The Fuzzy Lemons at Liberty Science Center, Saturday, March 21, 2009

This was our most highly anticipated gig of the year, and the consensus among band members seems to be that it was an awesome show. We would have loved a bigger crowd—279 seats is a lot of seats to fill!—but the folks who came out were very energetic, dancing along with the music. It felt pretty darned good.

Our day started at 7:00 a.m. when Dana made the first run in her truck, first picking up my guitars, then taking Brandon and Justin to load the gear from the rehearsal studio (Brandon’s drum kit takes a lot of hauling). Kipley picked me up at 8:00 and we went to Stef’s to get her and her band’s P.A. Thank you, Stefanie, we could NOT have done well today without you!

Stef and her gear took up all available space in Kipley’s car, so I ended up lounging with Stef’s husband Marco for a bit, waiting for Dana to swing back and pick me up. This turned out to be a good thing, because Stef called not once but twice, asking us to grab bits she’d left behind.

The J.D. Williams theater at Liberty Science Center is pretty roomy; it’s a movie theater but they also have a big stage with several podiums backstage. Obviously they can give many types of presentations there, but this was their first-ever rock concert. The staff, as a result, wasn’t able to provide much assistance but we were able to get our logo projected on the screen behind us, which was very cool. Stef and Justin did a fantastic job setting up the P.A., and we were ready for soundcheck by 10:00 a.m. An entire hour for soundcheck—awesome! We ran through at least four songs, maybe even five, and still had time for a bagel break before showtime.

Just before curtain at 11:00 we congregated backstage (not much more than a staircase). Someone told Justin we had a few minutes before showtime so he went to make a quick pit stop, but the door at the bottom of the stairs was a one-way affair and he ended up having to go all through the building to get back to us. So we started closer to 11:10, which was just about the only glitch in a day that could have been glitch-heavy but wound up going pretty smoothly. (We’ll most likely give Justin a lot of grief about going potty and disappearing right before the show, but so far the e-mails among the band members have been mercifully silent on the subject. Maybe because the concert itself was so fun.)

Comparing this show to where we were even 6 months ago is a revelation (Once again Colleen Castle showed up to videotape us, and I spent part of the afternoon going through the recording; I’ll post clips when I can). We sound pretty tight, with the instruments blending smoothly and no one stepping on anyone else’s parts. Dana, Kipley and I harmonize very well together if I do say so myself. Our audience participation and between-song patter have both improved, as well—I hate that silence between songs when the audience isn’t sure what they should be doing, but today’s crowd clapped and cheered and laughed at our witty banter.

We debuted two new songs: “Yes You Can,” my post-Obama up-with-people anthem; and Kipley’s wry “Fairy Tale Blues.” The two songs are very different and yet they’re both Fuzzy Lemons songs; I am pleased with the range that the band continues to reach.

The show ended around noon and we did the whole load/unload thing in reverse. I was home by two, just in time to deal with my drowsy post-nap 3-year-old. We had a great afternoon in the playground. Now it’s bedtime; we’re off to visit the in-laws on the Other Coast tomorrow. Have a great week!
~Dave

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