Tonight, I am in a band. I am only a guest musician. But the guys on stage are my friends.
It’s a great night. Bright lights are shining in my face. There are happy people in the audience. And I can’t think of many things I love more than playing music with my friends.
Bruce is on the harmonica. George is on the lap steel. Jack is on bass. Steven is on the drums. Another Stephen is on Hammond. Jerry is tearing the keys off his saxophone. Mike is playing congas. And I am playing piano.
There’s an old saying about bands. The quickest way to get the band to sound good is to shoot the piano player.
Old joke. One I’ve heard many times. But then, I’ve heard them all throughout the years.
Q: What do you call a piano player without a girlfriend?
Q: What do you throw a drowning keyboard player?
A: His amplifier.
I’ve been playing piano since age 9. The way I started playing piano was, my father bought an
old spinet from the classified section.
One December afternoon, Daddy and three of his fellow ironworkers hauled the piano into our home and put the instrument into our dank basement, just beside the water heater, beneath the framed embroidery which read:
“Watch ye therefore: ye know not when the master of the house cometh.”
My father bribed his friends to help him move this piano by paying them with beer. His friends were feeling no pain. As a result, by the time the piano got to the basement, the thing looked as though it had fallen down three flights of stairs. Because, of course, it had.
But it sounded great. I was over the moon to have MY VERY OWN PIANO.
Mama asked Daddy whether he was going to buy me piano lessons. He replied, “If the boy wants to play bad enough,…