Blast from our past

My phone started ringing a little before 9 a.m. yesterday morning, which was a great, yet unexpected surprise.

Jason’s face filled my screen, as I slide the arrow accepting his phone call. He left for work around his usual time, 8:15 a.m., so I was a little confused when my phone started ringing. It’s unusual for Jason to call before he walks into work. I’m lucky if I hear from him at all some days because the kitchen gets so busy.

For the past couple of months, I have had the itch to go to a concert. For a while, it seemed like Jason and I had the opportunity to go see one of our many favorite bands on a pretty frequent basis. But, with the move to Tennessee, our spending was limited due to us saving all of our funds. Every time a band travels near to our new location of Kingsport, I tell Jason . . . . so needless to say he knows my desire.

Jason took me to my very first concert in Fort Myers while we were in high school. A country concert at the Civic Center. Jason is an absolute blast to go to a concert with. We have created some unbelievable memories at the many, many shows we have attended. He always finds a way to get us as close to the stage as possible. (Yes, there has been a few times we couldn’t hear anything for quite a few hours after leaving a concert.) I love the way the music moves him, how into the words and instruments he becomes. He definitely showed me a new way to appreciate concerts.

So back to the phone call . . .

Jason said he was listening to the radio and heard an interview with Fuel. The band was going to be playing at Capone’s in Johnson City. My smile instantly overtook my office.

Was he really going to suggest what I thought he was?

Jason said why don’t you go online and see how much tickets are. I’ll leave it up to you, if they aren’t too expensive go ahead and buy them.

This man is so good to me. I love his spontaneity.

So I go online, tickets are only $15. Yep, that was an easy decision. I went ahead and bought two tickets and clicked the button that we will pick them up at will call once we arrive.

So, I send Jason a text message telling him what time the show starts. His response “Nice.”

When Jason and I dated in high school he introduced me to a lot of music. Fuel happened to be one of those bands. So our first “date night” in I don’t know how long was a blast from our past.

Did I mention how good this man is to me? He’s always finding ways to surprise me and make my wishes come true.

Before we arrived at the venue, we stopped and got a bite to eat. We stopped at Chick-Fil-A. Once we opened the packages to our sandwiches I noticed that they forgot to put it on a multi-grain bun. Jason, on the other hand, received the right bun. So what did he do? He took the top off his sandwich and told me to give him the top off of mine. This cracked me up.

After having some good laughs, we were on our way to the concert venue.

Capone’s was not that bad of venue. It had a very intimate setting, so we were able to get pretty close to the stage. The only bad thing about the space the band played in, was it got really warm very fast. I could only imagine how much warmer it would have been if the room was jammed packed with people.

Once Fuel took stage my energy rose. I could feel Jason’s energy rising as well. The band played a great mix of old and new music. Some of the old songs took me back, took me back to 16 years ago.

I remember listening to those tunes with Jason, wow, 16 years ago.

My body started swaying and my feet started tapping, as the words flew out of my mouth when a familiar tune filled the air. The sounds of the guitar often times raised the hairs on my arms as a chord was struck or a certain beat of the drum overtook the room.

Oh how I love live music.

It was such a great night. I loved every minute of our night out. If felt good to go out, to get out of the house and spend some time with Jason.

Nights like last night remind me of the history Jason and I have created. It’s hard to believe we have known each other for 18 years. Where does the time go?

I love this man to pieces and am so fortunate to have such a caring man who, yes, will do anything to make me smile.

A tune from the heart

Jerry Louis performing at Low Key Tiki Song Writers Fest Jan. 13, 2013.

Jerry Louis performing at Low Key Tiki Song Writers Fest Jan. 13, 2013.

As the live music surrounded me, I began to sway to the beat and smile as certain lyrics grabbed a hold of my heart.

I did not feel like I was working today as I covered a Song Writers Fest that encompassed many musicians who have known each other for more than 50 years. Without any rehearsal, these musicians got up on stage and began playing their instruments and instantly became in sync with those around them. It was incredible to see and hear so many talented musicians in one location – St. James City.

I sat next to the president of Flora-Bama – a destination in Perdido Key Beach, FL where musicians from all over the world gather to perform during the Frank Brown International Songwriters Festival – this afternoon. Although he told me he had no musical talent, he spoke poetically about all the musicians who were standing before us performing.  As we sat shoulder to shoulder, he encouraged me to really listen to the lyrics and decipher what the true meaning of the song was.

This man who could not sit still as the music moved him, told me time and time again that these people (the musicians, producers, performers and music writers) make our world a better place because they provide us emotion through their music that we cannot always express on our own.

“If it weren’t for them our life would be empty,” he told me because these musicians play lyrics that are from the heart. I could not disagree with his thoughts as his passion for music continued to overwhelm him.

Music can be healing, uplifting and encouraging in so many ways. There are many times I turn on a favorite artist while I am writing to make the words flow from my thoughts into an article. When I’m feeling down, or need some encouragement to finish off the last of my distance, music lifts my spirits and fills that void.

I was incredibly moved by the music I heard this afternoon as the musicians spoke their heart through an instrument or their voice.

“Troubadours travel around and make the world a better place,” this gentleman told me as another set ended. As I looked around and watched everyone as they were watching those performing, his statement materialized as there was not one unhappy person in the bunch.

There is something about watching a musician play live that is completely different than listening to the same tunes on a CD. When you see and hear the emotion firsthand, it sometimes formulates a better understanding of the true meaning of that song.

Another talented musician, who has been in the business for many years, peformed at Low Key Tiki Jan. 13, 2013.

Another talented musician, who has been in the business for many years, peformed at Low Key Tiki Jan. 13, 2013.