Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Monday at Schuba's

Angie Heaton was opening for Andrew Morgan and Kevin Tihista last night. I worked with Angie back at Parasol and hadn’t seen her in ages, plus I enjoyed the last Tihista/Morgan show I’d attended, so there was no way I was missing it last night. As I walked into Schuba’s purposefully, I managed to knock into someone, that someone being Angie. I hugged her and squealed about her cute new hair cut, then she spun me around and pointed to Michael, my old boss at the label. I talked with him for awhile, subjects ranging from “So how’s life in the big city?” to “Did you hear Bill’s not working at the label anymore?” to “So… I read you had brain surgery in your blog… how about that?”. I adore Michael, he’s just this big, gentle, sweetheart of a man, and I miss the hell out of hanging out at Parasol, so it was great to see folks. Angie introduced me to a couple of her friends, a horticulturalist and a police officer in training/former WLUW dj who live near Midway, and I was their near-constant companion during the night.

Angie played to a pretty sparse crowd, but was lovely and gentle and nervous as hell, like she always is. I got to hear lots of my favorite songs of hers, including “God Speed the Plow” and “Tattoo Blue”, and I was happy when she used the line she often uses in concert, “All my songs are about crushes, or death, or being crushed to death. I guess this is one of the latter.” Everyone in the room fell in love with her and her “funeral folk” (her brother’s term for her music), and lots of people came over to talk to her afterwards.

Once Andrew Morgan started up, we moved to the back of the room. Not to jeopardize my chances of scoring this prime location in the future, but I’ve realized that standing on the platform in front of the oven in the back of the room is a great spot. You get to see all the socializing in the back, but can still see the stage because you’re six or so inches taller than everyone else. Angie held court back there for awhile, as the police officer and I agreed that even when Andrew played his own songs instead of Moz covers, they still sounded like the could be old Smiths songs you’d never heard. A friend of Angie’s who has apparently been to every show anywhere since 1985 or so started chatting me up about improv, which I proved to know a lot about for someone who doesn’t take any classes. I’m apparently going to see his Improv Olympic 5B performance next weekend. Angie leaned over to me and whispered, “He’s hitting on you, but he has a girlfriend!”. I shrugged. “He doesn’t flirt with me.” I pointed out that maybe that’s because she’s a lesbian, though I later realized that, having hung out in the corner with three lesbians all night, I was probably not giving off the straightest vibe ever.

Kevin Tihista started playing soon, singing many of the same gorgeous, miserable, beautiful songs that I heard a couple weeks ago. At some point, I turned to Angie and said, “I don’t believe this, but I think you played the most upbeat set at this show.” She agreed this maybe the first time ever this has happened.

After the show, I chatted with Angie and Michael and some old C-U folk for a little while, and also confirmed that I had in fact brushed by Andrew Morgan on Diversey on Wednesday. Apparently his friend was convinced that I’d said “Hi” instead of “Pardon me,” making Andrew’s response of “No problem” silly enough for them all to remember who I was. We chatted about Kansas-Oklahoma jokes, the labs we’d worked in that got shut down by the NIH, and our various Hyde Park experiences. Altogether, a lovely little night, and worth the sleep-deprivation caused froggy throat I managed to get despite not smoking or drinking a thing.