So where was I? Right, I was having people’s breasts poke me in the back. Not, I repeat, an experience to be recommended.
James showed up around 10, and was immediately plagued with sound problems, which caused his intro line to involved the word ‘fuck’, I’m pretty sure, although I don’t actually recall what it was. Because he had very little time, there was relatively little banter, and that, from James, is pretty unusual. He’s usually quite a clown. His set list included (in no particular order), Cadillac Man, Dangerous (a new one he wrote, which he said, “Two people know what this song means, and if Joss tells anybody, I’ll kill him,” about), Goodbye (aka Hundred Acre Wood), Come As You Are (easily the best rendition of anything he did that night), Chocolate Jesus, Angel (another original), and another Tom Waits song. And maybe a couple or three others; he didn’t do more than ten songs, and was sort of frantically going through his sets that he had written down to see what he could or should do in the time he had available.
He was very much in Bruce-Springsteen voice on Saturday, which is, well, not his real voice. He wants to grow up to be Bruce, clearly, but I like his own voice better. I think at it was mostly due to nerves/frazzlement over being late/time pressure, because normally he’s not quite so much in somebody else’s headspace while performing. Oh, one of the new songs he did was something he’d just written, and he said, “I’ll probably forget it,” and he did. :)
Several people asked for Rest In Peace, which he did not do, which did not surprise me. He shook his head and smiled the first time, and then looked sort of exasperated as people kept asking. He did do ‘Goodbye’ pretty much on request, though, ’cause he was going down his list of what to do and somebody called, “Goodbye!” and he kinda went, “Okay, I can do that,” and did.
I really can’t remember much of what he said–in part, probably, because he didn’t say a lot. When he did Angel, he mentioned it had been written for someone in specific, and “No, I’m not going to tell you where she is!” There was quite a bit of swearing at the sound system, and a lot of general frustration, and then they tossed him offstage so the next band could come play.
The woman behind me said, “Is that *it*?”, but it didn’t surprise me, I guess. He was so late, and there were other bands, so, well. He’s not a professional (at least not a professional musician!) and I’m pretty sure that the only reason they didn’t just totally cancel him is because there were three hundred crabby people waiting for James Marsters (with Capital Letters) to come perform. So I told the woman behind me that he usually played a lot longer, but since they were running so late, they probably needed the stage for the next gig, and she seemed relatively mollified.
So Sarah and I struggled our way out of the club and went looking for Deen and Angie. Upon locating them (they were in the already-forming line (line! not mob! that was new!) to meet and greet James), we promptly went back into the building to use the restrooms (14 Below has the Smallest Restrooms Ever), and on the way back in, I saw a guy and said to Sarah, “I think that’s Keri, the lead singer from Urban Family Dog,” and she said, “Why don’t you go ask him,” and I was like, “Nah, he’ll stop and talk to Deen if he sees her,” and when we came out again, indeed, Keri was hanging out with Deen and Angie and talking to them. So introductions were made all around, and really, *that’s* when the evening started to turn good.
Waugh! Why did you stop now just when it was starting to get good?