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Archive for June, 2011

Gig #9, Eric’s Homecoming Open House

Gig #9
6/15/11
Eric’s Homecoming Open House, Grand Ledge MI

The Gig:
Eric is the son of good friends, Judy and Harv. Eric has recently graduated from
U. S. Army Basic Training and is home for a short stint before he is deployed. The gig was at his parents’ house and I was set up in the garage where the tables had been set up for guest to eat and hang out.

The Lesson Learned – Repetition sooths the nerves
I think I made it through 8 or 9 songs before I felt any of the nervous sweat run down my forehead. I thought this was pretty good considering there was only about 4 or 5 feet between me and the closest person seated. Even though I knew at least half of the people there, one would think that this would take some of the pressure off but I’ve found that it may make it even worse. I’m not sure why that is, but sometimes it is easier to perform in front of strangers than it is in front of family or friends. But now to contradict myself, it may be, as time has gone by and that several of my friends have been at my gigs supporting me (including this open house) that I’m no longer fearing judgment in front of my most important critics.

The Music:
The sound was good at the low volume required for this size room. I just needed enough power to blend in with the socializing between guests. Many times in the past I’ve played in spaces about the same size without any amplification. Although still a good time, it is a struggle to play and sing loud enough to even hear yourself. This of course then stains the vocal cords and compromises the quality of the guitar and voice.

Special thanks to:
• Harv for taking the video’s and pictures
• Judy and Harv for inviting me to take part in their celebration.
• Eric for his service. Be safe my friend – We’ll do it again when you get back.

Looking forward to the next one,
Tim

Gig #8, The Log Jam in Grand Ledge MI

Gig #8
6/11/11
Log jam, Grand Ledge MI

The Gig:
Local musician Chip Christy invited me to play during his breaks. This consisted of 2 sets approximately 20 minutes each which is about enough time to play 6 songs per set.

The Lesson Learned – My voice was horse before I even started:
Earlier in the day, my wife and I and 3 other couples went to a beer tent at a festival a few miles down the road. About 40 minutes into our stay one of the guy’s eyes started getting red and irritated, then another guy and them me; more than likely it was some sort of pollen. We hung out for an hour or so then left. Everybody’s reaction pretty much cleared up except I was left with a low gravely voice that I just couldn’t get rid of. Another possibility and possibly more likely? At the beer tent the music was pretty loud and you would pretty much have to yell to have conversation. I’ve been in this type of situation before and attempted to play and sing and I’ve a similar problems. But regardless, I just picked songs that were in lower register. This would have been a problem if I was doing a whole gig. One more thing that did seem to help, my buddy Doctor Dave suggested tea and honey. The bar didn’t have any honey but just the tea along seemed to help.

The Music:
The sound was good. My buddy Gary gave me the slow-down signal a couple of times and I needed it. For some reason, I always seem to speed up during the songs. I think this is a common problem, but one must be mindful of it to conquer it – Thanks Gary
The set list consisted of about 12 songs from my previous postings.

Special thanks to:
• Chip Christy for giving me another opportunity to hone my skills
• Friends and family that came out to support me. I counted something like 28 people. It means a lot to me and definitely helps me keep rolling (many of them are in pictures that I’ve posted under the Photo Album/Gig #8 tab)
• Harv for taking the video’s
• My wife Kim for taking the pictures
• Tom Moore for his continued support and the man behind this blog

Looking forward to the next one,
Tim

Gig #7 Ethan’s H.S. Open House

Gig #7         6/4/11

Ethan’s H.S. Open House, Grand Ledge MI

 This gig was set up through my friends that hosted my last gig (Gig #6, D & D’s Barbeque).  Prior to Dave & Deb’s gig, Deb told me that she has a friend who has a son that is graduating from high school this spring and that they may be interested in having me play at his open house as one of my gigs. I suggested that they listen to a few of my songs at tims52gigs.com or timheenan.com and to let me know if my style of music fits their venue. They did and the gig #7 was scheduled.

I arrived at 6:00 and was warmly welcomed by Ethan and his mom.  It was about 90 degrees outside and close to the same inside. My buddy Dave set me up with a fan as I got the rest of my gear out of my truck. The open house was at the Grand Ledge Boy Scout Club on the Grand River.  The floor was wood and the walls and ceiling were solid (dry wall) so the sound moved around quite freely.  I did a few sound checks and adjusted the volume. There were a lot of people so I had to turn up the volume on my combo amp to a pretty high level, louder than I’ve ever had it.  Again I was very pleased with the quality of sound that my little Fender Combo amp put out.  Dave also commented on how good the sound was from his position half way across the room.

I started playing.  My first song was “Margaritaville”.  I’ve learned to start with something that is easy for me to play so I can build a little confidence right off the bat instead of challenging myself on something that I could easily make mistakes playing which would have the opposite effect.  Song number two was “Peaceful Easy Feeling” which is exactly what I was starting to feel and enjoy myself.  I say this because I had planned on making this the last gig or at least putting this project on hold for a while. I’ve been struggling with balancing the time that I think I need to put into this project and my day to day responsibilities not to mention my real job which is an hour away from home.  But now here I am in shorts, shirt and flip flops, playing and singing overlooking the Grand River for a bunch of happy people. This is what I have been envisioning ever sense I played during one of Chip Christy’s breaks at a H.S. open house a year ago (see my bio for more about this this). I was living my dream. With the music, the people, the water, shorts and  flip flops, the sun shining and singing – this was the moment – I was in it. Half way through the gig I ditched the idea of quitting tims52gigs. I love this stuff!   Music is always in my head. I’ve tried to turn it off over and over and over, but it never stops. I love it.

The experience – In my blog I wrote “Why 52 gig? Experience and Exposure”.  During this gig, sure I gained more experience but what I didn’t know when wrote Experience and Exposure is what I was going to get to experience myself – make sense?  I’ll try to explain.  Prior to gig #6, I never even knew any of these people, now I’m right in the middle and sharing in this family’s celebration.  Seeing the pictures of Ethan as was going up on a bulletin board watching his friends and relatives hug, kiss and congratulate him on his accomplishment and wishing him well on this next journey which is with the U.S. Marine Cops. (hats off to you young man – I don’t even know you and you make me proud).  Most of the people that know me know that I’m a rather sentimental individual, I can’t even watch a parade in our small town without getting a tear in my eye. I was touched to be part of this event.  The pleasure was all mine. I’ll always remember this gig.

I learned that Ethan also plays guitar and piano. I asked him about half way thought the gig if he wanted to play.  He said he was still meeting and greeting his guests.  I asked him again when I finished playing and this time he accepted. Ethan tuned the guitar to a dropped D tuning and played and sang a song. I thoroughly enjoyed your performance.  Great job and good luck in all of your endeavors my friend.

The songs –  

My version of Rhiannon by Fleetwood received a welcomed applause.  I have been trying to tweak this one a little bit and it seemed to pay off.

The last song I played was American Soldier by Toby Keith. I love this song but I’ve never played this one out in front of anyone before because I struggle with the range of the lyric near the end of the song.  But I thought this song was so fitting for the occasion, so I moved the capo down a fret which allowed me to sing it in a more suitable range and played it.  It went over well.  I’ll add this one to my list.

No pictures yet on this one.  Hopefully somebody will email some to me if they have any.

No video this time

Looking forward to the next one,

Tim

 

  Set List

  • Margaritaville
  • Peaceful Easy Feeling
  • Norwegon Wood
  • People Are Crazy
  • Small Town
  • Peaceful World
  • The Life
  • Come Monday
  • What do you want
  • Turn The page
  • Rhiannon
  • Small town Saturday night
  • Volcano
  • Fire and rain
  • American soldier
  •  And few more