Holy rock and roller!
Where there’s a Will there’s a way … a Will McFarlane, that is. Way is for his playing … as in way great … as in the way that everyone playing with him just automatically amps way up a couple of notches … as in the way all of us witnessing said playing at the Blue Note Grill last night are jaw-droppingly mesmerized … as in the way it turned into a family affair with Will’s wife, Janet, sharing vocals and son, Jamie, on bass. Well, you get most of the picture … the rest of which includes Clark Stern on keyboards and Justin Holder on drums. If you don’t believe me, go google these players.
Three sets, three handsome men sharing my table (Robert, David & Mike), and three glasses of Matchbook Cab later and I still wasn’t ready to go home and break the spell. The band brought their A-game with Standy By Me, Bring it on Home, Do Right Woman, Nadine, My Little Runaway, Dixie Chicken … it was pure magic. I could go on and on, but then I’d just be rubbing it in.
Robert \r(o)-be-rt\ a boy’s name pronounced RAH-bert is of Old German origin and means “bright fame.” A favorite name for boys since the Middle Ages. Especially favored by the Scots due to 14th-century king Robert the Bruce and to poet Robert Burns. (Credit: www.thinkbabynames.com)
I know how many of you are laughing already. I’d laugh too if it wasn’t just so damn weird … and a little creepy, if I think about it long and hard enough. If you’ve heard, or read, about my boomerang drummer phenomenon, then you shouldn’t be surprised here … this is just one further example of my inescapable universal loop. (Jump over here to peek behind the cymbals if you have no clue what I’m talking about.)
Somewhere early in the Life of Me, “it” was written. Or maybe the “Bob” fairy waved a magic wand over my bald baby head or cut my baby powder with something dark and twisty assuring that I would forever have some sort of Robert in my life. What Dr. Seuss character was let loose in my life story, I wanna know? Bob, I am? And why a Robert, fer cryin’ out loud? Why not a Willie or a Sam? What possible lesson could I learn by having a Robert … or a Bob … or a Bobby … or a Rob? None, I tell you … none.
But have them I do. It’s not even something you can take precautions against. About a year and a half ago I was actually seeing two Roberts’ at the same time … and I admit right here and now that I got a bit of a cheap thrill out of it. At least I didn’t have to ever worry about calling one of them the wrong name during an intimate moment.
When I meet a man and he tells me his name is Robert/Bob/Bobby, I just smile knowingly and say “of course, it is” … much the same way I respond “of course, you are” if they tell me they are a drummer.
Far be it from me to try to make sense of this cosmic name game.
Robert, Robert, bo-bobert,
I don’t make this stuff up. Cross my heart. Hope to ….
Sunday just squawks for roast chicken and biscuits. And this Sunday it’s supposed to be cold and rainy, with even a slight chance of snow in the mix … so there you go.
Just slide some garlic herb butter up underneath the skin, nestle that bird in a big old Le Creuset pot with some white wine, garlic, potatoes, carrots, onions, fennel, mushrooms, peas and some tarragon tucked in around it … pop that baby in the oven for a couple of hours.
Serve it with a salad, biscuits, and a bottle of pinot noir. And for those of you who only drink white wine with chicken … yes, it’s ok to drink white wine before Labor Day.
Is this a good time to mention that my friend Robert is coming over for supper?
Music to shuffle through while roasting a bird:
The Funky Chicken (Rufus Thomas)
Fire (Bruce Springsteen)
Wasn’t Born to Follow (The Byrds)
I’ll Fly Away (Gillian Welch/Alison Krauss)
How Long (The Eagles)
Fly Like an Eagle (Steve Miller Band)
Free Bird (Lynyrd Skynyrd)