What a fabulous weekend in Austin . . .
Marcia Ball's b-day event was even better than I expected - between the music, hanging with old friends, and just being in one of my favorite music cities - it was very satisfying fun. The music was outstanding, beginning with zydeco and Cajun music on Friday night through an amazing "pianorama" on Sunday afternoon . . . and including a completely over the top performance by the "divas" on Saturday night. Highlights for me included the ageless Lavelle White belting out down and dirty blues - sounding and shaking better than most folks half her age (she's pushing 80!); Marcia harmonizing with Tracy Nelson, Angela Strehli and Lou Ann Barton on songs from the collaborations she did with those artists in years past (and who I never thought I'd hear sing together); a pianorama that ended with the hands of nine players on five keyboards pounding out a storm of notes that had the audience out of their chairs; hearing one of the best boogie woogie players you've never heard of - Bob Seeley - wowed the audience when Marcia invited him up to play; and Delbert McClinton and Teresa James belting out a duet backed by a combination of players from his band and Marcia's and joined by the Mingo Fishtrap horns.
Saw a lot of old friends from Delbert's cruise - was wonderful how many folks came into town to celebrate with Marcia. Having not gone on the cruise this year, it felt like one with the concentration of music and friends. Made a few new connections too . . . and may have sold a few on coming to Portland for the Waterfront Blues Festival.
And what Marcia was able to do in three days to raise money for two great organizations was also a testament to the person she is - over $125K from ticket sales, auction items, and additional contributions. Just an amazing weekend . . . now that's the way to have a birthday! Will post some photos soon.