Sunday, September 29, 2013

Weird Gig # 9

Sometime back in the mid-'80s I joined the David Brewer Band for a gig at the clubhouse of a well-known one-percenter motorcycle club in Salem, OR.  The band included myself on harp, David on guitar, drummer Kirk "KT" Tuttle, and Abu Nafee on bass.  Abu normally played guitar and slide guitar in David's band, and I don't recall why he was playing bass on this particular gig.

The four of us met at the old Fremont Tavern that afternoon, loaded our gear into a small rented trailer, and split for Salem in KT's suicide door Lincoln Continental.   Things were going fine until the Lincoln's engine started running badly enough for us to have to stop several times by the side of the road.  After cooling off for a while it would start up again, but the problem continued until KT discovered the fuel filter was clogged.  After removing the debris from the filter, we were on our way.

We arrived in Salem many hours late, but set up and played anyway.  We probably would have played the whole night except that Abu, who had not been ingesting any of the abundant party favors, announced that that was it, he wasn't playing any more!  And not another bass note was played. 

The rest of the night is a blur, but at some point, I recall unrolling my sleeping bag on a couch in the clubhouse and making a futile attempt to sleep.  After a few minutes, I heard this faintly familiar (and for some reason, ominous) rattling sound.  I peeked out of the bag and saw a leering club member getting ready to spray paint the sleeping bag.  Okay, I got it - no sleeping during parties at the clubhouse!

Later the next morning we pulled ourselves together and started packing our stuff up for the trip home.  One problem - Abu and his bass guitar had disappeared.  His amp was still there, but he was nowhere to be seen.  We searched the premises and the neighborhood, but no Abu.  Bleary and tired, the remnants of the band headed back to Seattle.

It turned out that Abu, fed up with the shenanigans at the gig and its aftermath, had somehow got himself to the Salem Greyhound bus station in the middle of the night and went home.  He actually arrived in Seattle before the rest of us.

I'm outta here!

I should say that, when I talked to Mr. Brewer about this gig he said that he didn't see anything "weird" about it.  It was just like all of his other gigs, except for, you know, the disappearing bass player part.

You can check out the Boneyard Preachers here.  See you at the nightclub!

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