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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Bob Dorr And The Blue Band Update


Direct from Sparkle City!


It's been one of those weeks of peaks and valleys, first, the appearance info...

Tonight (Thursday) is the make up for the July 2, rain postponed, Porky's perfectly picturesque patio party in the parking lot, 44th & Douglas in Des Moines. Get there early for the great burgers, we play 6:15-9:15. The bikes/bikers always make for great people watching, and speaking of people watching, I wonder what Porky's Pink Ladies will be wearing in 90 degree heat...

And speaking of make up dates, Saturday (can you believe it's) Aug. 2 has us in Colby Park in the Des Moines suburb of Windsor Heights for the rescheduled Independence Day celebration that was flooded out on the 4th of July. There is now a brand new permanent stage/band shell and I'm told the park has been totally cleaned and is looking good. This multi-generational city celebration has been one of my favorites for 4 years. Al will be joined by Dave Sharp, the sax player that played with us at the Harlan RAGBRAI event, in the horn section. Phil Maass, Dennis, and I will be part of the sound crew for the day, featuring four bands starting at 2pm, The Blue Band plays 7-10pm, right before the fireworks. Bring sunscreen and ice cream CAKEroll for the crew! Red, white, and blue frosting optional...

Next Saturday (Aug. 9) has us right here in Sparkle City for a different kind of biker crowd: The Cedar Trails Festival. Our performance, right before the Night Ride, happens 7-9p and is sponsored by The Hearst Center For The Arts. Heath will join Al in the horn section. This is a 3-day festival showcasing one of the state's best trail systems. See ya on the pathways...

And then, the event I look forward to more than any other: The Iowa State Fair. We play the last weekend, Aug. 15 and 16. If you've been to one of these shows, you know what I'm talkin' about. If you haven't been there, GET THERE THIS YEAR, if for no other reason than the funnel CAKES!...

So the good news and the bad news. The good news-I really had fun last Saturday at the Wells Fargo Street Dance. (Hello Col. Bob!) I got to see a bunch of my high school friends (I know how old you are) including the bass player in the first band I ever played in that got paid for playing: Tortoise & The Hair. (We were the big buzz of the Sudlow Jr. High cafeteria/multi-purpose room!) Speaking of bass players, the bad news is that Davis has had to take on a day job (despite The Blue Band making some decent money in the summertime, the Fall/Winter ain't lookin' too good (yes, you're seeing correctly on the Tour Page, that we have more jobs booked in July 2009 than we do in November 2008) and he's got two daughters that are going to want to go to college some day) This comes just as all of us seem to have gelled into one GIANT groove machine and were poised to take it on the road a little more (Dan & Monica Post, we're gonna play one of those parties you're trying to organize in Kansas City SOMEday!) The good news is that he still wants to play with The Blue Band. The bad news is that he works 8-4pm, Mon.-Fri. making playing more than two hours from home difficult on any day except Saturday. That includes TONIGHT at Porky's!! The good news is that Sam Salomone will be back on the bandstand with us tonight to play organ bass and Hammond organ. We're celebrating Sam joining us by including the full horn section of Heath and Al! Sam, Jeff, and a full horn section in Porky's Parking lot? Whoa, that IS good news! But before I get too euphoric, the bad news is that we don't have a bass player (yet) for Thurs. Aug. 21 in Davenport and Friday Aug. 22 at Hawgstock in Winterset. I'm hoping the good news is that you know someone who plays bass, already knows all 75 songs that we play, and is willing to play for the small amount of money I can afford to pay them! Tell me somethin' good...

One of the biggest changes/challenges for me as a band leader in the last 5 years is simply being able to staff each gig. Each day I realize how COMPLETELY unusual it is that The Blue Band had four people that played nearly every gig together for the first FIFTEEN years! (thank you Jeff, Bryce Loshman, and Molly Nova) I am bound and determined to keep doing this until the year 2012, which would give me a lot of synergistic numbers. (many of you know my obsession with numbers and percentages) In 2012, I will be 60 years old. I will have worked at Iowa Public Radio-KUNI 40 years. The Blue Band will be 30 years old. Please keep helping me make that goal, I'm convinced it will be a magic year...

See ya on the (hot) Blue Highway, looking in every town for substitute bass players, hoping for an army of zydeco tie players at The Fair, wishing Jill, the Blue Goddess of the North, a happy birthday (a perfect excuse to bring CAKE) and reminding you that we love you. Bob Dorr & The Blue Band

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