It took a while for her to understand that bringing together a group of musicians, writing and rehearsing some decent songs, playing a handful of local gigs, developing a website mailing list, buying gear and then more gear, firing and re-hiring the guitar player before performing in the music video that went viral and raised $2,000,000 for UNICEF, getting an agent and doing a bunch of auditions most of which were bogus- that was the price you had to pay in order to book that cameo appearance in that film that wins that Oscar for that “Best Song” and gets you that Rolling Stone Interview that finishes your career, and that all of it was a lot easier to write about than to live through.
She stares down at her boots and tells herself she’s not going to miss the endless packing, unpacking, loading in, tearing down of gear, or saying “Cheese” and making nice with the backstage circus. She wants to replace her dreams of being a performer with sentences describing the thrill of standing in the wings the night they made the “Toast” video, and the way she felt hearing the Mayor introduce the band and express his appreciation for her song that was making international news and bringing all the positive attention to Albuquerque.
Then the stage manager touches her right arm, somebody cues the band, and the lights come up. Jodie runs her hand over the wrinkles on her sleeve which probably nobody will notice, puts on a smile designed to brighten the balcony seats, and walks to the microphone center stage. The band is vamping and smiling back at her winding down the intro with a fermata, and she launches into the song that got us to this gig.
I’m gon-na get me a judge
Gon-na get me a ju-ry
Get me a law-yer, get me a mis-trial
I’ll be the toast of the town, dammit
I’ll be the toast of the town.
The audience is screaming and already singing along because they know the words from youTube, and on stage during the guitar solo Jodie is laughing and wondering where did all these people come from and the whole idea of adults who never grew up being such a large percentage of the population.
As a writer she could also tell how the only time she is ever comfortable anymore is holding a guitar.
Anne Animas lives, writes and hides out in Southern Colorado.