the everybodyfields make me want to move to Johnson City, Tennessee.
Seeing their unassuming stage presence, their self-deprecating humor, their old clothes and bushy beards, and hearing their exacting musicianship and excellence made me grin in self-satisfied wonder. We arrived in time for sound check, and saw them play flawlessly, and work with the tech team to kindly and creatively resolve some tiny glitches. After which they put down their instruments and wandered through the hall like any other tourist, picking up brochures and greeting the ushers and security guards. They’ve got a childlike wonder and excitement, playing every note with passion, and singing along even when they’re off-mic. Heck, they even made a friendly feature of a particularly noisy 19-month-old (ahem!) in the back of the house…
No, they didn’t play t.v.a., but they did play his pontiac, and their slow version of good to be home made more than a few people weep without shame. Of course they stuck around afterward to sign a CD for The Girlie, and ask about a good Thai restaurant, and to talk about The Wife’s hometown in Tennessee. And the whole thing’s up on the Kennedy Center website, the tech team having made a mix that might be better than their albums, even. It’s sad music, so sad that it’s ironic, and ends up being joyful all over again. Despair comes full circle, and gives birth to hope.
Best of all, our old/new friend Kim popped out of the woodwork just in time, and we got to catch the show with her. I’ve been leery– critical, even– of internet relationships, which just seem weird and false to me. And it was weird to meet a person who you kinda feel like you know, but you don’t, and she doesn’t know you, not really. And it’s a little false, too, to have a person ‘know’ only the self-perceptions and propaganda that are put out on a blog. So it was awkward for all of us, I’m sure (though least so for Ella). But it was also true: to finally meet a person who faithfully walked through some difficult and important stuff with you, and who has felt like family, and who turned out to be just that. Thanks, View. You are the real deal, true through and through.