Just got back from Fry’s Electronics . . . hubby wanted to look at stuff, and when he seemed really dejected about not getting to buy whatever-it-was, I told him to go ahead and charge it. I shouldn’t have, but I said, “If it’ll make you happy.” He hasn’t seemed happy lately with the performance of his computer on those silly games. But that’s not the thing I wanted to write about.
Fry’s has a Steinway concert grand in a roped-off area by the music CDs. I usually go back there to hear a really good player, a grad student at SMU, on Saturdays and Sundays. But today they didn’t even have the PianoDisc on. A sign on top of the piano proclaimed that they were looking for a pianist to perform (paid) on Friday nights, Saturday afternoons, and Sundays. I asked the local manager about it. “Why isn’t my friend here who was so good?”
“Oh . . . which one?”
I described him.
“Yeah, that was the guy we liked out of all of them. Well . . . they quit paying him. They were paying cash off the books, and the manager kept saying he’d have to arrange to get it, and after the second time the guy didn’t get paid, he left.” They all guffawed.
I knew it sounded too good to be true. “Well, that’s too bad.” I was still interested in getting to play an in-tune new Steinway grand, however, so I said, “Who would I talk to about the job?”
“The manager, I suppose. He comes in at 9 AM and you’d have to call early, before he sneaks away.” They laughed again.
I know what you’re thinking. The shift is probably about five HOURS on Friday night and six or seven HOURS on Saturday and Sunday. What in the HECK would I play? Everything I know, TWICE. And sight-read a bunch of those jazz arrangements/transcriptions that I bought a couple of years ago. (I got four Steve Allen books on eBay, and then several Oscar Peterson transcriptions, and then two versions of all I could find from Vince Guaraldi, the “Charlie Brown Christmas” guy. The biggest hit with the crowd, whenever I play in front of people, is Guaraldi’s “Linus and Lucy” and “Christmas Time is Here” and “Skating” and so forth from the TV shows. Followed closely by the Fuer Elise, a medley from “The Fantasticks,” and “Memory” from Cats. [Sorry, Dennis.] The general public doesn’t really go for obscure classical stuff, which would work in my favor here.)
But I get SO nervous when I play and people are watching. People aren’t really paying attention at a big store like that, though. And it might help me get over stage fright. However . . . the guy was warning me that they don’t PAY. Wonder what they’re gonna say the gig pays? Not too much to begin with, I suspect. Still . . . it’d keep me out of the bars on weekends. So it’s under consideration.
I mean, it wouldn’t hurt to call the manager tomorrow morning. . . .
Seriously, guys, an IN TUNE NEW STEINWAY CONCERT GRAND . . . *swoon* OMG
But I’m being an idiot. If I could just play my own by-ear arrangements of Neil Young/John Denver/Randy Newman/Beatles/Monkees songs, it’d be different. But I would run out of show tunes and I’d have to play the “easy” Beethoven sonata and the Schubert Moments Musical, and I’d be sure to screw up, and then where would we be? (If anyone in the crowd even noticed that there WAS a wrong note, you’d eat your hat. But I would know.)