Friday, December 7, 2012

Rock 'n Roll Deja Vu

December 7, 2012

by Heather

If somebody would have told me as a teenager that I'd still be dancing to my family's rock and roll band as we eased into our retirement years, I'd have called them crazy.

In junior high,  I played tambourine periodically with my brother's band and, very occasionally, danced on stage as a "go-go dancer."  Fast forward two years: I'm 15 and dating Tom who is also in a rock and roll band (Tom and I went on to marry five years later).  In our twenties, both guys moved away from the band experience and my years as a band groupie/roadie were over, or so I thought.

About a year and a half ago, a conversation started about how much fun it would be to get together and form a garage band -- just to sit around, play instruments, and have some laughs.  I thought I could play the keyboard (hey, I played piano when I was eight after all), Tom would play lead guitar, brother Scott on bass, a biker buddy on rhythm guitar, and we could find a singer and drummer.  The band came together with the addition of a neighbor as lead singer, and the Maricopa County Public Defender as the the drummer (his first question, when asked if he wanted to join this band of bikers, was "Are the other members potential clients?"). 

At the first practice, I realized I was way out of my league.  The other members came with years of experience and they sounded pretty good right from the start.  I knew I couldn't keep up so I bowed out -- not entirely though.  I had a favorite song "Born to Be Wild" by Steppenwolf that I just had to play and my husband wanted me to play along to "Route 66," which he sings.  With some practice, I was able to master (is playing one-handed really "mastering"?) those two tunes.

A local biker bar has a jam night every Wednesday. People show up with their instruments -- everything from horns and harmonicas to guitars and keyboards -- and groups are put together to perform.  Scott and Tom had been playing there off and on for several months when they invited the other band members to come along. The guys played three songs together as a band and were good enough to get hired for a gig.  We were back in the band business!

Their band (called "Outside of Normal") now plays about once a month, most often at the El Dorado Bar and Grill.  What makes it really fun is that our friends and relatives come and rock out while the band is playing. We have a blast dancing and singing along to the songs we grew up with. I'm not the band's only guest artist -- friends, neighbors, relatives, work colleagues, and just about anybody who wants to perform on stage is invited up to do so.  Between the band and the audience, there's never a dull moment!

That's me playing the keyboard and lots of our wild friends dancing up a storm -- sure love that they come out and party with us!

Here's Ann, part of our trio of bloggers, taking a break from the dancing.

Sheila, the other third of our blogging team, is chatting with Edie, a member of our book club.

You should see Sheila and her husband, David, on the dance floor -- they're crazy good!  Behind them is Cathy, David's cousin (also from Scotland) and a member of our book club.  Hidden from view is her husband, Phil.

Everybody's a critic!  Rowan likes to watch his Pop-pop play the bass 
but sitting this close is a little too loud for him.

If you're in in the mood for a party, join us Saturday, December 15th, in south Scottsdale, AZ,
at the El Dorado Bar and Grill.
Starting time 8 p.m.; ending time midnight!

Keeping the Merry in Christmas!


  1. It is a blast! Fun to have our "own" band to go listen to, and of course they play the good ole rock and roll that we all grew up listening to. Love being a band groupie...Rock on Tom!!

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