We turned Tuesday into Saturday.
It’s but once a year (and sometimes less frequently) that Roger Clyne & The Peacemakers make their way to my neck of the woods for a live show. It was on this most recent Tuesday that we made the trek to Ferndale, Michigan to enjoy the epic rock show, a performance easily the best I’ve seen out of the Peacemakers in the most recent of their shows I’ve attended. We rocked and sang in celebration of music and life.
Arizona is a place of significance to me. It’s the home of Her Majesty, the Grand Canyon, a place for which my appetite is still not sated, even after eight visits and numerous hiking adventures. And it is the home of the Roger Clyne & The Peacemakers, music I’ve followed for seventeen years (one of the few of anything to be in my life for that long). That music was foremost in my mind on my first trip to that state, a vacation with my parents in the summer following my high school graduation.
We explored much of the area (including my first glimpse of the Canyon) on that trip and the Peacemakers were ever in my ears. I even took to checking out one of their regular local venues. Though they were not playing Nita’s Hideaway that evening, having yet to see them live, I simply wanted to stand in “their world”. I convinced my parents to drop me alone at the random (to them) bar far from our lodgings so I could take in the music of Juliana Hatfield.
The return travels from our vacation brought canceled flights and a replacement bus ride to move my family the last section of our trip home. It was on this bus, with my Discman and headphones in my lap, where I sat when the man behind me tapped on my shoulder and started to chat.
He was interested in music and began to inquire as to what I was playing and who were my favorites. I mentioned the Peacemakers and started into my routine explanation of just who the mostly unknown band was…but the look on his face stopped me. He asked if I had the CD.
“Open the liner notes.”
Confused, I followed the man’s direction, opening the booklet from the CD case of what was, at that time, the most recent RCPM album. As I did so, the man was fetching his license from his wallet. He nodded as he took the booklet from my hand, flipped to the back page and handed it back, along with his identification.
And behind me, for the entirety of the bus ride, had sat a man who had played on the album from my unknown, favorite band.
Here’s to life.