Musings as I am, literally and figuratively, "Dancing on the Journey!"
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Tuesday, March 8, 2011
"South in my Mouth" then a "Blast from the Past!"
"South in my Mouth,"
then a "Blast from the Past!"
I just spent a great weekend with four friends from my college days at Georgia College in Milledgeville. We were long overdue for a visit, but our primary objective for this trip was a Merle Haggard/Kris Kristofferson concert!
Before the concert, we enjoyed a late lunch at Paula Deen's new North Carolina restaurant.
Sharon, Jamie, Gail, Paula, Kaye and Jane
Paula's menu was a veritable feast of traditional Southern-fried fare! Paula's cheesy biscuits, yeast rolls, fried chicken livers with flash fried collards, fried green tomatoes with spicy red sauce, chicken salad croissant, crab cakes, fried oyster "Po Bubba" sandwich, homemade chicken noodle soup, triple chocolate cheesecake, and all the tasty accompaniments, were lusciously "South in our Mouths!"
Getting ready to order our food
The restaurant was really "plugged in." The hostess scanned her wristwatch-like device over an electronic box, when we were seated. Our waitress "checked in" at the device on our table as well. The small electronic box, consisted of an interactive screen with menu buttons, which accessed photos of menu items, trivia, and other information!
The event center concert venue seemed intimate, even though there were over 2,000 seats. Our seats were row twelve, center stage, two rows above the floor level seats. We probably weren't 40 feet from the stage.
The long anticipated concert did not disappoint! Merle and Kris proved that, at 73 and 74, respectively, they can still "bring it!"
They performed for an hour and forty minutes without a break! Two of "The Hag's" sons are on the tour. The steel guitarist, fiddle player, and other musicians, all enhanced the performances.
Merle Haggard, with his son on guitar to the left.
Merle and Kris basically took turns playing their hits, and sang along with each other. They enjoyed bantering with their audience. Some of the more "enthusiastic" fans got a little obnoxious with their constant yelling. However, for the most part, people were good-naturedly calling out requests, and declaring their love for two performers who've "been around the block" and are proud they've lived to tell about it!
Merle sang "Pancho and Lefty," with Kris singing Willie Nelson's part. Kris sang lots of his oldies--including two of my favorites, "Loving Her Was Easier (Than Anything I'll Ever Do Again)," and "Help Me Make It Through the Night." I found a video from 1971, of Kris, with no facial hair, singing "Loving Her Was Easier," and I put a portion of my video, from 40 years later, after that one! (I was capturing images from the "big screen.")
Merle Haggard has a new album titled "I AM WHAT I AM." He sang the title song, (some of the lyrics are excerpted below,) to cheers and enthusiastic clapping. I imbedded a video of the song, as well.
I AM WHAT I AM
I won't be a slave, and I won't be a prisoner
And I'm just a nephew to today's Uncle Sam
I believe Jesus is God, and a pig is just ham,
I'm just a seeker, I'm just a sinner,
And I'll be what I am.
This was, without a doubt, one of the best concerts I've been to in a long time! There were lots of oldies, and other songs with upbeat, feel-good music. I couldn't help but bounce in my seat, clapping and singing along--as were my neighbors! As you can see, by the video I posted, I got a couple of great clips by filming the big screens!
We got quite a kick out of observing how old most of the crowd was--It was kind of disconcerting when we realized they were mostly our contemporaries! LOL! What a great trip down "Memory Lane!" Good times--great friends!
Gail Googled on her phone, and read some of Merle's and Kris' biographical information to us, while we were driving back from the concert. It seems that both men have similar histories, in many respects, and quite colorful pasts! Google for yourself, if you're interested!