Saturday, January 12, 2008

Monte Montgomery - Fitzgerald's

Self-discipline is not one of my strengths. Or maybe it’s just a lack of a particular sense of purpose. It probably sounds like I’m sitting on my couch right now eating an entire sleeve of Girl Scout thin mints that I stockpiled during the last sale and watching a Full House marathon. It’s not quite that bad, but I do find myself squandering valuable time. Unless I write stuff down or share it with others. Somehow that motivates me to action more than the threat of Tony Robbins’ banana hands yanking me from whatever wasteful or shameful activity in which I’m wasting time and re-directing me into something more productive. Here, watch how it works. Hey, everyone, I’m going for a bike ride today. Great. Now I committed. If I don’t ride I’m going to sound like a blowhard asshole. So excuse me while I go get my bike ready. [Ed. Note: the time is 1:03 p.m.]

[Ed. Note: The time now is 3:08] I’m back. The first 15 miles of the year versus my goal of 2,000. See, I did it again. Now every time I feel like making an excuse not to ride, I’ll remember that all four of you readers will lose all respect for me and call me hurtful names if I fall short of my goal this year.

This also applies to leisure time activities. I used to see a lot of live music and plays and other semi-cultural events, but I’m not sure how I became so averse to putting on clothes and actually leaving my home for entertainment. So now I actually post my calendar of events in which I’m interested and when other people commit, then I cannot bail out or else they will lose all respect for me and call me hurtful names.

Here, watch how it works. I sent an email out casually mentioning that guitar hero Monte Montgomery was coming to town. I’ve seen him several times before during my time in Texas and was always floored by his shows, even if they were packed with 500 generic frat boys with their fitted baseball caps and their yappy sorority girlfriends.

Of course, it was a Friday show and I would have likely claimed I was too tired to put on clothes and drive 25 minutes to Berwyn on a Friday night after a long work week. But this time Stiv_OO and Senor Cojones wanted to go. Moist Rub also wanted to go but sent me the following note earlier in the week:

Hey, were we supposed to go see somebody at Fitzgerald’s this Friday? I have on my calendar written "Fitzgerald’s". Is that the guitar dude?

Anyway, I can't go. Apparently, I told the ex I would take the kids for her on Friday. You know, I think she knows that I don't remember shit like that and so she just tells me I agreed to it a few months ago.

I couldn’t risk getting a reputation as a bagger, so I came home from work and took some diet pills with a gigante extra sugar double expresso frappacino latte and got my jittery ass to Fitzgerald’s. Fifteen bucks later I was past the doorman, though insulted that he didn’t card me. The joint has always booked quality acts and is a great place to see a show, but scored extra points by having some cold bottles of Beck’s NA on hand.

About 15 minutes before the show, I secured my spot about 20 feet back from the stage. No opening act and they came out firing. At the end of the second song my only reaction was “holy fuck” – sorry about the language – I’m typically not the cursing sailor type but that was all I could manage to say to Stiv_OO. Monte could have said, “Thank you, good night, drive safe” at that point and I would have felt I got my money’s worth. Fortunately, they played about an hour, took about a 30 minute break and then busted out about another hour and a half of rock-ity goodness. At their worst, they’re an excellent bar band. At their best, you wonder if that’s what early Double Trouble gigs were like before Stevie got discovered. Not the same style music at all – Monte plays an electrified acoustic and has an extremely unique playing style and sound. He’s a technician with the guitar, but without being robotic about it. He knows every inch of that instrument as well as a chronic masturbator knows his own penis. The set was a good mix of just plain out guitar hero shredding, a couple cheesy ballads (sorry, Monte), just plain down and dirty rockers, a couple fun forays into comedy, but impressive all the way. Monte, of course, is the attraction, but his drummer and bass player lay down a tight driving rhythm that keep it from becoming merely a guitar clinic. It’s a band and a damn good one. He’s a renowned guitarist, but has a better show because of them.

I’ve always said a good guitar player inspires me to want to learn to play. A great one makes me want to not even try, knowing that I could not even come close to that level. I might have to put my guitar on craigslist after that show.

One final note to the inevitable asswipes at the show: The bass and drummer did not leave for the solo numbers in order to give you the opportunity to yap it up with your friends. I can recommend several other bars in the area where you may drink and make your inane conversation without paying a $15 cover charge. And to the girls flitting about the floor like fleas on a mangy dog - I only hope someone with less self-control than myself takes the opportunity to clothesline you next time you push your way around the floor with a sense of entitlement, Princess. By the way, none of you were nearly cute enough to get away with it.

Bottom line – Monte and his band rock. Add him to your myspace friends and catch him when he comes to your town.

Audience Member (shouting): When are you coming back?
Monte: Well, first we need to leave, then we’ll pick a date to come back and let you know.

Sounds like a plan.


keysunset said...

Thanks for the review, Sid darlin'! Maybe MM will head to NC way some time and I'll be able to get away to see him.

I loved that clip of him playing Romeo and Juliet I saw a while back (thanks to you), too.

... A great one makes me want to not even try, knowing that I could not even come close to that level. Just be as good as YOU want to be, Sid, let the great ones entertain and inspire, but not deter you. We are all part of life's tapestry of music.

Best wishes to you on your goals for the year. You know what I love, seeing guys ride bikes. ;-)

Oh, and somebody get that Moist a personal assistant to help keep him on top of his busy social life. :-D

One of the Princesses said...

I was too cute enough to get away with it.

ll said...

I’ll remember that all four of you readers...

Jeez. Sounds like someone's a little full of himself these days.

I think you only have 3.

HR said...

I'm just posting to prove LL wrong.

ll said...

Hah! I know you were the "one of the princesses" chica.

So there!

How do I know, you ask?

Because you are cute enough to get away with it. Dammit.

The Count said...

I bet Moist Rub reads it. That's four.

leper lurker said...

There are probably more readers, especially if you count the multiple personalities...