Saturday Night at Sunny’s

It’s crowded, hot, humid, and almost as smelly as a locker room. There’s an inner circle of musicians playing furiously, an outer circle of those taking a rest or not able/willing to keep up, and a crowd of onlookers, and no room to move. The bow of the fiddle player next to you threatens your left eye. Tony’s guitar goes over your head and his mandolin comes back in a careful ballet. Fred kicks off a tune at his usual lightning speed. Joe bumps his bass forward grinning like “Yeah, you think I can’t keep up?” Kari and Rick are playing twin fiddle lines with Michael’s mom — he brought his visiting parents down to the jam even though he usually has a paying gig. His dad’s playing banjo and his mom is laughing as her bow flies and Michael’s flatpick is a blur. You can’t drink enough water and you can’t get to the bar for more and at 1.30 you finally decide that if you are going to drive home from Red Hook safely you better leave soon even though they’re starting “Bill Cheatham.”

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