Monday, January 14, 2008
The End of an Era, Part II
This one really hurts.
I spent January 2002 to June 2006 in San Diego, CA. I won't go into the long list of pros and cons of San Diego... people who love it, love it; those who don't so much love it, don't, and ne'er the twain shall meet.
One of the blessings (and as a non-Christian I don't use that term loosely) of my time in San Diego, however, was to meet Kevin Cavanaugh. Kevin was the mastermind behind Blue Velvet, a self-described "retro lounge act" whose brilliance had to be seen to be believed.
Imagine, if you will, a sharkskin-jacketed vocalist/keyboard player/impresario, backed by 2 chicks dressed as 1967 bridesmaids, singing a totally-lounged-out arrangement of "Born To Be Wild" or a brilliantly conceived medley of ABBA tunes, whilst wearing gowns and wigs that would make Emma Peel or Lady Bird Johnson absolutely green with envy. If you can imagine this, you are either a total stoner, or you actually managed to catch "Blue Velvet" at one of their gigs.
I met Kevin shortly after I arrived in San Diego, and became a total, "oh-my-god-I'm-a-teenaged-girl" fan. Even more incredibly (for me, not for the audience), I had the chance to sing with him several times when he played at The Caliph, a bar that I can charitably describe as - ahem - "The Wrinkle Room". We even had an abortive attempt at a guy-group cleverly referred to as "Aqua Velvet". Wait... does one gig count? Need I say more? It died a death and probably the world is better for it.
Kevin is not only an amazing musician, but a genuinely helluva nice guy. He's one of those guys for whom I wish nothing but great things... and if you know me, you know how rare that is. I'm not really evil... I'm just very sparing with praise...
Anyway, it turns out that after more years in SD than I, Kevin has decided to return to the land of his ancestors, namely Grand Rapids, MI. Now, I'm not about to go on about MI having the highest unemployment rate in the country - let Mitt Romney answer for that in his campaign speeches. And Kevin, I already did the "going back to my roots" thing... imitation is just tacky, dude.
I will, however, join those in San Diego in mourning the fact that Blue Velvet will no longer be gracing stages there... they were amazing, and the fact that they were not showered with gigs and cash money only reinforces my judgment that San Diego is a cultural backwater that deserves non-stop repeats of American Gladiator.
To the ladies of Blue Velvet, I can only express my undying affection and appreciation - and I hope nothing but the best for you all.
To Kevin, well... Kevin, I hope you find happiness in Michigan - and you need to know that now you're only 1 time-zone away from Connecticut. If you ever need a partner in a duet of "Oliver's Army"... you know where to find me.
"One More Widow, One Less White... mphmmger... "