When last we left off on July 30th, I had just seen a new band called Blue Sky Riders as an opening act for a Kenny Loggins concert. I contended that this new band, comprised of Kenny Loggins, Georgia Middleman, and Gary Burr, was the breath of fresh musical air that we grownups had long been in need of. I talked about how we were the forgotten demographic, overlooked by an industry that historically catered to 14 year-olds. There, that's the recap.
Well, it is a few months later, and the fledgling band is headlining their first tour in mostly smaller venues on the East Coast, gathering momentum and audiences as they go, and keeping us apprised of their daily antics via social networking sites that provide up to the minute pictures and blogs from the road.
While so far we have been spared any tales of trashed hotel rooms and drunken debauchery, (though it may be too soon to tell), the comments from audience members have become more glowing with every stop on the tour, indicating that the three band members' individual personalities and collective humor are as much an integral part of the show as the music is.
For those of us who have sampled a morsel of BSR's empowering, upbeat songs delivered in seamlessly blended, luscious three-part harmony, we can't help but feel compelled to comply with their urging to remain brave and perhaps crazy dreamers -- a message not often touted in today's cynical world.
I may have watched Almost Famous one too many times, but I am reveling in the now very real possibility of something unprecedented -- well, first, three singers that don't need to use auto-tune, but I digress. What I meant was a successful, commercially viable band appealing to and comprised of people over 40, hatched merely by word-of-mouth and (ironically) by the use of technology that we in that age bracket still have a hard time trying to figure out how to use. (I still prefer writing my song lyrics in spiral notebooks and can hearken wistfully back to the warmth of analog, so I am clearly not the one to ask about apps.)
"Why," you might ask, "am I so invested in the outcome of this band?" Well, besides genuinely loving what they do, I would like to live in a world that values honest to goodness talent, that is not only willing to allow for, but embraces the vantage point that only artists with an increment of life under their belts can offer, and mostly I want to live in a world that doesn't count anyone out. Ever.
So, yes, I've been known to tilt at a few windmills because I don't believe any dream is really all that impossible when it comes right down to it, and Blue Sky Riders seems uniquely poised and ready to make it happen, to forge a new path where previously there has been none. So I invite you to check them out. I think you'll become a fan, too.
Blue Sky Riders is playing in New York City at Feinstein's at Loews Regency this week, and their first CD drops January 22nd, 2013.