A number of years ago, I purchased a 2nd printing of the Woodstock Music and Arts Festival poster signed by the Artist, Arnold Skolnick, Richie Havens and Grace Slick. When I purchased it, I had the idea that I would obtain other signatures; however, life's circumstances prevented it. Visiting the site of the original Woodstock this past summer, re-awakened in me the desire to obtain the autographs on the poster of as many of the surviving performers as I can meet.
As mentioned in a prior blog, a couple of weeks ago, I had the distinct pleasure of meeting Mr. Marty Balin after a performance. Hearing him sing "Miracles" made the hair on the back of my neck stand up. Although, after he signed my poster, because I was wearing a Hell's Angels jacket, I was obliged to relive Altamont and knock him out (j/k).
This past Saturday, I obtained anothger signature. I drove out to Chatham, NJ to see John Sebastian. Another member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, former member of The Lovin' Spoonful, and writer/performer of the theme to "Welcome Back, Kotter". The venue was unique - a Presbyterian Church. He played a solo show for approximately 90 minutes telling some stories and playing most of his hits. Before he played "Do You Believe in Magic", he explained how it was, musically, a re-write of "Heatwave" by Martha and the Vandellas. He played Gus Cannon's "Prison Wall Blues" then later played "Younger Girl", which was musically inspired by the former. Also, featured were "Did You Ever Have To Make Up Your Mind", "Welcome Back", "Daydream", "Nashville Cats", and "You Didn't Have To Be So Nice". He played both acoustic and electric guitars, a banjo, and, of course, the harmonica. No Autoharp and "Summer in the City" was notably absent.
It was interesting- John Sebastian looks like he did 40 years ago - yes, a little older, a little balder - but not much. However, he had trouble with the higher keys and tried to hit them - although, the crowd did not object. After the show, he sold CD's and met fans - posing for pictures and signing autographs. I had not brought my camera - but he signed my poster, the CD that I bought, and a CD booklet of the "Do You Belive in Magic" which I brought.
Next up - either Arlo Guthrie on the 29th (If I can make it) or Country Joe McDonald on October 3rd.