First, because I can.
Second, because he's worth it.
And because of this ... which I found on a website and really really really sums up what it is about Jeffrey Gaines that makes a drive across two states worth it.
(Well, he's the payoff in the end. The drive across two states happens on Tuesday, after Kara gets off work, and puts us in Philly in time for Kathleen Edwards show Tuesday, March 28th, at the Tin Angel ... Jeffrey is Saturday night, April 1st, also at the Tin Angel. Between the shows, we're gonna explore Philly and venture down to Washington DC to go to the National Gallery and pretend to be art snobs!)
Anyway ... here's the article.
A few months back at the Tin Angel, Jeffrey joked about the fact that no one ever comes to his shows dressed like him. Whereas crowds routinely don elaborate costumes to be in sync with their favorite performers we just look like were waiting for a bus!
Its true; the connection isn't an obvious one. Jeffrey Gaines fans represent a cross-section of America. Looking around the room, you are likely to find teen fledgling rockers, some guys who just came for the beer, married couples, serious music aficionados, a sprinkling of pageant contenders, some guys who came along to appease their girlfriends and a few gen x-ers who came just to hear In Your Eyes. Then there's the core group of Jeff's supporters who for some reason connect to this guy and would follow him anywhere. I'm not saying which category I'm in but considering that I'm spending a gorgeous Sunday afternoon typing this article, you could probably guess.
I am personally offended at the tasteless choices we are handed in the movies, television and music industries today. I am just as offended by all of us who are willing to accept those choices and just live with them. Its mostly garbage. The media spoon-feeds us mediocrity on a daily basis until we begin to believe all those small, fragmented, isolating thoughts that reinforce our insecurities, convincing us that we are never enough. They seep into our consciousness and begin to form our existence. Where is the quality in our lives? There is so much talent out there underrated, under promoted and under supported. We just need to care a little bit more.
I once overheard a club manager remark to Jeffrey that hes never seen anything like the devotion Jeff's fans have toward him. We hang around long after the show hoping for a few brief words, a photo or a JG on our cd cover. Jeffrey is always generous and accommodating.
We come away from the show feeling validated, appreciated and inspired. We can take all that back into our lives and function from a slightly higher level of awareness as the words and music still resound in our minds and hearts, reminding us to be bold, to care for each other and to focus our energies on the things that really matter.
I wasn't at all surprised to find that many of Jeffrey's fans are caring, compassionate and creative. They are teachers, artists, photographers, caretakers, builders, writers and musicians; people Id like to know better. The JG cafe is a forum for just that kind of interaction. I hope more people will write in just to say hi. Don't be shy! I love mail!