Sunday, February 4, 2007

The Nation called Kansas

I know I don't have a lot of Topeka stories et, but KC is a pretty cool city. I was still waiting to make some friends, so KC was my closest outlet for fun.

On the Friday I thought I'd visit Orient Lodge where they put on a 2nd degree and it was done very well. Afterward, I thought I'd try out that Irish pub and see if Rich Stevenson was there. Well, he was and he remembered my name and that I was from Alberta! During his break, he introduced me to two people we'll call Larry and Liz. We shared some beers, I met some more people, and it appeared that some future good times here were to be had.

After a few drinks, I asked Rich if he would mind if I played a few tunes and he said, "Sure, come on up!" So I played "Hasn't Hit Me Yet" from Blue Rodeo, some U2 "All I Want Is You" and Neil Diamond "Sweet Caroline". The crowd seemed to enjoy it quite a bit. I now knew this was going to be my new home in Topeka.

The next day, I again headed to KC to meet up with a brother Mason we call "The Pontiff". We went out for Japanese food. Good stuff. Unfortunately afterward, Chasmo had to work, so Pont and I headed back to The Roxy where a really cool hippy band named Nation, was playing.

Well, like all of the music I've heard so far, Nation raised the bar even higher! They played all the classics--Jefferson Airplane, Steppenwolf, and more. But the song that literally made me feel the soul of rock in this state was when they played "Carry On Wayward Son" by the classic 70's prog rock band, Kansas! They nailed it. It was absolutely perfect. The vocal harmonies, the timing, and with a Hammond organ in the background fully rounded out the room. I was so impressed, I bought the organist a beer.

Oh, and guess which band is celebrating a 30 year anniversary? That's right ... Kansas! And guess what town they're from? Yeah... Topeka baby!

The waitress we deemed "The Evil One" as she continued to pimp shooters on us, was very nice. That night I really got to know The Pontiff and knew we'd be doing it again soon. All and all, a great night.