Last night I went to Fitzgerald's to see Sarah Borges
and her band, the Broken Singles. I bumped into Sarah in the bathroom before the show and we chatted about some of the people we know in common, then I went out to say hi to Mike, her pedal-steel player, who used to play for Ev's former roommate's band. It's a ridiculously small world.
They were in the Sidebar, a smaller, more intimate room of the club. This worked well for the size crowd, but Sarah and her bad have such a big, full sound that I can't wait until people realize how amazing she is and began to fill larger rooms. Most of the people there had seen her open for Dave Alvin last year at Old Town School. She's like that: you see her once and you're hooked.
Between sets I chatted with the doorman, Tom, who's from Williamstown, MA, in the Berkshires. We talked about the provincialism of Boston, and contrasted it to the parochialism of Chicago. It's hard to explain the Chicago mentality. On one hand, you have this big, major city, a marvel of architecture and city planning, It has theater to rival Broadway, and arts and music to rival anywhere. But there's this...underlying base of...meat.
Chicago was once the meat-processing capital of the country, and it's never strayed far from that, at least in mentality. Just think of a lot of Meat People, and you have your average Chicagoans. While I sat at a table listening to Sarah, several Meat Men say next to me at various times, clearly trying to get my attention by staring at the side of my head from oh, two feet away. Classy. These men were middle-aged, sported the classic Midwestern Ned Flanders moustache, and had a sweater over their big gut. I ignored them, and they went away.
Picked up Sarah's latest CD and it rocks as much as her first. Worth enduring a parade of Meat Men to see her.