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James Dalton
Chorus and Verse Blog
Posted: February 2, 2010 08:06 am (-06:00)
James Dalton
Singer/Songwriter/Performer
Feeling Old And Looking ... Ahead


Since I am starting to do some booking for the Spring and Summer months, mostly for the solo gigs right now, I was looking back at old gig schedules to see which venues I should reach out to. I noticed that I was much busier and much bolder with the traveling and the shows back then.

This past weekend, I was really excited about a three-night run I did in NYC and, of course, I am excited to do a three-night run anywhere, and even though I basically stay in the same area, I bring up this past weekend to make the example of the frequency of my shows these days.

There aren't that many, and it's been bringing me down in the undercurrents of my soul. Clearly, I had a good weekend and there are a few gigs coming in the next one, but, as I am getting older, am I losing the interest that I had once had to be out all the time? The answer is no, because I am constantly dreaming of cities and states, both near and far, seeing the highway signs and customs agents in my thoughts easily. So, what is it?

A couple days from three years ago, I did a run of gigs that made my mouth water when I looked at it. Check it...

1/30 Tommy Doyles in Cambridge, Mass
2/1 Brownie's 23 East in Ardmore, PA (opening for Splintered Sunlight)
2/2 LaSalle University in Philadelphia, PA (co-bill with April Smith)
2/3 Wonder Bar in Asbury Park, NJ
2/5 Court Tavern in New Brunswick, NJ
2/8 Wildflower Cafe and Gallery in Bethlehem, PA
2/9 Flannery's in Mercersberg, PA
2/10 Murph's Other Bar in York, PA (opening for Hexbelt)
2/11 Azure in Philadelphia, PA
2/12 Hear New Brunswick Radio in New Brunswick, NJ

To some of you, that isn't very impressive and, to others, it's pretty damn busy. But, to me, that's how it was back in '06 and '07. I had a little green Jetta that fit me, my guitars, my sound system and whatever else I needed. It was perfect. Maybe it was the car dying in rural Virginia on the way back from a good run in Tennessee with Jon Ladeau just days before a studio session with Lance Larson, or maybe I got too caught up in going overseas working for a paycheck as an entertainer bouncing around the Baltic, leading wild drunken sing-a-longs, or maybe it was moving to NYC and getting a job at a cool blues club. Who knows? Maybe I am just getting old, watching all the younger guys sing their energetic songs from dirty little buses. Maybe I am a little jealous with the attention other people get. Or, maybe I am just tired, or a failure. Failure? Really? At such a young age?

Or, maybe I just needed a little time off, because, fuck it, I'm not that old, I'm not that tired and I don't think I've even started yet.

You know that scene in the end of "The Wrestler," where Mickey Rourke is about to walk out into the ring and after Marisa Tomei's character pleads with him not to go out into the ring and wrestle, because his body is so beat up he may not live through it, literally and stuff? Well, Rourke's character looks at her, points away from the ring, which to me is no different than the stage, and says, "the only place I get hurt is out there." Fuck yeah. I remember wanting to stand up in the movie theatre with both tears in my eyes and a smile on my face in agreement, that the only normal place for people like me was in the ring, giving everything.

Anyway, now that I've typed through all of this, maybe I don't feel so old and, if I do, who gives a shit? I'm hitting the road anyway, damn it...

Questions? Comments?
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James Dalton
James Dalton is a New Jersey-based singer/songwriter/performer that has had his ups and downs but still pushes forward and stuff.
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