30 April 2012

All About H: The Culmination

Last week, I posted about the Three Events we had to attend, which were All About H.

I'm a Very Lucky Lady.


With H, I've done and seen more than a girl could ever expect. It started with our first date to a DC United playoff game (back in the day, when they regularly made the playoffs), continued with our second date to DC's legendary jazz club, Blues Alley. I wore Betsey Johnson and black knee-high boots I bought while visiting my dear friend in England the year before.

Thank you, #healthyme, for getting me back into an ensemble chock full o' memories.

We threw parties (we still do, occasionally), then literally legendary. If you’re Of Our Age, maybe you were at our Studio 54 parties? Maybe? We would meet random people at bars who’d partied in our cleared-out-group-house-let’s-add-velvet-ropes-this-year fetes. I painted huge "54s" and giant crescent moons with coke spoons on drop cloths. We dug through Goodwill stores and closets to find stunners like the butterfly top I found a copy of at Forever XXI and wore to a very 2012 speakeasy.

Just after this photo was taken with sosarahsays, H split for the hills, having had enough of the twitterscene. Well, the bar at Chadwick's down the street, where I found him with kcellis & crew about 30 minutes later.

But really, it’s all about H.

H is a Music Guy, among other things. It’s not unusual for us to have one of the artsy cable channels on on a Saturday afternoon. The Beans are regularly exposed to - and must learn about - vintage concerts, from Billy Idol (The Bean does a mean Idol impression) to Chuck Berry (when we played the "Hail! Hail! Rock 'n' Roll" documentary again yesterday, Bean No. 2 started tappin’ his foot and bobbin’ his head, then went, “oh!” and made a beeline for the music drawer in their room, bringing back his guitar to jam along).

Back in the day, we spent multiple New Years afterparties with Ahmad Jamal at Blues Alley. We got ridiculously excited when Bohemian Caverns finally reopened. He popped the question by sliding a pretty little velvet box across the teeny table up against the wall while The Carribean Jazz Project was jamming on stage. We have regular conversations about how and when we’re going to take The Beans to Jazz Fest. And Metallica concerts.

So it’s not a surprise that H was contemplating a road trip to St. Louis just to see Chuck Berry at one of his now monthly concerts. Chuck Berry is, well, a Music God. When you watch other musicians - no slouches themselves - like, oh, Keith Richards and Eric Clapton talk about him, you can’t help but be humbled.

So a very thoughtful friend called one day. He’d just bought 4 tickets to Chuck Berry’s show at The New Historic Howard Theater. He and H have talked about H’s road trip plans, and he thought maybe, just maybe, we’d be interested in 2 of the tickets.

Well, duh.

So Saturday night, we met these Hip Cool Friends in their Hip Cool Apartment in their Hip Cool Neighborhood, literally steps from the theater. We walked over and took a seat right as it opened, opting for a balcony booth table. We were, to say the least, excited. We ordered leisurely, with a saavy and honest bartender-turned-waitress, looking forward to sharing a bottle of Argentine malbec and that Marcus Samuelsson-designed menu. International geeks that we are, the conversation turned to the Middle East travels. We were having a lovely evening over good wine and good food.

And then the band walked on stage.

And then Chuck Berry walked on stage.

If you’ve seen him in the last few years, you know. You know that the 85-year-old legend sometimes plays off key. He sometimes forgets songs and song lyrics. He changes key whenever the heck he feels like it (but has been doing that, well, always. He’s a stinker like that. Just ask Keith Richards.) His band manages him and his goodnatured bullheadedness brilliantly.

And he’s amazing. Positively amazing.

Pardon the dark pic, but really, it's Chuck Berry, people. Chuck Berry.

I won’t bore you with a description of the theater (incredible rennovation) or the menu. I won’t share our post-concert drinks with other friends (hel-LO Wardrobe Oxygen ladies!). I will just remind you, as H said during one of the last songs,

“You hear that? You hear that sound? Chuck Berry invented that.”

And changed Rock & Roll forever.


E said...

I would have loved to have seen this show. Did he play "My Ding-a-Ling?"

RosaLovesDC said...

Oh how fabulous! BTW, you are looking good lady, all your hard work is showing.

DC Celine said...

E & Rosa - it was an amazing night. And no, didn't play Ding-a-Ling. He probably only played 10 songs, but according to our friends who saw him 2 years ago, he interacted w/ the audience much more. Go check out Wardrobe Oxygen's post on it - her mom got up on stage w/ him!

And thanks, Rosa, now's the tough part - getting strong and staying that way.

Liz - So Much to Smile About said...

So fun reading these stories! Sounds like you had such a great time! I can't wait to check out that venue!

DC Celine said...

Liz, put it on your list - at the top of your list! It's. So. Cool.