LIVE BAND TONIGHT
We went on break after a forty minute set, our third night at The Sugar Shack at theHoliday Inn of the Crossroads. The crowd was okay, businessmen in cool-guy shirts andlong sideburns, divorcees in mini-skirts, truckers with their rigs out in the parking lot, thelocals who came for two-for-one on call brands and the free buffet. They liked the Oldiesw
e played, “Twist And Shout”,” Jailhouse Rock,” “Good Golly Miss Molly,” “DevilWith A Blue Dress On”, anything with a beat they could dance to without being
embarrassed. Fine with us, we were a hippie rhythm-and-blues band, shamelessly crazyfor the Beatles and the Stones, not really interested in disco or techno or even psychedeliccrap lingering from the Sixties.Pip and Levon were guitar maniacs, I sang and played electric piano, and Marty,
who‟d got us this good
-paying gig, filled in on drums while Mojo awaited trial in thecounty jail on a framed-up Possession With Intent charge. Some of our crowd came butnot as many as during the week, Friday night at a Holiday Inn being the equivalent of visiting your grandmother at the nursing home, so many out-of-touch old farts sitting
around. Katy came, though I had dumped her over a week ago, and sat with Pip‟s mother
at a table down front drinking White Russians. She came outside into the parking lot arm-in-arm with Marty to where Pip, Levon and I were passing around a quart of tequila.
“Why are you guys drinking out here?” Marty asked, looking fine in a cashmere
overcoat, his mustache trimmed, his long black hair so styled it looked like he went to thesalon everyday.
“That asshole Sugar charges us full pop on drinks,” Levon said.
“The way you guys drink, I don‟t blame him.”
“Listen to you,” Pip said. “You probably get a cut of the profits.”
“Hey. Ronnie. Sugar wants you to sing a song for him,” Marty said to me.
I tilted the tequila bottle up and chugged. “Fuck Sugar.”
“Come on, now. Sugar‟s paying us good. We get house band here, we‟re makingtwo grand a week. Pay a lot of bills with that money.”