Monday, June 10, 2013

The Lounge Singer

I felt awkward. Not because I was in a bar. I’ve been in bars before though rarely alone. Let me clarify. The bar has an excellent reputation as a burger place. I had time and hunger to kill. So I walked down to the local burger joint. One of the owners recommended the guacamole burger. I sat down with my coke.

“He’s a fan of mine, he loves it when I sing Sinatra,” said the musician. At a table in the corner the owners interviewed him for a job. The musician got up from the table. He walked over to the table nearest me and muttered something to her about being interviewed. I guessed that she was upset at having to sit by herself waiting for him. His hair was black but didn’t fit the age indicated by his face.

Glenda from Sysco foods walked in carrying a laptop. She hugged the woman at the bar. The woman at the bar hugged back. She spoke caringly and stroked Glenda’s exposed shoulder. Having exchanged pleasantries Glenda began leaving. The woman at the bar said, “…we have to be strong.” She continued to sit there with her manicured legs and nails. Sitting, her body swayed to the music. She said hello to an older man within range of her at the bar. He had a Telly Savalas haircut and drank something straight up.

The musician was saying that as part of his contract he wanted to make sure he could get a free drink or two for his buddies. The way he talked everybody was his buddy. He could get them all to come in and do spots during his gig. He knew lots of people. He’d just got back from the Riviera where, “I played with all those guys. All the guys I play with are class acts….” Then I heard him talking about a guy that’s quiet unless he’s on stage—then he’s funny.

I wouldn’t have hired the lounge singer. He was trying too hard. I had the impression that he would do a bad version of Bill Murray doing a bad version of a lounge singer.

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