a cork board

c.r. avery & baton rouge
PMpFri, 16 Apr 2010 12:49:26 +000049Friday 1, 2010, 12:49 pm
Filed under: events, music, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

the background hum of the office is ever-the-same. light key-punching and muted conversations humming like public transit. I drift like Magic Hour Sailor Songs and dwindle down the Mississippi River back to Baton Rouge. I miss those muddy waters. I used to glaze them over with my eyes from the window of a courthouse in the city. I saw C.R. Avery last night at the Burlington Slam Project. the man is a beast. the man is the wheels on busses and bicycles and coincidence. it was the first time I saw him perform without a mic. his harmonica-beatboxing persona was not lost in the quiet room at The Black Bull. the crowd fell to a hush when he began performing. the waitresses lined the outskirts of the room and there was not even the sound of glass clinking from the bar. C.R. was brilliantly simple without one of his three bands and only two of his family of instruments. there were no electronics, but it worked. the bass from his throat shook our ear drums and we ate it up. I finally got to see him do his “Boxer” piece and the beat was bouncing off of the wood. like I said, the man is a beast. the highways and road-maps he’s travelled are etched on his face; his clothes are weather-worn wonderfully extended from his self-proclaimed hobo caricature; his voice is worn and weary and woefully whimsical in its eloquent story-telling mannerism; and his smile is as genuine as Pierre Elliot Trudeau’s handshake. I beat-box his songs into sleep, into work and throughout the day. and today…the background hum of keyboards and head-set-held customer service phone-calls takes a backseat to C.R.’s greyhound shenanigans. the hobo has me horribly hooked and I am blessed to call this man my friend. everytime I hear him play…I miss Baton Rouge. last night he asked me “have you been back since Katrina?” and all I could say was “not since ’97.” now I’m thinking about The Great Canadian Novel and Magnolia Trees and Pelicans and gumbo and crawfish…over the background hum of keyboards and phone calls and generic office ramblings. it starts to sound the same after a while…so tune out and tune in and “take a bus to Baton Rouge.”


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