Rocky Mountain Low
November 30, 2010
More power to October-in-Aspen-the Denver-Tributes! Blessings to the county and city for opening their Rocky Mountain hospitality to us all.
I gave my full solo concert at the Community Church then appeared and guested at 17 (count ’em) events over five days. Unfortunately one of these events was not at the Wheeler Opera House on Friday or Saturday because I was kicked out, with the police called, because while waiting in the foyer to be called up on-stage to join in the hit song that I wrote for John Denver (“Grandma’s Feather Bed”) the Wheeler Opera House night manager assembled two female ushers, a Wheeler Operate House security man, and, while she (the night manager) went to call police, ordered the three of them to usher me out the door because “[I] didn’t have a ticket.”
I told the young lady night manager that in the 13 years I had been guesting on the Wheeler Denver trib concerts it was never, ever required for me to have a ticket. She replied that, “even the musicians and singers on-stage had tickets, for the producers buy tickets for them.” I left the venue as I didn’t want to argue or cause embarrassment when the police came.
Before I left I told the Saturday night manager that she did not understand the heartfelt love and fellowship which prevailed between the folks in the audience and the singers and musicians on-stage, nor the rapport of community that brought this worldwide audience to Aspen in October to share their love of J.D.’s music, song and story.
I pointed to her heart when I said this (I pledge that I did not raise my voice). This angered her much and she cried, “That’s it, you’ve crossed the line; you’re out of here!” It was bizarre and strange to me, her attitude.
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By the way, I am three times older than she: Big deal these days, eh?
(Next year I supposed I’ll just have to hang out backstage and not show my ticketless mug in the foyer.)
On the second half of the Denver trib concert that night the cast called for me to come on up and sing with them on “Grandma’s Feather Bed,” but I was long gone to friendlier pastures. I went looking for Joe Henry to renew old friendships.