< < < I originally posted this story in spring of 2020. Since that time, COVID has made a mess of everything, Melinda and I have not have not returned to the Keys, and The Hurricane Grille has closed it’s doors. > > >
This past winter my friend Moose Boles (Lou Reed Band, Greg Allman Band) had some NY gigs and asked me to front his Bulletproof Blues Band (temporarily known as “Moose’s Orphans”) for several shows at The Hurricane Bar & Grill in Marathon – midway down the Keys. I readily agreed with no idea what I was getting into. The Hurricane is a music bar above all – their food and service is excellent, but the audience is there for music. So I enjoyed jamming with two fabulous guitarists – Chicago’s own John Cosgrove (Byther Smith, Studebaker John) and Lower Keys blues giant Ric Bluesfuze Arra (Lady A Band) as well as a solid rhythm section – Doug Allen (Funkin’ Conchs) on bass and Alan Crawford (Desmond Decker) on drums. Flying by the seat of my piano stool, these Sunday night jam sessions were some of the most fun gigs I have had. We would throw out a song and these guys would just dig in deep and so would the crowd. Check out the Youtube link for a sample. We pulled out some non-blues tunes (Dylan, Beatles, etc.) and bluesified them all the way. I have been a blues man for many decades, but these jams renewed my love for the blues. Thanks for the gig, Moose!