It’s the text message you never want to get. “Hi Jenn, please call me when you can.” I knew before I called that another friend had died.
I’m still feeling pretty numb from this one. I can’t believe it. This year would have been his 55th birthday (in December). I still remember going out to celebrate his 50th birthday with a group of friends. I don’t remember exactly what the question was or who asked it, but I think it was along the line of resolutions for his 50th year. Steve responded that he was going to go to more live music with Jenn Marks. I think another one of his ‘resolutions’ was that he was going to start surfing again because at every show that we went to in 2018, and we went to 8 shows together, I remember asking him if he had started surfing again. And every time I asked, he said no, not yet and he had reasons.
But he kept the resolution to go to shows with me. We fell into a monthly cadence of checking in about shows. It started out that I would send him the shows that I thought he might be interested in attending and he would choose one and we would go, Later, he also started selecting shows for us.
In January, we went to see Dustbowl Revival open for Josh Ritter at the Fillmore. I had invited him because of Dustbowl Revival.
In February, we went to Slim’s to see Front Country. Alex and Ben Morrison were the openers so it was a two-fer in my opinion.
In March, it was KOLARS at Bottom of the Hill and was such a good time. We all loved KOLARS!
April was El Radio Fantastique at Bottom of the Hill again. This was where I discovered RIKKHA and fell in love with them.
We took a break for the summer. Our schedules weren’t lining up, but then we were back in September for Bettye LaVette at the Chapel. She was fantastic.
In October, we went to see Reijjie Snow at Brick & Mortar. The show was sold out, but I think the doorman took pity on the two old white people that didn’t look like they belonged and let us in.
November brought us Lucero at the Warfield with Jonny Fritz opening.
We closed the year out with a December 30th show at The Chapel featuring Quinn DeVeaux opening for Lee Fields and the Expressions. That was such a fun night!
I think April 2019 was the last show I went to with him. We went to see Low Cut Connie at the Great American. I don’t know why there weren’t more shows in 2019; maybe there were other birthday resolutions that took precedence over shows; maybe we just couldn’t connect. In 2020, COVID came along and shut down life as we know it. We found other ways to get together, mostly taking hikes in Glen Canyon Park. Our last hike was in the end of March — me, Steve and Kevin — but we had other hikes in the canyon with more of us.
We had plans to go see Lee Fields at GAMH in May, but I got COVID and was still under quarantine. He and Kevin went to the show and Steve said the show (Lee and his band) was great; it was a great night out! I was sorry to have missed it then, and I’m even more sorry now. Fucking COVID!
So on Friday we will gather at the Dovre for a “swift one” to remember this guy.