Saturday, October 21, 2006

The class of 1976 – Blue Sky reunited

Yesterday was the 30th reunion of the Calvin College class of 1976. I had a great time meeting old friends and thinking about things that happened over thirty years ago. But more importantly to me was that Blue Sky reunited for the first time in at least 30 years – I’m thinking it has been slightly more than 31 years since we played together.

Blue Sky was a band made up of me, Pete Bardolph and Ken Winters. We were more than a band - we were also best friends. Pete and I continue to play together in the Lazy Blue Tunas (which we formed almost six years ago) and we’ve kept in touch pretty regularly in the intervening years, even when I lived in Colorado. But I lost touch with Ken completely. About a year ago I got Ken’s email address from our alumni association and asked Ken if he’s be interested in getting together to play a few songs for the reunion. Ken agreed, even though it meant a trip up from his home in Memphis, and we’ve been in occasional contact ever since. Then, Thursday, Ken arrived on campus and he and I got to hang out for a couple of hours and it was absolutely delightful. We practiced together on Thursday evening and last night we performed three songs together as Blue Sky (with the help of our classmate, friend and part-time Blue Sky and Lazy Blue Tuna member John Gelderlos) in the middle of a six-song Lazy Blue Tunas set.

I had an amazing time. First of all, something has happened over the past thirty years – the standard tunings must have gone up because all the songs were a lot higher than they used to be. But aside from that, Ken was in fine voice (although he didn’t play guitar even though he used to) and we sang three songs from the Eagles first album. More importantly, though, I got to connect with one of my best friends from both high school and college and discovered that the years melted away almost instantly and that we still have a great time together. Laura and I got to meet his wife Stacy and truly enjoyed that too. There was lots of laughter and fun and the great feeling that a part of my past that had been lost had been found again. It was a great two days. Thanks for coming, Ken!

1 comment:

KathyB said...

Thanks for getting this going, Bob. It was nothing short of a magical night.