Gift & Song

I was on the highway at midnight, here in NYC in light traffic, a rare happening in these parts. Over the airways, came this song. I had no idea who it was. After the song the DJ from WBGO (a jazz station out of Newark, NJ) said the title, Black Lace Freudian Slip. It was sung by René Marie who was soon to appear at The Jazz Standard in the city.

As it turns out, The Jazz Standard was downstairs from what was to become my favorite rib joint /southern food restaurant in the city. Its name is The Blue Smoke. I love that name!

And by the way, by downstairs I mean the basement, only with a measure of elegance.

I had no idea that the two shared an address. But not too long before this night, I caught a moment of a talk show panel talking barbecue on TV. On it was the owner of Blue Smoke telling the story of how he came up with the name for his restaurant. It was “named after the curl of blue smoke that rises out of perfectly smoked meat”. This was a part of a conversation he had had with a BBQ Pitmaster about the nuances of barbecuing and smoking meat.

This song grabbed ahold of me. The song, the voice, the craftsmanship of the arrangement rings of old school. I had to go experience this in person.  I got my friends together and we made reservations for dinner and a show.  After dinner, we were walked from the restaurant, through the kitchen, sort of, to the performance venue. We got the pick of the seating. We felt like VIPs. Aaaaah!!! So well worth it.


sassy lyrics
woven through haunting rhythm
of full bodied bass
this gift in song wound its way
to tippy-toes of my soul

Pat R


For Colleens. Weekly Poetry Challenge : Prompt Gift & Song