It's crazy to me how apprehensive I am of meeting new people and how fruitful the experiences have always been. I've been getting into the habit of offering rideshares from Boise to Portland and vice versa to offset my gas cost and help people get where they need to go. In November, I gave a ride to a dude named Lincoln Lute, a Boise-ite and a killer musician who is going to start on his move to New York later this month. He shared some great music and pretty wild stories and was grateful to have him as my copilot that day.
While I was playing with Boise Philharmonic in December, I emailed him to see if he wanted to hang out sometime that week. and was asked to get together to play for TRICA, a really awesome organization that brings arts education to the community. It was an obvious choice for me, so we got together and talked through what we were doing. We accompanied a group of young kids who presented a "shadow theater" for faculty and families. It was heartwarming to see so many kids excited about just screwing around and having fun and to work with TRICA's Jon Swarthout, the man behind the madness.
Shortly after this, Lincoln asked if I wanted to get together for an impromptu recording with a few friends of his at the TRICA building, which I quickly agreed to do. When I showed up, I was greeted by Lincoln's friends: a trombonist, a singer, and a cameraman. So our instrumentation ended up being guitar and voice, high voice, trombone, and bass. My kind of ensemble. Within about an hour plus, we met, arranged a tune, and recorded it in the ice cold not-quite-renovated-church-turned-TRICA building; I was really stoked with how this turned out and had an awesome time!
I pretty much never would have guessed that somebody I would meet on a rideshare would be so rad, and that's kind of a bummer, isn't it? I tend to get hung up on these ridiculous what if's of interacting with new people, and these rideshares I've given are no different; people need to get from A to B and post on Craigslist looking for a ride, and I expect knife-wielding soulless assassins every time (I understand it's self preservation, but my brain REALLY jumps to conclusions). I have yet to help somebody who I feared and am always rewarded with compassion and good conversation. Every time I do it, it opens me up further to meeting new people and getting me out of my shell. Experiences like these don't happen enough and I'm extremely grateful to have taken part. Thanks again, Lincoln, Casey, Chelsea, Eric, and Jon Swarthout for the great time!
For more on TRICA, go to their website: http://www.trica.org/