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Soundcheck went well and Bette and the band had dinner at a nearby restaurant before returning to the club to change into their evening outerwear. The band was milling about the stage area and getting a feel for the club while Top 40 poured through the club’s sound system from satellite radio.
Bette sat atop a barstool at the bar with a bottle of Elysian Space Dust IPA in her hand and surveyed the club. In just a few short moments, this club was going to be filled with people who paid to see her older sister and friends do what they love and the thought made Bette’s heart swell with pride. They’re gonna make it, she thought to herself. Smiling, she hopped off her barstool with her beer and clipboard then made her way to the stage where the band was putting the finishing touches on making sure wiring wouldn’t get in the way of their performance later.
A familiar strumming of a solo guitar intro permeated through the speakers. In an instant, each band member was transported back to the days when life was much simpler. All who could hear the recognizable tune couldn’t help but bob their head or sway to the music as it enveloped them in the comfort of its melodic harmony. Then the bass line kicked in making way for the first verse.
As the band set up their instruments the way they wanted to find them on stage, Angus was the first to start quietly singing along.
“There is freedom within,
There is freedom without
Try to catch the deluge in a paper cup.”
Carmen and Kit immediately began humming along.
Bette was reviewing the setlist with her pen in her mouth. She closed her eyes and let the soulful melody invade all her senses. The moment the first chorus came through, every person in the main bar, including the bartenders sang aloud.
“Hey now, hey now
Don’t dream it’s over
Hey now, hey now
When the world comes in
They come, they come
To build a wall between us
You know they won’t win.”
Almost instinctually, Alice took the lead on the second verse, grabbing the microphone in front of her guitar.
“Now I’m towing my car
There’s a hole in the roof
My possessions are causing me suspicion
But there’s no proof.”