My friend Dani came to town yesterday with her boyfriend, Tobias. They met when Dani was traveling in Europe two-years-ago where they fell in love. She moved from San Francisco to Copenhagen to be with him and I haven't seen her since she left last summer. Until last night.
They could not be cuter or more perfect together/ for each other. The lesson here: take great risks for great results.
We made a pit-stop at The Burgundy Room, previously mentioned here, before heading to our final destination, my favorite bar in all of Los Angeles and quite possibly, the world: The Piano Bar.
From the looks of it, it isn't much. Some neon lights, a framed portrait of the Queen and some scattered wooden tables, a piano with a bar wrapped around it like a ribbon. But every time I'm there I fall a little bit more in love. With the people and the music and the timelessness of Piano Bars and all who go there: the kind of characters one would want in her story. I certainly do.
I was born during the wrong time, obviously. I despise clubs and electronic music. Technology freaks me the fuck out. (A probable conundrum because I am a blogger and cell-phone addict.) I want vinyl and live bands and piano bars. I want the scratchy sounds of Billy Holiday and Edith Piaf. The true performers. Artists. None of this "Hollaback, girl- lovely lady humps" bullshit coming out of the auto tuned mouths of current pop-stars. (Gag.)
The very first song played (upon our arrival) was sung by my new friend Betty, a lounge singer and former television-writer, not to mention the mother of a real wild child. The song she sang to us was called "Rockabye Your Baby." It was a sign. We quickly became friends.
Betty sings Rockabye:
I love people and places and singing and timelessness. The Piano Bars are quickly disappearing, and call me old-fashioned, but it is one of the great cultural tragedies. Singing around the piano may be less than "rock and roll" but there is nothing more joyous.
Tobias even sang an original song:
Tobias has a band in Copenhagen and they're amazing. Go make myspace friends and download some tunes.
At the risk of sounding like a PSA, do the world a favor and support your local piano bar, will ya? Because their extinction is imminent and needn't be. Not if everyone really knew what they were missing:
Genuine moments with new and unlikely friends-- Defying time, place and every other circumstance that for whatever reason keeps the old from the young.
The world would be a much better place if we could all just join hands and sing together around vodka-stained pianos.
I'm quite sure of it.