As you sit in the audience the usual conversations go on, like towns we came from, where we lived now, the current members of the group, and what concert we last saw the play...
While up on stage, figures in multi-color shirts were placing their banjos and guitars in instruments stands, which presented an impressive display and offered first glimpses of Bill, Alex and Rick.
There was the occasional but very distinctive sounds of the stretching of a twelve string and plucking of a banjo strings as the final stages of tuning took place off stage behind the public address system where necks and heads of instruments moved in shadow.
They're just about ready I thought. Lights dimmed, then three slightly aged gentlemen walked on stage at their introduction, we watched as they picked up their instruments.
I held my breath awaiting the first chord of the three voices that I had come to know so well. They broke into the opening set and then it happened, soft at first, but ever so enclosing, a surrounding maze of high, low and middle harmonic layers of caressed words So Carefully spoken and placed words that were enunciated to harmony's delight!
As our eyes were bathed in the maze of Bill's flying fingers, Alex's Calypso style and Rick's Irish tenor, our souls left the ground and took to flight launched by the perfection of singing and the joy of a finger pickers delight!
At its completion, we landed on our feet again! We were introduced to the trio and treated to its 43 year history of members past and present. You could hear the amazement and approval of the audience that took verbal forms of ah's and ooh's from the back of the auditorium in a rush forward to the front on the stage, while being subjugated to the antics of Rick and Bill running amuck in a flurry of jokes that broke us.
We sang and we laughed and asked for more, as we remember from where we came and where we were, Here, with Bill, Rick and Alex - and how they brought us together to sing and feel. As our voices resonated though out the concert hall we could not help to feel that not only this is how it used to be but this, is how is should Be, and that we had become a member in good standing with
The Fabulous Limeliters
© 2002 by Daniel Thornhill. Contributed to Tribute to the Limeliters website August 19, 2002.