I first saw Sarah Jaffe perform at Sons of Hermann Hall with her former band Tomahawk Molly, who happened to be friends of ours. I instantly fell in love, bought their home-made CD, memorized all the words, and burned a copy for my sister. After we listened to Pretty and Pissed Off (our title, not hers) we wondered if she knew our mother. We then felt guilty about the illegal burn and made sure we paid her the five bucks the next time we saw her.
As she ventured out from Tomahawk Molly, I was reluctant to go along, because when we fall in love with someone or something, we like it to stay the same but that is usually impossible. But when the changing and growing is more like a blossoming and not like weird cocooning it is easier to go along. I was not disappointed.
Quite the contrary.
At the September 11th, sold-out Granada performance she, along with her band performed an exquisite set, where I felt like she had the most fun I’d ever seen her have on stage. She danced, she joked, and she was humbled by her sold-out, home-town crowd.
Standing at the very back of the room, my head leaning against the back wall, I remembered sending her a message once on Myspace (remember that?) asking her when the world was going to know about her? It seems she’s well on her way.
I flashbacked to a surprise party my husband threw for me on my 36th birthday. Even though the party was a blast , with so many of my friends, this was probably one of the saddest times in my life. Sarah showed up with some of my friends and I’m sure she was strongly coerced to play, because she didn’t have a guitar and looked a bit mortified. Chris however was trying real hard to make up for some “junk” and he thought she might help.
He was right.I was impressed by the effort.
With my sister on one side, my daughter on the other, we sat by the fireplace and listened intently as she sang a few songs with our Jonny-cakes (Comrade) beside her.
At this time in my life, God was whispering softly to me about being a girl in this world and I was trying real hard to drown out the noise and hear Him.
Her songs reflected many of the feelings I was having to nth degree and yet they didn’t make me sadder. They reminded me I was not alone. That as hard and ugly as it gets, God can still make beauty out of me.
It goes down as one of my best memories.
I hope as Sarah is presented more opportunities to perform for larger audiences, play with other talented musicians, make music she loves, and sell a sell a zillion tunes, that ultimately, whether she is playing to a sold-out crowd in packed stadium or on the couch of a friend of a friend on a sad and awesome birthday, I hope she knows she is a beloved child of God in whom He delights. And that this fan is honored to delight right along with Him.
Now, you can be delighted, too.
Jonny Clark opens for Sarah tonight at The Mucky Duck, 2425 Norfolk, St in Houston. 7:30.