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Ghost of Sam Post

April 2009 - Posts

  • Restaurant Report

    Here is an update on a local restaurant. This eating establishment, Two Nichols, has always been good. Good food, good staff, pleasant surroundings, and reasonable prices. These things have changed, however. Now all of these things are GREAT! Not only is the food fantastic, but also the Ghost has requested items that are not on the menu and the restaurant has provided these items. The desserts are a special mention. One of the waitresses is a wonderful baker and she loves to make desserts. One of her specialties is Key Lime pie. It is absolutely mouth-watering.

    This past weekend the Ghost worked with a band at the Two Nichols lounge. The restaurant was extra gracious in providing dinner and drinks for the band members and their wives in addition to the band's normal pay for the evening. Mrs. Ghost was especially pleased with the fresh salad bar. There's plenty of food, all prepared fresh and tasty. In fact, it is possible to construct an entire meal from the salad bar. There is an array of fresh produce, several salads, fruit, and good protein sources. And you can go back for as many plates of food as you desire, although I cannot imagine getting more than a single plate of food.

    The staff of the restaurant takes a special interest in its patrons. Rarely have we dined in this restaurant where we had to wait more than a few minutes to be served. The waitresses are all pleasant and helpful and they remember frequent visitors. As many of you know, the Ghost has special requests when dining out. There is to be no "goo" on any of the food (no butter, gravy, sauces, etc.), for example. When coffee is served there is to be milk, not creamers or powders or coffee lighteners. At most restaurants there are excuses, at Two Nichols, the waitresses remember the Ghost's visitations and there is never a problem getting real milk for the coffee or dry food. So says Sam Post.

    Posted Apr 28 2009, 07:42 PM by Sam Post with no comments
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  • Approaching Fifty Years

    It doesn't really feel like it was a half century ago that I started to play the drums. On July 10th of this year at 3:00 in the afternoon I will have been playing the drums for fifty years. Well, not continuously of course, I had to sleep sometime, but half a century, whew!

    As I think back over time I can recall many bands and many interesting gigs in which I participated. There were roll ‘n' roll bands, jazz bands, country/western groups, Hawaiian shows, Latin music, and strippers. The venues covered many states but mostly it was New York that had the best work. In the early 1960's I started with the Alan Freed rock ‘n' roll shows and I remember being quite dazzled by the female entertainers in their gold and glitter, tight fitting costumes - I was about eighteen years of age at the time. The drummer always sets up behind the groups on the bandstand so I had a great view!

    When the Vietnam War came along I ended up in the Army. I played the snare drum for the marching bands until it was time to put down the sticks and to pick up the rifle. In country (Vietnam) I saw many groups from all over the world that came to entertain us. Although I had never played country/western music up to that time, most of my fellow soldiers were most enthusiastic about it. I began to listen to this music and I added it to my repertoire. When I returned to the ‘States I joined a country band and that led to many other gigs and recordings. Eventually I got back to the top-forty music because it paid much better. Nowadays I play whatever is at hand and, I am delighted to say, I still possess my "chops" from the old days although I have to admit that I'm getting a little rusty. But hey, do you know anything that is fifty years old that doesn't need a little oil once in a while? So says Sam Post.

    Posted Apr 20 2009, 06:45 PM by Sam Post with no comments
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  • Easter Lunch

    It was a beautiful day on Easter Sunday. The sun was shining and the weather was mild. It was one of those days when you feel that anything that you want to do will come out spectacularly. Our friends from Georgia had made a date with us to come down here to have lunch at one of our local restaurants. Since the weather was so perfect, they decided to come here on their scooters. This, of course, meant that all of us would ride our scooters to the restaurant; the day was too good to waste inside a car, we wanted to enjoy every minute of sunshine and fresh air.

    I was pleased that the restaurant was not too crowded; one seeks to dine in a quiet, respectful manner where decorum is maintained. We arrived shortly before noon and chose our favorite table next to a window where we could easily see the scooters. The waitress was prompt, as usual in this restaurant, and we ordered without too much fuss. The food came to table shortly after ordering and it was good. Unfortunately, I forgot to tell the server that I wanted no condiments included with my entrée. The cook likes to douse the vegetables with a liberal amount of hot pepper and it feels, to me, like a forest fire has been started in my mouth. Other than that, the meal was great. The four of us enjoyed the lunch, the quiet atmosphere, and the delightful scooter ride to and from the restaurant. Next time we will go to another good restaurant in Tallahassee. We will ride in the car, and the restaurant will not be quiet, but the food will be okay. To tell the truth, I prefer my wife's food preparation more than I do most restaurant fare; I know it is made with love, and it is cheaper too. So says Sam Post.

    Posted Apr 15 2009, 06:48 PM by Sam Post with no comments
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  • How Soft Can You Go?

    Everyone knows that drums (the musical kind) are kind of a loud instrument. The volume really depends upon how the drummer hits the heads of the drums. Plenty of force will give you a loud sound; a gentle touch will give you a soft sound. There are also different devices that a drummer uses to play the instrument. There are sticks (drumsticks - not the kind from the turkey) of all manner of sizes and weights, brushes (without the dustpan), and mallets. Lately there have been added a few new kinds of hybrid stick-brushes that give a sound that is softer than a wooden stick and more pronounced than the traditional brush.

    I have played with every conceivable device over the years to produce sound from my drums. I have played every kind of music from folk to rock to jazz to play in every kind of venue from strip joints to huge auditoriums and from grand hotels to the lowest of toilets. In point of fact, some of the toilets I played in were larger than some of the clubs. Anyway, the point is that I have had to perform loudly with big Rock bands and very softly with Bluegrass and Folk music groups. One of the groups that I played with down here in Florida had a guitar player that kept cranking up his amplifier until his guitar was louder than the whole band. Naturally, to keep the overall music sounding right, I had to play with the heaviest sticks I had and I was pounding so hard that I thought that I might break a head. The guy was truly insane. More recently I have been playing with a bluegrass band and I only play with brushes because the band members keep complaining that the "drums are too loud". To help with their dilemma I only use the softest brushes and I have now started to leave some of the drums at home. Of the six drums in the "kit", only three drums now make it to the bandstand. Next I will leave the ride cymbal home. If the drums are too loud then, I will play the drums with my fingertips and leave the brushes at home. The next step will be to just show up with a small tambourine and a cowbell. I will play the cowbell very lightly though; you can't get many cows on the small bandstands. Hey, it is not all bad; it will be easier to carry the drums (or drum). Smile

    Posted Apr 06 2009, 05:48 PM by Sam Post with no comments
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  • Shades of the Musical Past

    A few days ago the Ghost performed music for a full eight hours. That's a long time to stay on the bandstand playing song after song. This usually doesn't happen, but once in a while two gigs end up on a single day. Fortunately, the start and stop times did not conflict with each other; we went from one gig to the next in a matter of minutes. On this particular day the ghost was playing drums and, as everyone knows, drummers have a lot of equipment. To carry this equipment one usually disassembles the kit, packs it up and schleps (this is an industry term) it to the next location whereupon it is unpacked and reassembled so that the musician can play once again. But, what if the time between jobs is five minutes? It takes more than five minutes to take down the equipment, let alone moving it and setting it up again. What to do?

    Enter the crowd. There are always lots of people who are willing to help carry music equipment. In several cases over the years I have been faced with the dilemma of having to do two gigs, back to back, and there were always plenty of people who were happy to help the musicians. So it was in this case. The two restaurants were across the street from each other and, as it happens, they are owned by the same person. When it was time to end the first gig, about a dozen people pitched in to carry the equipment, piecemeal, across the street to the second location. (Sometimes this situation is more fun when the people are drunk.) It took no more than three minutes to transport everything to the second gig.

    There was still a band performing at the second location when we arrived so we carefully (and quietly) put the gear on the stage and waited until the other musicians finished before we set up to play our music. The excitement in the music business is intoxicating and the people you meet are usually in a good mood. After all, they are there to enjoy themselves so you find people demonstrating their best attitudes. There is even a healthy camaraderie that forms between people, musicians, and friends when music is the focal point. If the Ghost had to choose only one profession, it would be music and entertainment. Though there are many wonderful endeavors in this world, musical entertainment is number one for me.

    Posted Apr 01 2009, 07:54 PM by Sam Post with no comments
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