This is just a brief recap and may not mention everything. The Knoxville, Tennessee audience grew restless as it was 8:10 PM on Thursday evening and still no Clay. Then the lights go down except for the exits and the stage curtain has yet to be raised, as Clay enters singing theTheme From Love Story. The night was magically drawn back to the Big Band era as if Clay and the band have taken us, the audience, on a ride in a time machine back to the 50's and 60's. He even sang "Invisible" and some popular music songs of today in the big band style.
No cameras were allowed and bags were searched. I did get a rather bad picture of the Bijou marquee. You can't make out Clay's first name but the last name is a little bit legible>
My seat was in the left orchestra section on the 7th row (from the stage
)and the 7th seat and I got a seat on the 7th row from the stage on the right side in Asheville last July and further back in Knoxville during 2007. I loved it when Clay sat on the stage facing my side. He seemed to make sure that everyone on each side of the stage got to see him at some point in the program.
Minor Health Problems Threaten to Ruin the Trip
I had a bit of hypoglycemia (I'm a type 2 diabetic) before, during and after the show, even though I'd eaten dinner. I just thought I was getting woozy because I was seeing Clay live for the 3rd time: but I was prepared with some lemon drops. It wasn't a major episode. I just felt funny. The second day after the show, when my mother and I were in Pigeon Forge- I had problems with my sinuses. Still, the trip wasn't ruined.
Unchained Melody Highlights the Concert
When Clay hit some of the "glory notes" of "Unchained Melody", I felt chills and goosebumps up and down my spine. I don't know if anyone else in the audience did, but I know I felt it. You don't get that on a recording or on Youtube!
Mr. Aiken's History Lesson
Clay gives a brief history of the Bijou Theatre. I'd heard some of it through my mom, because my parents and my brother lived there when I was born and an infant. He tells us that the theater was once a whorehouse, a hospital, a place that showed adult(x-rated)films, that it once belonged to the Methodist church and that it had a ghost(and he looks over at Quiana). As Clay mentions the ghost bit, some of the lights in the theater flicker :D.
No "Rap" For Clay's "Who's Sorry Now?"
When Clay asked for a style for WSN after he sang it the TNT style, he asked the audience for different styles of music. At first, we raised our hands. Clay commented on how polite we were being and just asked us to blurt them out. I said "Rap" but he said no and that he couldn't do that, and chose "bossa nova" . Still, except for the bus lines, that's the closest I've gotten to an interaction with Clay in person. I don't know why I chose rap, it just popped in my mind. I guess I could blame it on mild hypoglycemia, LOL!
"Tried and True" Time Machine Moves On
I didn't go to the bus lines for this Knoxville concert, but I did in 2007 at the other Knoxville concert.
Side Notes and Side Trips
I met a few of my fellow Claymates who I'd previously only met online. One was from the OFC- ClaysLilSusiQ. She offered an extra ticket that was closer, but it was only 2 rows over and I thank her anyway, A Facebook fiend and fellow Claymate ,Vie was seated just behind me at the concert
On the morning before and after the concert, I met some friends of the family from our church when we lived in Knoxville. One of them was my godmother. I imagine that they're glad that Clay stops in Knoxville and Asheville because that's been the only times that we've been to see them lately. It's sad that we don't make time to visit three hours away and I have also lived in another town that's about three hours south of here in Alabama. Still, I hope that Clay will have a concert in Chattanooga one day in the next few years.
While we were so close, My mom and I decided to spend 2 nights in Pigeon Forge. We didn't tour the replica of the Titanic, but took a few pictures outside of it. We ate out a few times and drove through the national park and went to Cherokee, NC. Although it was mostly unseasonably warm in Pigeon Forge for this time of year, there was snow in some of the park's higher altitudes. We saw a family with young boys from Florida who had never seen snow. They had a blast in a snowball fight. We didn't do too much Saturday night, as my sinuses were bothering me. That morning when we had breakfast at Hardee's , I saw a man who resembled Ray Stevens about a booth away from us. As much as I like Ray Stevens' comedy, I'd rather have been that close to Clay or someone who resembles him .I'd control my fangirly urges and I probably would have just waved politely or something if it had been him.I also saw a bus similar to Clay's between Knoxville and Chattanooga today(Sunday), but I knew that wasn't him. We cut through by the new Volkswagen plant on our way home. We'd not seen it since it was built.
A few random clickable pics from the Smokies:
Pics of my mom and myself at Titanic. There's a little boy that we don't know, but he was wearing a captain's hat.
From Smoky MTNS and Cades' Cove:
The picture inside a wood building is an old-timey blacksmith shop in Cades' Cove. I almost dropped my phone in the shed when I took the picture and it was padlocked.
Never Too Much Claytime
------See You Next Time!-----------
Search Amazon.com for tried and true clay aiken