Tuesday, March 13, 2012

David Simpson kicks off the tour for A Good Man

David E. Simpson

This was my fourth time on the Circuit (Am I setting a record of any kind?). This one was a mini tour: Monsieurs Gordon Quinn and Bob Hercules, directors of A GOOD MAN, graciously allowed me to take a third of this tour due to my fondness for the open road and the warm Southern audiences that make up the circuit. My stops were Auburn, AL and Lafayette, LA.

Auburn was predictably pleasant. I’d been there on the 2009 tour with my film MILKING THE RHINO. That previous experience included a post-show soiree at someone’s home, where they fed me dinner and bourbon and the conversation went deep into the night. No such luck this time but the show was great anyway. The venue is a refreshing anomaly: a newish, stylish art museum on the outskirts of a university town otherwise devoted to football. The audience at each of my Auburn shows has been populated by several retired professors who seem to be regulars at the screenings, so the Q&As tend to be of a pretty high order.

The following night in Lafayette took the cake though. Screening in a state of the art theater in the brand new Acadiana Arts Center… the film never sounded better. But the real highlight was before and after the show. My host steered me towards Randols: a cavernous Cajun joint beloved by locals. It’s crawfish season! So I dared to have crawfish etouffee that was topped by a whole one of the little boogers, which I needed help from my waitress to figure out how to shell and eat. 

Then after the screening a local told me about the Blue Moon, just down the road, which hosted a Cajun jam session every Wednesday night. This place was the real deal: tucked out of the way on a side street, a dozen folks on stage w accordions, fiddles, guitars and washboard; a few younger folks on the periphery learning from the grizzled vets. Very cool.

All that, plus the 70-something weather, made it pretty hard to come back to Chicago.

The sorry thing is that I forgot to bring my camera (and my phone cam is crappola), so I can’t prove any of this.

Going on the Southern Circuit is a good reason to make more films.