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Saturday, June 28, 2014

A great time Rollin' on the River in Naperville!

Jodi Wartenberg photo
By Ted Slowik

Wow, what a fun show! Last night's two-hour free concert at the Free Speech Pavilion on the Naperville Riverwalk was a big blast!

I was humbled and grateful to feel the love and support of so many family and friends who came out to listen. Slowiks were well-represented with son Noah, brothers Bud and Mike, sister Liz, nieces and nephew Sarah, Rachel and Jonathan and Sarah's kids--the next generation!

Jodi Wartenberg photo
Good friend Ron Kostka was amazing on the drums! He really brought the songs to life and powered them along with his inimitable brand of transformative energy. We had one rehearsal, on Tuesday night, and I could tell then by the way he was hitting the skins that this would be a special performance.

Jodi Wartenberg photo
And it was! I felt really good about the way I sang and played 22 originals and five covers on three different guitars in four different tunings, with a little slide at times and a loop pedal to play a lead over a rhythm track. That worked OK but Ron and I have to practice the timing of that a little more, so I kept it to a minimum.

Mostly I just barreled through the 27 songs with a small amount of talk in between. The set went exactly as we rehearsed and planned with the exception of two audibles: I included the tune "Lies" because we were more efficient than expected and had time for more songs than planned, and when I had the Epiphone in open E tuning and slide I added Robert Johnson's "If I Had Possession Over Judgment Day." I gotta work on that--not being afraid to have a little pause between songs here and there.

Jodi Wartenberg photo
I was pretty drenched with sweat by the end of the night. Even though I felt great I appreciate the concern of friends who thought I might have overdone it a bit, given I just had heart surgery three weeks ago. But I've been doing cardio rehab and sweating like that every day so I wasn't worried. It was a great workout!

Selfie with Janet Pimentel!
I truly appreciated seeing so many friends including Chuck, Donna and Rachel Pelkie; Dave and Mary Jacque; Cean and Anne Magosky; Judy Brodhead and Gary Smith; Janet Pimentel; Jodi Wartenberg and Greg Vershay; Kathy Millen; Lois Mayer and Maria Rocco; Dr. Jim and Kelly; Clarence Goodman; Meg Dedolph; Hank Beckman and more. Special thanks to Nancy Thompson and Brett Lindahl from the Naperville Park District for the opportunity to play such a wonderful setting as part of the Rollin' on the River free concert series. Cheers to Debbie Mossburg of Bike Bald--I donated all the tips from the night to aid their cause of helping people affected by cancer.

Hank's story
Hank wrote a really great article that was published in The Naperville Sun the day of the show. We spoke for about 20 minutes on Monday and then again for few minutes on Tuesday, and his story was published online Wednesday and appeared in print Friday. He really did his homework--you could tell he listened to songs and read the blog and knew my story well. I greatly appreciate his excellent work!

Jodi Wartenberg photo
Aside from being a whole lot of fun, I'm extremely happy with the progress I'm making as a performer. I switched from playing bass to guitar just three years ago and now I know I can play two hours of originals and keep a big crowd entertained and engaged! That's really gratifying.

Judy Brodhead photo
But I know I can get a lot better. I owe a deep debt of thanks to my friend and guitar teacher Kev Wright of The Righteous Hillbillies, who puts a tremendous amount of time into planning lessons for all his students. He knows what your strengths are and what you need to work on, and with his wonderful bedside manner he's a tremendous boost to one's overall confidence. I very much look forward to learning a lot more from Kev!



Ted setlist Rollin’ on the River Naperville 6-27-14
1. Hurt (Johnny Cash cover)
2. More (loop pedal for solo)
3. Slowiks (capo 2)
4. Hinsdale
5. Record Store
6. Springfield
7. Rockville (REM cover)
8. These Walls (dropped D)
9. Red Rover (loop pedal)
10. Well, Well, Well (John Lennon cover, electric)
11. Low (electric)
12. Hit Somebody (acoustic, Warren Zevon/Mitch Albom cover)
13. Dream So Hard
14. Support Joe Hosey
15. New Way Home
16. Kick the Can
17. Refugee Blues (W.H. Auden poem)
18. Years Go By
19. Lies
20. Don’t Wanna Fight (electric, slide)
21. If I Had Possession (slide electric, Robert Johnson cover)
22. Back To You (Acoustic, open C)
23. Stand Your Ground (Trayvon Martin tribute)
24. ‘Merica/Never Been Any Reason
25. Dear Editor
26. King of the Mountain
27. The Cave  (Open D) (Mumford and Sons cover)