Where The West (Categorically) Begins: The Steve Gnash Experience / by Prewitt Scott-Jackson

Fort Worth’s Steve Gnash and Dreamy Life Records release Gnash's eponymous debut record Friday Dec. 2nd at The Boiled Owl Tavern w/ Son of Stan and Same Brain. Gearing up for the big event I look back at my first Steve Gnash experience hoping to offer a glimpse of what to expect on Friday.

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It’s November and I’m tired. Really really tired and … ABSOLUTELY ENTHRALLED because Steve Gnash, per our Twitter interaction Nov. 7th, has agreed to give me unfettered access to his Nov. 9th show at The Live Oak in Fort Worth.

  Twitter Screenshot courtesy of Prewitt Scott-Jackson

Twitter Screenshot courtesy of Prewitt Scott-Jackson

Flash forward two days, my Uber drops me off at The Live Oak. Not just any Uber, but like, honestly, the most cerebral Cinderella carriage-like Uber ride of the century. An omen of the night to come?

I’m early. Not just tonight, but always. Sipping cheap beer to numb my anxiousness, kill my nerves. Any second now and Steve Gnash was gonna walk through that door.

Then he did.

A light surrounds him. No, a halo. A halo of sunflower sunrays that scream “MAGIC!!” This guy is a certified Pop god.

An entourage follows: Two photographers, his manager, his driver, his personal nutrionist, an intimidating security guard, a sex bonfire of a backing band and an apple cart worth of adoring fans.  

My pen starts shaking in my hand. My blank notebook stares at me with grave doubt. Gnash immediately recognizes me as part of the press and precedes to one-hand-catch my dazed expression taking it back to the end zone for ‘6’ [sits down next to me in my mafia-inspired booth inside the Live Oak bar].

His entourage follows suit, filling up the entirety of the booth before I can blink. I’m enveloped by this sense I’ve been absorbed into his orbit. A star and his planets.

Initially, nothing is said to me. Logistics discussed amongst the group such as “How many plates of free nachos are we entitled to?” and “I can confirm I have the Nag Champa and the champagne Mr. Gnash,” etc.

I interject with my first, and as it would turn out, my only question of the evening, “So, Gnash, what were you doing prior to arriving tonight? I guess what I mean to say is … What does Steve Gnash do when nobody is looking?”

“There’s always someone looking at Gnash,” his manager Hollywood Jones quips.

  Steve Gnash and Manager Hollywood Jones – Photo Credit: Prewitt Scott-Jackson

Steve Gnash and Manager Hollywood Jones – Photo Credit: Prewitt Scott-Jackson

After a chasmic pause Gnash finally speaks, modestly answering “Reading someone’s cards.”

“Like Tarot cards?”

“Yes.”

“Whose cards would that be?”  

“The psychic at the gas station off 1900 block on Hemphill St.”

A halo of sunflower sunrays I tell ya, a halo of sunflower sunrays!

The entourage shifts towards the green room located backstage at ‘The Oak.’ I try to nudge my way in but Hollywood Jones puts a kibosh on that. Despite Jones restricting my green room access, Gnash offers me a pity pull from his champagne bottle. Would you pass on a pull of the philosopher’s stone? I think not.

  Green Room Access Denied – Photo Credit: Prewitt Scott-Jackson

Green Room Access Denied – Photo Credit: Prewitt Scott-Jackson

Being turned away, I head outside. A healthy portion of the backing band congregates on the loading dock, this includes lead bass guitarist (Tha) Mista Deezy. Mista Deezy specializes in having fun and serves as the most talented musician of the backing band. Besides providing lead bass, Tha Deezy doubles as lead backup vocalist.

Deezy refused my interview, but not in an “I’m the best musician here” kind of way, ‘twas more of an “I can’t disrupt my pre-game mojo but I hope you understand” kind of way.

  Tha Mista Deezy (pictured right ) Pre-Gaming Prior to The Show – Photo Credit: Prewitt Scott-Jackson

Tha Mista Deezy (pictured right ) Pre-Gaming Prior to The Show – Photo Credit: Prewitt Scott-Jackson

Back in the main auditorium the audience sits inauspiciously waiting for something their minds are incapable of conceiving. I scan their brain pans with my deft telepathic skills to hear a collective “Just another wispy Fort Worth singer-songwriter.”

The band’s sheer show of force strikes down this ridiculous notion with a masterful opening performance of the hit single “Sprung;” a track that has since been world premiered by 96.7 FM on the Local Ticket Show w/ Mark.  

  The Steve Gnash Experience in Full Swing – Photo Credit: Prewitt Scott-Jackson

The Steve Gnash Experience in Full Swing – Photo Credit: Prewitt Scott-Jackson

From there, the band dives into “Coughdrops,” a track I have heard before thanks to my advanced copy of the record. “Coughdrops” incites the audience to MOVE. And MOVE they did!

  Mista Deezy Feelin’ the “Coughdrops” – Photo Credit: Prewitt Scott-Jackson

Mista Deezy Feelin’ the “Coughdrops” – Photo Credit: Prewitt Scott-Jackson

The remainder of the set sways seamlessly from song to song with nary an interruption aside from a moment of exuberant prayer in dedication to Pop goddess Britney Spears.

  Gnash Praying at The Alter of Britney – Photo Credit: Prewitt Scott-Jackson

Gnash Praying at The Alter of Britney – Photo Credit: Prewitt Scott-Jackson

The besiegement of sexy sound lingered, fluttering about the Live Oak’s microsphere for minutes upon the set’s conclusion. Nobody speaks. The audience, they sit in silent stupefaction as time ticks by until finally an uproarious applause ignites nearly burning down the red velvet stage curtains that have since been shuttered.

As I left the venue, the same dazed expression as before falls upon my face only this time the daze consists of wonderment and achievement not that of nerves and anxiety.

For once in my life, the planet of Me has a star. Whether I’ll ultimately catalogue as an insignificant dwarf ice planet or a gas giant such as Jupiter, being tethered to Steve Gnash’s sun gives me a boundless sense of purpose because either way I am now embedded in his orbit.

Well, until my Uber ride back home arrives anyway.

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about the word writer person:

Prewitt Scott-Jackson writes Dad poetry & short fiction when he's not hyping and typing for Fort Worth Noise. His writing can be found in Ghost City Press (New York), Five 2 One Magazine (Los Angeles), Prairie Schooner (University of Nebraska Press) and Sick Lit Magazine (Texas), among others. He prefers short walks on the beach because – and I quote – “It’s really hard to walk on sand.”