Es ist so schön, ein Musikant zu sein!

5 Feb

We went to Pittsburgh’s Hofbräuhaus last week for my birthday, where, after a long ordeal with trying to get a table, we enjoyed some jamz from the always-fabulous Grkmania. I used to go see them play at Penn Brewery, back when they played there weekly before the Brewery closed for a brief period a couple years ago. They used to play fine, traditional tunes, including a lot of Slovenian songs, good Slovenians they are. But now they have moved to the Hofbräuhaus.

I felt bad for them, being forced to leave Penn Brewery for the Hofbräuhaus, having to abandon much of their more traditional repertoire for songs that appeal to hundreds of drunken fools standing on tables, playing drunk songs like “Who the Fuck is Alice” and “So ein Schöner Tag“, in hardcore turbo polka, of course (incidentally the video of the latter, from the original Hofbräuhaus in Munich, has pretty much the same atmosphere as the Hofbräuhaus Pittsburgh). They have laid aside the songs of their ancestors, which could have well been turned into some good hardcore turbo polka, for tunes I find far less charming, songs which some might even abhor.

But I looked at Joe Grkman on stage, accordion in hand(s), jamming away with the rest of the band, and saw only smiles. Sure, it could have just been  because of the beer they’ve been consuming. And sure, maybe I can’t have judged this situation all that well anyhow, as I may have been somewhat inebriated myself.

But it was clear they were enjoying making music for these hundreds of drunks anyhow, regardless of what songs they played. And it was clear hundreds of people were enjoying them, too.

…although I will note that it was only after  Joe gladly obliged my request for a Slovenian song that a few couples passed in front of me, twirling, dancing away.

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