My wife and I went to a Christmas concert at New Salem State Historic Site on Saturday evening. Eight solid voices and a small combo singing a wide variety of Christmas standards, some ballads, with some comedy mixed in. Very enjoyable, but the highlight for me was when a local talent: Ken Bradbury, took the stage. Ken has just retired from 35 years as a high school teacher, has authored a number of books, 100 plays, has great stage presence, is very, very funny and plays a killer piano.
Ken's gig is this: he plays riff or two of piano (in this case Christmas music) and then tells stories while he continues to play background. He had the audience from the get-go, and some people were nearly in tears laughing so hard. Then he put the hammer down:
"I read this morning that the average shopper will spend $450 on presents this year. Then CNN said it's really $950."
"I thought about that, and wondered more about the real Christmas message."
"Since we got up this morning 15,000 children throughout the world have died of hunger."
"we could feed every one of them with 1/5 of our cell phone bills."
"this Christmas, send someone you know a letter telling them how much you love them."
"And don't sign it. "
"Let them think it might be from a LOT of people."
"That's a that person will value long after their Christmas Rolex has rusted."
It's a terrific performer that can have you in tears two different ways inside of 10 minutes.
For the reminder.