I sat in with Jon Paris’s band in NYC (at Lucille’s Grill in BB King’s, times Square) for the second time on Monday, October 22, and it was fine.  This time, instead of running the harp through the PA, I managed to talk Jon into letting me set up my Digitech RP200 amp modeler.  (It wasn’t easy–Jon doesn’t like to fuss with gear.)  It was worth the trouble. 

Last time I played with Jon, I went straight through the PA.  It was okay, even very good, but an acoustic harp sound isn’t ideal for an amped blues band.  This time around, I had the right sound for the gig, and what a difference it made.  When we opened up, with a medium tempo blues in E, you could see everybody’s heads turning toward the harp.  The amp modeler gave it that heart-grabbing Chicago sound–not so much loud as commanding, with a lot of authority on the low end of the harp in particular.  Having the sound made it a lot easier to play the right thing, too.

I plan to drop by Lucille’s Grill every month or so to get my blues thing on.  I’ll advise when I plan to go next.