Wednesday, September 30, 2009

I can recall having a conversation with Ella at one of the first Sierra Grille shows. I had just seen Tim bust through the front door and I was watching him weave in and out of the crowd at breakneck speed (he always had the gate of someone who had somewhere important to be). He was "fist bumping" his friends and acquaintances throughout the bar. I asked Ella, "how does one get on that list?" Moments later he approached us and extended his fist to Ella. She stuck hers out and they both made the motion that their hands had just exploded due to the contact. Because I was sitting with a mutual friend, Tim looked at me and checked if I was game... you bet I was!

Although this wasn't my first fist bump with Tim, it signifies what I'll refer to as the "alpha-bump" which led to a consistent bumping and conversation at local music shows.

Not only was Tim was at every single show I have ever played in Northampton, I happened to see him almost every single day of the week. I work at the public library in Northampton and this location was one of the many stops he would make throughout the course of his busy day. I would often be on the phone at the reference desk and Tim would approach with his print out of local concert listing for that day (sometimes the header of the paper would read "Tim's Concert List" followed by the date) or I would be dealing with a disgruntled library patron and I'd see an anxious, suspended fist inches from my face out the corner of my eye.

Only days since his passing, there's already an enormous emptiness that I can feel in my home town. It's strange to think that he won't fly into the front door of the Elevens ever again, dart into the assistant director's office at Forbes for a quick candy fix or be seen lobbing paper airplanes at three o'clock in the morning. Unquestionably, he was the absolute greatest supporter of our community's music scene and will be missed by all those who ever met him. Tim was an extraordinary personality, a beautiful guy who essentially had a key to the city and I'm glad that he and I were friends.

This Friday the Elevens is hosting a memorial show. Swillmerchants, The True Jacqueline, Rabbit Rabbit, Ray Mason and several others will pay tribute.