The club's main performance stage room is cozy even under normal circumstances, but on Wednesday night, the influx of fans, musicians and well-wishers made things even more compact than usual. Many of Central Indiana's blues stalwarts were on hand, including Gene Deer (left, above) and Gordon Bonham, who are shown in the throes of an intense guitar solo near the end of the first set. I'd heard that the list that musicians use to sign-up to participate in the jam reached three pages Wednesday; a co-worker said he sat with a musician from Toledo, Ohio, who was unaware of Booth's passing but knew about the weekly jam and thought he'd drop in while staying in town overnight. His name was never called.
I was able to grab photos for about an hour and a half before I reached a point where I could not either move around or find an open spot to shoot any more; that's not at all to complain -- it's to testify to the support of Jerry in fan and musician turnout from the local blues community. They put a bucket on the stage for folks to donate money so Jerry's family can afford a proper send-off. My co-worker acquaintance, who stayed till 1 a.m., said they announced near the end that they had collected $1,100 for Jerry.
To view a full gallery of images from the evening's performances, visit this link.
Gene Deer Band members, bassist Henry "Chief" Coneley (above) and drummer Joe Means (below).
Above and below: Deer in mid-groove.
Above: Gordon Bonham
Above (from left): Gene Deer, Allison Irvine, Smokin' Dave Wyatt and Gordon Bonham.
Above: Drummer Jeff Chapin along with bassist Smokin' Dave Wyatt.
Above: Bonham's band has Smokin' Dave Wyatt as its bass player.'
Above: The spotlight is now all on Bonham.