Tuesday, May 6, 2008

The Day the Music Died

On May 2, Steve Schroeder, the owner of the venerable Kirby's Beer Store in Wichita since 1992, passed away suddenly. He was a good friend and a great guy and I will already miss him terribly. He would do anything for a friend, and I consider myself lucky that he considered me one. He did do something for me once, and it was huge - and he went out in an ice storm to take care of it for me.

If there is a Rock and Roll heaven, a little bitty dive bar with a tiny stage and patrons who exude attitude just opened up across the street from the local state U. There will never be a cover charge, and the bands will have to play for tips...and they will. They will line up to play that little hole-in-the-wall, in fact.

Godspeed, Steve. I turn up the volume and raise a glass of somewhat cold beer. I'm glad to have had you in my life for a while. I will never forget you, or the fun that I can remember.

Freedy Johnston is a Kansas boy, and he would play Kirby's every trip home. If I recall correctly, we Kirby regulars were the first people to hear this song played live, one year when he was home for Christmas.

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