I like to go and listen to live music. Not at your local bar where it’s more about decibels, but at the more subdued venues. I have a few local artists whose mailing lists I am a member of and get weekly updates as to their gigs. I also get weekly updates from netteradio, a weekly 2-hour internet radio show that is dedicated to promoting unsigned women musicians. If you are into an eclectic mix of music, you should tune into her show. If you do not sit in front of a computer all day long, you can listen to the shows via podcast. That’s what I do. Hosted by Annette Conlon, she also puts together showcases around the area.
Last week, there was one such showcase at the Talking Stick, a cozy coffee house in Santa Monica. Sometimes the musicians are new to the music scene, and sometimes they are just new to the LA music scene. I get to listen to five or six different artists, and those I like, I join their mailing lists. I sit in the back of the room, sipping my English Breakfast tea. Even if the artist isn’t all that great, it is still refreshing to listen to the sounds of the instruments and to hear the clarity of the voices and not go home with ears ringing.
I usually check out the websites of the featured artists before I go, just to make sure that I’m not heading out for a night of angst and darkness expressed in the music. This time, a new artist, AnnElise caught my ear. Plus, I already know I like the Conlons and Arlene Kole (with a K) so the night was set up to be a pleasure.
Halfway through the 3rd musician, a guy walks up to the counter looking amazingly like Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN’s chief medical correspondent. I like Dr Gupta, and I watch his shows and specials, when I get the chance. He also appears occasionally alongside Anderson Cooper, either on AC 360, or on one of the Planet in Peril specials.
Now, I’ve had “star sightings” before, but please! Dr Gupta, from Atlanta, Georgia, at a small coffee shop in Santa Monica? Who’d a thunk it? The sweetener in my tea must be tainted.
I stared for a little while, trying to determine if it was him, or just someone who looked like him. He WAS wearing a suit jacket, and who does that in a California coffee shop except medical correspondents? He started to speak, and the voice was the same, so now I was 90% convinced it was Dr Gupta. After he walked past me, I was 100%.
Later on, talking to Annette, I found that it was in fact Sanjay Gupta and he was there in town to meet with one of the musicians!
Adding Sanjay Gupta to my official star sightings!