Tiki King Perfect, 2004

Life is full of moments. Clocks tick, time passes, and sadly, a lot of life goes by almost unnoticed. But there are moments that stand out, that burn into your memory because they are living poetry. I remember once many years ago when I was single, I was alone on a Christmas eve. All of my family were living far away. My friends were all off, presumably with their families, and I was alone. I put on some music and poured a shot of Rum. Chrissie Hynde was on, singing about Christmas. "Through the years we all will be together, if the fates allow..." I stared into my shot glass, and watched as single tear traced the contour of my cheek, and the fell, seemingly in slow motion, landing in the rum, sending tiny waves to the edges of the glass. It was a moment that was so perfectly sad, that it actually cheered me up.
Not all of these moments are sad, quite the opposite. One such moment came years ago at Ukefest west, during the performance by James Hill. He was playing his first song "Miserlou" and there came a spot at which he paused for maybe an eighth of a second, or maybe even less. And in that moment I realized that the entire crowd was dead silent for the first time that evening. 550 people who had been talking and eating, clinking forks and glasses, drinking and socializing. 550 people who were now focused on the stage. It seemed as if time stopped. Forks hovered above plates. Glasses were held motionless, conversations were paused. 550 talking, laughing, eating, drinking people were now living statues, frozen in sheer awe of what was probably some of the best Ukulele playing they had ever heard. I remember thinking, "Good God! there really are no limits..."
Somewhere, on a giant, silent, cosmic clock, the second hand clicked forward starting time again, and James's hand came down in slow motion striking the next cord, and you could almost see a wave sweep through the crowd. He finished the song, and people went wild, I assume they were feeling the same giddy excitement that I did. As I stood there cheering, I realized that I had just experienced a perfect musical moment. A moment that showed the beauty of how far it was possible to go. A moment that, oddly enough, was a fraction of a second of silence.

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