As I wandered in off the street and into the poorly hidden local coffee house underneath this town’s much fabled museum. I was overjoyed to catch the sight of a lone guitarist performing a soundcheck on the cramped rectangular stage.
I eyed a closed piano; obviously not a part of this musician’s repertoire. Instead he fiddled with the decaying guitar perched on his lap. His grubby paws wearing away the fine craftsmanship of the neck, my assumption – he’s been playing for a long while.
I approached apprehensively, it was late and I was exhausted after a hard days graft. Despite being a local resident he claimed he was “glad to see new cats on the scene”. His apparent smugness grew fonder as he exclaimed that it must have been my birthday, as I had been lucky enough to stumble in for a special song he was playing tonight. I scoffed under my breath.
With nothing better to do, I ordered a hazelnut latte from the silent server and took my seat. The coffee shop was empty but for me and the barista. Let’s see what this boy can do. He announced to the vacant room that this song was being performed in my honour. The worker cooed quietly, as if looking for something behind the counter. A tumbleweed would have been massively fitting.
The gentle plucking of the guitar was melancholic, his voice unlike anything I’d ever heard. His rough tone juxtaposed near perfectly with the bark of his guitar in a perfect blend. The barista simply stared, he’d seen this act too many times, becoming so used to perfection that he found it tedious. I infectiously nod my head with his melody. He howls sweet nothings, I can only sit and listen.
His nameless song ends abruptly, like the ending credits of a personal favourite movie. I hadn’t realised the passing of time with this performance, I’d been glued to my seat. My eyes were infected with the same substance as I’d failed to avert my gaze.
“Cool,” he uttered before pawing off one of his CD’s into my hands.
“Play it when you get home,” he demanded, before packing away his guitar into its holder. One song didn’t satisfy – I caught a glimpse of a worn poster on the damp walls of the establishment.
He plays every Saturday at 8pm, his name – K.K. Slider.