The Philly Opry / by Birdie Busch

My friend Kevin told me of a saying he heard, I think when he was in Italy. It goes, " Those that eat alone, die alone." It sounds morbid but really it's just an Italian way of saying, "Hey man, how great does it feel to sit down with each other and feast?" I'm a big believer in food bringing people together. Perhaps one of the lonelier times in my life was that post-college apartment jumping stage where I was always sharing a place with people but always sitting down at different times and eating solo. I remember realizing that although I was by no means ready to start a family to remedy this I really wanted that experience back of sitting down with loved ones and kindreds and sharing a meal, sharing the end of a day together.

Anyhow, I thought of this tonight as I sat down with some friends to share a friday evening. Cooking has always been something that seemed just an extension of my creativity. I don't think I haven't met a passionate musician that wasn't also a passionate cook. Feel free to let me know about the exceptions in  funny anecdotal character descriptions if you can. Now I'm drinking some bourbon while also licking fresh cookie dough off my finger and I'm sitting down at my desk while they play in the front room.

I'm excited to sit down right now cause I'm about to post photos from the Philly Opry I hosted at Johnny Brenda's a few weeks ago. It was our first one, an experiment of sorts, and I was getting nervous as the day came because of all the snow. I started acting like a fatalist and making all these nervous predictions that everyone wasn't going to come cause of no parking, etc. But it was as if someone opened the top of the club and poured them all in. I could only describe the crowd as giddy, rammy, and riotous with occasional bouts of slow dancing fever.

The broken bell republic was aglow. We would like to thank Johnny Brenda's for being such
a music institution, Lisa Schaffer for taking all the photos, Nick Miles and Veronica for building the barn out of salvaged cardboard (!), Angela Miles for homemade nudie suits, raffle prizes and more,  and everyone who decided that that's where they needed to be that night. This may become a tradition.....Love, Birdie Busch

more photos of the night can be found in my photo section at!