This weekend was eventful. My godson and his band decided to celebrate Father’s Day by playing their fathers’ favorite songs. My godson and his band Shunpo (yes, they named themselves after the Bleach technique), planned this for a while. They learned the songs in partial secret. I knew about them practicing some of the songs, but I had no idea what they were for.
The boys managed to convince their fathers and families to go to the drummer’s home. His family has a large backyard with enough space for the forty to fifty people who showed up. How they got away with playing rock music live without anyone calling the police I do not know. This is Chicago. You typically get at least one complaint. But no one interrupted them.
They played very well. They played a nice metal-ish version of “The Best Is Yet to Come.” They had easier times with “People are People” and the completely random “I’m So Young.” (I found out later that the bassist’s father is a fan of the film Cry-Baby, which features the song). They did a fantastic version of “Life on Mars,” although it was kind of cheating since they learned it a while ago after hearing on VAMPS last album.
But the best goes to my godson’s father’s favorite song “Darling Nikki.” My godson saved that one for last. Mostly for his voice. It has gotten deeper, and he is still learning to control it. However, it was also for the moment. He took off his guitar. The music starts, and my godson pulls his shirt off and acts out the scene from Purple Rain. All his father could do was laugh and record it. He likely did not wake up Sunday morning expecting to hear his 14-year-old son sing “I met her in a hotel lobby/Masturbating with a magazine.” Thankfully, my godson did not hump the ground, although I am sure he practiced doing. Instead, he picked up his guitar and played guitar solo at the end of the song with band’s other guitarist.
Everyone applauded, and he put his shirt back on. He went and got his acoustic guitar. I wondered why he brought it. Then he says, “He doesn’t think I remember this, but I do.” And he sings “By Your Side.”
I used to sing the song to him when he was a baby. I had no idea he remembered any of that. He looks me right in the eyes when he sings “When you’re on the outside baby and you can’t get in/I will show you, you’re so much better than you know.”
I could not help it. I typically have control, but in that moment I could not help it. It made me cry. He kept the eye contact as he sang “And if you want to cry/I am here to dry your eyes/And in no time, you’ll be fine.”
As soon as he finished I went over and hugged him. That caught him off guard because I do not show much physical emotion. When I pulled back he saw my face and said, “Geez, you’re crying! But it’s good crying.”
After I got some control over my voice I asked why he sang to me. He says without pause, “Cuz you’re my second dad.” I managed to control myself, but just barely.
His parents named me his godfather because of how I felt around children. I thought because of what I went through I was dangerous to them. His parents did not agree, but telling me that did not mean anything. So when my godson was born they asked me to be his godfather. And now he thinks of me as his second father.
That is by far the kindest thing anyone has ever said to me.