I didn’t expect to be mesmerized that night, but as I sat down next to the curb amongst 10 to 5 of my friends, I felt that something special was about to happen. Rio sat down and tuned the guitar, with a single lock of his hair hanging in his face. We sat waiting patiently when he explained to us that his first song would be about a friend of his who lived in an abusive home, then died while running away. We all set ourselves up for wave upon wave of sorrow, when he exploded into a beautiful cry of sadness over the death of his friend, and joy that she escaped her situation. When he finished the crowd had grown a little and inched closer together, as we prepared to go on another journey.
As he had before, Rio explained his next song and set into his fears of a nuclear winter. Throughout his performance Rio ceased strumming the guitar and began entwining the heartstrings of every person in attendance and laying them on his loom to create his tapestry of sorrow and camaraderie. With each song more people left their cliques and joined our circle, they put down their beers and joined us for soy milk. As Rio progressed we forgot that we lived in a dangerous world, that there was a band setting up inside, but we all experienced a catharsis and left a little happier than we arrived.
When Rio finished to a rousing ovation, he just gave us a crooked smile and humbly thanked us for listening. I rose to thank him personally and tell him how moved I was and he in turn thanked me and everyone there for having a great scene and making things like that possible. As the night passed and bands played Rio’s songs stuck with me, and as my life goes on I don’t think I’ll ever forget that human tapestry he made of us. Joining us all, and out different complexions to create beauty.