What can I say… Vera Klement is simply an incredible woman. I experienced a moment with her I will never forget, where in the intimacy of her home, she told me the story behind every single one of her paintings, including one in progress that was particularly intriguing due to its reference to Balzac. I was able to get a wonderful glimpse of Vera's personality through her stories and artworks. Her work is so striking and symbolic, her homages to fellow artists, poets, writers, composers are incredibly profound and she as a person is very endearing. I am thrilled to introduce her to all of you.
After meeting with Vera, I spoke with a blues musician friend of mine and asked him if he might get some members from his band together to play for us in a place of their choosing this Saturday. I explained I was looking for an intimate place I had never been to before, preferably a place where he and his crew liked to hang out, and if possible, not too far from Vera's studio. He took me to a joint on the West side owned by his friend Wallace, a small, authentic, soul food restaurant, "Louisiana-style cookin' like you wouldn't believe", he said.
April 28, 2012 - An evening with Vera Klement,
Wallace and his Catfish Corner, Blues Diva Sharon Lewis and her band Texas Fire
I had definitely never been there before, nor had I ever heard of the place. The food was good and the people welcomed me like I was one of their own. I felt like I was at the heart of a community filled with a rich story and culture. I knew the musicians would play a whole different set here than what they would play anywhere on the North side, and I knew it would be good. I sat down with Wallace and asked him if it would be alright for us to come for dinner and have some musicians play for everyone who would be there. He was thrilled with the idea and offered to set everything up.
The joint is called Wallace's Catfish Corner. Let's meet there for dinner, sit down with Wallace and the musicians, then get down! Blues Diva Sharon Lewis and her band Texas Fire will perform just for us.