Evidently yesterday was the first day of the Tibetan new year, so it was my first gig here in Lhasa. It was much more a standard Chinese club than the place where everyone else performed the night before last. It’s as if the same person designed every club in China, because they’re all virtually identical. I was glad to see a lot of Tibetans in the house, though. All of us performed last night – Kimmy and Maria danced, Dave did his fire eating and dance show, and I played for two hours.
Because most of the music played here is nearly identical, I was trying to get away with playing as much hip hop as possible, if only to break up the musical monotony that I’m sure club-goers here are constantly exposed to. It worked for 45 minutes until they insisted that I played house music, so I played breaks instead. Things were pretty much immediately going well and it was a good time, though. The decks were so low that I asked them if I could sit in a chair because my back would be killing me – instead they removed some of the floor boards so I was standing on a surface almost a foot below the floor in the DJ booth. It worked out fine, and the gig was actually a lot of fun. One of the clubs dancers grabbed my ass while I was playing and made it look like one of the security guards did it. She didn’t tell me until afterwards and it really weirded me out since I couldn’t worry about it at the time.
Immediately afterwards we were all collecting our things and getting ready to leave when some Tibetan guys at a table urged me to have a drink with them. They asked where I was from, I told them America, and they said they really love Americans. They asked me if I knew why, I said no, and they said because we care about them. We don’t really do anything because of the trade implications it would have with China, but maybe they heard about our “Free Tibet” bumper stickers or concerts or something. Anyway they were very enthusiastic and friendly, and a joy to hang out with.
Today we had another Tibetan meal (no more Chinese food) and some fantastic teas – masala and butter tea. Dave and I wandered through a neighborhood network for an hour or so, hanging out with small children and taking photos while observing what it was like.
In a few moments we’ll leave for dinner. Tonight we’ll be performing in the same club again – looking forward to it!