Big sheets of rain; hammering so hard you had to shout to be heard over it. I even watched it rain around a corner of a covered porch for a few minutes. It’s high summer in North Carolina, there’s a thunderstorm in the forecast many evenings. But this was Forrest Gump-type monsoon rain. We had a gig in a nearby small town, at their “Singing Grove” in a nice little park off Main Street. Hosted by the local Chamber of Commerce, they took good care of us. Gracious people. There is an air-conditioned back room with a wide, deep and well covered stage. Summer here means 94F temperatures and 300% humidity. Even the air is perspiring. The first thing you set up at the gig is the fans. Show time was 6PM, we had a hired pro sound system and a guy who knows how to run it. So, at 6PM we started our set – vintage R&B, rock and soul. The crowd was fairly into it, when they weren’t fanning themselves in the shade. Too hot to dance, but seats were swaying and toes kept time. We played well with no problems.Guitar Player Ken was on fire, his soloing was outstanding even for his skill level. Lots of fun. About 6:20 a sun shower swept through, but the crowd was hardy and stayed. With about 4 songs left in our first set, a colossal tropical downpour cracked open above us. We thanked the crowd as they departed, and helped our sound man and video man pull back their gear under cover. Our own stuff was far enough back to just get a little mist/spray from the splash zone surrounding us. We pulled everything into the back room, dried off and encased things, and then unwired the stage. The line of thunderstorms continued raging overhead as we settled into the back room and had a second round of catered BBQ and chicken. Loading the vehicles was done in rushes between storms. Fairly soaked and sticky, I got home around 9:30, about what it would have been without the rain. BONUS : Free light show ! Some of the most enormous lightning I’ve ever seen raged past as we waited inside eating fried chicken. The last audience members to leave were shouting for us to please come back. That was nice.