Somehow anniversaries like the one I had this week take me on a walk down memory lane. It’s Friday so I’ve been thinking about the music and playing some of it to get me a movin’. It’s been a good day and one tune in particular from my past has been a keepin’ my toes a tappin’.
Earlier this week I mentioned my days frolicking about Key West and frequenting the dance floor of The Copa. This tune came out before I met the better half on an earlier trip. The first time I heard it was another one of those special nights when the DJ was premiering a new dance track. As usual the place had once again transformed into yet another decor. It seems The Copa was much like Auntie Mame’s beloved Beekman Place, ever changing to fit the latest mood.
This trip to Key West the interior of the old movie palace was stark. The walls down each side were stripped of anything at all and were white behind the long bars that lay between them and the huge dance floor. The stage was empty with just the white big screen. The music pumping and the colorful lighting system raising the energy of the dancers below the grand high ceiling. These were the days before laser technology and intelibeams so lighting systems were quite extensive if they were to have much effect at all.
I remember dancing and looking up into the lights and wondering what spectacle they had waiting for us. I could see lots of neon suspended above that had yet to even flicker and many large light boxes hanging above the bars that were still dark. Dance I did and getting a cocktail was easy as the bars were as long as the dance floor itself and lined each side of it.
Many cocktails later we were at that climax point sometime after midnight. The music was pulsing, shirts were off, dance floor packed and sweaty bodies filled the place. The usual lighting gave way to a full ceiling of neon sculpture coming to life above us as New Order’s Bizzare Love Triangle made its debut. I did not yet know the name of this tune so the series of neon circles, triangles and arrows didn’t yet make sense with meaning, just beauty.
The music was amazing as it pulsed and flourished. The neon sculpture now lit, filled the place and flowed with movement as it flashed and danced with us below. Then as the dance mix of this fabulous tune hit it’s bridge the suspended boxes flashed as if they were 1950’s flash pots flooding the stark walls with light. It all made sense. The neon sculpture had made its debut, the starkness of the interior was it’s art gallery and the sculpture danced with us.
That was The Copa, like Auntie Mame, spare no expense to make a night out an experience to last a lifetime. The rest of the trip that sculpture of neon that filled and entire ceiling of an old 1920’s movie palace danced with every song played as we danced below mesmerized by all it could do. A few months later when I made my trek back down south, the sculpture was gone and The Copa had yet another decor to fill it’s night with new surprises.