Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Can You Feel The Love?

Fan recaps of the Gala Weekend are trickling in on the message boards. Here's a bit of the sampling of the reactions:

I just know that this gala was the single most amazing Clay experience I ever had (other than my M&G). I have been to Spam opening and closing. I have seen over 40 concerts. I saw QVC and R&big mouth. This just blew me away. Not because it was so important to Clay but because I needed to see Clay as Clay for me. And, I will tell you that I never, ever loved him more. Gay, shmay. He is one hot man. And loving, caring, passionate, and funny. He has it all and aren't we lucky that we found him? Don't I feel sad for those who haven't?
The Gala was wonderful, he was adorable, funny, snarky, handsome. I don't have enough adjectives to describe him!! My face still hurts from smiling. The auction was fun to watch & he was so excited to see how much the items sold for! His voice was just awesome!
This was one of the best Clay events I have ever attended. Or maybe they just keep getting better.
As has been noted, nothing has changed about how Clay acts with the fans. Nothing. He’s the same gorgeous, silly, wonderful, snarky, smart ass we’ve known and loved for nearly 6 years now
The moments in "On My Way Here" were very emotional (did I mention that there was crying?) and of course by the time he had finished "Right Here Waiting" (the song whose status changed drastically for a lot of us last night, I think!) we were both exuberant and drained and oh so incredibly grateful. I remember thinking over and over how fortunate I was to be there and literally said to myself after every song that that one alone had been worth the ticket price.
This was my first Gala and my first chance to see him in his "salesman moving the merchandise" mode for the chirren. He and the auctioneer, as you've seen, made a great team and sidesplittingly funny. Shamelessly working the room, milking it relentlessly for every dollar. Clay really looked to be having the time of his life. Modeling the leather jacket, making the bear dance, offering up his "stool" with the appropriate mock grimace. Flirting. Exhorting. Cajoling. And it was so much fun and so exciting to watch the bidding war over the top items.
About midway through "Right Here Waiting for You", I thought I was the only one with tears streaming down my face and sniffling, but then I realized I was hearing sniffling and sobbing all around me. In case you're wondering, the little ripple of laughter at the very end of "Right Here Waiting" was slightly embarrassed laughter at ourselves as the sobbing was just as audible as Clay's tender voice as he sang the last phrase of "Right Here Waiting" without the mike. (And the beauty, purity and texture of his unamplied voice...truly every bit as beautiful and transcendent as the finest instrument ever made).
For me, it felt like we had gone back to our roots. Clay even looked so much like he did back in 2003/2004 when he first mezmerized us and cast us underneath his spell. I saw so many of those early gestures and nuances and passion. It reminded me of why I first fell in love with him. (Yep, I said, "in love"...deal with it!). It was so eerie but so right. Whatever the degree of wondering each of us may have gone through about "is Clay still Clay", I say the answer is a blessedly, resounding YES! Even for those who didn't have that doubt or concern, what a treasure it was to be reminded and be able to relive that magic again. Last night was like the perfect mixture of Clay of the past AND present...old look, new songs. Totally cool, freaky and somehow right.
There has never been anything like the love between Clay and his fans and you could feel that love flowing back and forth...and around... between us, too, the friends he has given us..
Clay is a professional entertainer, but one that actually has a giving and loving heart, and one that loves each and every fan. Everything that has led him to this moment in his life began with "us". His emotional rendition of "Right Here Waiting" only touches on what he was trying to say and I can only say that I believe Clay knows and deeply appreciates all the love and support we have given since the beginning....for without that solid beginning, there may not have been that fateful meeting with Jaymes, which has led Clay to the happiest and most fullfilling time in his life.
Now, I'm not an easy crier, it really takes something for me to tear up. But-- omg that was one emotional night! I was so embarrassed when I started crying during Right Here Waiting-- but, as I was desperately searching for a tissue in my teeny worthless but pretty purse, *g*, I began to hear it-- a sniffle here, a stifled sob there-- and knew I wasn't alone. I was so proud of him, and so thrilled for him! I know he felt the love, it was a palpable entity-- and I'm so glad I was there to share it with him and everyone else there
The reality of the moment is really more then I can probably convey with mere words. The love that was flowing in that room, from him to us and back, was beyond anything I have felt in a Clay setting. There are times I wonder if I imagined it, but then I see others commenting on the same thing, so I guess I wasnt the only one. I will always remember this weekend, it will be very hard for him to top, but Im willing to let him try and I sure as heck plan on being there when he does.
I can say with all honesty that being in that room Saturday night was, without doubt, one of the most wonderful experiences I have ever had as a Clay fan. There was such electricity, love, and true emotion in the ballroom of the Marriott. Clay was the same Clay he has always been. He offered his love and caring and we gave it back to him. It was truly amazing.
I know he stripped himself naked with the People article and the blog and the thread at the OFC. But saturday night, in that few minutes, he bared himself, he bared his soul. That was one of the greatest acts of courage i have ever been a witness too
All I know is this man is firmly entrenched in my heart and in some strange way we are all also there in his. I don't know him--he certainly does not know my name or my face-- but I do believe I and the many, many like me, are nestled in that huge heart of his along with the handful that he does know. We are all just so lucky to have had him come into our lives .
It was amazing to hear and watch him take his voice and use it to connect to everyone sitting in that room. The voice says it all- there is no filter, no chance to misinterpret. The honesty comes from his soul.

You get the idea. *g* It was a magical night for most fans. Yes, some are still struggling with recent events, but Clay is who he is, a pretty amazing man, one well-worth admiring, and yes even loving.

And now for your viewing pleasure a Gala Montage by LovesClaysVoice:

Song: Miracle Of The Moment
Sung by: Stephen Curtis Chapman

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At 10:19 AM, Blogger Carolina Clay said...


Thank you for sharing all the fan recaps of the magical TBAF gala. LCV's montage is very special.

Many thnx for your kind comments in the Claymmy entry of the Carolina blog.

Have a great week!



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