18 Weekender Friday, December 9, 1977
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The Carmina Consort will present "In Dulci Jublio" at
8:15 tonight in Gerrard Hall. The concert will tell the
Christmas story through the music of medieval and
Renaissance composers. The consort, now in its fourth
season, is composed of nine area musicians who
specialize in performing early music on period
instruments such as recorders, krummhorns and viola
de gamba. There is no admission charge.
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Local musicians stay afloat
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Chapel Hill may not be the most profitable town for a musician, but the atmosphere is
a good one for making music, says Joe DeLuca. DeLuca is a bass player for the rock
band Night Shift. Staff photo by Sam Fulwood III.
By ETTA LEE
Chapel Hill musicians need a strong sense
They work long hours for limited
audiences and pay. They frequently are
forced to take outside jobs to support
Joe DeLuca is a bass player for the Chapel
Hill rock band, Night Shift. Unlike many
area musicians, Joe supports himself
through his music.
According to stereotype, the budding
musician seeks fame and fortune in the big
music cities New York or Nashville.
Joe shatters the stereotype. He left New
York after studying music there and came to
Chapel Hill to perform in Hot Grog. He had
no idea he would stay here.
"I like Chapel Hill," he says. "I've been
here approximately two years now. This is
the longest I've been in one place at one time.
I've never been one to plan ahead, I guess. I
stay in a place as long as I dig the people.
"I've thought about going back to New
York a hundred times since I've been here.
And eventually I guess I'll be branching
away from Chapel Hill particularly if
Night Shift gets notice from a record
company and we get to go on tour."
Local musicians have differing opinions
on the state of the music business here,
DeLuca says. "It's not difficult to get by in
Chapel Hill, in my opinion. It's a little more
impersonal in a big city and there's a good
audience for new music here. Musicians can
be original here."
The Chapel Hill music market has its
financial disadvantages, though, DeLuca
says. "In another way I feel I've sacrificed
something in coming here. In New York
there would be more clubs to play and I
could make more money, but then, on the
other hand. I don't have the same expenses
here that I would have in New York.
"Musicians don't make as much money
here for one thing, there aren't many clubs
here and performances are more spread out.
Another thing is that North Carolina doesn't
have liquor-by-the-drink. Bars pay more to a
band where there's liquor-by-the-drink.
There's a big difference in a bar serving a 50
cent beer and in a bar serving $2 drinks.
DeLuca first started playing guitar
seriously when he was a senior at New York
State University at Stony Brook. From there
he studied jazz and played with 'Lightnin'
Hopkins, "a blues genius from Texas."
"I've been playing professionally for about
eight years," he says. "It's a big commitment
to play professionally. It's been hard at
"But there are ways to support yourself.
You meet a lot of people who can help you
out. You have to spend a lot of time
performing in bars. I don't really like bars
Playing professionally also means
compromising your music interests at times,
"A musician also has to be really versatile
to support himself in music here. In my case,
for example, what I would really like to play
is jazz. I was mainly playing jazz before I
came here. But in order to pay the bills, I play
rock and roll, I play at weddings and I play at
parties. . . .It might not be what I want to be
playing, but at least I'm playing."
Just to keep playing is sometimes an
uncertain goal, DeLuca says. "Being a
musician is a really unstable way of life. Even
now, sometimes I kick myself and wonder if I
have a future.
"I'm excited now about this new band I'm
in Night Shift. This band could really
make it, I think. The vocals are wonderful.
It's a mature band. We've all been involved
in a band situation before.
"Night Shift plays a mixed bag lots of
different types. We play some classic rock
tunes and we're introducing our own original
tunes. I feel really good about this band. We
have a common goal, since the band comes
"You have to keep music interesting. It's
important not to play by rote. You can go
through the motions of practicing, but
you're not really making music unless you
keep it fresh. You have to develop the habit
of playing every day. It's therapeutic."
Night Shift will appear at the Mad Hatter
Dec. 8, 9 and 10.