Lisa Engelken in present tense.

It's been years and we're wearing different skins. In the dark hallway between sets we talk about our molted selves, those discarded skins we've left behind on paths we never knew why we traveled, and I remark how funny it is to look at our past and think we were never that person except it is so obvious we wouldn't be here without them; I wouldn't be here says Lisa if I hadn't been there. We laugh, because 'there' means so much in music-speak: heartbreak and hope, perjury and injury, envy and sushi. And then we are talking about how you write songs based on what other people tell you, that being a writer means being able to listen and not simply blurt out your feelings to any witness standing by; your self is shaped by the toils and troubles of others, by the broken dreams people give you and ask to have fixed but then never return to collect. The language in the dark between sets plays like this between us, a surfing of metaphors and hardcore physics, those stiff rules of life that will not let us bend the truth to suit our sights. And then I tell her to go, that people are waiting to speak to her, they've come from far away to wire into her bottomless sparkle, and that I will catch her energy later, Monday morning, as we drive with Sandra to New York, and the mention of the word 'Sandra' sparks new admissions and admirations but we break it up and head out into the light where the first thing we see is Sandra hawking Lisa's brilliant new CD, growling at everyone that they better get and pay for their copy right now. The rest of the night is utter thrill, and Lisa Engelken, the former dashing Lisa E., spirals into new coils of drama and delight as we bathe in her energies like blooms in a meadow, tilting happily in her direction, even our veins throbbing perfectly to the beat. You make up every song as you sing it or listen to it, since there is no room in your brain to remember that much, so it's always a surprise when we or she gets it right and we remember that note or that feeling or that moment when she made us smile years ago, or was it seconds go, or now? She makes you feel good, and it makes Lisa Engelken feel good to do it. How many times in the second set does she almost apologise for feeling so good, perhaps at your expense? But she bites her tongue and figures you're free to stand up and go, so she flings another torpedo of a tune at those of us who stay to watch her sing. And we all stay, of course, we always will. Music kissed from her lips into your heart and memory will always keep you right where you are, listening.