The Space at Westbury
November 24, 2018
Bringing his special brand of feline insight mixed with rock and roll, the “Cat Daddy,” Jackson Galaxy and his Total Cat Mojo Live Tour arrived at The Space at Westbury on Long Island. The audience was full of cat guardians, rescue workers and fans of Jackson from his Animal Planet show “My Cat From Hell.”
Jackson Galaxy, born Richard Kirshner, originally hailed from New York City and legally changed his name in his twenties. He moved to Boulder, Colorado to reset his life and ended up working at the Humane Society of Boulder Valley. Although he had little experience with felines, he soon became the human that the shelter cats gravitated to and he began his journey to understand them and help bridge the gap between the species.
Utilizing video bits to inject humor into the event, Galaxy hit the stage, guitar in hand. For viewers of his show, it isn't unusual for him to travel to home visits with with his guitar case in hand, full of cat treats, toys and other tools. Galaxy is known as a rock musician but fans rarely get to see him play. This tour changed all that. The man can rock!
Set to look like a living room, the stage sported a comfy couch and a few cat toys as props. Galaxy talked about concepts like the “Raw Cat” the wild cat nature that lies inside of each house cat. He laughed as he described how a cat is showing you trust when it lies on it's back, exposing his or her belly and Galaxy strongly urged humans that this was not an invitation to pet said belly!
In describing the first cat he fell in love with, a kitten in a box who he tripped over outside the shelter in Colorado, his vulnerability was apparent. He named her Velouria, after a song by the band The Pixies and she lived with Galaxy (and since 2014, his wife Minoo Rahbar) for 26 years, before passing on last year. The audience related to his stories and most of all, his humanity.
For all the fun, there were serious moments, like discussions of the necessity of shelters and treating pets like family, not chores. The audience, decked out in cat shirts, sweatshirts and ears, was attentive. They filled out questions forms in the lobby prior to the show and Galaxy selected a few and responded near the end of the show. He asked people to raise their hands if they've adopted a cat, fostered a cat, participated in trap-neuter-release, bottle fed kittens or volunteered at a shelter or rescue. As hands were raised proudly in the air, Galaxy was visibly moved by the power of the passion of his audience and seemed humbled to be among like-minded folk.
Photos by Christine Connallon