Just been to Seattle’s Jazz Alley with a great band. James Williams, Steve Wilson and Danny Embrey came along. They sounded great. Bassist Jeff Johnson and drummer John Bishop joined us. Great turn out there – sold out shows and Jazz Alley is great place to play. A BIG thank you goes out to KPLU-FM for their continued support. I always enjoy the city too – a beautiful place. I also got to stop into Tula’s in Seattle – another great little jazz club.

Now heading back to NYC, then to Worcester MA. There I’ll play with Paul Bollenback, Marshall Wood, and Jim Gwin. WICN Radio has brought me in several times – good people!

The Kansas City Jazz Festival was good and HOT (about 110 degrees!). Thanks to those of you who braved the elements – good to see my friends. Got to play with some of my favorite guys: Paul Smith (who just put out his own CD), Todd Strait, Danny Embrey, Gerald Spaits, Steve Wilson and guest Bobby Watson! Too much fun! The Concord Festival was good – got to play with Mulgrew Miller for the first time – a treat! (Did I mention that Chic Corea played Happy Birthday for me INSIDE the (hotel lobby) piano? That was an honor. ūüôā

Got to meet the well-known producer of MANY hits- Phil Ramone. Also spent a few days in San Luis Obispo, Ca. What a pretty place – took a great hike near there (watched out for mountain lions!) Also got to see/hear a live taping of Bill’s (McGlaughlin) St Paul Sunday (Mozart Festival there) progam (MPR) and was asked to sit in with the french horn player and his band- Richard (Rick) Todd on their ‘From Brahm’s to BeBop’ Concert-very cool (He’s “the one” hitting all those beautiful high notes on Shirley Horn’s Here’s to Life…)

Looking forward to NYC’s Birdland gig with Danny, Bob Berg, Lewis Nash, James Williams (and maybe another special guest or two). Should be a great two nights of music.

Going to be interviewed for Downbeat’s Blindfold Test later in the month – have always thought that would be an interesting thing. Also taping a couple Christmas tunes (already!) for NPR – more on that later. One more NY date to mention coming up. James Williams invited me on one of his Blue Note nights – September 2nd. Lots of ‘luminaries’ will be out (and IN the band)!

And summer’s almost over – can’t believe it. Hope everyone is digging theirs – and taking time to do things you love. Life continues to be an (excellent) adventure.

With Love,