First of all, it’s been quite the few months with many small triumphs and several challenges. More below on all of that, but I want to THANK YOU for helping make what we do worthwhile. I have received so much good feedback and by YOU showing up to our performances and giving us the great energy you have, and for your feedback via facebook, fan page, website, personal interaction after/between shows. This is so much of what makes it worthwhile. Yes – we performers must ‘put it out,’ but we also have to (or at least I do!) have something to put BACK IN! So, thank you!
Here’s some of a re-cap:
Among other things my mind has been on this catastrophic oil spill. It makes me sick to my stomach and angry and frustrated just like everyone else. Sometimes I don’t know what to do about those feelings. Music helps.
My heart goes out to the folks who work and live there and to the ocean and wildlife that are suffering – we will all suffer for this.
Also I have several close friends who are going through some very hard health issues. That’s also a helpless feeling and music helps that too.
I could write in these road notes that all is fine & dandy, when in fact, so much isn’t in this world. As Mose Allison says in one of his tunes I’ve been doing lately: “This world is just one big trouble – spot, cause some have plenty and some have not…”
More & more I feel in choosing certain material to sing and play, it’s cathartic and helps just a little to have meaning in all of the chaos around us.
So, onto the music . . .
I think I left off in April. We played in KC at the sweet little club, Jardine’s, where we saw a ton of friends and had really good gigs. Then to Lincolnshire, Il. at a great high school where they invite many national acts to their auditorium. I played on a Rhodes piano which has re-kindled my love for that instrument. Couple of days back at home and then to the San Diego area – Oceanside CA. where I sang with the jazz choir there as well as doing our own thing with my band. Heard a wonderful educator speak about vocal health and tracking it through technology. Her name is Diana Spradling and her book is “Jazz Singing, Developing Artistrt and Authenticity.” Check it out! Also while there I got to hang with a great friend from Jr. High! So great to catch up with long-time friends.
Back in NYC, I played with the great guitarist Gene Bertoncini at the Women in Jazz concert at St Peter’s Church. It was just the two of us and we had fun trying some new things out for some new folks.
Onto Asheville, NC to their wonderful series, where I did a masterclass for singer Sharon LaMotte’s students – fun!
Our poor drummer Eric had ‘all night flight issues’ and barely made it – one of the perks of this vagabond life – not! But we had a great concert in that beautiful space. President and Michelle Obama had JUST been there, but alas – he had to leave before I got to lay eyes on them!
Back home for a few days, then to Catalina’s in Hollywood. It was really good to be back there and see our friends and play with Rod Fleeman, Tom Warrington and Bob Sheppard. While there I took a hike in Grifith Park – that was lovely too.
Back on the east coast I went to hear Nancy King and Fred Hersch at the Jazz Standard. They were inspiring as always.(I get to sing with Nancy again in Portland in July.) Then to an ‘all stars’ concert just outside Boston at Showcase Live’ along with Jay Giles, Bucky Pizzarelli, Gerry Beaudoin, Harry Allen and the rhythm section. It was a varied and cool concert.
Our little series in Northampton was a blast! The Unitarian Church was an excellent venue for Rebecca Parris, Brad Hatfield and I to play. We had alot of fun with tunes, banter and making music together. Also thanks to Zack for sitting in! And also thanks to Tom Reney for helping get the good word out through radio! Great crowd and we look forward to the next time (maybe we won’t choose graduation day next time however – parking is bad enough!)
Then back to NYC at Bryant Park to open up Bill McGlaughlin’s new “After Work Classical and Jazz” concerts. Lewis Nash, Ed Howard, Rod and I had a great time, although, another airline snafoo put Rod in just 3 minutes before ‘down beat’ … the show must go on and the weather was beautiful, thankfully. Lots of folks attending these, just as if it were a theater – but it’s midtown Manhattan – outside! So, you can imagine the ‘competition’ with traffic, sirens, etc. Quite invigorating and host Bill McG never fails to engage the audience.
Birdland the following week was great – wonderful crowds all week long, and fun for me to add the Rhodes again to our show. Rod, Lewis, Ed and I didn’t want the week to end really. And Birdland is truly one of the great clubs in the world.
Had a great week OFF after that – whew, that was alot in a row. Unfortunately for me, my iphone was stolen in a rather ugly incident. I’m only telling you this to be aware yourself and alert your loved ones, as it’s no fun and costly. A ‘kid’ riding a bike on the side walk close to my home in NYC ripped it right from my hand while I was talking on It – along with a clump of hair. NO FUN! I have to say the NYC police were great. I didn’t get it back of course, but they were & have been on it, and of course it could have been worse.
So, next on to Denver Festival, teaching gigs and camps in June and August, Portland OR, and more East Coast gigs in August and recording this summer as well.
Please log on often to the touring page as things are added. Also facebook blogs. We don’t want to miss you!
Here are some things I’ve either heard, read, saw: The beautiful Picasso exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, attended a concert and tribute to Leonard Bernstein at the famous ‘Lotus Club’ in NYC, I got to hear the Orion String Quartet, Mark O’Connor Quartet (and I sang “Amazing Grace” with them!) and the Imani WInds all at Bryant Park– beautiful!
Heard Johnny Mandel conduct the Diva Jazz Orchestra at Dizzy’s and Ann HC sounded lovely as always.
Also heard two friends play (separately) at the Metropolitan Room in NYC: the lovely Sharon LaMotte and the wonderful Wesla Whitfield.
Misc news: My middle neice, Julia graduated from high school! My oldest niece, Sonya is traversing Europe and attending school in Spain. My neice, Sydney is in Honolulu attending school and working with kids after school; nephew Paul is tearing it up in track and band! (yeh!) oh – also ‘classical greek’ ! They are growing up.
Hope you have a good summer, can do good and meaningful things along the way, and that we get to see you out there sometime soon. Thank you for checking in.