-the other day we got to play w/mark yeary, who truly is an awesome piano player! he has backed many, most famously merle haggard. his physicality & smoothness reminded me of gene taylor - hopping from island to island, square hands always perfectly balanced to attack the keys with strength, speed, & agility. when he sang, too, in a voice somehow both laid-back & energetic, his style still reminded me of gene the boogie-woogie king: muscular yet no effort wasted, soulful but w/lightness of touch. mark yeary is one swinging cat!
-i asked him to play some nola style songs & he did both roberta & some fats domino! his band was really solid, w/steve woods on guitar. two fellows well-known by all but me played trumpet (wow!!!!! a tall man named john...) & saxophone (we did honky-tonk w/him, an elderly fellow probably famous except to this know-nothing). later in the night, ray mcdonald strolled in & smoothly crooned some merle songs...
-i found out i'm not a band leader except w/dds. when you're talking about a band that's practiced only in certain tunes, then you're expected as a unit to follow, there're just too many carcasses to haul thru the mud on a tune that's unknown by even one poor soul.
-yes, mark yeary, the fantastic & famous pianist, wanted me to lead. my playing already was suffering bc i was nervous to play in front of him! but he kept looking @ me to kick it off & i kept looking at him hoping he'd kick it off. some songs would've been great if we didn't do 95 go-arounds, but i wanted to be sure everyone got a chance on every flippin' song. see how polite i am??? there were 85 musicians on the stage & i wanted to give each one a go-around... the set groaned... finally, phil, dear man, stepped in & pulled everyone out of the drink. yes, he's more portable, but his musical direction was also more adept (not to mention he can pull any style out of his can, like a human jukebox). i just wanna go fast! in the presence of fine musicians (except dds), such as folks playing music w/thrilling-to-watch but terrifying-to-accompany finesse, my star does not glimmer or shimmer. it just gets dimmer. and i feel dumber. like a bummer.
- enough already on this; i know. but rats. and dang! still, we all were honored to be around such great musicians... that trumpet just killed me!! i truly had no idea that this kind of & quality of music was going on in bako! i will go back again - to watch! and i think phil will have little problem sitting in... go to julie's branding iron 3rd friday of each month to catch this swell show. it'll just kill you!!
- now here's a flyer for our next show (corrected for a 3rd time!). we also have a private deal on june 4 & a few more pending. i might be moving, but we're not dead, no sir!! one possibility's such a kick. a kick! i'll reveal its secret @ later date... bwahaha
-this eve, my doggies are here (they finally laid down to rest after the border collie spent the 1st hr here bouncing like a jumping bean); i've started packing a tad; the mountaintop residence is turning into an actual abode rather than dump bringing horror to my loved ones; my dear cousin's coming in this wkend from tx; i "get to" make an amend in lotusland (character building & the start of soul-clearing, i hope). next wk, the last of school, i'll hope to have a library party. am gonna miss those kids so much. hope i don't start blubbering too much. wouldn't want my dear students to cry even one tear, not a one. i hope i'll always remember them, least as long as i'm on this wild blue.
washington irving: "there is a sacredness in tears. they are not the mark of weakness, but of power. they speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. they are messengers of overwhelming grief... & unspeakable love.”
Labels: blues jam, change, dusk devils, frazier park, julie's branding iron, mark yeary, roscoe and gusgus, see below, students, teaching, tim gardea presents