Originally, I expected to have a relatively quiet April, with a lot of down time. But in mid-March, gig offers started coming in and all of them were too good to pass up!
As I write this, I am in New Orleans for the French Quarter Festival – eagerly anticipating the opportunity to play with good friends Banu Gibson, David Boeddinghaus, Kris Tokarski, Tim Laughlin, Andy Schumm, Bob Havens, John Royen, Richard Moten and many others.
Tim has a brand-new CD available (please see my RECORDINGS page for ordering info). I was delighted to be able to record with Tim and David Boeddinghaus – a great program of standards and new originals by Tim.
Immediately following the French Quarter Festival, I head for Chicago and gigs with the Fat Babies Classic Jazz Band and also the Blue Three. I am honored to have the opportunity to play with the FBCJB and Blue Three – exactly my kind of music!!!
Of course I love to play in Chicago, and it's a good thing that I also enjoy working in New Orleans. I wound up with another string of gigs in the Crescent City between Apr. 22 - 29. Apr. 25 is the grand opening of a new restaurant called NOSH. This establishment is owned by the group which also owns a place where I frequently play: the Bombay Club. Kris Tokarski is the musicial director of NOSH as well as the Bombay Club, and has engaged Tim Laughlin and yours truly to provide the music for opening night. Later in the week I will be back at the Bombay Club with one of my favorite vocalists and favorite people: Banu Gibson.
In other news, I am now a member of Gino Meregillano's new group The Cash In Hand Band. As you may infer from the band name, this is group plays what Gino calls "a loving tribute to the music of Johnny Cash." It was a smash hit at the Redwood Coast Music Festival earlier in April, and has already been invited to perform at other West Coast festivals. I have loved Cash's music since I first heard it on the soundtrack of the tv series "The Rebel" back in 1959, and am always enthusiastic about any opportunity to play it. Gino knows exactly how to pace a show, so I expect this group will be a great success on the festival circuit.
Also, my Swing Central has just been engaged to perform at the Austin Lindy Exchange (ALX) on Sunday, Nov. 19. I love working with this band and am overjoyed to have yet another opportunity to drum with it.
Meanwhile, during all the traveling, Mittens and Alex are handling Daddy's absence in the best ways they know how...
Thanks for stopping by, and please check back around May 1 for updated information on late spring/early summer gigs!