News

Nov. 13, 2019

The Nevermore Jazz Ball in St. Louis was an incredible experience.  I had the time of my life playing with terrific bands: Miss Jubilee and the Yas-Yas Boys; The Chicago Cellar Boys; Michael Gamble’s Rhythm Serenaders/Orchestra and Jonathan Stout’s Campus Six.  The weekend was actually a challenge: playing almost constantly after a long layoff, and switching back-and-forth between a variety of drum styles (from South Side Chicago of the 1920s to Big Band sounds of the 1940s).  I was able to make most of it work, and would do it all again in a heartbeat!

The most pleasant surprise of the weekend was having the opportunity to work with “Miss Jubilee” and her fantastic musicians.  I enjoyed all of the sets with this great group and hope to do more with them in the future.  I am always interested in traveling to St. Louis — one of my favorite cities.  It is rich with Railroad, Steamboat and Civil War History…and Scott Joplin’s house!

Miss Jubilee Band 2

Miss Jubilee and the Yas-Yas Boys at Foam on Cherokee Street, St. Louis, MO

Next up is a trip to Texas for the Austin Lindy Exchange.  I’ll be leading Swing Central and will also be working with the Jonathan Doyle Swingtet.  Below is a link to Michael Steinman’s recent blog concerning Swing Central at the 2019 Redwood Coast Music Festival:

https://jazzlives.wordpress.com/2019/11/09/hal-smiths-swing-central-at-the-redwood-coast-music-festival-part-one-hal-smith-steve-pikal-dan-walton-jamey-cummins-jonathan-doyle-may-11-2019/

On Thanksgiving Day I will travel to California for the 40th Annual San Diego Jazz Fest.  I am really looking forward to playing there with On The Levee Jazz Band, the Kris Tokarski Trio, Gino Meregillano and the Jazz Guitars and the Memphis Speed Kings!

The December and January calendars are empty at the moment, but I will post any updates as soon as they come in.

Meanwhile, the cats are a lot more active these days, as the temperatures continue to drop.  They are chasing each other, playing, occasionally scrapping and competing for the best spots to observe the household:

 

High Up and Low Down

Happy Holidays!

— Hal