Daily Archives: October 6, 2011

SUNDAY MORNING with THE REYNOLDS BROTHERS, ED POLCER, and DAWN LAMBETH at SWEET AND HOT 2011

Depending on your habits and pleasures, Sunday morning might be a time to sleep in, to curl up with the metropolitan paper and your Beloved, to have a leisurely breakfast, to go to church, to visit friends and relatives . . . . all of them fine responses to a day of rest.  (All, that is, except for heading to the mall.)

But I propose one activity more singular and much more gratifying: spending Sunday morning with the Reynolds Brothers, those irrepressible rhythm rascals, and their friends.  I don’t know if the Brothers do house calls, so you will have to bask in the music they made on Sunday, September 4, 2011, at the Sweet and Hot Music Festival.

The Brothers were reliably themselves: Ralf on washboard and rulebook; John on guitar, vocal, and whistling; Marc Caparone on cornet and vocal; Katie Cavera on string bass and vocal; Larry Wright on alto saxophone and ocarina, with guest artists Ed Polcer, cornet and vocal; Dawn Lambeth, vocal . . . and a special (although unseen) member of the audience in his stroller, James Arden Caparone, the happy child of Marc and Dawn.

Just to be perverse, perhaps, Ed called FROM MONDAY ON as an opening selection (possibly preparing the audience for the idea of having to go back to work, even though that Monday was Labor Day) — playing and singing it:

It was just after breakfast, so in other hands a beef dish might have seemed too heavy to tolerate, but with the Brothers, PEPPER STEAK went down very easily:

Katie Cavera sweetly and wistfully asked the question raised by the Boswell Sisters and the Washboard Rhythm Kings– a plea to the somewhat hard-hearted lover in question: WAS THAT THE HUMAN THING TO DO?

After such knowledge, nothing but a rouser would suffice, so the band offered NAGASAKI.  By jingo, it was worth the price:

SUNDAY was appropriate in mood as well as on the calendar, and it offered Dawn Lambeth a too-brief chance to serenade us.  And the serenade took place off the bandstand as well, as Ed strolled over to James in his stroller to blow a chorus just for him.  I was sitting there and saw James grin — a baby in jazz bliss!

Who gathers all the talk of the town?  Why, DR. HECKLE AND MR. JIBE, according to Johnny Mercer:

With James in the audience, Papa Marc decided to sing a chorus of the Louis Dunlap – Charlie Carpenter song YOU CAN DEPEND ON ME — the lyrics don’t always fit, but the sentiment comes right from the heart:

I don’t think John Reynolds was following up on some subliminal associative strain by calling for PARDON ME, PRETTY BABY, but one never knows:

And — as is their habit — the Brothers ended with a truly hot AFTER YOU’VE GONE:

Keeping live music alive!

BY THE POOL in LOS ANGELES: DAN BARRETT, EDDIE ERICKSON, HOWARD ALDEN, JOEL FORBES at SWEET AND HOT 2011

My experiences with music at poolside have been less than ideal: someone’s iPod or a boom box, or even oleaginous background music being piped through speakers.

None of that for the Sweet and Hot Music Festival in Los Angeles this past Labor Day weekend (September 2011)!  Here are two wonderful instrumental performances by members of the Rebecca Kilgore Quartet that took place beside the pool on Sunday afternoon, September 4, 2011.  In the spirit of accuracy, I have to point out that the bluish lighting is not an entirely accurate representation of everyone’s skin tone, and the wind does cut through the singing and playing . . . but it is so far above anything I’ve ever heard by any pool that it deserves to be presented and immortalized.

Here’s a deeply lovely duet — DAY DREAM as caressed, sadly, by Eddie Erickson and Howard Alden.  I make Eddie blush and mumble when I say this, but he is the best male ballad singer I know . . . full of tenderness and spirit.  He doesn’t belt or overact; he gives us his heart.  And Howard’s playing is subtle, sweet, and restrained.  Don’t blame the wind: it wanted someone to request THE BREEZE AND I.

Something more festive followed — a trio of Dan Barrett, Howard, and Joel Forbes, working their happy way through Earle Warren’s 9:20 SPECIAL — a Basie classic:

What a way to linger in Los Angeles!