Daily Archives: April 4, 2012


We miss Barbara Lea, who died at the end of 2011.

Her dear friend Jeanie Wilson has planned a memorial service for Barbara — full of deeply felt music and tart stories in honor of “The High Priestess of Popular Song.”

It will take place on Monday, April 16, 2012, at 7:00 PM, at St. Peter’s Church (54th St. & Lexington Ave., New York City), with Barbara’s good friend, singer Daryl Sherman, as host.  The performers and speakers will include Bob Dorough, Steve Ross, Marlene VerPlanck, Ronny Whyte, Melissa Hamilton, Jack Kleinsinger, George Wein, Joyce Breach, Roger Schore, Jan Wallman, Karen Oberlin, Lewis Chambers, Sue Matsuki, Tedd Firth, Harry Allen, Annie Dinerman, Dick Miller, The Speakeasy Jazz Babies, James Chirillo, Boots Maleson, David Hajdu, and others.

W.B. Yeats writes “Say that my glory was I had such friends.”  I hope to see you at the memorial service — to let Barbara know just how much she is loved, missed, remembered.  And although memorial services remind us that the object of our affections is no longer with us, we go out thinking of that person with something deeper than funereal gloom.


My trusted internist Dr. Gauvin says that many people are suffering from undiagnosed joy-deficiency.

The Reynolds Brothers, masterful practitioners, can fix that without those nasty forms to fill out, and no co-pay.

Here they are at the bubbling-over Dixieland Monterey Jazz Bash by the Bay (on March 2, 2012).  John Reynolds takes care of the guitar, vocals, and whistling; brother Ralf mans the washboard; Katie Cavera keeps the Brothers in line with her string bass and singing, and my hero Marc Caparone swings out on his cornet.  For the first half of this set, stomping / mystical piano man Ray Skjelbred brought his magic!

Who needs to ask “Is there anyone finer?”  We know the answer, Miss DINAH Lee:

When I dream about the moonlight on the Wabash, then I long for my INDIANA home — even though I was born in New York:

Although they perform standing, Marc and John lament the fact that ROCKIN’ CHAIR got them — while paying tribute to Messrs. Armstrong, Teagarden, and Carmichael:

Singer / stuntwoman Kaye Wade joined in with a rousing GOODY GOODY:

Because everyone was grinning, the Boys took a chance with a three-key signature ascent through SMILES:

Brother John sweetly whistled us in to DREAM A LITTLE DREAM OF ME:

At this point, Ray bade everyone goodbye, saying he had to get ready for the next set with another band.  I don’t doubt him, but I think he really had to go off and lie down somewhere — he had taken in too much joy too quickly.  The Reynolds Brothers can do that to you.

And here they prove me correct with their romping rendition of LIZA:

It’s Katie Cavera Time . . . so she sings and swings out on I’LL BET YOU TELL THAT TO ALL THE GIRLS (but it sure sounds good to us!):

For Wingy Mannone — THE ISLE OF CAPRI:

And we close with a riotous JAPANESE SANDMAN, hardly soporific:

Now, don’t you feel better?  I know I do.

And I would like someone to explain to me why the Reynolds Brothers aren’t asked to festivals outside California.  Could it be that most evil insidious prejudice, anti-Washboardism?  Please tell me.