Wow, what a time! Dorothy and Frank Vernon put on a regular series of events in their beautiful barn in Longmont, Colorado: I’d been to one of their evenings in 2016 (see here) and couldn’t wait to come back. Before you read a word more, check out their site here. I was not ever a Cool Kid in school, but in their barn I feel as if my new self fits very comfortably, surrounded as I am by love and swing.
You can learn more here and get on their email list. Carl Sonny Leyland, piano, vocals, and spiritual guidance; Marty Eggers, string bass and serious joy; Jeff Hamilton, drums and surprise — these are very Cool Kids and heroes of mine.
(And this took place the night before the Evergreen Jazz Festival — so it was a delicious appetizer to that swing banquet, where Carl, Marty, and Jeff also made deep friends through music.)
I wouldn’t just write about the barn dance without offering some evidence of the joy to be found there. Here are four beautiful effusions: rocking, splendidly deep, full of wonderful harmonic, melodic, rhythmic twists and turns.
Talk about swing! This performance starts rocking immediately and keeps on without needing to be plugged in to the wall to recharge its battery:
Courtesy of the Harlem Hamfats, a kind request to one’s Squeeze:
the most famous rag of all, but pay attention:
and a jazz classic but nicely outfitted for 2018:
Beautiful tempos, irresistible propulsion. I feel good when these fellows are in charge of the music: I hope you do, too. Blessings on them and on Frank and Dorothy — and happy birthday to Judy!
May your happiness increase!