I’m stunned, but in a delightful way: the band schedule for the Monterey Jazz Bash by the Bay — although it could change — is available here. I have all I can do to not print it out and start playing jazz-chess with my highlighter (once I find it). But you’ll see the reason for my opening emotions: there’s so much good music here, some of it in conflict with other explosions of good music . . .
Now, the schedule is too large to be appropriately reprinted here in the space that WordPress allows, and that is in itself significant. So a few facts. There’s hot jazz, blues, gospel, trad, zydeco, hokum, singers, banjo players, gypsy jazz, washboards, saloon songs, stride piano, boogie-woogie, and did I mention just plain hot music for dancers and for listeners?
There’s a special Thursday night session. Friday and Saturday the music runs for more than twelve hours in eight simultaneous venues (all under the same roof); on Sunday the last set begins at 3 PM.
When I called, yesterday, the Portola Hotel still had a few rooms left at the special Jazz Bash rate; Monterey is a lovely town with interesting shops and good things to eat. Easy. Now, a few possibly-impolite lines. If you are coming to the Bash, I salute you, I embrace you (if we’ve signed the appropriate paperwork). If you’re not coming because you live too far away or because it costs too much or because of health issues, I do not upbraid you, but sorrow with you and hope you will watch the videos I create from the performances this March.
But if could come but you don’t make the effort and say wistfully, “Gee, I’d like to get there. Maybe in a year or two,” I just hope this and other festivals are ready for you when you are ready to attend. Festivals, although they look huge and solid, are fragile affairs, and they don’t survive when there are too many empty chairs in the room. It’s easy, after the fact, to say that “they” did a bad job, whoever “they” are, but you and your attendance are the fuel necessary for the festival car to make it up the hill year after year. I have spoken.
May your happiness increase!