Tag Archives: Germany


When I posted a picture of my newest objet d’art and small heavy mystery, I was hoping for a mixture of amusement and erudition, whatever the proportions.

I got the former in large measure: the comments have been very witty and some of my JAZZ LIVES friends absolutely threw themselves into the delightful activity of solving the mystery.

But this comment rang the bell, hit the target, won the prize.  Dig it, as we say:

May I help you? This artefact is a replica of the “Neumagener Weinschiff” which ornated the graveyard of a wine-merchant in the then Roman part of Germany. Details are to be found on the German version of Wikipedia.
“Jazz lives” is a daily joy for me and lots of others. Thank you very much, Michael. Truly yours, Bernd Gaertner, Berlin, Germany

From what I can gather online (with the usual reservations — search for “Neumagener wine ship” if your German is as poor as mine — the tomb dates from about 220 B.C. and it was found near Trier, Germany.  Thus I suspect what I bought for twelve dollars was a piece of German-Roman tourist merchandise, which in no way reduces its value.  (Some of my readers were mildly anxious lest I think I had found a valuable antique: I had no such get-rich-quick illusions.)  I love it even more for the hilarious good cheer it produced on this blog, and tonight I plan to drink a glass of Nero d’Avolo in its — and Bernd’s, and my readers’ honor.  Thank you all!



Louis Armstrong is still giving us joy, and people inspired by his spirit are being generous in his name. 

The prime mover here is Ricky Riccardi, whose Louis-blog, THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF LOUIS ARMSTRONG (www.dippermouth.blogspot.com.), has been extra-special of late.  If you haven’t visited it, you are depriving yourself of both pleasure and insight.  Typically, Ricky spins the roulette wheel of iTunes to come up with one of Louis’s records, which he lovingly analyzes in print. 

But wait!  There’s more!  Ricky’s writing makes me hear new things in records I know by heart.  And he also provides audio of the recording and of related tracks and video clips.  It’s like a free master class with a master listener who adores Louis.   

But wait!  There’s more!  Ricky’s friend-of-Louis Uwe Zanisch turned up some heroically rare film of Louis and the All-Stars: COLOR home movies of the band in Ghana in 1956, in Sweden in 1965 and 1961.  The band on the bus — reading, sleeping, chatting — and in concert.  Priceless and heart-warming.  And, as Ricky writes, the fact that the films are silent is even more endearing.   

Visit the site: if it’s snowing and cold where you are, you’ll feel warm and enriched all day.  And, with the power vested in me, I award Ricky and Uwe the Golden Order of Louis, First Class, with crossed shuzzit.