Tag Archives: GPS

“LET THEM SEND OUT ALARMS”: DAWN LAMBETH, CONAL FOWKES, MARC CAPARONE at the SAN DIEGO JAZZ FEST (November 23, 2018)

Dawn Lambeth, Conal Fowkes, Marc Caparone, at the 2017 San Diego Jazz Fest

We live by Siri, by the GPS.  Wouldn’t it be nice to toss all those useful but restrictive parental stand-ins that want so badly to show us the way and rebuke us if we wander?

Here’s a musical version of that perhaps subversive suggestion: the 1942 song — music by Jimmy McHugh, words by Frank Loesser, which slyly suggests that the way to get to the desired end is by choosing to live by instinct, serendipitously:

 

The musical actors in this play — showing us the way to pleasure, living it rather than instructing us — are Dawn Lambeth, vocal; Conal Fowkes, piano; Marc Caparone, cornet.  And all of this happened on the morning of November 23, 2018, at the 39th San Diego Jazz Fest, a wonderful weekend:

Try it.  Who knows what glories are there to be discovered by accident, what gifts the universe will give if you surrender to it?  Here endeth the sermon for today.

May your happiness increase!

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ARE YOU LOST?: CRAIG VENTRESCO and JOANNA STERNBERG TEACH THE LESSON (July 26, 2015)

NY map

I’ve known Deacon Craig Ventresco for more than a decade now, and learned a great deal from his moral teachings at Bar Tabac, the Cajun, and other pulpits on both coasts.

CRAIG

But I’d never heard him deliver such a serious sermon on the dangers of being destabilized in the cosmos as I did on Sunday, July 26, 2015, at Casa Mezcal on Orchard Street (that’s the Lower East Side of New York City).  In his stern peroration, he was supported nobly by another great teacher, Joanna Sternberg (to be precise, Craig plays guitar and sings; Joanna accompanies him on the string bass).  In their efforts to uplift the community, they are assisted by members of the congregation Tamar Korn and Meredith Axelrod.  Heed the words of Deacon Ventresco.  Take them to heart:

The song was a 1908 hit for Bert Williams, composed by Chris Smith and Cecil Mack:

RIGHT CHURCH BUT THE WRONG PEW 1908Given the ubiquity of the GPS and the smartphone, to say nothing of those antiquities, paper maps . . . don’t let this happen to you.  And — if a less serious moral statement of mine may be permitted — I think Craig should sing more often. He has noble stories to impart to us.

May your happiness increase!

BEAUTY AT THE BICKFORD (Part Two): RANDY REINHART, MARK SHANE, JAMES CHIRILLO, BRIAN NALEPKA, KEVIN DORN (April 8, 2013)

Here’s the second part of the delightful concert I witnessed on April 8, 2013, at the Bickford Theatre in Morristown, New Jersey, thanks to Bruce Gast and a stellar quartet: Randy Reinhart (cornet); Mark Shane (piano); James Chirillo (guitar); Brian Nalepka (string bass / vocal); Kevin Dorn (drums).

Randy is not only a fine brassman but a thoughtful leader in the Ruby Braff mold — given ninety minutes and a quintet, he encouraged the players to have solo features and he reinvented the quintet in a variety of even smaller bands, with wonderful results.

For ROCKIN’ CHAIR, at a nice medium tempo, we had a rockin’ trio of Randy, Mark, and Kevin:

MY GAL SAL moved speedily:

HONEYSUCKLE ROSE was a solo feature for James (with Brian and Kevin) , who began by offering his own version of the famous Dick McDonough solo chorus:

Randy and James got very pretty with I’VE GROWN ACCUSTOMED TO HER FACE:

I associate DON’T TAKE YOUR LOVE FROM ME with pop-song melancholy (all that tearing and weeping and breaking), but Brian is constitutionally more cheerful than that, so his vocal / instrumental feature on this song is very lively, although no less heartfelt:

More to come!

The Bickford Theatre/Morris Museum: On Columbia Turnpike/Road (County Road 510) at the corner of Normandy Heights Road, east of downtown Morristown.  Near Interstate 287 and the Route 24 expressway. This is a 300-seat hall with generous parking on site.  Wheelchair access.  Weeknight concerts are one long set (8-9:30 p.m.). Tickets are generally $15 in advance, but $18 at the door.  Tickets may be purchased via credit card over the phone by calling the box office at 973-971-3706.  The box office can also provide information, directions, or a simple “jazz map.”

You can keep up to date on brilliant concerts to come by emailing Jazzevents@aol.com.

For my part, I’ve made BICKFORD one of the “Favorites” on my GPS — evidence of my musical happiness.  And if you missed the first part of this concert, make yourself at home with another sample of delicious music in a wonderful environment here.  

May your happiness increase.