Cynthia Sayer, ebullient banjoist, singer, composer, has a new CD out — called JOYRIDE. In my childhood parlance, a joyride was when you stole someone’s car, drove it like mad, and left it somewhere else. But I think Cynthia’s criminal record is clean, so listeners need not fear.
JOYRIDE is another stop on the journey Cynthia has been on for years — bringing her beloved instrument into the musical mainstream and rescuing it from jokes about its limitations.
For the CD, she offers ancient pop tunes, show music, Thirties swing classics, Hank Williams, Walt Disney, tangos, and a few originals. (Warning, though: two of the songs here — one an original and one a Malneck-Mercer classic — are aimed at people who have just had a relationship explode. Starry-eyed romantics may find them a little vinegary.)
Cynthia is aided and abetted by Charlie Giordano, accordion; Mauro Battisti, string bass; Larry Eagle, percussion; Sara Caswell, violin; Adrian Cunningham, clarinet; Jon Herington, electric guitar; Randy Sandke, trumpet; Scott Robinson, tenor saxophone / taragoto [hear him light up the sky on HONEY, playing Joe Muranyi’s beloved horn]; Marcus Rojas, tuba; Mike Weatherly, string bass / backup vocals. JOYRIDE is part of Cynthia’s efforts to introduce to a wider audience the 4-string jazz banjo and the music associated with it. Her CD will be issued on January 22, and the celebration of its release will take place at Joe’s Pub in New York City a week later (425 Lafayette Street NY, NY 10003: phone (212) 539-8778) at 7:30. Tickets can be purchased here. Her show will focus on “hot swing,” but also original compositions, tangos, and other surprises. Hear I LOVE PARIS — a track from the new CD here. And to learn more about Cynthia and her continuing musical adventures, click here.
May your happiness increase.
Posted in Irreplaceable, Pay Attention!, Swing You Cats!
Tagged Adrian Cunningham, banjo, Charlie Giordano, Cynthia Sayer, E Street Band, Jazz Lives, Joe Muranyi, Joe's Pub, Johnny Mercer, Jon Herington, JOYRIDE, Larry Eagle, Marcus Rojas, Matty Malneck, Mauro Batisti, Michael Steinman, Mike Weaterly, Randy Sandke, Sara Caswell, Scott Robinson
– Last Monday was a bumper night at Arthur’s Tavern – the West Side’s smartest supper club. Sitting in was Jiri Kripac, a pocket cornet player from Australia (Bob Barnard referred him). He is a hot player and along with our regular hot cornet player, Scott Black, we peeled some paint off the wall. Subbing for our regular bass player was Brian Nalepka of Manhattan Rhythm Kings fame. Also sitting in was Jack Watanabe – a Japanese stride piano player.
– The Monday before Gary Pace (clarinetist Sol’s son) sat in on piano. Great player!
– Notes from the world of jazz violin players:
– Jonathan “Jazz” Russell, a 13 year old violin player, also sat in with us on the Monday cited above. Jonathan started sitting in with us once a month starting when he was a mop-haired 7 year old.! He has really developed. He recently won the WINS “Tomorrow’s Newsmaker” award in the field of Arts and Entertainment. Past winners have all been classical musicians. He is also playing with Wynton Marsalis and the JALC orchestra on Nov. 6,7 & 8 at Rose Hall as a guest artist in the Nursery Song Swing Series. Quite an accomplishment.
– A friend dragged me up to Dizzy’s Place at 11:00 P.M. to hear the Caswell Sisters group featuring Sara Caswell on hot violin. I’m glad I went. She is extraordinary – what technique! Turns out she was once Jonathan’s teacher.
–Except to hear Barbara Lea I’m not one to go to cabaret shows. We however have a friend, Chris Marlowe, who is an excellent arranger and piano player for singers who is highly sought after by the top singers. Mostly to see and hear him we went to the Metropolitan Room to hear Marianne Challis. Wow! what an act – great singer with a really funny routine and stage persona! I highly recommend Challis! She’s the one who told this one:
A chicken and an egg were lying on a bed recovering from a steamy session. The egg rolled over and said to the chicken, ” Well, we certainly have the answer to the proverbial question!”
I arranged to have Marianne and Chris booked into the Harvard Club recently and she laid (Ha Ha) that joke on the well heeled audience. I was the only one who laughed! Not to worry, said the entertainment director at the club, it is very difficult to get a Harvard Club audience to laugh at anything!
Posted in The Heroes Among Us, The Things We Love
Tagged Arthur'sTavern, Barbara Lea, Bill Dunham, Bob Barnard, Brian Nalepka, Chris Marlowe, Gary Pace, Jack Watanabe, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Jiri Kripac, Jonathan "Jazz" Russell, Marianne Challis, New York jazz, Sara Caswell, Scott Black, Sol Pace, Stride piano, Wynton Marsalis