Wednesday, January 21, 2009

In Honor of Two Great Musicians

The other day while writing my newest entry I began to burn out, and despite the rather cold weather decided to go for a stroll. The moment the very cold air hit my face I began to have second thoughts. Perhaps a nice drive in the country would be more pleasant. So I buckled up and meandered out of town. Driving down along the canal I spotted a path and decided to park and attempt a walk. All bundled up, and with my iPod ready to go, I ventured out into the very cold and snowy scene. I'd cued up an old friend. Eberhard Weber's Fluid Rustle. I'm not exactly sure what made me pick that, but it was perfect. As I strolled down by the canal, I watched the little kids figure skating and playing hockey. Accompanying this view, Gary Burton's vibes, Norma Winstone and Bonnie Hermans' murmured voicings, and Bill Frisell's atmospheric strumming, all grounded by Eberhard and that deep, resonant bass. Later, the sounds of the wintry Potomac and the wind blowing through the crisp reeds complemented the music. These great musicians and this winter wonderworld had reawakened my spirit

A couple years ago I flew over to Stuttgart to visit friends. The first night there I treated them to a concert by Jan Garbarek and his group. I'd been looking forward to this trip, these friends, and this concert for a long time. Katherine, David and I enjoyed the concert immensely but were saddened when we heard that Eberhard was absent because he'd recently had a stroke . As far as I can tell, Eberhard is recovering. His birthday is January 22 and I'm sure that there are many out there who want to wish him Health & Happiness on his birthday. Three or four months ago I went to see Chick Corea and Gary Burton. It was another great concert and afterwards I went to say hello to Gary. When I finally got up to him, I thanked him for his generosity. For all the years he has toured and played for so many. For all the beautiful music he has made. Years ago, when I was growing up, we used to go down to Evanston to a little coffee house to hear some of the most amazing concerts. The Keith Jarrett Quartet, Steve Kuhn, Oregon, Livingston Taylor, Bonnie Raitt, and many other fine musicians played there. The Gary Burton Quintet with Eberhard Weber, Mick Goodrick, Pat Metheny, Steve Swallow, and Bob Moses played there. We all felt so blessed to be able to take in these great performances. I remember those days, all those years ago, with a very special fondness. All these years later, having toured all over the world many times, Gary hadn't forgotten those concerts at Amazing Grace. What a guy. Gary's birthday is January 23 and I know there are many out there that want to wish him all the best.

Happy Birthday Eberhard + Gary!

Health, Happiness + continued Creativity

To You

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