Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Kids will be kids, but...( The Fish House they are helping them grow up right. Right, Allen Kanovsky?)

Submitted by Al Kanovsky 08/05/15

…what if they aspire to be JAZZ musicians?

For parents I suggest intense therapy. For the kids I say study, practice and love what you do.

Last night at the Fish House in Kendall I had a great time listening to young ladies and gentlemen (kids to me) display their talents. They all sang or played the classics of the Swing Era. Bill couldn't contain his joy while imbibing 2 pitchers of beer by himself. He knew the lyrics of every tune. If he doesn't recognize a song he doesn't consider it music. "Nuff said!  

On stage doing the vocals was Melinda Rodriguez. Accompanying her was the amazing Francesca Romero (keys). On bass we had Kenneth Jiminez and at the kit Ryan Hecker. All of them young enough to be my grandchildren or even great-grandchildren. (All grandchildren are great, Especially mine.) Melinda did ballads and jump tunes equally well. The titles included "All the Way", "FrimFram Sauce", "Beautiful Love", "Blue Skies" and the very difficult "Black Coffee". Francesca displayed some 'down home' BLUES chops with her keyboard solo. Kenneth caught the groove.

The second set started with a tall, graceful Gena Simms doing "Cry Me A River" with all the emotion the tune deserves. She was followed by a young man wearing the traditional skull cap. He did "Straighten Up & Fly Right". I know it as the "Signifying Monkey". When I asked him his name he replied "David". I should have guessed. David Ben Arie. At least he doesn't play harp.

A very pretty, diminutive lass steps on stage. Her name is Justine Garcia. This young lady is a JAZZ singer. Taking imaginative chances with melody, rhythm and lyrics. She did "If I Were A Bell" and "Bye Bye Blackbird". Ms. Garcia had me paying close attention. You will definitely hear about her in the years to come. Keanu playing tenor sax did some nice background for her.

Cainan Grier was pure showman  while doing "Blues  In The Night". A little shy, Chris James, sang "All Of Me" while being encouraged by Melinda. Danny Klein took the mic to sing "We Were Not Too Young At All".

The last set had Melinda out in front to do "Savoy"  and "You'd Be So Nice". David took over the keyboard and soloed "Have I Told You Lately That I Love You". Bill's eyes were closed, his chin down and murmuring the lyric. Danny, a tablemate, had done a song and returned to ask Sarita ( a friend of mine) if she would like to have dinner some night. They talked about it.

I offered Danny the senior discount for my course in "Approaching A Woman". You all know the opening line "Pardon me, Miss" --- I left before getting the final result. My apologies to any of the performers whose names I missed. Seeing all of the young people heartened my belief that JAZZ will live forever.  

Al's Disclaimer:
A short note: The reason I write this is because I love music and words. I do not book acts. I do not promote acts. I do not accept invitations to review artists. I go to venues of my own choice. When and where is not influenced by anything other than who I would like to hear that night or day. If I don't like what I hear, I won't write about it. When I like it I let you all know. I never mention a name without asking permission. "Pardon me, Miss. Would you like to dance?" 

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