Monday, January 28, 2013

It ain't easy...being Al. Could YOU keep up???

Submitted by Al Kanovsky 1/28/13

It ain't easy, but it's great, when you have so many places to choose from for JAZZ and BLUES. It was made a little easier by the Sunshine Jazz Organization. They were presenting a show dubbed "Alto Madness". Two of the south-land's premier altoists were featured, Jesse Jones Jr. and Joe Donato or if you prefer Joe Donato and Jesse Jones Jr. I arrived a bit early(they were offering a free glass of wine to the first 20 guests) only to find both J's in a somewhat harried state. The show was scheduled to go on in half an hour and there was NO rhythm section. That's right--no drummer, no pianist and no bass player. Both of them were on their respective phones trying to get it together. They were so desperate that they even asked for my help. I know a lot of the musicians in town. None of them has ever offered their phone numbers. I suggested a few names of players I thought could play at their level. They started a little late (not unusual for JAZZ performances) but had assembled a really good section. Joaie Schneider(keys), Rick Dahl(bass) and David Rinzi(drums). To be in a place where you can hear J & J playing together is a rare treat. One to sit back, listen and enjoy. They both have, and are, fun on stage. They truly love to entertain, both by word and music. You've got to hear Rick on the bass guitar: outstanding. The "Real" Tracy Fields was their with a pal, Larry. A man named Walter, whom I know from his attendance at the JAZZ in the Gables concerts, asked me to join him and his wife. Walter would come to the show accompanied by his mother who was over 100 years old---I'll never disclose a woman’s true age--I would tap and clap to the music. Walter's Mom would shimmy and shake. She passed in January and joins my beloved Flo in Heaven where I am sure they both are enjoying a glass of wine while listening to some of the greats that are there with them.

Alice Day graced us with that wonderful JAZZ style and beautiful voice. Mel Dancy got up on stage to entertain accompanying himself on keyboards. Moe Morgen came in late, having been at Barbara Van/Mike Orta opening at Michele’s in Fort Lauderdale, and did a really nice ballad on soprano sax.

On the way out I had the opportunity to chat with Joe for a moment. The subject was--horn players who sing--TO BE CONTINUED. 

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