Sunday, June 15, 2014

38 Long Years Ago (Hey Allen Kanovsky! They are all the same size... it just depends where you are when look at them!)

Submitted by Al Kanovsky 06/15/14, I was living in Los Angeles and attended the Playboy Jazz Festival at the Hollywood Bowl. It fell on the same day as this year, June 15th. It was memorable and I still have the souvenir pin. Box seats, where people brought table cloths and candelabras, crystal glasses and champagne were $22.50. For two afternoons and evenings of the best JAZZ ever Rose and I opted for stadium seating at $8.50 per.  90 bucks paid for a lot of tacos in those years. I would like to say I remembered who played but I only have true memory of Miles, Art Blakey and Mel Torme on Saturday with Herbie Hancock, George Benson, B.B. King and Stevie Ray Vaughan on Sunday. I remembered Kenny G. not for his musicianship but more for a remark after a solo when he said, "That's to show that 'white boys' can blow". To this day, I personally don't consider Kenny a JAZZ man nor do I think he can "blow". Too contrived and too conceited for me. I did some research (Google) and came up with the others. Saturday, Andre Crouch, Al DiMeola, George Howard, Rare Silk and the Rob McConnell Boss Brass. Sunday included Nina Simone, the Maynard Ferguson Orchestra (they blew the clouds away), Azymuth with Flora Purim, David Vaughan and Honi Coles. Rose and I continued going to the Festival with her close friend, Delores Copeland, who worked at the Playboy Mansion, for many Fathers Days to come.  Yes, we eventually sprang for the big buck boxes. 

I often write of the past because I have so much of it to write about. Flo and Rose, both of whom, shared my love of people and music and must have a lot to say about me when they sit around the coffee table in Heaven.

Last night it was Le Chat Noir. I am inexorably drawn there by the warmth of the owner/hosts, the 'vibe' and the musicians that play there. I was well rewarded for my choice. It wasn't JAZZ. It wasn't BLUES. It was the BEST. Certainly in the top twenty of live musical performances I have heard in the past. That includes Joe Williams with the Basie Band doing "Everyday" and Illinois Jacquet in Carnegie Hall. If I were to use all the superlatives necessary I would have to refer to Roget's Thesaurus. Wonderfully talented musicians playing ultra-complex charts. 

Let me name names. Anibal Berraute (keys), Federico Britos (violin), Renyel Rivero (upright bass) and visiting from Japan Ms. Yuki Kawanami (bandoneon). The play list which follows had only a couple of melodies that were familiar to me. No matter --- I basked in the pleasure of the sounds. Tango, bolero even a bit of salsa and a little JAZZ. "Libertad", "Bordonazo", "Tango En Siete", "Entre Hombres", "Elena", "La Muerte del Angel", "AS Tangoes By" and "Adios Nonino" made up the first set. 

I sat there slack-jawed. I had been graciously invited to join Susana Behar (vocalist) and her husband Dr. J.P. Levy at their table. They were impressed as well. Susan had met Yukie on a visit to Japan. The music played so far was rhythmically and melodically challenging for musicians. Changing tempos, varying melodic lines in each title, made for an amazing listening experience. Every solo was a display of mastery of the instrument. Some of you may think that I am being effusive or in other words "over the top" in my review. I do not write as a critic. I write reviews of what I listened to. Believe me I am not even close to describing the beauty of what I heard last night. 

The 2d set started with "Green Dolphin St" and JAZZ was in the house. "Decarismo", "La Cumparsita", Fugay Misterio", "Oblivion"- recognized by Susana -
"Taconeando", "Verano Porteno" and the encore "Bis Naear". 

During one of the tango numbers, Federico made an unusual sound with his violin. It is peculiar to tango. The sound almost cricket-like is called 'cachilla'. Interesting. 

I could go on for another hundred words but I hope you have better things to do, this being Fathers Day.

To all you Dads, "Have a great day". To all you gals who made these guys fathers---"good luck".   

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?"       

 ~ ~ ~

~ ~ ~
Posted by Jazz & Blues Florida
Please visit to see the scene.
Or, just email me at to sign up to have
Florida's jazz & blues news delivered to your inbox.
And, if you like what you see here, please HIT THAT FACEBOOK SHARE BUTTON below!
Did you know that as Florida’s ONLY promotion platform for live jazz & blues:
We have the only monthly publication dedicated to previews of upcoming jazz and blues shows in Florida at ?
We have the most comprehensive festival page for Florida jazz & blues at ?
We have the most complete listing of Florida jazz & blues performances at ?
We have the most comprehensive and active news blog for Florida jazz & blues news ?
We have the most complete and current listing of Florida jazz and blues links at ?
We have the largest email notification system for upcoming jazz and blues events in Florida?

No comments :

Post a Comment