This Week’s Shows 11.17.18 A long Overdue Update
I’m back in Ohio and it’s long past time for an update! Big changes are all around this fall. I’ve left the cruise world behind…it was a good run (8+ years) and now it’s time to move on. I’m now in grad school at Ohio University, living in Athens, Ohio. I’m loving being back in school. So far it’s been really great dedicating some time to my craft. The program is great and I’ve met a lot of wonderful people. I have two assistantships so I’ve been super busy…that’s my excuse for not updating sooner!
Adjusting to a new regional music scene is always kind of a fascinating process and I’ve had some really interesting experiences. Here are the highlights:
Most recently I had the great pleasure of playing Brian Harnetty’s Shawnee Ohio, in Durham, NC as part of the Duke Performances series. This piece was a little over an hour long, scored for Piano, two violins, viola, cello, banjo, bass clarinet, and myself on alto saxophone, along with prerecorded sound and video. In the piece, which looks at various facets of life in Southern Ohio, Brian took recorded interviews with people talking about growing up, what they did on Saturday night, fracking, mine disasters, and a healthy dose of murder ballads, and composed music that flows through and around these sound bites. A large video screen behind us showed images and videos throughout the performance. This was a fun weekend with a great band, comprised of new music freelancers from as far away as NYC, Utah, and Chicago. We did two performances, which were well received.
I’ve started playing with a new saxophone quartet this fall, called Sonax. We’re getting a wide ranging repertoire together from composers like David Maslanka, Florent Schmitt, Marc Mellitts and others. We have a few things on the books for the new year. More to come!
Earlier this fall I did a really fascinating big band gig at the Greenbriar for the birthday party of a literal billionaire. The Greenbriar is a huge sprawling resort compound know for golf, horse stables, etc. It also has an enormous bunker underneath it where congress would have gone in the 50s had there been a nuclear incident. The grounds are super opulent…it sort of reminded me of the Hermitage in St Petersberg, Russia. The gig was fun; we backed a Sinatra impersonator from Las Vegas and played some big band and jazz tunes as well. This was one of my first times meeting a lot of freelancers from the Southern Ohio and West Virginia area. There are some great players in this area. Somehow I ended up playing bari sax and bass clarinet on this one. Not my forte, but it went well.
I’ve been keeping up with my sax/dj project, called EDDA. This photo is from a gig I did at the Coffee Bar (TCB) in Parkersburg, WV. I haven’t booked a lot of dates for this project yet…mostly i’ve been too busy to get on the phone about it everyday. I really want to get connected with a booking agent, but again…haven’t gotten around to it! I’m doing this project tonight in Athens at Uncorked, Athens ONLY wine bar!
Other than that, I’ve been busy with practicing and school. It’s been great dedicating a significant amount of time to my classical playing again, as well as studying jazz in an academic way. Here’s a link to a transcription of Lee Konitz’s solo on There Will Never Be Another You from his 1955 album with Warne Marsh. More on school stuff later…