Thursday, December 24, 2009

Happy Holidays!

A "happy holiday of your choice" to all. There will be no jazz workshop on 12/26/09. The next workshop will be on 1/2/10.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

'Twas the week (just about) before Christmas and just for a lark
All the jazzers were jamming down at McRae Park.

OK, I was going to do a whole rewrite of Clement Moore's classic Christmas poem but it got to be too hard to get the rhymes and the meter going well. Too much like actual work...

Today we had the last Jazz Workshop of 2009 and some might (inaccurately) even say the last one of the decade. To see the year out, we had a nice turnout of twelve people: Ira (alto sax), Bob (guitar), Owen (accordion), Kevin (guitar), Gene (drums), Candy (viola- a first for the Jazz Workshop), Toria (vocals), Wes (tenor sax), Annie (vocals), Thaddeus (bari sax), Paul (piano) and Tim (guitar).

Kicking off with the "instrumental hour," we played "Blue Bossa," "Milano," "Minority," "My Romance," "Bluesette." With the vocalists, we then essayed our way through "A Child I Born," "Like Someone in Love," "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas," "East of the Sun," "Satin Doll," "Corcovado," "What Is This Thing Called Love," "Sannta Blues," ""Embraceable You," "Yardbird Suite," "Misty," "One Note Samba," "Pick Yourself Up," "How High the Moon," "Jingle Jam," "It's All Right With Me," "It's Only a Paper Moon," "Dream," and "The Christmas Song" (a.k.a., "Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire").

Next week, on 12/26/09, there will be no workshop. Have a happy holiday of your choice! We'll be back in action on 1/2/10 (is anybody else having a hard time believing that it's almost 2010 already?).

In three days the days start getting longer! W00t!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Santa Baby

Today was the "Santa Breakfast" at McRae Park, for which the Workshop provided a couple hours of music. I was too busy to take pictures and not smart enough to give my camera to someone else. D'oh!

Present for the gig were Annie, Dick and Reno (vocals), Gene and Ken (drums), Owen (accordion), Kevin and Tim (guitar), Peter (bari sax), Ira (alto sax), Wes (tenor sax).

We covered some of the tunes listed from last Saturday plus a few more ("Rudolph," etc.).

Update for the workshop schedule: regular workshop on 12/19/09 (instrumentals 12:00-1:00, with the vocalists 1:00-3:45), no workshop on 12/26/09, and then resuming the weekly regular workshop schedule on 1/2/10.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Christmas gig is here

Every year there is a "Santa breakfast" at McRae Park and they ask the Workshop to provide music. This week at the Workshop we found out that the Santa Breakfast would be next week. Well, that's short notice! So we spent the time today setting up songs for next week.

Today we had four (four!) new vocalists turn up for the workshop. Three of them seemed to come together and the fourth came on her own. Unfortunately since we were feverishly working on the songs for next week we did not have space for these folks to have a chance to participate. Hopefully they will come back some time! Had I known this would be the case, I would have put mention of it in the Craigslist ad. Unfortunately Annie found out about this from the Park District on Friday, so it was too late by then. I feel bad about that.

Today we had Annie (vocals), Toria (vocals), Ken (drums), Ira (alto sax), Wes (tenor sax), Owen (accordion), Jeff (bass), Norman (piano), Luis (bass), Reno, (vocals) and Tim (guitar). I think that's everyone.

The songs today were predominantly holiday music- "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas," "Feliz Navidad," "What Are You Doing New Year's Eve," "My Favorite Things," "Sleigh Ride," "Santa Baby," "You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To," etc.

Next week we will play from 10:00-12:00 at the Santa Breakfast at McRae Park and we won't have a regular Workshop session that day. Tentatively we will have a Workshop on 12/19/09, not on 12/26/09 or 1/2/10 and will resume our usual schedule on 1/9/10.

In the photos: on top, that's Annie, Toria, Reno and Ira. We were having fun. Really. In the middle photo is Norman. The bottom photo is Owen's hand and accordion keyboard.