- I have never driven a 12-passenger van
- I have never driven a 12-passenger van through Manhattan
- I have never spent time with Leni Stern in a 12-passenger van
- I have never crossed the Virginia mountains in a 12-passenger van
And I must say all of these firsts have been actually fun, except driving the van through Manhattan. The tour is off to a great start. On Monday I made my way to northern Pennsylvania and stayed with friends. Tuesday morning I drove the rest of the way to Manhattan for a rehearsal. After driving one block in one hour, we finally got to work and started rehearsing the new tunes. I’m especially excited about Leni’s Bubbles and my arrangement of Ain’t No Mountain High Enough – it’ll be a great new recording.
On Wednesday we hit the road to Philadelphia where we stayed at Barbara Montgomery’s beautiful Farmhouse and performed at Chris’ Jazz Cafe. Driving and parking around Philly was a challenge! Here are a few live snippets and pics from the night.
On Thursday we continued to Washington, DC for a concert at the German American Heritage Museum. The museum is in Chinatown and has outstanding acoustics, we should do more concerts! This was also a great opportunity for Washington raised Arianna Fanning to reunite with her family and even some of her old teacher. I captured the complete performance on Facebook live – enjoy here!
Our Friday stop was Charlottesville, VA, what a beautiful town. The Charlottesville Jazz Society hosted us at the Unity church and best of all, they brought in a home-made Spaghetti dinner and we had a fun feast and gathering after the concert. Photographer Martin Phillips captured the night in a an amazing photo album, enjoy it here.
Our initial Saturday performance fell through due to funding. Nevertheless Eric Spelsberg from the WV Jazz Society invited us to stay in Bridgeport, WV and took us out to dinner – great company and great food, thanks, Eric!
Cleveland, OH at the Nighttown Jazz Club was our Sunday stop. Jim Wadsworth, who is the musical director for the club, is one of the most dedicated advocates for the music. It was a great honor to be featured at the club – here are some video impressions.
Report on the rest of the tour will come soon – Monday, clinics at Oberlin Conservatory, Tuesday, Clinics and performance at Marshall University, Wednesday, concert at the Kentucky Day School in Louisville, Thursday, concert for the Jazz Fables Series in Bloomington, IN, Friday, concert at Deaconess Sports Park in Evansville, In, and Saturday, concert at The Jazz Kitchen in Indianapolis, IN – hope you can join us!