Satchmo at the Waldorf 

The other afternoon in the pouring rain Meta and I took the subway downtown to the Westside Theater/Upstairs on 43rd Street to see the one-man show, Satchmo at the Waldorf, staring the great actor John Douglas Thompson.  I recommend it to anyone who loves Louis or is interested in his life in music and his life in show business.  It takes place in Louis' dressing room at the Waldorf Astoria where he was appearing and where he was also staying in a suite during his engagement.  We, the audience, are…

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Thank you. 

I would like to thank everyone who came out for our gig at Somethin' Jazz Club on Feb. 28 and last night's gig at the Cornelia Street Cafe.  Working hard to hone one's craft has its own rewards, but playing for appreciative audiences who recognize and acknowledge that craftsmanship (and hopefully even artistry) is a real treat. Thanks for braving the freezing temperatures.  We sincerely appreciate it.

Grateful 

On Friday, Oct 4, we had another great gig at Somethin' Jazz Club on 52nd Street in NYC (somethinjazz.com/ny).  Dave Frank on tenor sounded exceptionally inspired.  Every solo was a keeper.  Jon Easton on piano and Joe Solomon on bass were also outdoing themselves.  Our guest vocalist, Alexa Fila, was outstanding and our two first-time-ever vocal duets, one on Rockin' Chair and the other on Every Time We Say Goodbye, were enthusiastically received. There are times when musicians experience grave doubts…

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For those of you who were not there... 

Elements is a club on Mamaroneck Ave. in White Plains, NY.  It's had the courage to have a Tuesday night jazz policy for over a year and a half now.  Our trio has been featured there monthly almost since the beginning.  That's a pretty long gig.  I love playing there for three reasons: the first is getting to play (and sing) regularly with Steve LaMattina, guitar, and Lou Stelluti, bass.  Like me, these guys grew up in Westchester and have been active in its jazz scene for decades.  If Westchester was a…

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Artistic supporter? What size? 

Most of us would admit to supporting the arts, either through donations to NPR, or to our favorite museum, or to our local chamber music society or even to our kids' bake sale to raise money for costumes for the high school musical.  Supporting the arts is a little like participating in our democracy: "Hey, I voted!  What else do yo want from me?"  In the arts its, "Hey, I wrote a check.  What else do you want from me?"  Well, I'll tell you: we need your behind in a chair; not your living room sofa, but a…

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Once upon a time... 

Once upon a time not so very long ago there was a land where shiny musical instruments of all shapes and sizes were seen and heard everywhere.  They were seen in movies, on TV, in musical shows, on the radio, in clubs and restaurants and dance halls.  If you walked around in the middle of the great city in the days when air conditioning wasn't ubiquitous, you'd here their sounds coming out of the windows of rooms where people were practicing them.  You could see men and women walking along the streets of…

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Call me crazy... 

Well, call me crazy, but I actually sympathize with jazz club owners.  I mean, I would never get in that position myself, but you have to hand it to people who open clubs and restaurants and try to present jazz groups.  Their expenses never take a vacation: rent; electricity; heat; insurance; drink; food; salaries for cooks, bartenders, servers, housekeeping and themselves.  Then on top of all that they have to pay bands.  Some popular bands pay for themselves.  Less popular ones don't.  It's a lousy…

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Kick outa' You 

I was listening to Sinatra's "I Get a Kick Out of You" a little while ago.  It really is an amazing example of what so called "pop" music used to be.  From the top down or the bottom up it is a masterpiece: The great, great Cole Porter's song and lyrics; some of the best musicians around playing the amazingly superb arrangement; state of the art recording technology; Sinatra in his prime.  Every aspect of the recording is excellent.  How did we get from the most sophisticated musical culture the world has…

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Who was Sal Mosca? 

Who was Sal Mosca?  Are you ready for this (those who have no idea who he was)? Sal was arguably the greatest jazz pianist of his generation.  Born in 1927 and professionally active from the mid-1940s until his death in 2007, Sal never stopped developing.  His first jazz recordings were with Lee Konitz and Warne Marsh, and he continued to record into the 21st Century.  He has a very impressive and extensive discography, which you can see on his website, salmosca.com  

Sal came from the era of skill over…

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Dec15

Bob Arthurs with the Henry Ray Band

Bella Notte, 3524 Johnson Ave, Bronx, New York

Holiday Party and CD release party.

Dec12

Bob Arthurs with the Henry Ray Band

The Lounge, NYC

Invitation only new Henry Ray CD release party.

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