Well, needless to say I’ve been looking forward to this weekend… Frank Vignola, Vinny Raniolo, The Hot Club Of Detroit as well as Verlon Thompson and myself. There was some rain this weekend, but nothing that could dampen the spirits of our sunflowers behind the Beatrice Love Kitchen at the Fur Peace Ranch.
When I was a kid, my Dad had quite a collection of Django Reinhart as well as George Van Eps and the like and the music always fascinated me. To get to see it played live by master was just about as good as it gets. Frank and Vinny were truly brilliant and in their part of the show on Saturday night they were joined by Julien Labro on accordion. Yikes…
Yes indeedy, the music was stratospheric… Now on this particular evening it was my turn to play Mr. Mom, so I didn’t get to see the hot club of Detroit do their show… I did get to see them at sound check, however… and without a doubt there was some great stuff going on.Paul Brady and Evan Perri were on guitar, Carl Cafagna played Sax, Julien Labro on accordion and Andrew Kratzat on bass. If you ever get a chance to see any of these guys play, don’t miss the opportunity. This is an art form that I[m not truly familiar with, however like I said, I listened to it as a kid and I surely appreciate it and not just as a guitar player either.
Well, I got home and Izze went to bed without a peep which was great and yesterday the music just kept on coming. I euchred Verlon into doing a little show with me Sunday night and Frank and I had spoken about the great Jellyroll Morton song Whinin’ Boy blues so of course I figured what a grand opportunity to play an old jazz song with some really great contemporary jazz cats. I played some of my stuff including my new song ‘Things That Might Have Been,’ and at the end of my little set I called Frank and Vinny up and we did a killer version of Jelly’s tune. Ian Buchanan would have gotten a kick out of our take on this tune he taught me so very long ago. Thanks Ian… your teachings have certainly taken me a very, very long way. I wish you could have been here to see this. I think back at the way Ian Buchanan was able to transliterate piano pieces into accessible guitar parformances I realize that this only scratches the surface of his inventive genius.
After we played Whinin’ Boy, we called Verlon up and he did a tune he and Guy Clark wrote with one of our songwriting classes about ten years ago. Killer tune. Well, needless to say, the boys shredded this one up pretty well and when we finished this cool song we left the stage for Verlon to work his magic.
Now Verlon Thompson is another of those elegant human beings who just has it all going for him. A great songwriter, great guitarist, great accompanist, great singer… OK, OK, I could go on and on.
Verlon told his story in words and song and I was there until the last note was played and I wasn’t the only one. The next day, Monday, was a half day at the Ranch… another short workshop and then the au revoir’s that end each session at the Fur Peace Ranch.
A quick shot with my new guitar friends Frank and Vinny and onward for all.
Friends, new and old, the same for music and life… I’m off to Parkersburg, West Virginia to pick up my son for some farm time before he has to to back to school. Yikes… onward indeed.