Ho ho he he ha ha ha (jolly enough?). This is my favorite season,
and I'm "gearing up" (I've already watched my "Charlie Brown Christmas"
video twice). Also "gearing up" is my website - under new management.
Check in from time to time and see the progress. Already we've
"reinvented" the performance schedule, so that I can provide timely
updates. What may prove to be more interesting is my new performance
diary (blog), linked to my website (see "In Focus"). You can,
if you choose, post your own comments (my friend Chris Webb has
already posted three). Now about this month...
|Jazz Performances and Piano Entertainment Concerts
I am enjoying an increasing variety of public (and private)
jazz gigs. In addition to Sullivans, this month I am with
Karen Sommerville, Bryan Clark, Dave Schiff, and who knows
what else will come up. This category of gigs in particular
(in contrast to Church sponsored events noted below, which
tend to confirm earlier, and remain more stable), can have
things book at any (including the last) minute. I am now
able to update my schedule more regularly now to communicate
this. Also, before coming to anything, I still recommend
confirming by calling my performance information line (877-JOE-HOLT).
Hope to see you!
|Church Sponsored and Christian Music Concerts
In Chestertown, we are winding up our Jazz Vespers series
with a service of in-house talent. Don't be fooled, we have
some real talent in-house (including the Kingstown Trio,
a light/smooth jazz rhythm section that will accompany the
performers). It'll be fun. In November, we featured vocalist
Sue Matthews with my trio (and the Rev. David Sparks "presiding").
Way cool (as Sue would say). In January the Second Sunday
concert series resumes with vocalist Bryan Clark (yes, Virginia,
the same Bryan Clark I've told you about - or - Yes, Virginia,
there is a Bryan Clark). Alan Dale and I will be with Bryan.
Also in January, I resume making mischief (uh - music) in
other churches, including Newark, De in Jan., Hagerstown,
Md, and N. Ft. Myers, Fla in April. Watch the concert schedule
expand over the coming weeks to include these and other
|The Last Musician
The story continues (and reaches back to include the newsletters
back to July - which are now all avaivable in the newsletter
archive)... Not long after my brief experience with Cab
Calloway, I was sharing it with Jimmy Lawlor on a Midiri
Brother's gig (in addition to being the drummer for the
Midiri Brothers, Jim is also the comic voice on my "He's
Steppin' Out" CD, and a guy who has a funny take on everything).
When I finished the story, Jimmy looked at me and said,
"Well Joe, you can look at it this way; you have the distinction
of being the last musician ever to play for Cab Calloway".
He then laughed and walked away, leaving me standing there
(on the dance floor, while we were talking on a break) in
a kind of "Charlie Brown" (oh, good grief!) moment. Now
fast forward about seven years: I'm playing solo piano at
Sullivan's when in walks this "hoity toity" couple pushing
an elderly woman in a wheelchair. The wife (I assume) immediately
approaches me to impress me with her "status" and says:
"Do you know who that is there sitting in the wheelchair?
That's Mrs. Cab Calloway". Without thinking I blurted out:
"You know I'm the last musician ever to play for her husband"!
To be continued...
This month is not a product in focus, but my latest effort
to touch and communicate with you (which, as a goal, all
my products are). You may have received, a couple of weeks
ago, an e-mail announcement form me announcing my new performance
diary/weblog. I am hopeful that something positive may be
gained form sharing some of my thoughts, and receiving your
input (you can post your comments on the site). To give
you a flavor, the following is an entry from a few weeks
ago: "This is going to be interesting. We'll see how this
concept of having a performance diary goes, or plays. I
like journaling, but also the privacy. Yesterday was a good
day, and like many, one that few would see. I had six 1/2
hour "shows" in a nursing facility in Baltimore, then two
1 hour "shows" in a Wilmington (De) nursing home. This means
that I played "Always" (my consistant closing song, along
with a few other fixed selections) 8 times. It would be
understandable to think that I would get bored with this.
I don't. Related to this, I think, is a question I am often
asked; "What is your favorite song?". I don't have one.
They are (more or less) all tunes, but each one an opportunity
for expression. I'm continuing to learn to (increasingly)
enjoy and to take advantage of these opportunities." You
can access my blog from my (new and improving) website.
Take a look