Joe Holt's Notes Newsletter vol 2 no 11
November 2006


I hope this month finds you well. As for me, I remain busy. Nothing new here, except a slight shifting of focus. I am preparing for the (network) marketing blitz that will accompany the release of my new Christmas CD (see below), which should be available next week! I am optimistic about strong sales over the Christmas season. Now, about this month...

in this issue
  • In Focus
  • Jazz Performances and Concerts
  • Church Sponsored Concerts
  • Radio News
  • Recording News
  • From the Weblog

  • Jazz Performances and Concerts

    Things are changing here. I am moving away from the regular gigs in local venues (i.e. Sullivan's, Baywood), and focusing more on concerts and special events. Numerous events, many with the Midiri brothers, are already scheduled in 2007 (including festivals and concerts in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Idaho, and California). I have changed the performance schedule to highlight these events, and in the coming weeks, will project further out, so that you can see what's in store. The "main event" this month is the concert at the Mainstay with the Midiri Brothers. Also coming soon is the Felicia Carter concert at the Prince Theatre in Chestertown. Check it out...

    Church Sponsored Concerts

    "Dark" again this month, but picking up again in early December, with concerts in Rising Sun, Md., and N.Andover, Mass. Keep in touch with the schedule...

    Radio News

    "Joe Holt's Notes On The Radio" continues to air on WNJC 1360am (Phila. area) on Thursday evenings from 9-9:30 eastern time. This month, 2 new CDs are added to the playlist; "A Shaw Thing", and "Do You Hear What I Hear?". Through the expanded playlist, and the "Audio Trailers" segment - where pre- release, private collection, and musical colleagues recordings are presented - I can maintain my commitment to play something new/previously unheard on every show. To travel even further down this road, beginning on 11/16, the show will open with a "live - in studio" performance. If you have a request (hymn/Christian song or jazz/popular standard) you'd like me to play on a future program, drop me an e-mail! Thanks for listening!

    Recording News

    Busy, busy..... The new Midiri Brothers CD AND my new Christmas CD both make their debut this month! Although this newsletter will make the "official" release announcement in next month's newsletter, the Christmas CD; "Do You Hear what I Hear?" will be shipped to me on/by 11/16 (next week!) and orders are now being accepted. Looking ahead, I'm laying the groundwork now for next year's projects. More on that next month. For now, check out the new CDs.....

    From the Weblog

    There is certainly a difference. When I sit down to play piano, it is easier to fall outside of myself, and more deeply so. I'm aware now (while writing), of a parallel. When teaching piano (which is seldom these days, but a large part of my past), I reference the "feeling of falling" to introduce the fundamental principle of (rotation) technique. To summarize; It is a natural feeling to push down a piano key. We are using our muscles to effect/control something. In this technique scheme, however, the goal is to abandon muscle-laden pushing in favor of "falling" into the piano key with the weight of your hand and arm. In every case, this requires an adjustment period, where the "need to push" is unlearned and replaced with the ability to let go. At first, it is often difficult because it feels as if we have lost control. As time goes on, it becomes easier to "let go" (if that is our goal). We then can touch upon the broader discovery that letting go is the key to freedom. Learning the "feeling of falling" now allows us to approach the "freedom of falling". Falling into freedom means we are leaving behind all that we cling (are chained) to. This describes what I am increasingly experiencing whenever I play the piano. Way cool. posted by Joe Holt | Friday, October 20, 2006

    In Focus

    Yet another new CD! This time it's the new Midiri Brothers' release: "A Shaw Thing". After appearing on the first 2 Midiri CD projects: "Avalon" (a collaborative venture) and "Fingerbustin'", then disappearing for (several years and) 4 CDs (save a "cameo" appearance on one), I'm back! In January of this year the decision was made (on both sides) to integrate me back into the band, both on the festival circuit (I've travelled to 3 separate California festivals with the "boys" this year, many more to come in 2007), and in the recordings. This is the Midiri's first studio recording since 1999 to include piano. However, like "The Other Brother" (the recording earlier this year on my label featuring the Brothers), where I also played the Hammond Organ, "A Shaw Thing" features 4 selections with me "dabbling elsewhere", this time on (believe it on not) harpsichord! This is modeled after Artie Shaw's Gramercy 5 of 1940 in which Johnny Guarnieri played harpsichord. That was fun, but I still like the piano cuts best. "A Shaw Thing"; the long awaited Artie Shaw tribute by the Midiri Brothers has been a hit at recent festivals, and is generating much excitement. Check it out...

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