Monday, April 27, 2015

365 True Things: 30/Music

The other night we drove up to Gilroy for a house concert—or in this case, a barn concert. Our old friend Dorian Michael was playing with his band the Mystery Trees. Four musicians: Dorian and Kenny Blackwell on guitar, Ken Hustad on bass, Bill Severance on drums. Awesome musicians all.

I love house concerts. They are intimate, immediate. I'd guess there were maybe a hundred people at this one. You're almost in the laps of the musicians —especially if you're in the first couple of rows, as we were. And besides that, people bring all sorts of desserts, and there's wine AND real glasses to drink from. All for the $20 price of admission. (Though a donation jar was present, which was filling nicely when I passed by. The hosts sponsor these concerts out of love. They should be rewarded.)

So we had a rollicking wonderful evening of bluesy, rootsy, hillsbillsy music linked solidly to rock 'n' roll. It made me so happy. And it reminded me that it's important to get OUT to hear music once in a while.

On our hour-long drive home, David and I reminisced about concerts we've been to, both together and before we got together (though a few of them were together before we got together—but that's another story). Here's a no-doubt very partial list, in no particular order:

Jethro Tull
Gentle Giant
Bruce Springsteen
Bob Dylan
Rolling Stones (introduced by President Clinton: no, it was not "in the day," but they were awesome good nevertheless—and the tickets were free: David won them via the NRDC!)
Steeleye Span
Talking Heads
Pink Martini (with Ari Shapiro!)
Béla  Fleck and the Flecktones
Béla Fleck and Abigail Washburn
Al DiMeola, Stanley Clarke, and Jean-Luc Ponty
Strength in Numbers (Edgar Meyer, Béla Fleck, Mark O'Connor, Jerry Douglas, and Sam Bush)
Chick Corea with and without Return to Forever
Shakti, with John McLaughlin
Dave Brubeck
Gonzalo Rubalcaba
Randy Newman
Loggins and Messina
Herbie Hancock and the Headhunters (the one show I wanted to walk out of—I do not do funk)
Miles Davis
Bobby McFerrin (including a reenactment, in a five-minute swirl of activity, of The Wizard of Oz, so wonderful!)
Dave Matthews Band
Stanley Jordan (in the Berkeley Amphitheater: we could not believe our ears)
Joan Armatrading
Mose Allison
Dr. John ("fuck Florentine Tiles")
Ralph Towner (in Paris)
Greg Brown
Brett Dennen
Ottmar Liebert
Keb Mo'
Michel Petrucciani, with Makoto Ozone
Gary Burton, with Makoto Ozone (at the Blue Note, NYC)
Bill Charlap
Michel Camilo
Brad Mehldau
Regina Carter and Kenny Barron
Jake Shimabukuro
Los Lobos
Patty Larkin
Sheryl Crowe
Shawn Colvin
Ani DiFranco
Patti Smith
Lucy Wainwright and Suzzy Roche
Little Feat
Eric Clapton (he was disappointing; his band was great)
The Chieftains
Cesaria Evora
Richard Shindell
Tuck and Patti
The Bobs
Dan Hicks and His Hot Licks
Yo-Yo Ma and Emanuel Ax
Jean-Pierre Rampal
Donovan (David saw him; I was off gallivanting)
Keith Jarrett
Demon Taiko Drummers

And I'll just mention in closing my envy-to-the-grave: My brother-in-law, David's older brother Geoff, actually heard the Doors at the Whisky-a-Go-Go. The Whisky was pretty much like a house concert, in its size. And the Doors, despite their short tenure, are in the pantheon.


  1. ani difranco?? damn girl. I love her and her anger too.