Sunday, October 14, 2007

There Are Plenty More "Fish" in the Sea

I knew that Diana Krall had appeared in Dallas this past weekend with the Symphony. I couldn't afford to go, but I was looking forward to reading the review that I knew would be in the paper the next day. While reading, I was surprised to learn that John Clayton played bass on the gig! (As I've noted before, I really enjoyed getting to watch him run the festival band in Port Townsend a few years ago and see his performance with the Clayton Brothers Band at IAJE in January.)

But the review had one curious paragraph:
Longtime associate and bass player John Clayton was also marvelous, the perfect match for the jazzy set. It was a pleasure to see a guy still able to handle the upright bass.
Huh? He hasn't seen any good upright players recently? What kind of shows does this guy usually go to?

I'm tempted to give him at least a partial benefit of the doubt, however, because the reviewer who wrote that sentence usually covers the local politics beat. Still, there are plenty of great upright bassists in jazz today, so I hope he gets to see some more of them soon. Here's a partial list: Dave Holland, Christian McBride, Eddie Gomez, Larry Grenadier, Avishai Cohen, Curtis Lundy...and those are just the living guys I could come up with right now, off the top of my head. And there are lots of great local guys playing at restaurants and clubs right here in the Metroplex.

So here's hoping that our reviewer gets to experience some of these folks. And I really wish I could have heard John Clayton again...

(If you're wondering about the title of this post, it has to do with the fact that "bass" the instrument often gets mispronounced like "bass" the fish, so some bassists have been known to refer to their instrument that way; one of my favorite examples is a dazzling solo piece by Jimmy "Flim" Johnson called "Fish Magic." It can be previewed here.)

Speaking of singers...a Russian choir answers the musical question, "How low can you go?"

Taking a bite of the Appleton: A burglar who struck a house in Appleton, Wisconsin left the valuables alone and stole the food. Key quote: "The burglar apparently entered the unlocked apartment and walked away with a pizza, six eggs, a can of beef ravioli, a can of peaches and one chicken-and-broccoli Hot Pocket, authorities said." ( catch this guy, just question the person who bought the big economy-sized bottle of Pepto that night.)

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