July was a full and productive month. Besides producing another year on this green and blue sphere (my birthday), I travelled back east for some r&r (rest and relaxation, not rock n’ roll) with my family. Then it was back to Austin and a crazy gig schedule: 14 shows in 13 days! A great mix of house concerts, benefits, and club dates with Manteca Beat, My Exotic Other and various collaborations. Highlights included:
My official birthday bash at the Elephant Room with some jazz heavy hitters: Russell Scanlon, Evan Arredondo, Jeff Hellmer, Stephen Summer. I was playing hard just to keep up with them. Luckily members of the audience kept me supplied with birthday libations.
Manteca Beat played three great shows – a house concert at the incredible home of Daren Appelt, known for his monthly Ham Jams, and now hosting an ongoing series of great acoustic music; the following night we threw down at Romeo’s and were blessed with a special guest bellydancer, Sharla; we rounded out the weekend with a set at the Kevapalooza extravaganza at Opal Divine’s, with drummer Kevin Hall sitting in with the band.
The month ended on a high note with a cool world music performance in San Antonio. Rick Henderson, master sarode player, put the show together at Two Hearts Yoga, which has a nice space for acoustic music. I got to share some of my original compositions with Joel Dilley on bass, and Zarish Khan on tabla. The audience was very much into it, and I look forward to more shows in San Antonio which blend jazz and world musics.
August is giving me chance to catch my breath (although one must breathe slowly in this 104-degree weather), but there are some great shows coming up this month, in particular August 26 with Sangeet Millenium and tabla master Ustad Tari Khan. Check the calendar for details.