Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Yet More On Peeps In Da Hood

Psachya's comments generated more reader email.

Rhondda writes:
Reading "the accountant" and noticing the footnote reminded me of a day long ago [in a galaxy far away], no, in Hong Kong; our beautiful new JCC was about to open. At the time, it was frequently possible, if you were on the ball, to purchase used grand pianos from the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts for extremely little. They would hold quasi-'insider' auctions a few times a year, you just had to watch the right notice boards. I passed along this info, right before an auction was going to be held, to the "programming committee" via the rebbetzin of the synagogue and the program director, both good friend who know things about music. You need to know here that pianos cost so much in HK that almost NOBODY actually buys them; they're rented. Except the Chinese ones that sound awful, those you can afford. Grand pianos?? unless you work for a major foreign bank, forget it. So here we had a chance to get hold of a seriously decent grand that would enable everything from chamber music concerts to purim spiels.... BUT, there was an "expert" on the programming committee, an amateur who fancied herself something more than that, who nixed this proposal thusly: "Oh, we don't need that. These days people just use electronic keyboards." No darlin', not chamber music, and not visiting artists doing violin recitals....

Hashem protect us from the input of amateurs...
An out-of-town bandleader emails:
I experienced a Dave Berg character recently:

I had just finished a wedding that started at 5 pm and finished after the mitzva tantz at 5 am. That's approx. 15 hours of work including set up and strike. So as I'm packing up, a guy is talking to me, and asks me, "So what do you do during the day?"

I then asked him, "so what do you do all night"?
Jordan emails:
I know those guys too.

There is a subset of the Carlebach Purist, which is the hippie musician Carlebach Purist, who knows all the Carlebach tunes and knows that Shlomo, who he has never met, wouldn't want a trumpet player to play on his tune, especially when the trumpet,(or sax or trombone) player played with Shlomo numerous times. Which is kinda like the Choson who once told me that he didn't want trumpets at his wedding because they sound so obnoxious. Then he told me that he loved Miles Davis, who played...wait, what instrument is that? oh yeah...... (His actual critique was against the Shiny Shoe Horn section style, with which I cannot really disagree.)

PS I played the job.
PPS Only Miles music though.
PPPS got paid sublead for it too.
He also comments:
Bob Smith was a Casio endorser for a while. His Funk-Fusion-R&B Band, Bob's Diner, used Casio keyboards. I know because he once gave me a Casio G-Shock watch for free.
The keyboard player in that band, Ed Alstrom, was the Product Manager of Casio's Keyboard Division for the better part of 16 years and occasionally writes reviews of "one-man-band" type arranger keyboards for Keyboard Magazine. I went to hear Ed play once a number of years back. His material was a lot of fun. He was playing with a trio. Call it arcastic, sardonic hipster jazz. I bought his CD, "The Record People Are Coming." I used to use one of the tunes off of that album, "Prayer", in a program on Tefilah I used to lead on a Jewish Awareness program for teens. More on that soon...