Los Angeles, CA
September 3, 2009 2:00 PM
The best rendition of “Mr. Bojangles” ever performed was by Mr. Sammy Davis Jr.
In my opinion, the second best rendition is by a unknown performer at the end of the Santa Monica Pier. His setup was not the stage of a high class music hall with professional lighting and a backup orchestra. It was a simple one mic, one guitar, an umbrella and a little puppy name “Angel”.
At first I ignored this lonely singer as I was taken in by my surroundings of the pier and the ocean. I was at the Santa Monica Pier!! However, when the singer started “Mr. Bojangles”, I couldn’t help but take notice. Now, I don’t know if it was the atmosphere that made his performance so haunting but it came together so well.
I remember it like it was yesterday.
Hollywood Bowl, CA
September 2, 2009 7:25 PM
The 2009 Jazz series at the Hollywood Bowl with Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke, Lenny White, John Scofield, Chaka Khan, Jean-Luc Ponty and John Connors.
The setting was the Hollywood Bowl. The weather was absolutely gorgeous. A full moon hovered over a calm evening with temperatures hovering around the 25 degree mark.
The tickets were a cheap 14 bucks a piece. We may have sat at the back but I wouldn’t have had it any other way. Besides watching the music being played from a long distance, the view around made it all the more special. There were two large screens at each side of the bowl which allowed some up close and personal moments if we wanted. We just sat back with our glasses of wine and took it all in.
Halfways through the evening two figures appeared to the left of the stage, one guiding the other along the way to the piano. When the screen displayed the individual sitting at the piano, an uproar came from the audience. Stevie Wonder in all his glory. The excitement from the crowd was as boisterous as if you’re favorite hockey team just scored the winning goal to capture the Stanley Cup.
Stevie joined the group for a few numbers with his trademark sway and smile. He made everyone’s life more special that evening. A story to be retold over and over again by the thousands of people at that concert.
As I wasn’t allowed to bring my SLR, I had to settle taking this photo with my iPhone
July 15, 2010 11:00 PM
I saw Paul McCartney. Now I can die happy.
What makes a person so powerful that it can turn an arena full of adults into screaming giddy schoolgirls?
I grew up with Paul. He was there when I had my first big city experience. We had taken a family trip to Toronto in 1963 when I was 8 years old. Going from a small town in Saskatchewan to Toronto was in itself an exhilarating experience but this trip included seeing “A Hard Day’s Night” for the first time.
He was there when I felt the highs and lows of adolescence. “Abbey Road” got me through my final year of High School.
He was there when I lived in Toronto. “My Love” from his Red Rose Speedway album was being played in the airwaves continuously and I never tired of it. I can close my eyes and still remember sitting in the hot apartment and listening to this song with my roommates.
He was there when I returned home and met Rod. While many Beatle fans fell the wayside, Rod and I embraced him. We had all the Wings albums. We would play them over and over again. Our daughter, Amber, born one year after his last album would sleep and play with Paul’s voice in the background.
So I had good reason to feel like I did back in 1963…giddy and excited. All those emotions I felt through the years listening came back. My adolescent confusion during “Hey Jude” and “Long and Winding Road”. The highlights of meeting Rod and having Amber joyously bounced back during “Jet”, “My Love” and “Band on the Run”.
So I ask again…What makes a person so powerful that it can turn an arena full of adults into screaming giddy schoolgirls? We all grew up with Paul. His music was the background to our lives.