Friday, November 20, 2009

Nov 20th weekend update

First, this Sunday y'all need to tune in to Ric and Jackie's 97.1 FM Sunday jazz show, 8 am - noon. Special guest in the studio will be Craig Sharmat.

What a rap sheet this cat has. It includes a serious legacy Las Vegas component.
Born in New York City, Craig's earliest musical influences while he was studying classical piano in grade school would have been Prokofiev and Copland. When his love of the guitar transitioned him away from piano, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young would play a separate yet equally important influence. As his guitar playing progressed, he expanded his palette to include John McLaughlin?s Mahavishnu Orchestra and other fusion bands which would lead the way to a passionate appreciation for the styles of players such as Larry Carlton, Pat Metheny and George Benson.

Craig began his musical career playing in various bands and Las Vegas showrooms. From there he landed himself the position of guitarist as well as conductor for platinum selling jazz saxophonist Ronnie Laws. Soon after, an opportunity to play with top selling jazz vocalist Randy Crawford arose. At this time was also gaining a reputation as more than just a guitarist...

I'll be out of town, hate to miss this.


This oughta be pretty cool. I dig Jeff Bridges; fine actor, good musician, too. T-Bone Burnett is one of the producers (cool dude in his own right).


Yikes. Check this out, OMG...

From Joe Brown's Las Vegas Sun review of Wayne's show:
“I had been warned that Wayne Newton can’t sing anymore. Apparently it’s been common knowledge for years that his voice is shot. But nothing could have prepared me for the ghastly noises that came out of the Las Vegas icon Wednesday night. Newton can barely speak, let alone sing. It sounded like the Vegas Chainsaw Massacre. Once Before I Go.”

“That somewhat maudlin, foreshadowing title indicates what Newton is really up to here.”

“The very strangest thing about this show is that Newton refuses to even acknowledge that his voice, once sweet and bell-clear, isn’t what it was.”

“Danke Shoen is basted in napalm and rolled in broken glass, Summer Wind sounds like a Santa Ana blowing through a brushfire.”

“It’ll never happen, but Newton might have a solid show if he de-emphasized the singing…and talked intimately about the really interesting stuff - including his multiple bankruptcies, and well, what the hell happened to his voice.”

Ouch! He's on the Musicians' Union Major Shitlist.



Been a while since I posted one of these. When I'm not obsessing over Santa Fe and The Fat City Horns and our extended tribe, I read and write a ton. Several of my latest hardcopy reads:

These are part of my research stash for the book I'm working on (which is about 4 years behind schedule, owing in large measure to my next-of-kin duties).

Great stuff, all highly recommended. Click the images for links.


Took my Ma on a road trip to the dam yesterday, then to lunch at Macaroni Grill.

The circle of life, man..."Are we almost there yet?..." (repeatedly, LOL). It's lookin' like the viable jaunt radius is more like 10 miles from the nursing home. I pushed the envelope yesterday.

It was all good. Nice break from nursing home tray chow.

Speaking of the dam: Shot this while we were parked briefly on the Arizona side.

(Click the photo to enlarge) Lake Mead is now at ~42% of capacity, and falling. I track this monthly in an Excel sheet.

It's down more than 120 vertical feet.

Above, what it looked like 11 years ago, March 1998. Below, the spillway in operation during the July 1983 high water mark period.

My next policy blog post will be about drought and western states water policy (including my own take on some perhaps overlooked desalination potential -- a coupling with solar and wind energy).

Gonna call it
"The Next Anasazi Ruin." (Hahaha...)

Remember, we're gonna be dark again Monday night. The band returns to The Palms on the 30th, and, with any luck, I'll have the new CD for sale at the gig.

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