I spent Monday going through You Tube looking at footage of the late, great Phyllis Diller. She was not only one of the first female stand-up comics, she was also one of the hardest working comics period! I loved her persona ever since I was a kid and when I got to meet her about ten years ago I called her a babe. She cackled with delight and made some extremely dirty jokes about being so skinny and small-breasted. She was as funny off stage as on – and I will always be grateful she blazed the trail for people like Sarah Silverman, Carla Collins and even Betty White.
Speaking of comedy, Pam Hyatt had a fantastic show last Tuesday to raise money for PAL, The Performing Artists Lodge in Toronto. She performed monologues; featured some special guests and did a hilarious Steve and Edie classic, “I Hate Your Guts” along with Sam Broverman and Peter Hill on piano. Hilarious stuff and they had a packed house. As always Pam had her cool kid, Carson Forster, as well as his fiancée, choreographer Heather Jones, to help with the catering and bar.
Pam’s next big show isn’t until November 5 at Hugh’s Room, but tickets are on sale now and I suggest you get ‘em while you can!
Wednesday I took Heather Luckhart to The AGO to see the Picasso exhibit. It was a worthwhile trip although I have to admit I found most of his work to be far more disturbing than the prints that made him so famous.
After a couple hours we went up to the top floor to enjoy some modern art…and before leaving went down to the first floor where some of my favourite paintings live. I like to go visit them every month or so. On the way home we strolled through Chinatown and I bought many useless toys that make obnoxious sounds. The insane laughing baby wouldn’t stop for the entire cab ride home – I ended up letting it hang out of the door to amuse others because it was giving us all a headache.
Also, Wednesday I saw a great singer named Kirty over at The Cameron House. I’ve never heard anyone sound anything like Joanna Newsome until I saw Kirty. Check out her band when you can!
Speaking of talented singers, Thursday I met with Jadyn Lamb, a young actor/singer who shows a lot of promise. I gave her a quick tour of my home studio as well as Jazz Fm and hope to help her out with a demo. She’s got such a great personality and her parents are fans of the station.
Thursday night I went for a night sail. Perfectly warm and two good friends joined Captain Paul and myself…Danielle and Gay met on board and got along famously. I plan to do plenty of evening sails in September as long as it’s warm enough.
Friday I hosted a Jazz Safari™ that started at Lula and ended at The Reservoir Lounge. I don’t do too many safaris in the summer but I’m so glad I picked this night. A highlight was at The Old Mill Inn were Matt Dusk and Sophia Perlman surprised everyone but getting up to sing with the Adrean Farrugia Trio. I also hit an eyewear shop in The Junction called Opticiando (http://opticianado.com) to see the Kingsley Etienne on the B3 organ. I’d consumed several martinis by this point and ended up buying a pair of ridiculously expensive sunglasses. Of course, they are so awesome I dare not wear them.A friend suggested I just take a photo of them and put it on a T-shirt…maybe give away buttons with my sunglasses on them…change my Facebook profile pic to sunglasses…or perhaps I’ll just put them on and leave them on my head at all times. Another treat on Friday was seeing Raoul Bhaneja singing with Robin Banks at The Reservoir Lounge.
I had a safari on Saturday as well, and began by cooking up a fancy dinner for my date, Jessica Ferg. We hit The Rex for Melissa Boyce and went back to The Reservoir Lounge to see Tyler Yarema and The Old Mill to see Rich Underhill with Atilla Fias on piano and Artie Roth on bass. Rich congratulated me on the fact that I was voted the number two jazz entertainer in Canada, (to which I inserted a “number two” joke of course) and got me up to recite some comedy poetry. (to read about it click here: CBC TOP FIVE. I always love jamming with him…and as bassist with Kollage I’ve worked with Artie on countless occasions.
It was great fun and at the end I got to congratulate him for being named the number one jazz saxophone player b y the same CBC on-air host, Tim Tamashiro. (Truth be told, Tim himself deserved to be on the list for best entertainer – he’s more than a singer, he’s a showman!) Tim Tamashiro Site
With all this boozing and carousing, a quiet sail on Sunday was just the thing. I took my web designer, Jessica Pelchat of Eco Chartreuse (http://www.ecochartreuse.com) and her family out for a sail.
My eight year old First Mate, Hayden is a born natural…he steered for most of the day with almost no direction at all. I was impressed that this kid could figure out waves and wind…I’ve never seen anyone (of any age) learn so quickly and I’ve been sailing over a decade! Laura Desiree, Laura Fernandez Vezi, Debbie, Matae and Melissa Lauren also joined for the afternoon. It was a perfect way to end a busy crazy week!