These past two weeks have been filled with terrific concerts and plenty of visits from some of my favourite people. Brandi Disterheft flew from London England for a show at Jazz Bistro. We grabbed lunch and she gave me a bee-lated birthday gift…a mega bottle of Aberfeldy 12 which is now my new favourite scotch. Mary B dropped by with some cold beer for a surprise visit and we sampled the tasty single malt. It was so good we decided to do a short promo video, extolling it’s virtues. ABERFELDY
Also in the past couple weeks, Lyne Tremblay was in from Montreal and performed a wonderful show at McMichael Art Gallery. She and Amy McConnell had an all-star band and performed an entire set of French jazz standards.
Also at McMichael, Alex Pangman and her Alleycats wowed a full room. This gallery is a favourite place to visit for the art; but add great music and it’s doubly worth the drive to Kleinberg.
I made it through yet another Fund Drive. It’s hard work but very rewarding. Four hours of talking each morning to get people to donate to a radio station…I normally drink a cup of coffee a day, if that – but during this two week period I’m Java Man.
Working with Heather Bambrick is so much fun and the weekends are a blast too. Laura Fernandez and I often have a couple people “testify” briefly on the air and follow it up with a dinner party at my loft.
I caught some great music at Toni Bulloni in the last wee while. Big Rude Jake and Roger Clown.
It’s a truly intimate and delicious evening. Live music Tuesday and Saturday nights! http://www.tonibulloni.com
CRAD’s WAKE was a total blast! About 100 people showed up…some of his $3 books were selling for $100. The testimonials and toasts, the music and poetry…it was better than I ever dreamed. Crad would’ve loved to have hated it.
The money we raised went to “The Crad Kilodney Literary Foundation” and we plan to make all his books available free on-line, in accordance with his final wishes.
I also sang with Don Francks and Tony Quarrington at Lula Lounge last week and did a show at Nottawasaga Inn a week before; so much fun!
Since my last post I hosted a couple jazz safari’s and caught some killer bands. Gord Sheard Trio gave a remarkable performance at Habits Gastropub on College (at Dovercourt). I love the octopus and the ginormous scotch menu… On this night Gord was joined by Mark Kelso (his usual drummer) and Mike Downes (who just picked up a Juno and subbed for George Koller who had a gig with Bobby Vinton of all people). It was an unforgettable performance by all three!
We hit Jazz Bistro and The Old Mill’s Home Smith Bar a few times and went to a freaky little bar inside the Imperial Tavern to watch Jazz Generation. I don’t know if I’ll ever bore of hosting tours of the Toronto jazz scene to raise money for JAZZ.FM91. So far, I just can’t get enough and I’ve been doing about forty nights a year for eight years!
I got a call from Captain Paul last week. The boat was in the water and ready for our first sail. The weather was perfect and we putted through the islands with a handful of friends.
To make matters even more blissful, Sheena Beena was staying with me for the past couple weeks and just went back to Quebec. Having her stay at Chez Bee was a sweet treat and I hope she’ll be back soon for more musical adventures and a million laughs!
People ask me why I’m always so happy. Here are five reasons I can think of off the top of my head. Try it! 1. Pick an adventurous soundtrack for your life. 2. Don’t commute – live near where you work (or at the very least find a way to avoid rush hour). 3. Surround yourself with incredible, smart, witty, lovely women. 4. Stay active all summer (in my case cycling, hiking and sailing) 5. Drink scotch.