****** Musician's Meanderings******
Steve Hashimoto's Journey Journal – News From the Trenches - 05-25-2003:
Howard Reich's got nothin' on this critic -- at the restaurant show gig on
Tuesday there were a couple of young women sitting and resting at our booth. One
was sort of listening to us and the other one looked very uninvolved and
bored. Remember, there was free food of all types at the show. Well, during my
bass solo in the 2nd tune of the day, the bored-looking girl proved that it
wasn't boredom on her face, it was food poisoning. Suffice it to say that she dyed
the pretty blue carpet pink and orange, in explosive fashion. And like true
pros we didn't stop playing. (For that matter, most of the people in the area
didn't stop eating, either.) Next stop, S.S. Titanic.
I was gratified to learn that I'm not the only person who's getting tired of the pseudo-soul
melismapalooza that passes for the majority of contemporary pop singing
No less an institution than the New York Times has rung in, supporting my argument.
I have nothing against melisma when employed sincerely and by great singers
(Aretha Franklin's performance of Amazing Grace at Martin Luther King's funeral,
for instance -- melisma springing from great emotion). Most of the melisma
I hear lately seems, however, to be a short-hand signal telling us that the singer
is feeling a lot of emotion, when in fact they aren't, and also seems to serve as
camouflage for the singer's lack of a sense of exact pitch (I know that damned note's
around here somewhere!). Will someone please invent a radar-gun that clocks
melisma and vibrato? There ought ta be a law! Worst offenders would be sentenced
to 40 hours of community service consisting of listening to The Greatest Hits of Jonathan
and Darlene Edwards (although most of them, being tone-deaf, wouldn't get the point).
This week Steven Hashimoto will hit it and quit it at:
TUES. 5/27: at QUENCHERS, 2401 N. Western, Tues. 5/27, 9:30pm to 1am, with
Sueños Latin-Jazz Quartet (Mike Levin, sax; Bob Long, piano; Heath Chappell,
drums). A semi-jam session: bring your axe (sorry, no drummers or bass players,
though, unless you have hand drums you can play -- I need to have a stable
rhythm section on the bandstand)!
WEDS. 5/28: at HACKNEYS, 127th and LaGrange Rd., Palos Hills, 7:30-10:30pm,
with The Brass Tracks Big Band.
THURS. 5/29: at GATEWAY BAR & GRILL, 7545 N. Clark, 7:30-10:30pm, with
guitarist Pat Fleming.
FRI. 5/30: at THE UNDERGROUND WONDER BAR, 10 E. Walton, 7:30-10pm, with Robin
Kay and Band (Pat Fleming, guitar; Paul Coscino, piano; Luiz Ewerling,
percussion; Rick Vitek, drums); then as always, later on at THE GREEN MILL, 4802 N.
Broadway, 1:30-3:45am, with The Green Mill Quartet (Barely Winograd, bari sax;
Bob Long, piano; Rick Shandling, drums) for The After-Hours Jam Session.
SAT. 5/31: in Milwaukee with the fabulous Tony Ocean (thanks, Fiorino!).
Need to fill Sat. June 14, por favor. Call me at 708-222-6520.