****** Musician's Meanderings******
Steve Hashimoto's Journey Journal – News From the Trenches – 09-21-2003:
Just a bunch of odds and ends...
How's this for chutzpah? We were playing at the Avenue Alehouse in Oak Park
Thursday night and before the first set a friendly drunk engaged us all in
conversation. Although he'd never seen us play before, he took it upon himself to
give us advice on our careers ("You guys have to take it to the NEXT LEVEL!"),
on how to play music ("You guys have to BLEND!" -- I told him most of us had
known each other and played together for over 20 years), and what to play
(even though Thursdays is and has always been jazz night at the Alehouse, he told
us we needed to rock out). Like I say, he was friendly, and after not getting
much more than surly grunts from us he left us alone. Just as we were getting
ready to start I happened to notice him leaving, accompanied by some of the
staff, and then the manager came up to me and asked me if I knew the guy. I told
him I didn't, but thanks for keeping an eye on him. The manager laughed and
said they'd just cut him off; he became abusive and told the bartender that he
was "with the band" and that if they didn't serve him "we" weren't going to
play. An idiot, but ya gotta kind of admire him, in a Hunter Thompson kind of
You know, lately I hesitate about talking nice about people because I
inevitably get about 10 e-mails castigating me for not being more comprehensive
(which usually boils down to my not talking about whoever wrote the e-mail). Look,
I love you all, you're all geniuses, there's just not enough time to talk
about everyone's gigs or cd's. And now I'm going to talk about 2 cd's I recently
got, and I'm sorry if they're not you.
Vibist and fellow Lil' Cow band member Ken Hall recently put out a gorgeous
duo CD, with guitarist John Moulder, called "Spirit Talk", on the NAIM label.
The playing, the arrangements, and the recorded sound are all beautiful. A lot
of the tunes are familiar, but these guys really put a nice twist on
everything. It was recorded live to 2-track in a great sounding church, with Moulder
playing acoustic steel-string guitar throughout. It should be in stores by now,
so go right out and buy one.
Guitarist Marco Villareal, whom I played with in Indiana about a month ago,
has a side project, an acid-jazz/fusion band called Freek Johnson, and they
have a CD, and it's kinda awe-inspiring. The players are Marco on acoustic and
electric guitars, Waz Fox on keyboards, Buddy Pearson on bass and Bill Romer on
drums, and these boys can play! The tunes are really cool, but the main thing
is that these guys really sound like a band, if you know what I mean. There
seems to be a neo-fusion movement happening, so if you're into bands like Kick
The Cat and The Robin Dean Project, you'll like this. Go to
www.freekjohnson.com for more info.
It's come to my attention that a certain bar/restaurant that no longer hires
us is using pictures of Pat Fleming and I in some of their advertising. Since
we hope to play there again someday, I'm not making a big fuss about it, but,
y'know...suffice it to say that my estimation of the guy's sense of ethics
isn't in danger of rising.
This week Steven Hashimoto will closely monitor who's actually in the band at:
SUN. 9/21: at 100 SOUTH, 100 S. York Rd. in Elmhurst, 10am-2pm, with
flugelhornist Jeff Hedberg and pianist John Jeffreys; then later on at SIMON'S TAVERN,
5210 N. Clark St., 9-11:30pm, with The Steven Hashimoto Quartet (Dan Hesler,
sax; Zvonimir Tot, guitar; Heath Chappell, drums).
TUES. 9/23: at QUENCHERS, 2401 N. Western, 10pm-1am, with Sueños Latin-Jazz
Quartet (Mike Levin, sax; Bob Long, piano; Heath Chappell, drums). While not
technically a jam session (you don't get to call tunes; I call 'em), you're
welcome to come and play with us.
THURS. 9/25: a little leader date in Hammond, thanks to Michelle Golden.
FRI. 9/26: at THE UNDERGROUND WONDER BAR, 10 E. Walton, 8-10:30pm, with
vocalist Robin Kay and guitarist Pat Fleming; then later on, as always, at THE
GREEN MILL, 4802 N. Broadway, 1:30-3:45am, with The Green Mill Quartet (Barely
Winograd, bari sax; Bob Long, piano; and Rick Shandling, drums) for The
After-Hours Jam Session.
SAT. 9/27: need to fill it! Call me at 708-222-6520.