by Mercy Moosemuzzle -
SGN Contributing Writer
Mercy and Cuteness loved Livingston Taylor's big, smooth voice and accomplished guitar work at the Triple Door last week. Cuteness pointed out that the hall was pretty empty. When Mercy wondered why, Cuteness pointed out the audience was gray-haired like them, and like the performer.
The small but enthusiastic crowd shouted 'woo-hoos.' A woman next to Mercy said "Natty man!" when Taylor appeared in gray pants, shirt, bow tie, and red suspenders.
Mercy liked his openers, "I Must Be Doing Something Right" and "Everyone Is Just Like Me." She liked the fact that he changed the lyrics in "Start All Over Again" from "Do you recall the famous men" to "Do you recall the women and the men&"
Cuteness enjoyed the fact that Livingston talked about his creative process, for example, whistling the melody he started with for one song, and explaining that since the tune was complex, he wanted the words to be simple. He said he came up with the idea of "Don't Lose Hope" without realizing how much hope it was going to take to come up with all the rhymes for "hope" the song required.
Taylor talked about loving the movie and song "North to Alaska," but joked that the songwriter Johnny Horton didn't get hired again because his lyrics gave away the whole movie. Livingston sang his own song about the state, "Last Alaska Moon."
Mercy liked the song "I Ought to Be More Herbal," with lines like "You are what you eat; good God, I'm a weenie," and "What made Seattle famous made a gerbil out of me."
The singer did a funny parody of guitar playing being an Olympic sport. His piano playing was also elegant.
Taylor did a wonderful rendition of Irving Berlin's "What'll I Do," pointing out what he considered a brave transition from major to minor to represent the composer's vengeance of his loved one. Cuteness thought Livingston knocked that song out of the ballpark. Mercy thought the "Trolley Song" from Meet Me in St. Louis was equally delightful.
Taylor segued from "Heart and Soul" to his own "Say Yes If Your Baby Wants Something" nicely. He said "We're the Best of Friends" was about people who have been together forever.
Livingston introduced the Stephen Bishop song, "On and On," saying there is one note in the song that is too high for him. He asked the audience to sing it for him. That worked out all right. Taylor's originals, "City Lights" and "A Carolina Day," were nice.
He sang a very funny folksong, "Railroad Bill," in which the subject and the author have a disagreement about whether Bill will rescue a cat. Mercy liked the lines, "I'm the writer, God damn. I've got the pen in my hand."
Livingston closed with his song "My Baby Don't Mind." He said, "I must advise you, this is a fantasy. In reality, your baby will mind."
As an encore, he did Rogers and Hart's "My Romance." Taylor said Oscar Hammerstein is his favorite lyricist. He sang a few lines from "I'm as Crazy as Kansas in August" to demonstrate what he loves about Hammerstein.
Jocosity Longitudinal and Justify Gooddoctor in Gay Games
Mercy ran into her friend Jocosity Longitudinal in the gym (of course) after his return from the Gay Games in Cologne. She had heard that he had won five gold medals and his partner, Justify Gooddoctor, had won five golds and one silver. Mercy asked Justify how that felt. He said it was good for his ego.
"Justify won sizzling gold in the 1,500 meters, another in the 800, and still another in the 400. He literally ran away from his competition, blowing them out. He also won gold in the 4x100 and 4x400 relays, and a silver in the 4x200 relay."
"I did not sizzle, but he did well enough to also win five gold medals. I won my age group in the shot put, discus, javelin, and hammer throw."
"Both of us competed in the 70-74 age bracket and were helped along in that not too many competed in that group. Our reply to those that claim we had no "real" competition is to say, 'Where were all the others in our age group, and why weren't they competing?' We invite them to test themselves at the next games. We feel great to be our age and to be able to do these things as well as we can. The philosophy of the games is to do your personal best."
Deborah Stewart on Rizzoli and Isles
Mercy and Cuteness enjoyed watching the episode of the cop show Rizzoli and Isles, in which the duo had to go undercover in a Lesbian bar. Deborah Stewart, who is an out actress, did a nice turn as one of the women who responds to a personal ad Isles posts on Rizzoli's behalf, and comes on to her. Mercy liked the sexual energy between Stewart and Angie Harmon in the role of Rizzoli. Both are attractive actresses. Cuteness thought the plot could have been more imaginative.
Mercy and Cuteness are looking forward to seeing Jessica Williams at the Triple Door on Saturday, September 4.
Jessica Williams is a well-known and highly respected American pianist and composer.
This two-time Grammy Nominee was classically trained at the Peabody Conservatory of Music. In her mid-20s, she worked with the great Philly Joe Jones, drummer for the Miles Davis Quintet. She also played in the bands of Eddie Harris, Tony Williams, Stan Getz, Big Nick Nicholaus, Airto and Flora Purim, Charlie Rouse, John Abercrombie, Leroy Vinnegar, and others.
She has released over 65 albums and written over 300 compositions. She has received two grants from the National Endowment for the Arts; a Rockefeller Grant for composing; the Alice B. Toklas Grant for Women Composers, and the prestigious John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship.
She's been a guest on NPR's Fresh Air with Terry Gross, and on Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz. She's written scores for PBS and HBO and has received more than twenty ASCAP Special Awards for her prolific musical output. She has played everywhere from The Kennedy Center to the Opera House in Tokyo.
You can get your tickets at www.thetripledoor.net
Dr. John, September 7-12 at Jazz Alley
Cuteness and Mercy are also looking forward to seeing Dr. John at Jazz Alley September 7 to 12. Band members include John Fohl (guitar), David Barard (bass), and Herman Ernest (drums).
Iconic American musician Dr. John goes tribal with the follow-up to his 2008 Grammy Award-winning release The City That Care Forgot for "Best Contemporary Blues Album." His newest release, TRIBAL, (August 2010), featuring a track with Grammy-winner Derek Trucks, is a unique, spicy mix of New Orleans funk and blues with songs written by Dr. John and a few of his friends - Allen Toussaint and the late Bobby Charles all joined by his ultra funky Lower 911 band of musicians. Dr. John - or Mac Rebennack, as known to friends and family - is universally celebrated as the living embodiment of the rich musical heritage exclusive to New Orleans.
His colorful musical career began in the '50s when he wrote and played guitar on some of the greatest records to come out of the Crescent City, including recordings by Professor Longhair, Art Neville, Joe Tex, and Frankie Ford. A notorious gun incident forced the artist to give up the guitar and concentrate on organ and piano. Further trouble at home sent Dr. John west in the '60s, where he continued to be in demand as a session musician, playing on records by Sonny & Cher, Van Morrison, and Aretha Franklin, to name a few. He then launched his solo career, developing the charismatic persona of Dr. John, The Night Tripper. Adorned with voodoo regalia, a legend was born with his breakthrough 1968 album Gris-Gris, which established his unique blend of voodoo mysticism, funk, rhythm and blues, psychedelic rock, and Creole roots.
Several of his many career highlights include the masterful album Sun, Moon and Herbs in 1971 which included cameos from Eric Clapton and Mick Jagger, and 1973's In The Right Place, which contained the chart hits "Right Place Wrong Time" and "Such A Night." Dr. John garnered Grammy award wins in 1989, 1992, 1996, and 2000 with a passion that has yet to wane.
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