I’ve been talking to a handful of people in New York over the past week and marveling at how much there is going on here. ALL THE TIME. EVERY DAY. EVERY NIGHT. I’ve heard the same thing phrased a few different ways now, that being successful/staying sane/staying healthy is all about being able to choose what not to do. I am pleased that my week has been completely jam-packed with things, but coupled with not getting much good quality sleep since its hard to sleep in a puddle of sweat, I am absolutely feeling the wear and tear. (I should say that the wear and tear on my bank account is probably much worse, but that’s beside the point)
Okay, that being said, New York is awesome. Or at least my adventures have been. Thursday, I escaped the heat at the Museum of Modern Art. There was a lot of great stuff in there, like several pieces by Duchamp, a few from Sol Lewitt, a bunch of Picasso, a room full of Monet, The Starry Night, etc. By the way, do you know that Van Gogh wanted to be a musician? He didn’t have the ear for it though.
Dave and I met up with Ashley after she was done with work and adventured out to Brooklyn and did some dinner and bar hopping and eventually ended up on top of a roof deck with a view of the city. Still hot, but not quite as bad with a breeze.
Friday, Dave took off work and we rented a bike and had an epic bike ride through Central Park and around the edge of Manhattan along the rivers. It was hot. Like 97 degrees hot, but it felt fantastic to sweat all day. I got to see the Statue of Liberty, which was much less of an accident this time around. There are a lot of people here.
So that took up pretty much all day. After that we jaunted downtown to The General to catch the rowdy hot jazz group, ::The Sneak Thievery Orchestra:: and Jason Prover, in particular. You may remember him from the likes of Umoja Orchestra, or the early days of JASS, or just ruling the Gainesville music scene in general for a handful of years. Anyway, he is killing it in New York, and it was super inspiring to see a bit of it happen.
Speaking of Umoja Orchestra, we saw another group yesterday (Saturday) afternoon at a block party who used to play shows with them called ::Suenalo:: from Miami. There is incredible music happening EVERYWHERE. ALL THE TIME. EVERY DAY. EVERY NIGHT.
Last night we adventured out to the bars, found ourselves maybe in over our heads trying to talk Nietzche and Kierkegaard with a couple of recent philosophy graduates but at least were able to shift the topic to jazz for a bit. Afterwords, we ventured to a bar called Fat Cats, which Dave described as the Tim and Terry’s of New York. Scaled appropriately to take into account the New York multiplication factor, this place was huge. There were scrabble boards and chess boards all over, and a Jazz group playing standards that restored my self-confidence in my own playing after hearing the guys at Smalls earlier this week. Anyway, Dave and I played chess and at some point the steaks were that if I won the game, then I had to go try to sit in with the group. So, I won the game, maybe Dave threw it, I’m not sure, so I ran up and grabbed the bass player while he was on a break and he let me play a handful of tunes. Note that this was at about 3 in the morning, but I can say that I’ve played in New York now. We ended up shutting the place down, getting home around sunrise. Excellent Saturday adventures.