Matt Wilson, Adam Kolker, and Rail

These three discs have been in my changer for a while, but I am just now getting around to writing a little something about them.


In the past, I’ve made no secret of my enthusiasm for Matt Wilson’s music, and his new quartet disc, That’s Gonna Leave A Mark, just kicked that enthusiasm up another notch. The music is swinging and adventurous and fun and socially conscious. It balances inside and outside exceedingly well. Get this CD!


Adam Kolker’s Flag Day features Kolker on tenor sax, John Abercrombie on guitar, John Hébert on bass, and Paul Motian on drums. This disc can seem a bit understated at times, since it doesn’t go for high levels of exuberance, but maintains steady melodic flow and controlled expression. It is soulful in an intellectual way. I know that seems like a contradiction, but it doesn’t have to be.


A friend gave me this self titled CD by a band called Rail. I had never heard of them, but the music is interesting. They call it “heavy duty post jazz.” I might have called it instrumental indie rock played by guys with some jazz in their background. Either way it is pretty interesting. CD Baby has sound samples.

Nice weekend in Colorado

This past weekend I played at Mountainside Mardi Gras, at Red Rocks Amphitheater near Denver, with George Porter Jr. and the Runnin’ Pardners. Red Rocks is a uniquely picturesque setting in which to play and hear music. The sound was good, the people were very nice, the catering was a little weak, but all in all it was a great experience.

Photo by Gary Sullivan

It was quite a New Orleans musician hang back stage. I saw several old friends that I hadn’t seen in quite some time, even though we live in the same city. I also got to spend some time with my good friends, and former New Orleanians, Scott and Susan and their kids.

On the way home, the TSA agent in Denver confiscated (actually, technically, I surrendered it) my almost empty tube of toothpaste because the container was larger than three ounces. She admitted that there wasn’t even three ounces of toothpaste in the tube, but the tube was too big, so I was asked to surrender it, which I did without incident.

It amazes me that someone in the TSA hasn’t ended this farcical war on moisture. It seems from the occasional looks on their faces, that even the TSA agents in the airports know how ridiculous it is to confiscate almost empty toothpaste tubes. Maybe we can get the Mythbusters guys on this. See if they can blow something up with an almost empty 6.5 ounce Crest tube, or any combination of liquids in quantities of 3.5 ounces.

The best kind of visitors

Some visitors to New Orleans help more than just the economy of the city.

The Kindness of Strangers – News & Views – Commentary – Gambit – New Orleans:

“ ’We could have gone to Burger King, but we saw this and wanted to eat at a place with neighborhood people,’ said the pastor, the Rev. Dr. Brian W. Armen, shaking hands with people who approached their table. He and his flock were from Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church in Johnston, Penn. None of them had been to New Orleans before.”

Click the link and read the whole story.

It would be wonderful if we could all see EVERYONE around us as someone we can help or care about or learn from.