I haven’t simply forgotten to post….

… I have been very busy. So it’s time for an update.

I have been on solo shows and features, including a return to the Elkins Estate (this time for a fund/awareness raiser regarding it’s tenuous status) and a community-based open-house for Cheltenham Music & Art (where I teach). Of course, I did perform for the first time in five years at World Cafe Live (Upstairs) in Philly back in March and, quite honestly, it will be the last time. The food and wait service were superb — and that’s about it. I had forgotten how bad the sound is – the monitors don’t sound the same from one tune to the next and you can clearly hear any/all speaking in the audience when you are on-stage. Now, people shouldn’t be talking during the music, I agree, but I could tell you what each person ordered while I was in the midst of playing. It was an ordeal to focus on playing. Turnout was dismal as well — that’s enough on that forgettable gig.

At Elkins I added an element of ambiance as tours passed through the music room (a much better room than the aforementioned WCL). Visit the website (http://ElkinsEstate.org) to find out more about the dilemma and sign the online petition.

That brings me to the guitar/flute duo playing Friday afternoon at Cairnwood, the gorgeous former estate house of the Pitcairn family. A private event, of course, that gives Katherine Barbato and me the chance to bring our pairing to a live setting. Speaking of which, I am embarking on learning to play tangos by Piazolla a Katherine’s suggestion. I am sitting down and practicing, eyes on charts. Serious work but the results will be superb.

The group is on hold — so many venues and organizations are postponing or scaling back performances. We do get expressions of interest followed by apologies since the end of 2011. Still interested in taking the Group out of the US into an international market — what we do musically would be a great fit in European and Asian settings.

I do look forward to going electric again. I’ll play straight-ahead jazz with Howard Miller next Thursday — I don’t push like I do on one of the Group’s dates, but the playing is getting better each month. Perhaps I’ll bring a pedalboard and the Steinberger….

Bootleg still in near-release mode, videos giving me labor pains (I think I can imagine what it’s like) and I am still setting up dates around the Montreal Guitar Show (6/30) that will fit into my sojourn. Suggestions are most welcome.

Of course, I didn’t mention the non-musical aspects — dental visits, visual exams, long hold-times on insurance companies’  phones…. Can’t wait for the benefits…..

As sleep beckons me I must give in — after all, I have a gig tomorrow.

I promise the next one won’t border on a rant.

Matt

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