Herbie Hancock 70th Birthday Celebration at the Hollywood Bowl 9/1/10

Tonight was Herbie Hancock‘s 70th bday. Minutes before hearing this news I had turned to Beansie and said, “Man, Herbie’s looking good!”
“How old is he?” asked Beansie.
“I don’t know, but he’s basically looked the same for the past thirty years.”
“I want a sip of whatever water he’s drinking!” soon became my facebook status.
The show was great. His first set was more acoustic, straight up jazz, with an all-star line-up: Wayne Shorter on sax, Terence Blanchard on trumpet, Esperanza Spalding on bass, and Jack DeJohnette on drums. (And Nathan East on bass for a hot minute).
The second set was his funkier, electric stuff mixed with “The Imagine Project” (Band members: Vinnie Colaiuta – drums, Lionel Loueke – guitar, Pino Palladino – bass, Greg Phillinganes – vocals/keys, and Kristina Train – vocals).
Kristina Train, (aka “Chihuahua Hands” because it looked like she was petting a small dog with her left while she sung… distracting, but if you looked elsewhere she sounded pretty good. Just grab the mic with your left, K. Train!), belted through renditions of John Lennon’s Imagine, Peter Gabriel’s Don’t Give Up (which I sang all the way home), and Bob Dylan’s Times Are a Changin (with Lisa Hannigan on vocals – sounds Irish, looks Asian).
Other guests included India.Arie on vocals for “Imagine,”
Zakir Hussain on tabla and Niladri Kumar on sitar on “The Song Goes On,” (apparently with a pre-recorded vocal track by K.S. Chithra. We were wondering who else was singing…),
Juanes on vocals for “La Tierra” (Laney’s dad’s favorite Columbian),
Susan Tedeschi on vocals (can we say “girl crush”!?!?) and Derek Trucks on slide guitar on “Space Captain.”
And little Paulinho da Costa on percussion trading licks with Herbie during “Watermelon Man” (my mother’s personal fave of Herbie’s). He’s adorable. We must rival each other in height. Though the perspective up in our section is skewed. “Please tell me that’s a child,” I asked of the center dancer in the Debbie Allen Dance Academy “Tatamant/Tilay/Exodus” number. (Yes, yes it is, Jordan.)
The dirtiest piece was the second song of the second set (right after “Imagine”) but for the life of me I can’t get a song title. What good am I?

Now, three out of four times at the Bowl this summer I wound up in hysterics (and the show that didn’t get me was the night before I woke up with a man-down for four days cold). None of them are P.C.; I’m a terrible person.
At the BBKing/Buddy Guy show there was an African American lady, drunken stuporly screaming her conversation through out the show. At one point she turned around and yelled, “Anyone want some BLACK EYED PEAS?!?!” I lost it.
At the Nevilles, I commented Aaron’s chorizo on his forehead and Laners nearly choked on her own oxygen.
Tonight, we wanted to commemorate the final Jazz Wednesday Bowl evening with a group shot and Laners picked the only breathing man in the city who has never operated a camera to take on the task. He tried taking the picture twice, FAIL on both. We found another girl to try; she turned to him and said, “Ya, you’re holding the camera upside-down, dude.” I have little self-control when it comes to the giggles. Laughed right in his face.
(Similar to the time I took a pic for the lovely gay couple coming out of Alice Water’s Chez Pannise in Berkeley and we went to look to see how it came out, and one of the guys accidentally pressed “back,” and up pops a fully frontal, FULLY nude, sprawled out on the bed, picture of him. DIED! Embarrassed Showmance Will.)

Thank you Hollywood Bowl for our Summer Wednesdays!!!

Herbie Hancock's Seven Decades Bday Celebration at the Hollywood Bowl

Orgone Sunset Junction Saturday 8/21/10

There are a few things I always keep in my purse, (aka my pocket book; Hi, I’m from NY).

Some are none of your business (see future post on why it’s unacceptable to ever go through a woman’s purse…).

Others include but not limited to: lip balm (preferably Jack Black), hand wipes (EO Lavender ones – you can get them at Whole Foods), ear plugs (I have the baby blues from etymotic), and I keep a bottle opener on my key chain and wallet. (Anyone notice the food (wipes), booze (opener), and music (plugs) theme going on?!?!)

Anyway, on Saturday, I mistakenly left the house w/o my earplugs (I sometimes miss something in the purse transfer depending on which one I grab). This proved untimely as I had headed to Sunset Junction.  I love the concept of this street fair and I try to go every year, but the sound is terrible and painfully loud by the stages.  The rock star parking gods were looking down on me and I got a killer parking spot on Virgil just south of Santa Monica Blvd. I made a straight shot for the Hoover (tee hee) Stage for the Orgone set. Orgone is my High Sierra Music Festival discovery 2010 (like The New Mastersounds are my Langerado 06 discovery). Two of my favorite funky bands. Thankfully there was a small sound board providing shade from the sweltering east side 4pm sun as it was too loud up front in the shelter of the stage shade. And someone didn’t have her earplugs in. Even more opportune was the Real de Mexicao Tequila stand just to the left of the sound board.  Gotta love a guy who not only will custom make my cocktail sans cilantro, but wipes the shaker out first from any lingering offensive herbs. He made mine with extra jalapeno, extra tequila, no simple syrup (I don’t like cocktails too sweet) or cilantro (duh), easy on the pineapple chunks and juice, and just a splash of sour. Mmmmm. Yes, please!

Jordan’s Jala-Pineapple-rita

Recipe:
1 t jalapeno, green, fresh, chopped
1 T pineapple chunks, chopped
1 T pineapple juice
2 oz. tequila
1/4 t sour mix
squeeze of a lime
Procedure:
Muddle the jalapeno and pineapple chunks in a cocktail shaker. Add tequila, sour, and ice. Shake. Pour into cup. Top with a little pineapple juice and squirt a lime in there. Enojoy!

After two of these, we wandered around to check out the other local offerings and fell upon this scene. There was no way I wasn’t going to take a picture. (There also was no way I was going to give them money for it. My photographic journalist friend made me promise to never pay for pictures, it makes his job around the world… or in his current position, India… really difficult.)
And, yes, I’m wearing a Kelly Nishimoto dress.

Blind Date Text

This isn’t exactly food, booze, or music related, but it’s too good not to post. I also realize that I’ll probably have more dating scenarios to share so I’ve decided to extend Cocktails into Cock Tales and include men in that category. We’ll also give it to music since I mention a few shows on my calendar.

Here’s the premise. This guy Dave called me to go out on a blind date. He couldn’t even properly identify himself when he called.

“Hi Jordan, I’m Dave, Esther’s cousin. She gave me your number to set us up.”

“Oh, OK,” I said, (My mother often mentions giving my number to some people who “might have a guy for me” so this type of call is never completely unexpected.) “Esther who?”

“Um, I don’t know her maiden name but her married name is ___ .” (something I had never heard of…)

“OK, well there’s my mother’s friend, Esther Goodman?”

“No”

“There’s my friend here in LA who just got married, Esther Weinberg?”

“No.”

“Well those are the only Esthers I know, unless it’s my dead Grandma Esther?  Or are you from Purim?!?!”

“No, I’ll find out from her, in the meantime, do you want to grab a drink when you’re in NYC?”

So I generously agreed to an earlyish drink on the Friday I get to town. We would firm up plans closer to the date. Now, when I’m being set up, I am happy to meet with anyone you’re suggesting… but for a drink, or a coffee, or something quick. You don’t get my entire evening unless I’ve already met you. That’s how these blind set ups work!

The following is a word for word transcription of our text message exchange that started the night before we were supposed to meet. For the first time!! (I think I dodged a bullet.)

Hi Jordan,
It’s David Rosenschweig (Esther Elmer’s* cousin) we spoke on the phone a few wks ago. Are we on 4 2mrrow nite as per our conversation assuming ur in town?
(* turns out said Esther was a year ahead of me in high school, hadn’t spoken to her since. Her brother is my year and my mother knew their mother and recently ran into her in the city.)

Yes.  Do you want to meet at bar jamon at 7pm? 17th and Irving.

Sure. Jamon is fine, can u do 08:00pm? Looking fwd to meeting you

I’m going to see God Street Wine at Irving at 8.

Ok, How about we make it for Sat. Nite?

I’m busy sat night but could get coffee sat afternoon. Noonish.

Saturday I’m busy till late afternoon.
How long are you in town for?

10 days.
What time do u get out of work? I can do Monday before 8pm.

Great, would you like to meet grab a drink any evening except Tues.(I’ve got class/wrkshop) when you won’t be “double booked” or have a nxt appt. An hour?

What time do u get out of work? I can do Monday before 8pm.

I won’t know depends on how the day goes each appt. Is different some days 6, 7pm plus by the time I walk my dog 07:00 is not realistic.

How about a coffee during lunch one day?
Or on Monday u are welcome to meet me at city winery at 8pm. Seeing calexico.

Jordan, I’d like to meet u, & am willing to meet u any evening excpt one(Tues.nite) despite that u double booked our date set 3-4 wks ago. Let me kw.

I didn’t double book our date. I was planning to meet you tonight at 7. Don’t think meeting up is going to work. Sorry.

And u communicated that you’d have 1hr 7pm-8pm to meet when? I get that ur time’s limited. Don’t make up ur own version of events its silly. Good luck to you.

Please don’t contact me again. Tx.

Plse never contact me again.

— Last names have been altered for privacy purposes

Neville Brothers, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, and Dirty Dozen Brass Band at the Hollywood Bowl Wednesday 8/18/10

I’m a lucky lady. I have a fantastic Wednesday night summer 2010 routine.
6:00pm – Beansie leaves work and packs the car with fresh tomatoes from the possum proof garden, wine, and other goodies.
6:30pm – Beansie picks up Home Fry and they leave the west side.
7:00pm – Beansie and Home Fry grab me in West Hollywood. I’m equipped with layers, and more wine and goodies.
7:15pm – We pick up Laners from her job with the gays.
7:30pm – Laners finally gets in the car. I’ve polished off half of the wine straight from the bottle due to some ex-lover coming up in conversation. We listen to Laners on the phone discussing with her co-workers whatever drama is going on in the office.
7:45pm – Laners can’t deal with the drama and we can’t deal with not talking so she gets off the phone.
7:50pm – We park in our special spot for the Hollywood Bowl (special to those not opposed to walking up hills).
7:59pm – Grab a $5 ticket to the show (Really?!?! How is the whole city not here?!?!)
8:00pm – Boogie Time

Last Wednesday we saw Buddy Guy and B.B. King (who offers his stand-up comedy in addition to his musical talents). They turned the house lights on B.B. King due to some curfew rule. We thought it was in poor taste. He’s a legend and he’s old, give the man some time to get off the stage. Apparently they turned the lights on Buddy Guy one time and he turned to his band and yelled, “Mustang Sally!! 1-2-3-4!” and proceeded to play the song in its entirety.

This time it was New Orleans night. Dirty Dozen had everyone dancing. We had a few rows to ourselves in section K2 (all the way stage right/house left). For the Pres Hall set, Home Fry and I went down to the front to visit our friend M’Kohl styling in the Garden Section 271. This was the best set to see up close as they had a fantastic dance number by the Trey McIntyre Project to go along with the music. Then we went back up to K for Nevilles. I have to say, Art looked better than I’d seen him in years. Granted, I was in section K, but I almost thought they had someone else sitting in on keys. Aaron actually shed a tear during his ballad number; that, or he was sweating. (I totally picked up the term “number” from my parents and can’t stop using it.) It was a standard fabulous evening, including Laners thinking the boys behind us were cute, me going to talk to them and bring them to our row, and Laners then proceeding to ignore them. “They were dull up close,” she decided.

Let the records show that on Wednesday, August 18, 2010, I returned home to my apartment in West Hollywood during the night time hours… IN A TANK TOP! That’s right, my layers were still stashed in my purse. Balmy evenings in Los Angeles DO happen!

Laners, Jords, Home Fry, and Beansie at the Bowl.