Bonjour de Paris ...
We have been back in Paris for a few days and have taken the necessary time to reorient ourselves to this environment. I can happily announce that the return trip was uneventful except for an unfortunate decision I made at Charles de Gaulle Airport which brought us to the attention of the police. In my defense, we usually are able to travel with only “carry on” luggage. But this time, because we returned with more things than we brought with us, we checked two bags. Once we cleared Customs, I somehow got us out of the secure area without retrieving our checked luggage. It was the way we got back into the secure area that caused some alarm with the authorities. We were stopped, identified, and our carry on luggage was searched. We offered an apology which the police responded to with the French phrase “pas de soucis” which translates into “no worries”. Following that encounter we were once again “at large”. This being Paris, it was raining pretty hard so the trip back to our apartment with more luggage than usual was très compliqué. Beyond that things were pretty uneventful.
We had a great week in California and want to thank everyone who took the time to get together with us. Our evening with friends in the bar at the Hotel Laguna was a blast. We loved being able to get caught up with your lives and were so happy that it felt like we had only been gone for a short time as we were able to pick up again very easily. We are so fortunate to have so many wonderful friends. Speaking of wonderful friends, Ron Kobayashi was so gracious in the way he welcomed us to his Friday night jam session at Bayside restaurant in Newport Beach. Once again we must thank all the friends who came out to play music and say hello. We were so happy and humbled to see you and hear the joy in the music that was made that night. We must send a very special “thank you” to Mike and Carol Penn for once again making us so comfortable at “Chez Penn”, our California home. We also must send a warm “thank you” to John Tu and David Liu for bringing us back to California and handling many of the logistics for our stay. Leslie’s performance with John Tu’s California Dreamin’ Band was a highlight for me. That band is full of first call L.A. musicians and singers many of whom are friends of ours. That performance was followed by our Sunday evening house concert at the home of Ron Dye with our L.A. band including Domenic Genova, Jerry Kalaf and Joey Sellers. Ron and Natasha Dye could not have been more welcoming to us and our audience. Their home is a beautiful place to give a concert and we had a very enjoyable evening with them. Leslie and I where happy to perform some of the new music we have developed in our European performances for a California audience. We can’t wait to get back to CA and do it all again.
J.T. and California Dreamin’ Band Sound Check- Century City Plaza Hotel. Los Angeles, CA.
Paris after the 13 Novembre attacks.
We returned back to our apartment late Tuesday afternoon, got settled in and had some dinner. At that point we became aware of just how tired we were as evidenced by my sleeping for eleven hours that night.
We are back to our performance and teaching schedules in Paris. It is fun to play here again. The reality is that it is fun to play almost anywhere, but I do admit that for me, the lifestyle in Paris is hard to beat. On the other hand… a week enjoying Southern California weather was pretty damn nice and Leslie is more and more being drawn to be near an ocean. Maybe I need to brush up on my Spanish!
Looking ahead we are in Paris for the rest of the month and into early 2016. Jerry Kalaf will be here to work with us for the last week of December. For those of you who live in Paris we are working the last week of the year (Dec. 29th-31st.), including New Years Eve at Chez Papa Jazz Club in Saint Germain des Près. Peter Giron will be playing bass. A new performance was just added for January 2nd at Sunside-Sunset Jazz Club in Paris. Leslie was asked to reprise her “Hommage à Billie Holiday" concert which we did there last April.
Our schedules often change quickly but at this point our next road trip will be to work at the SoHo Jazz Club /Pizza Express on Dean St. in London on February 28th. Word of mouth is a very valuable promotional tool for us so… we would very much appreciate it if you could pass along this information if you know any jazz fans in London.
Until next time,
Leslie and Gerard
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