Bonjour de Paris ...
Summertime has arrived in Paris! It has been very nice these past few weeks. There have been a number of friends visiting Paris of late so our social calendar has been busier than normal. We are lucky to be very busy working, and it isn’t always easy to find time to see people, but we are always grateful we took the time to do so. It is important to get away from music every so often and seeing friends is a very good way to make that happen. To that end, there are more friends on their way to France and we are happily looking forward to getting caught up with their lives.
As I mentioned in the last blog, I often have very strange sleeping patterns. ( It is 3:25am as I write this.) We recently started seeing a new doctor and my sleeping problem was discussed. There were several orders for tests and appointments with specialists that are sometimes common when one starts seeing a new doctor. As we went to the follow up appointments I wasn’t always sure of the nature of the appointment. If you think reading a doctor’s handwriting in English is hard, try doing it in French! So I was a little surprised to find that one appointment was at a sleep clinic. I was given a device to use over- night that would monitor my breathing, heart rate, etc. I was to return it the next day. Ironically I found wearing the device so annoying that it kept me awake all night! The next day I had to get the device back to the clinic before noon. It was a two hour roundtrip by bus. We spent the afternoon in preparation for the Sunny Live Jazz Festival concert we had that night at Sunset Jazz Club in Paris, so I had to do the concert on almost no sleep. Despite the lack of sleep, it was a fun and well received concert. Leslie always finds a way to energize the stage. There is a video montage if you are interested. https://youtu.be/AYRlqvWtjkw
At the Sunset Jazz Club, Paris FR.
A few weeks ago we did a “Cotton Club” show on the Louisiana Belle, a paddle wheel boat that cruised up and down the Seine. It was a warm evening and Leslie and I were looking forward to being on the water. As it turned out none of the windows on this boat could be opened and consequently it was very warm. The back stage area was the warmest spot of all and there was no other place to be during the concert. To make matters worse there were two doors on either side of the backstage area that opened to the outside. As tempting as it was, they could not be opened because the paddle wheel was on the other side of the doors and the water that was churned up would have allowed water to get near some extension cords and lights so that wasn’t a good option. Despite the heat we did get to enjoy a bit of time on the deck after the show. We do have some road trips in Sept. and October with the “Cotton Club” group. I’ll get another opportunity to go to Lyon, this time I hope to try the food!
This week we are going to Cholet, France for work followed by a July 4th trip to Greasque for an appearance at the “Jazz en Sol Mineur Festival”. That is followed by weekly trips to La Baule, for some gigs at L’Hermitage and the Hotel Royal.
View from Louisianne Belle.
We had a great time in Le Lavendou in May. We had a beachfront hotel room and we found it to be very relaxing. Le Lavendou is close enough to Saint-Tropez for us to easily make a day trip there. I don’t know why, but I was expecting it to be way more showy in a “Rodeo Drive-ish” way. It was pretty much the opposite. There are, of course, all the boutique and designer shops. But the vibe is very relaxed and not overtly ostentatious. I suspect summertime there looks a bit different, but we would happily go back during the off-season. We found the old fishing village to be very charming!
View from the beach at La Lavendou.
Apartment building in Saint-Tropez, FR.
Village square in Saint-Tropez, FR.
Unfortunately we are not going to be in California this summer. We were really looking forward to seeing everyone. On the plus side in August we are going to spend two weeks in La Baule. We are working at L’Hermitage and the Hotel Royal during the weekends. During the week we will stay at a friend’s summer house which happens to be located two blocks from the beach. This is our way of manufacturing a little vacation.
View of the Atlantic Ocean from Hotel Royal, La Baule Fr.
Leslie and I have booked our tickets to be in New York in September. We will be able to perform with a local bassist and drummer, who both happen to be friends, which we are excited about. Plus we are very happy to be able to see some family and friends while we are in town.
I know I promised some photos of Leslie’s terrace garden. I have not had the time to take them yet. Keep an eye out for some photos on our Facebook page.
Until next time,
Leslie and Gerard
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