Friday, June 24, 2005

It's the story of my life...well not all the time. I get to hear a lot of
great music in Toronto, but it never fails that when there is the most
abundant selection, during the ten days of the Downtown Jazz festival, I
end up missing the greatest stuff. And the irony is that it's because I
work for the festival and last night, like every year, I was scrambling to
configure computers and modems and routers in for the media people and the
transportation people who were setting up on site, and this time it was not
coming together quickly. And meanwhile there's all this great music going
on. I just had to see Duke Robillard, my favourite guitarist, so after
picking up a wireless router at a computer store on Spadina I poked in to
the Silver Dollar to hear a bit of Duke. The minute we sat down he ended a
tune and announced a break. I though we had enough time to run down to the
festival site and plug in the new router then make it back to catch at
least part of his second show, but by the time we got back, we were only
able to catch the last tune. Then over to the Phoenix to hear Antibalas, an
amazing Afro-funk groups. Once again, we catch the last tune. And still
the router was not working.

Anyway, today worked out a little better and we got all the computers
working fine, but not until after the opening ceremonies (which I missed,
of course). Then another afternoon of running around - missed a show that I
was very anxious to see, David Murray, but tonight I sat for the whole
concert of Sonny Rollins in Massey Hall and that was a delight. After that,
heard a few tunes of the Tim Ries Rolling Stones Project (jazzy versions of
Stones tunes) and before heading home, I dropped in on Mark Stafford's
Harmonica Knights at the Silver Dollar. I had hoped to play a little
myself, I've got two gigs on Sunday, but alas, that was not to be. Tomorrow
is another day (and one where I want to be sure to hear organist Tony
Monaco at the Mod Club)