rogerinblueongray

rogerinblueongray

Dec 10, 2018

Christmas Tree - becoming my father

CHRISTMAS TREE

My family’s Christmas tree was by definition the one at my parent’s house. The tree my father bought and put up. The tree he and my mom decorated with three generations of family ornaments. The hundred-year-old donkey and cart and drum went on last. The family ornaments included glass bulbs, plastic space-ships shaped ornaments from the fifties, hand-crafted ornaments made by kids, and shell ornaments from Florida. Much later we added a glass pickle.

My father was neither mechanical nor handy. He often bought trees that were too big. The trunk had to be cut and trimmed to fit in the tree holder and the top cut to allow for the fallen angel. Often Dad put the tree into the holder at an angle. Meaning our trees had a tendency to tip over. To avoid a tree accident, Dad took to wiring the tree to a wall, and a window or curtain rod using picture hanging wire. Rather than keeping the tree from falling, these safety lines resulted in holes in the plaster, broken windows, and torn curtains.  In Florida my dad bought a tree stand that he pronounced, “the best stand ever.” I used the same stand for years until I purchased one in California guaranteed to hold a redwood up right.

When my dad died, Lynette and I inherited the family ornaments and for a time the “family tree,” was determined by where my mother spent Christmas. 

Last year with the passing of my mother, there is no one family tree, there are half a dozen family trees. Each of these trees has a few of the older family ornaments, fragments, from a century of decorating one family tree.

For a time, our family was held together by my parents, by traditions like the family tree, and occasionally (like this year, 2018) with the help of a length of picture wire.






Dec 7, 2018

Cloverdale Arts Alliance THE Jazz Club Lorca Hart - Brian Ho - Bennett Friedman 12 6 2018

Cloverdale Arts Alliance
Lorca Hart - Brian Ho - Bennett Friedman
 Great Trio 
Outstanding Drummer - Lorca Hart
Organ virtuoso - Brian Ho
Superb Saxophone and Flute Bennett Friedman




  “Drummer Lorca Hart grew up in Taos, New Mexico in a musical family. He was exposed to a variety of instruments and musical styles as a child but early on it became clear that the drumset was his passion. In high school he started to perform and focus on Jazz. He attended California Institute of the Arts from 1992-96, studying with Albert "Tootie" Heath, Joe La Barbera, Charlie Haden, Wadada Leo Smith, and many others. Since that time Lorca has worked consistently in a variety of musical situations, performing with many of the West Coast's (and beyond) finest artists including : Ralph Moore, Carmen Lundy, Freddie Hubbard, Calvin Keys, Stanley Jordan, Craig Handy, Kyle Eastwood, Herman Riley, Azar Lawrence, Red Holloway, Plas Johnson, John Heard, Danny Grissett, Justo Almario, Bennie Maupin, Phil Ranelin, Dave Pike, Don Menza, Hugh Masekela, Bobby Rodriguez, the Clayton Brothers, Anthony Wilson, Julian Lage, storyteller/radio personality Joe Frank, actor/musicians Jeff Goldblum and Peter Weller, Ronald Muldrow, and the Cross Hart Jazz Experience (the project that he co-leads with bass player Ryan Cross). He also leads his own trio featuring Josh Nelson on piano and Edwin Livingston on bass. Lorca can be heard on recordings by Hugh Masekela, John Heard, Justo Almario, Ronald Muldrow, Dave Pike, Phil Ranelin, the Cross Hart Jazz Experience, and the Lorca Hart Trio.”



“Brian Ho has grown from a hometown pianist to a Hammond Organ virtuoso. He began his love affair for the instrument while playing at an African-American Baptist Church in his teens. This child prodigy took piano lessons at Stanford and San Jose State, and began teaching at the age of 16. He now performs throughout California with his trio, freely soloing with his right hand—while his left hand and feet play organ bass—in the same tradition as his organ idols, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Shirley Scott, and Jimmy Smith. Ho released his 1st CD Organic, which features guitarist Calvin Keys (Ray Charles, Ahmad Jamal), drummer Lorca Hart and staple saxophonist Oscar Pangilinan.”


“A native of Berkeley, California, Bennett Friedman has been performing, writing and teaching music in the San Francisco Bay Area since the early 1960’s. He attended Berkeley High School, Berklee College of Music in Boston, and San Francisco State University, where he received a Master’s degree in Music (performance) in 1971. Bennett served three years in Washington, D.C. with the United States Army Band.

In the 1970’s and 80’s Bennett worked in horn sections backing such artists as Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan, Sammy Davis Jr., Lou Rawls, The Temptations, and Michael Jackson among others. Bennett has performed with the San Francisco Symphony, the California Symphony, and the San Francisco Ballet Orchestra.”