Brrrrr. New York City suddenly got really cold yesterday. Not cool! Cold. I hope everyone in the northeast is staying warm. Last night I braved the freezing weather and went to the Hawaiian Tropic Zone in Times Square to hear my friend Marc Devine play with his traditional jazz quartet. The HTZ is a funny place. It’s essentially a sports bar where, until just recently, the waitresses and hostesses wore bikinis. They have jazz there several nights a week, which is more or less background music, but me and my “entourage” that included my girlfriend Jamia, her friend Yolanda (visiting from London), saxophonist Sarah Manning, guitarist Russ Spiegel, Nick Mancini (visiting from L.A!), and his girlfriend Karen were able to sit in a lounge area right in front of the musicians. It was a fun (but a little expensive!) evening.
It was actually a little refreshing to hear some jazz more on the traditional side for a change (and played well, too). They were playing standards the whole night, but not songs that are always commonly played at jam sessions. It never ceases to amaze me what a vast language jazz actually is. It also reminded me I need to learn some new tunes. They played “Once in a While”…that’s a pretty one!