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Kenny Kenny Has A New Act!

April 9, 2013 in Updates

Never to rest on bushes, Kenny Kenny has announced his new act “Jazz Stories With Kenny Bergle”, premiering on May 11 in Fort Wayne, Indiana at TRIAAC (Three Rivers Institute for Afrikan Arts and Culture).  It’s a cool time listening to Kenny Kenny play solo jazz guitar and relate surprising experiences that’s been his world for 40 years, the Jazz World.  Musical lessons and life morals unsuspectingly expose themselves during these stirring stories about jazz luminaries such as Ornette Coleman, Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis, Ella Fitzgerald, Joe Zawinul, Oscar Peterson and many, many more.  If you’re planning to be in the Fort Wayne area on Saturday Night, May 11th, don’t miss this unique perspective on jazz and Kenny Kenny’s excellent jazz guitar musings.

CLICK HERE for the ‘Jazz Stories With Kenny Bergle’ website with Ticket and venue information.

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John McEuen, Bill Cosby, and The Diz!

September 8, 2011 in Updates

Thanks again to show friend and music legend John McEuen!  Here’s another story he’s sent us to share.   This one involves show business legends Bill Cosby and Dizzy Gillespie.  Check it out – in John’s own words:

Carnegie Hall!  Finally got far enough out of Orange County to get to Carnegie. For our first time (of 4) there we were co-billed with Mr. Cosby, in the middle of a two-week tour with him. Bill knew music, and would open for us for 10 minutes , and then bring the band out for our show before his real set. To do this smoothly, he asked that I show him how to saw a simple bowing pattern on the fiddle, just on two open strings. He’d pick up my fiddle and do the bow sawing to kick off Jambalaya, and it worked great. “Hey boys, welcome to the stage.. here.. let me get you started” and he would exit, giving the audience a nice segue into something they likely did not want to see. (I always figure that with most audiences only _ of the people want to see what is on stage.. and they brought the other _).


But this night, our first big and most important NYC show, he had this friend…  he wanted him to sit in with us.

Barely out of the box as a band, our big night was already enough for us to handle. After sound check, Cosby came in to the dressing room to add fuel to the fidgets:

“If you boys don’t mind, I’d like to have an old friend sit in on a song with you.”
“No problem. What’s the song?” I asked.
“Just a regular 12 bar blues type of song, and he’ll fit right in… probably in the key of E.”
Thinking it would be good if his friend was a better player than him, I inquired:
“Who is it?”
“Dizzy Gillespie. He’ll do fine.” Yes, Bill, he’ll do fine.

It was one of those evenings that sounds like a fake story, a fabrication, like my whole life seems at times. I often drive through small mid-west towns and am positive the people walking around them are actors, set up to portray small town life. Even in the Big Apple it seems there are roles cast and people filling them:
The guy playing drumsticks on the sidewalk at midnight.
Three-card monte game on a cardboard box, the dealer harvesting the green from those who are green.
The guys who run the Going Out of Business! store in Times Square for the past 15 years.
The waitress at the Stage Deli who barely has the time to take an order, doesn’t write it down, and the food comes before you know it.

Bill did his intro, brought us out, and after Jambalaya, he came back out and then introduced Dizzy… as the horn man walked out, the crowd went nuts, and we hadn’t even played a note with him yet. I had not yet felt the impact of what it was like to be around someone with a longtime national career, and never forgot this reaction. Standing up there dizzy in Dizzy’s applause, I have never forgotten. It seemed we were in an old faded black and white photo with yellowing edges from some old showbiz agent’s desk, some forgotten show where the famous horn man sat in with some unknown band (‘… yeah, buddy.. that was a great night…shoulda been there..”)… and I was the out of focus guy.

As I remember, it seemed difficult to remember what an E chord looked like when those puffy cheeks were blowing his historic notes right beside me. But, ‘we’ went over great.

Wow and thanks again John for sharing your innermost thoughts with us!    Check back here for more stories from John McEuen soon!

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