[Dixielandjazz] Solos - was bass solos

Stephen Barbone barbonestreet at earthlink.net
Fri Jul 23 18:50:47 PDT 2004

Hi Jeanne:

Thank you for reading and enjoying those posts and NY Times articles.

You are among those who listen well. Yes, Sacto has some great ones, along with
a lot of garage bands. Tommy Saunders is a favorite of mine, as is Peps
(Peplowski) and my hero, Kenny Davern who used to cut me up regularly in NYC 50
years ago. (he still does) The East Coast All Stars are just that. I work with
some of them, like Randy Reinhart here in the Philadelphia area from time to
time. They are great players and great soloists.

The festivals you mention and the Jazz Parties, Atlanta etc., also feature
great jazz musicians. However, many of the other festivals are not as creative.

I rarely get to jazz festivals these days, other than local ones which I play.
They are not OKOM festivals but rather Jazz Festivals featuring modern jazz,
smooth jazz and blues. Like Rehoboth JF in Rehoboth DE, Berks JF in Reading PA,
Clifford Brown JF in Wilmington DE, Dover JF in Dover DE, etc. My band, Barbone
Street, has shared the stage on New Orleans Nights with Preservation Hall, and
Dirty Dozen Brass Bands, 3 times at Berks and Clifford Brown. (These are 8 and
11 day festivals). We've also headlined alone at Berks, Rehoboth, Clifford
Brown, West Chester University, Dover JFs,  Turks Head Music Festival, Media
Blues Festival, Wilmington Riverfront Blues Festival etc. within the past 3

These appeal to a large, broad, younger jazz loving audience and our brand of
Dixieland goes over big time. The smallest of the above festivals draws 1000,
the largest about 50,000. Our largest single set audience at one was 5500.
Needless to say, they pay much better than your average OKOM festival. There
are no "all events" passes. Each venue has its own charge. Some free, some as
high as $80. Our jazz festival performances have generated charges of from $12
to $39 for a one hour set.

Some of the performers at these festivals are the BIG boys/girls. Wynton
Marsalis, Branford Marsalis, Herbie Hancock, Bela Fleck, Boney James, Aretha
Franklin, Hiromi, Toshio Ashioki (spelling?), Maynard Ferguson, Arturo
Sandoval. Roy Hargrove, Joshua Redman, Kenny Barron, Keith Jarrett, etc. We are
usually the only Dixieland Band there, yet we draw with the best of them.

We do about 160 gigs a year locally which is just about all we can handle. So,
we rarely travel more than 80 or 90 miles for a gig these days, especially with
the band average age now at 70.

If you have a moment, see our web site. Not fancy, but you'll get an idea of
what we do..


Steve Barbone

PS. Had a Las Vegas Trombone player sit in with us at The Coatesville (PA) Old
Fashioned Ice Cream Festival a couple of weeks ago. Bill Scann. He free lances
there and I think teaches music at one of the local High Schools or
Universities. More of a modern jazz player but he did great and had a ball.
Know him?

PPS. Funny thing about "All Star Bands". Had a Dixieland expert write me a year
or so ago stating that he disliked all star bands because they were "pick-up"
groups and not well rehearsed. Blew my mind. I am a firm believer that "jazz"
musicians speak a common musical language and thrive in such situations. As I
hear it, that's where creativity lives.

Jeanne Brei wrote:

> Hey Stephen,
>    I love your posts -- and especially the Times articles that you
> forward -- but I'm just curious -- do you ever go to any trad jazz
> festivals? Maybe there are a few like what you said -- but some of them
> really feature All-Stars -- the Sacramento Jazz Festival's Red Lion Inn
> comes to mind (hearing Tommy Saunders' solo on Black Coffee at 1:00 AM was
> breathtaking) -- the Mid-West All-Stars, the East Coast All Stars -- they're
> all fabulous musicians. Also, the Sweet & Hot Jazz Festival features more
> AllStars than it does bands!
>     And several of the guys on your list (the ones who are still alive
> anyway) can usually be found at Sweet & Hot or Sacramento -- Ken Peplowski,
> Dan Barrett, Dan Levinson, Tommy Saunders, etc., etc. -- and it's a real
> treat to hear them LIVE!
> Jeanne Brei
> Las Vegas, NV
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Stephen Barbone" <barbonestreet at earthlink.net>
> > I am not surprised that some members of the DJML do not like solos, much
> > less bass solos.  (remainder snipped)

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