This extremely busy day started with a take-out breakfast from the corner restaurant a half-block down from Debra and Jonathan’s home and offices on 11th Street. Then we dressed hastily and flew off in two taxis uptown to the National Jazz Museum in Harlem where Loren Schoenberg was waiting. Loren is the director (and the author of “The NPR Curious Listener’s Guide to Jazz”) and Jonathan is one of the museum’s curators. They had arranged a midday panel discussion on Missouri’s influence on music, jazz included. We were joined by the two of them, along with Terry Waldo, a veteran Ragtime pianist and longtime student of Eubie Blake. After a couple hours of conversation, we adjourned to a spot closer to the piano and started trading tunes. Terry showed us some hot ragtime tunes, and we tossed back some hillbilly. Things really livened up when we broke into a swift rendition of “City Kicks” and Loren leapt up, dove behind the couch and whipped out a tenor sax just in time for the break. Great music. Great conversation. Great fun.
Then it was back down Broadway to get our concert duds and instruments, and we were off to the Highline Ballroom for the nightly gig. But that’s another story. Stay tuned.