Sunday, July 18, 2010

Perugia and the Denouement

What can I say about the band's performances at the Umbria Jazz Festival? Two amazing sets at the Piazza IV Novembre. By the end of the second night's gig, we are reduced to tears of joy for how they have played, what they have accomplished, how much they have grown, and the sad and beautiful poignancy of this all ending.

First day, we are late leaving Hotel Il Grifone, but bus driver extraordinaire Marco Pranger maneuvers the massive tour bus right to the stage. Set-up, sound check, and they are off.

Basie tunes get the people in the square moving. Ballads are sweet. Dusk turns into night. Feetbone gets the people in the square shuffling. The last tune played on the 2nd Night is Brown Knows Rose. After the encore, the musicians sign autographs and pose for pictures.

We accomplish what we set out to do, and swing all the way.
Pictures here.

Denouement in Rome:

Nolan read from notes, thanking all, talking about jazz family, thanking Brown for all, for putting up with poor choices. This young man has grown up, as have we all. Not a dry eye in the house.

Following was Max, impromptu, once again thanking Brown, but also admitting that he couldn't imagine high school without jazz band, recognizing he would have been lost without that experience.

Colin and Anna lauded the musicians, the parents and Brown. Noted that they see a lot of bands, but Roosevelt is the best, easy to travel with.

Brown gave an emotional and inspiring talk, Teddy Roosevelt's "Daring Greatly." Thanked musicians for overcoming difficulty and peaking at Umbria. Remember the values of the band, excellence; support forthwith group., OK to work hard, to demand high standards of self and others, and to swing! He hugged every band member, told them to thank their parents, tell them about the trip, and to realize that their parents wanted them to have an experience they would remember the rest of their lives.

What a ride.

What's next?

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