Flying Home for Funerals
Here’s what no one told us when we moved to a far-away land clutching a bag full of youthful dreams for our future: One day, members of our original tribe—our oldest friends and family members—would begin to die, and we would be brought to our aging, creaking knees by the guilt we feel for living so far away and the distance we must travel to get back home.
King of Kings
Lovely to see so many members of the press corps here today. I know how busy you are covering Omicron, Ghislaine, and Harry and Meghan’s Christmas plans. Allow me to introduce myself: I am the great Plinka Kochovitch, award-winning director of such spectacles as Fauci: The Musical and the current Metropolitan production of the woodland animal opera Thistles and Whistles. As director of this year’s Nativity Scene on the White House Lawn I’ve faced my greatest casting challenge to date.
this hopeful breath may be our last,aghast, inhale the asphalt sky,we breathe the ashes of our past. we seek for now an outstretched fist,persist, resist, we reason why,this hopeful breath may be our last. as concrete burns through thickened skin,the din of silence will not lie,we breathe the ashes of our past. to suffer now and curse the […]
Married to the Bass
Okay, Ladies, listen up. Bass players make great husbands. There is no scientific data to support my claim. But having worked my way through the rhythm section, the technicians, and a handful of brass, reed, and string players, I’m a qualified judge.
Bottoms Up: Three Conversations about Aging
I’ve been thinking a lot about aging and the music business, mainly because I’m aging and I’m in the music business. A few weeks ago, I had three age-related conversations on the same day. Meet Bob, Fred, and Jörg Achim, three of my musical heroes.
The older I get, the more I respect the tenacity required to balance prominence with virtuosity. George Benson is clearly an artist dedicated to the craft of making music, but he’s also a stalwart celebrity, keen on maintaining his judiciously-groomed notoriety. George has been walking the celebrity tightrope for decades and, aside from the current gorge irritée, has remained ready, steady, and in the game. I can’t wait to meet him. I truly admire musicians—famous or not—with careers that span decades. As my dad likes to point out: “It’s easy to have a hit; it’s much more difficult to have a career.” Not that there’s anything wrong with a hit.
I love Paris. But just once I would like to visit when it is not hot enough to fry an ouef on the sidewalk. After our 2017 fun-filled adventure with Robin Spielberg and Larry Kosson—also known as the sweat your ass offtour de prance—during which time we bravely climbed Montmartre and cheerfully joined drenched throngs of tourists dragging themselves through the scorched gardens of Versailles—I swore I would never again enter a land-locked European metropolis between the months of June and September. All the Aperol Spritz cocktails in the world could not convince me otherwise. Figures that music would lure me back into the bronzed arms of the city that doesn’t sweat, it glistens. And maybe smells a little. Camembert, you might guess, doesn’t hold up well in the heat. Neither do I.
A Thousand Words
Scrapbook: A lifetime of photos and memorabilia pasted into an album that will one day jostle for position on a crowded bookshelf, attract some attention at tense family reunions, collect dust, and—a generation or two down the line—land in a dumpster. Scrapbook to scrapheap. Not very hopeful. Still, we persist with making paper shrines to memories of lost childhoods. Show me a woman who doesn’t collect the flotsam and jetsam of her children’s lives and I’ll show you a woman with ice cubes (and possibly gin) in her veins.
Olives, Almonds, and Sauvignon Blanc: The Musician’s Guide to Losing (and Finding) Those Last Five Pounds
Considering I’ve spent most of my adult life playing the piano in a cocktail lounge, it’s amazing I’m not (yet) an obese alcoholic with salt stains on my fingers and a pickled liver. I have stared down more bowls of smoked almonds and wasabi nuts than most people do in a lifetime. If I had […]