All tagged David Steffen
It’s a haven that exudes warmth and welcoming, and is exactly what you’d hope to find as you travel the roads, highways, and byways of northern California. Locals and visitors alike, everyone who rides their bike or ATV into The Zen House (or has it towed, shipped, or walks it in) appreciate the opportunity to take advantage of world-class service. And it’s delivered with a small town friendliness.
One of my most memorable moments happened while in The Netherlands for the North Sea Jazz Festival. Meeting for dinner at a restaurant in The Hague (my memory tells me it was called "Roberts".) More important than “where” was “who”. Seven of us spent the evening socializing, but more importantly I found myself sandwiched between producer Tommy Lipuma (on my left) and Jazz great McCoy Tyner on my right. The dinner was memorable, but I have no memory of the food. I spent my time listening to the stories Tyner told, including some during his time with Coltrane's "Classic Quartet.
According to the late Al Jarreau, “You have to make a decided effort to not get seduced by the Blues.” Accepting that, why not save a little wear and tear on your body and soul and just get into the blues. Arena Theater makes it easy. With the Blues On The Coast series, you’ll find some of the best players around, and June is no exception. This month Nick Schnebelen and his trio take center stage at Arena Theater Saturday, June 23.
Personal beliefs for some, we often see as biases for others; likes and dislikes all become apparent when we reflect on the things that are important to us. Over time we may adjust those beliefs, temper those biases, or embrace something we earlier eschewed. Consider our memories. Growing up, my great aunt Violet was as important to me as my parents. Easily 40-50 years my senior, Aunt Vi was a truly good human being whose affection and wisdom were never missing. I found myself thinking of her this week for a somewhat unexpected reason.
There’s something to be said for adrenaline. With good reason, it absolutely gets our attention although I can’t honestly say I remember the first time I felt that rush. It might have been when I was two years old, being wheeled into surgery to have my tonsils removed; I can still smell the ether but I have no memory of an adrenaline rush. Our “adrenaline memory” is very often associated with “the first time” of any number of things. Falling out of a tree. Riding a roller coaster, or water skiing, or a first commercial airline flight. The second, or third time you’ve been on Space Mountain, a thrill may still exist but it’s unlikely adrenaline will be coursing through your system. Whatever your first, latest, or worst memory of the trigger that sent adrenaline charging through your body, we can all relate.
With my long history in the music industry certain themes, ideas and, of course, songs jump out at me with some regularity. Perhaps it’s fair to borrow a phrase from a 1970s hit: “I’ve Got The Music In me”. In fact, we all do, we all have music in us, only to lesser or greater degrees. So when I have a chance to hear something or see something with strong musical character I can’t simply ignore it. And that “something” struck again this week as I connected with a film titled Hearts Beat Loud, one of the offerings at the 2018 Mendocino Film Festival.
Over coffee or tea some morning, a friend mentions that s/he has just come from a massage. If you’re like me, you suddenly remember that ache in your back, that knot in your shoulder, along with a twinge of jealously that it wasn’t you who just got the massage. It doesn’t take a French scholar to recognize the root language for certain words and “massage” is no exception. Happily, massage needs no translation. An experiential understanding is all that’s required.
Most people of a certain age can probably recall their discovery of the first local newspaper carrying their favorite comics. It almost doesn’t matter what those comics were, as there was something for everyone. I never read Prince Valiant. Too cheesy. I did read Blondie but felt it hit a little too close to home. Beetle Bailey. Fun. Peanuts? My ‘peeps’. Li’l Abner? Could have been one or two of my neighbors. Hi and Lois? Too vanilla. I’d follow some or all of these in glorious black and white during the week, and on Sunday, magically, we found that they had all erupted into living color. We were too young to understand that the comics had two reasons for existing. First they were entertaining. Second, they trained children (future subscribers) to get into the habit of reading the daily newspaper.
Many of us have taken a vacation camping in a redwood forest or along one of California’s great coastal parks; perhaps you’ve been to a riverfront, lakefront, or oceanfront hotel or inn. Maybe there was an island vacation you never forgot or dreamed of exploring. Sitting in a remote location under the influence of amazing scenery can lead us to think about the ultimate getaway, or at least my idea of the ultimate getaway: a desert island. A vacation for a week or two is one thing. The idea of a permanent island getaway isn’t for everyone but the imagery is alluring to many. I recall sitting at a bar overlooking the Caribbean in 1975 thinking I could live here. I had the same feeling a few years later in Hawaii. Great idea. Then reality smacked me along side the head and I got back to thinking about earning a living.