Sunday, June 10, 2012

Jamming in the Heights

There are bad days and there are good days, stupendous days and plain old shitty days and sometimes there are bad days that stay around forever or it can seem like that anyway. Yesterday was a big day for me, one that made me feel better than I've felt for a long time, months actually, better, healthier and happier.

Today is about shout outs for me, shouting out to all those people around me who enrich my life by being part of it.

Yesterday was the Annual Ring Garden Art Show, Art In The Garden 2012, and as usual, I was listed on the menu. I use the word 'usual' because back in 2006, when I first proposed to Liz Popiel who organized the event that I read poetry at her upcoming event, Liz politely said, "Well, I kind'a made up my mind after the last poet who performed, not to include poets."

"What happened then?" I asked.
"He caused me no end of grief about the noise, about the crowd not paying attention, and about our sound system, which I provide."
"That's it?" I said. "I promise not to do any of that and just be happy to be there and be part of it."
We shook hands on it then and I asked if I could include a few of my neighborhood poetry buddies who felt the same way as me. When poetry and music began back then as part of the  annual garden art show, there was me, Demetrius Daniels, Fred Arcoleo, and Robin Glasser either reading her adult Dr. Seuss poems or reading her geisha stories.

Over the years we've continued to add many more talented performers including Carlo Baldi, Dubblex, Ruben Gonzales, Peggy Ann Tartt, Greta Herron, Carla Lynne Hall, and Amy Soucy who usually performs back up for Fred and who occasionally graces us with one of her own numbers. This year Ruben didn't show and neither did Amy, but the rest of us came and performed our little or big tushies off. This year another newbie came, Roger E Ranski, and Ranski worked it out.

Demetrius took a minute to back me and I was like, damn what's up here but later he said he guessed he became like Dubblex, afraid to intrude. I'm like, "Please don't wait for invitations in the future!" I really swooned the last number, Stormy Weather and our small but enthusiastic audience threw in, swooning right along with me. Thanks to Demetrius for his tromboetry, Dubblex for his soulful melodica and Roger E Ranski for his improv guitar.

A shout out to Donna Deming, our illustrious and charming host who replaces our beloved Liz Popiel, who nurtured this event for many years. A shout out to all the participating artists who come every year.

A special shout out too to Carolyn Stanford for her tireless work in supporting and promoting art created by incarcerated non-violent offenders through her organization, "Inside Out Art".

I am looking forward to June 30th to Poetry & Music In The Garden. Please come and enjoy and BYOB!~

Hopefully this will help to banish those blue days that don't want to go away ~

This is the line up so far:

Joy Leftow
Carol Lynn Hall
Peggy Ann Tartt
Greta Herron
Demetrius Daniels
Roger E Ranski
Carlo Baldi
Arthur Sherry
Mario Coppola
Curtis Becraft of Curtis and The Dilettantes fame.

More info to follow ...