About Me

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Atlanta, GA, United States
When I suffered a lip injury that ended my career as a classical trombonist, I thought my life as a musician was finished, but I fell in love with music all over again when Santa gave me a guitar for Christmas in 2003. Even as I was struggling with my first chords, I was planning a new performance career. As a trombonist, I performed with the Heritage of America Band at Langley Air Force Base, the Ohio Light Opera, and in pick-up bands for touring acts that included Rosemary Clooney, George Burns, and the Manhattan Transfer. Reborn as a jazz guitarist, I sing and play my own solo arrangements of jazz classics, am half of the Godfrey and Guy duo, and hold the guitar chair in the Sentimental Journey Orchestra. I have been a freelance music copyist since 1995, served as Director of Music at Northwest Unitarian Universalist Congregation from 2011 to 2017, and currently serve as Contemporary Band Director at the same congregation.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas Lullaby

I enjoyed a special Christmas treat when my mom sang Peggy Lee's Christmas Lullaby with me in last night's Christmas Eve service at NWUUC

Let's backtrack.

When I was a kid, Mom was a professional musician, singing folk songs and strumming her guitar at public and private events. For public shows, Mom and Dad would take my brother (Darren), my sister (Cheree), and me along. Darren and I would often perform a handful of numbers with Mom. Dad would run the sound system. Cheree was too young to sing with us, but she would dance in Mom's guitar case and keep us all entertained. (Our parents took us to gigs to perform, but I imagine another reason they took us was so they wouldn't have to spring for a babysitter.)

Those performances were special times. Looking back, we weren't exactly playing in huge venues. We were on the mall circuit, and we would often play at local churches and small festivals, but that was big time for us kids. I felt like a star! I'm mainly a jazz musician, but I still have a deep love of folk music that can only stem from this treasured childhood experience.

Mom has been visiting for the past few days and has heard me practicing Christmas Lullaby over and over, so she learned the song by osmosis. We arrived at church early so I could make sure the sound system was set up. After a quick soundcheck, I ran through the Christmas Lullaby and heard Mom harmonizing. She sounded pretty, so I asked her if she wanted to sing it with during the service. Mom immediately agreed. We sang through it a couple more times and were good to go. She sounded great in the service. It was a real treat to sing with her.

Things have come full circle. The last time I performed with Mom, I was the short one, and she was the one holding the guitar. It was a special performance on a special night.

1 comment:

  1. That must have been an awesome experience and great present from your mom. Merry Christmas!