Bad Moon Rising

Jazz musicians are a mischievous bunch. I doubt that’s a surprise to any of you, as the history books are filled with stories of pranks and lampoons. (Who could forget the time Joe Venuti called up all the tuba players in Hollywood for a fake gig, to have them all turn up on the same street corner at the same time, to find nothing but a crowd of confused tuba players?) I like to think of myself as moderately clever (I mean, who doesn’t?) but one time a practical joke backfired on me (Joe Venuti I ain’t). Why am I telling you this story? Perhaps as a form of contrition, or perhaps because the child in me still thinks it’s funny. You be the judge… Winding back the clock a few decades to my early 20s, still in Australia and carving out a living in the Sydney music scene; I was working for a major Broadway production in a beautiful theater. The number of musicians, cast, and crew must have reached 100. We all got along very well…when you see the same people day in and out, you begin to feel a little like family (for better or worse.) Anyway, after a breaking in period, we all settled into our routines. Before and after the show, everyone gravitated to the green room backstage. Buried in the bowels of the old theater, it was the center of our social world. And with a show spanning nearly a year, it’s safe to say a lot of birthdays were celebrated during that time. So it wa
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Reedman extraordinaire Adrian Cunningham is the leader of Professor Cunningham and his Old School Jazz Band, based in New York City. Adrian Cunningham was voted in a 2017 Hot House Jazz Magazine readers’ poll the Best Alto Sax Player in New York. His most recent album is Duologue, issued on the Arbors Jazz label. Visit him on the world wide web:

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