A Busy Day at the Blue Wisp

It’ll be a busy day today at the Blue Wisp, with Carmon DeLeone’s New Studio Big Band performing at 3 pm and Andrea Cefalo at 7:30. I’m a fan of both, and I interviewed both. Recently I embarked upon an article focusing on a musician named David Matthews, who lived in Cincinnati for about ten years, starting in 1960. He was roommates with Carmon DeLeone during college and gigged with him, and they led an ensemble that toured Europe in the summers. While writing the article I ended up contacting Carmon DeLeone, who was tremendously helpful, and when I found out he was going to be going to the Wisp I decided to email him some questions in case he had time to answer them. His answers were very thoughtful, and I ended up submitting the interview to the Cincinnati Enquirer. Here’s a link to it:

http://news.cincinnati.com/article/20120729/ENT03/307290019/DeLeone-keeps-beat-alive?odyssey=mod|newswell|text|FRONTPAGE|s Continue reading “A Busy Day at the Blue Wisp”

Maria de Buenos Aires Comes to Over the Rhine

(A quick reminder before I launch into this blog entry: Carmon DeLeone will be playing at the Blue Wisp at 3 pm tomorrow, July 29,  and Andrea Cefalo will begin her first set at 7:30 pm. )

At the last minute yesterday I ended up with a ticket to Maria de Buenas Aires, a tango opera by Argentinian composer Astor Piazolla. I had pretty much written that one off; the two performances were in the Music Hall ballroom, with only 400 seats per show, and by the time I caught wind of the event tickets had long been sold out. Continue reading “Maria de Buenos Aires Comes to Over the Rhine”

Interview with Andrea Cefalo; She’s at the Blue Wisp Sunday Evening


Recently I wrote, for a magazine, a lengthy feature article on female jazz vocalists from around the world, not so much the famous ones but good ones, many of them up and coming. Writing the article entailed, in part, contacting record companies in America and abroad and encouraging them to send me all the CDs they had by jazz singers. I ended up with piles of them. There were plenty of rejects, but the ones I liked best I ended up recommending.

It strikes me that it would make sense to do something similar in Cincinnati—and if I do it, my A-list will include Andrea Cefalo, who I’ve seen several times at different venues around town. It’s been a while, though, and it was nice to catch up during a phone conversation today. Andrea will be performing at the Blue Wisp this Sunday, July 29, from 7:30 pm to 11:30 pm, as part of a quartet that includes Brian Cashwell on piano, Don Aren (who you may know from the Faux Frenchmen), and Napoleon Maddox (from IsWhat?!) on beatbox and vocals.

I’ve seen you a bunch of times, but I think at least a couple years have passed since the last time I saw you perform. So fill me in: have you been playing out as much, or have I been staying in more?

I have been gigging as much as I used to. I played a lot at the Meritage Restaurant in Glendale. And recently I had a couple dates at the Blue Wisp; the Wisp really is special for me. Continue reading “Interview with Andrea Cefalo; She’s at the Blue Wisp Sunday Evening”

uKanDanZ was great; More Music to Come

I’m about to discuss the concert that I saw last night and the music coming up later this week, but first I wanted to share with the world some very important new about cuisine here in the city of Cincinnati: Shanghai Mama’s, my favorite restaurant in the city for the food and the atmosphere, is back in action. After a fire at the end of last year Shanghai Mama’s predicted that they would reopen months ago, but the opening kept getting delayed. And although they’ve been open several weeks now I be there are still lotsa folks out there who haven’t heard yet that they’re back in operation. (And a reminder: on Fridays and Saturdays they’re open until three AM.)

Continue reading “uKanDanZ was great; More Music to Come”

Lisa Biales Interview; She’s Playing Seasongood Pavilion This Friday

This Friday, June 27, at Seasongood Pavilion in Eden Park, a free concert will take place as part of the Edensong series. The artists performing that night will be Lisa Biales, Neil Jacobs, Noah Wotherspoon & Jessi Bair, The Tillers and Ricky Nye. The show starts at 8 pm and ends at 10 pm—and make sure you get there in time, because Lisa Biales will be opening the show with a solo performance. Lisa recently released her seventh CD, Just Like Honey, and recently I had a chance to chat with her about her new CD, touring, and her recent appearance in a Francis Ford Coppola film.

I’m making sure to tell everyone to show up on time for the concert, because you’re kicking it off.

I’m kicking it off, and I’m asking Ricky Nye, who’s closing the show, to sit in with me. Continue reading “Lisa Biales Interview; She’s Playing Seasongood Pavilion This Friday”

Music at The Incline, The Avenue, and MOTR Pub

Last Saturday the urge hit me to revisit The Incline Lounge at the Celestial in Mt Adams, and I’m glad I did. You would be hard pressed to find a place in town more suitable for a cocktail, and true to form cocktail glasses were in abundance that evening. The Lou Lausche Trio (consisting of piano, bass, drums) was playing, and when we walked in they were performing a song I’m not sure I’ve ever heard in Cincinnati, or for that matter anywhere: “Nardis,” an early Miles Davis composition that Miles never actually recorded and which came to be associated much more with Bill Evans, who revisited the composition many times during his career. The trio also delivered a nice rendition of “Doxy,” which is a great sleazy, bluesy, boozy, seldom-played Sonny Rollins song that Jimmy McGary used to like to play and that I mentioned to Lou the day before the show. What a nice and thoughtful surprise it was to hear it, and the trio sounded great, and the Celestial has managed to retain the charm that’s been there since it opened many moons ago. Although I don’t remember her name, the vocalist who joined the trio for the second half of the first set was very tasteful, and hearing the music plus seeing the fireworks after the Reds hit a homer and won the game made for a great experience at the Incline Lounge.

(And lest I forget, the Manhattan they served me was stellar.) Continue reading “Music at The Incline, The Avenue, and MOTR Pub”

Looking for an Apartment? Talk to These Folks

Often when you rent an apartment the landlord is a remote figure, appearing long enough to hand you a set of keys before wandering back to a far-off neighborhood or even another city; someone was telling me the other day that her landlord lives in Florida. With Gaslight Property the renting experience is much more personal, with a brick and mortar office in the heart of the Gaslight District that tenants and prospective tenants can feel free to visit.

The location of the office is also convenient—311 Howell Avenue, in the heart of the Gaslight District, one of the best neighborhoods in Cincinnati and an area where Gaslight Property has a wide choice of apartments available. (They also have apartments all over greater Cincinnati, as our website makes clear.) Deciding where you’re going to rent is an important decision, and many people feel more comfortable meeting face to face in an actual office when they commit to a new apartment.

Gaslight Property is a family-owned business that’s been part of Clifton for decades. Their motto is “classic living, classic places,” and they’d love to show you what that means. Recently I was lucky enough to gather together everyone and snap a photo in front of the office. Although each person in that picture performs a different role, in one way or another every one of them is there to make sure that the experience of renting goes as smoothly as possible. Call 513.861.6000 today to make an appointment to discuss your next apartment.

Northside Farmers Market Wednesdays from 4 to 7

We turn this week to the theme of food, including some long-awaited news of our much-missed grocery store. Right now, though, a reminder of a great opportunity to buy fresh produce at a convenient location. Located in Hoffner Park in Northside, Northside Farmers Market is a weekly event that, along with food, offers latin music this week, plus this month there will be a photography contest that will mean a gift certificate for the winner. Here’s the details:

Introducing the first annual NFM Photograph Contest: Here is your chance to become a known photographer! We are looking for a few great photos all through the month of July… bring your camera to the market, take photos, choose the best three, email them to northsidefarmersmarket@gmail.com and you could win a $20 Northside Farmers Market gift certificate. Awards will be announced August 1st and you need not be present to win. Winning photographs will be highlighted in a major email blast and on the northside farmers market facebook page.

Favorite Bogart’s Concert: Ramones, 1978

Returning once again to the theme of favorite concerts, we have here a piece penned by David Hintz, who used to live in the area (Dayton and Oxford) who is now writing a blog in the DC area, DC Rock Live. Here Dave writes about seeing the Ramones at Bogart’s in 1978, when Bogart’s and punk were both new:

I had just turned 19 and was starting my sophomore year at Miami University. It was legal to drink in those days, thanks to development of 3.2 (% alcohol) beer. Ergo, nightclubs were calling. But there was another more important calling that I had discovered one year earlier: punk rock. Most music fans understand the importance of the punk movement, but it is hard to believe how dangerous and daring it was back at its outset. From the streets of London to CBGBs, punk band members and fans were stabbed, beaten up and constantly hassled for looking different from both the norm and the ‘normal outcast’. Continue reading “Favorite Bogart’s Concert: Ramones, 1978”