First posted on November 21, 2007
It’s the day before Thanksgiving in the States (duh) and even last night the traffic on the federal thruway that cuts across the area a number of blocks away could be heard from my window. Everybody is scampering to get someplace where tomorrow they will eat a turkey and then scamper back again. It’s a good holiday and in addition to the turkey roasting ritual I always play certain music. After the Macy’s Parade is over and the turkey is tucked away in the oven I listen to music for brass and organ by Bach, Britten’s St. Nicholas Oratorio, Menotti’s Amahl and the Night Visitors and a few other things. It used to be a day back in high school when I sighed with relief because it was the last football game that the Marching Band had to play in. That meant free Saturdays from then on, pretty much. My local high school football team was painfully bad. They tried hard but only would win one or two games a season. It was tough to sit through the games, but I was there to make music.
Funny, I read somewhere that Thanksgiving really didn’t get started big time until the era of the Civil War. Abraham Lincoln decreed we would all give thanks on that fourth Thursday of the month every year. Good for Abe. Before that there was Patriot’s Day, which was in early December. For that day people ate succotash, not necessarily turkey.
I’m listening to a Mel Bay cassette of compositions by Carlos Barbarosa-Lima, More Brazilian Music for Acoustic Guitar. It is nicely done, plenty of fingerwork, moments of bluesiness, and a distinctive Brazilian flavor. Some of my favorite guitar playing is Brazilian. I just love how they comp chords. This cassette by Carlos B-L must be out on CD by now. He is a complete guitarist and has wonderful articulation. I wish I could play like that. Happy Thanksgiving to all.