David “Dawg” Grisman and I have had a friendship and musical collaboration that began back in the “folk boom” years of the late 60’s. I had been a fan of David’s and we actually met “on the gig” at Gerde’s Folk City in Greenwich Village! Since then we have shared notes both written and played.
I was there at the beginnings of Dawg Music, writing, scoring, playing, and coaching. Since then we have worked together on various projects; among them, Mondo Mando, Dawg Jazz, Back to Back, King of the Gypsies, and Dawg ’90.
When David contacted me about working together again in notating his compositions in “The Book of the Dawg” I enthusiastically got to work.
The result (so far) is 3 volumes; “Dawg Roots”, “Dawg Grass”, and “Dawg Jazz”. These are the definitive notations of David’s compositions in both standard notation and tablature.
Each book also contains some wonderful “collector’s item” photos as well as stories and memories behind each tune. They are something you can be proud to have in your music library. I certainly am!
In 1995 Tony Rice and I released “River Suite for 2 Guitars” (Sugar Hill). Over the years the recording has garnered countless accolades and continues to be a best seller. Now David Grisman‘s web site, “Acoustic Oasis“ has released the one and only duo concert that Tony and I ever performed together. You can get it here and listen to a few samples also.
Here is a bit of “back end” info on the original recording of River Suite. Tony and I recorded the CD in his music den using a Tascam portable DAT machine and an Audio-technica AT822 stereo mic set up on a coffee table! Tony then brought in an analog tape machine that we used to transfer the DAT recording and to do some editing. We then brought the finished product to the great Bill Wolf who did the mastering. The entire project cost nothing but the time and work we put into it!
The tunes are ones that we developed over the years of jamming together during Tony’s tenure with the David Grisman Quintet. During that time, Tony and I developed a treasured personal friendship and professional association.
There will be more to come in this blog about those special times with the original DGQ. Stay tuned!
So…we’re walking up 7th Ave, Andy Statman and I…talking music, telling stories, laughing. Andy is always so upbeat, enthusiastic, and a ball to hang out with.
And funny? Man! One minute we’re cracking up, the next we’re deep into some scoring idea.
I glanced down at a stack of newspapers, still tied together at a news stand. Something catches my eye…
“Pianist Bill Evans d…”!
Oh no! Don’t tell us that!
Tears come to our eyes. We couldn’t speak.
I am fortunate to have seen Bill Evans live at least 6 times. Once when I was going to Berklee he did a Sunday afternoon solo set “in the round” at Boston’s legendary Jazz Workshop. David Grisman and I battled an epic NYC blizzard to get to a club where Bill’s trio played to maybe 6 people. When Bill Evans played you knew that you were in the presence of genius.
I am “blogging” about Bill Evans because just this week I was looking at a magazine rack, saw the Downbeat logo, and there he was on the cover…32 years later!! Incredible!
Thankfully…we have a lifetime of recordings…and Bill Evans continues to inspire on every one of them.