I was happy to join my accordion comrades under the direction of Melissa Elledge in this 45 minute new music performance that drew an audience of several dozen on a beautiful evening in Manhattan. This year is the 50th anniversary of the composition of the piece. Thanks to Greg Burrows for capturing the moment.
A good time was had by all who listened, sang along, clapped, or even danced a waltz or a tango or two (see second photo below).
And thanks to the producer of the event Ariana Hellerman for making it happen.
On May 24, 2014 at the anti-Monsanto Rally in Union Square, I provided disco music on the accordion for Elliot Crown and company’s exciting street theatre presentation in front of hundreds of activists. “Disco on the accordion” sounds a bit weird, but it actually worked and was a lot of fun. I will post a video as soon as it is available. Thanks to Kenny Vena for another great photo!
The Filthy Rotten System (FRS) was honored to play at St. Helen’s Church in Westfield, NJ for the annual dinner of First Friends of NJ & NY, a wonderful organization that supports and advocates for detained immigrants and their families. The Honoree Father Jack Martin has dedicated his life to the cause of immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers. Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Chris Hedges gave a moving presentation.
Father Jack (center in white shirt) and the FRS (Leader Bud Courtney, Jim Reagan, Jeff Schneider, and Paul Stein were present) closed out the evening with the 200 guests singing a heartfelt “We Shall Overcome”. Photos by Karen Long
About 20 or 25 children and I kept quite busy with musical chairs, the hokey pokey, and smashing the piñata (look up to see 1 of the 2 colorful piñatas) among other activities. Children and parents who were not playing a game enthusiastically accompanied the accordion on rhythm instruments. A good time was had by all. Thanks to Juan Carlos Ruiz for the photo.
Elena and I had a great time at the Jon Batiste – Stay Human band show at Webster Hall last night. He is an incredible jazz pianist and all-around musician and entertainer! I feel very lucky to have had three opportunities to join Jon (and some of his bandmates) and other musicians in melodica parades in Manhattan as part of the Make Music New York program. Thanks to Elena Schwolsky for the photo.