Yes, it’ll be the first public performance of Two Eagles ~1000 hours later…or is it ten thousand hours later…Bill has meticulously finished the band arrangement of ‘Two Eagles.’ Can’t wait to hear it played by Bill’s stellar band The Bill Runge Quintet. Miles Black on piano, Bernie Arai on drums, André Lachance on bass and Nick Apivor on the magical vibes. It was a full circle type of experience with this tune. It began on a cold clear February day when I spied two magnificent eagles in the large evergreen just off my building. They were there for hours…just hanging out. I went to the piano and found a figure I liked, and a couple of potential places to go and Two Eagles was born (I kept running back and forth from the piano to the window to the window to see if they were still there.) Last week, Bill was completing the full band arrangement and looked out his window to see two glorious eagles soaring around his building. “We’re not changing the name!” said Bill.
Can’t help but get a little excited about stepping out onto the new terrain of a new year. The forever hope of things being better. Things will be better, it always feels that way, even this year. So here we are sending some good vibes your way )))))
We used to do that tune, “What a Difference a Day Made” as a nice bright samba cookin’ along at about 120 bpm. I also sang it in the present tense, using “makes” rather than “made” it seemed more vivid that way somehow. Shirley Granger was the first performer I worked with who did the tune that way and it just stuck. Shirley’s band performed all over Vancouver in the 70’s along with Clive Guard and Gary O’Bray. We played places like the International Plaza, the Cave, and all over Gastown. Shirley had a larger than life pirate-like steel-hulled sailboat with her husband Alex called the Black Eyes, famous for its wild parties. Many a fond memory of Shirley, our gigs together and all the fun in between.
Hurtling from the disco era into the present, Bill and I have been busy creating our latest labour of love. It’s a collection of Twenty Interesting Pieces for the Contemporary Pianist with lots of beauty and character and treasures for the ear. For example, we had just finished one of our new pieces and suddenly found ourselves singing and dancing ‘What a difference a note makes – twenty four little half tones…’all over the living room. Stay tuned for more on these tunes!
Spring starts making her entrance long before the calendar says it’s official and proper to be Spring, eh? It’s undeniable, unstoppable, and the most welcome thing in the world. A signal that maybe the cosmos does care about us, after all. Climate change notwithstanding, is it wrong to enjoy some early warmth in February and March?