It was fun talking with Cyrus Chestnut and Diane Schuur in anticipation of their performances at the Lewiston Jazz Festival this weekend. Cyrus Chestnut headlines the lineup tonight (Friday), and Schuur is the headliner on Saturday.
Up above is the clip of Cyrus Chestnut riffing on Edvard Grieg's "The Hall of the Mountain King." I get such a kick out of that. What he does is so simple, so casual, but so good. In the story I mentioned it reminds me of Thelonious Monk, a jazz pianist I love.
Here is an unusual video I love. It is of Chestnut paying tribute to Steve Jobs.
Watching this video I did not know where to begin to ask questions. I asked Cyrus Chestnut on the phone about it. He said it was at a TV studio in Ukraine. They just learned Steve Jobs had died and they asked him to say a few words about him. They put it something like, "You're American, can't you say something about Steve Jobs?" So you have Cyrus Chestnut getting up there with that deer-in-the-headlights look. You can tell he is relieved when he sits down at the piano.
These funny situations life hands you, you know?
Let's find a good performance by Diane Schuur.
Ah! Here she is at the Kennedy Center. It was the night she kissed Colin Powell! She talks about that in Gusto. See, other papers can be boring and ask jazz musicians about, I don't know, the chord progressions to "Giant Steps." But we here at The Buffalo News, we ask them about famous people they have kissed.
We really need a clip of Schuur at the piano.
How about this?
Hahahaa! Hit it, Deedles!
This should be quite the weekend.
-- Mary Kunz Goldman