jun 6

Up at 6. Read a bit of AEC in bed. Went to coffee, wrote 2 poems (one a collage of phrases from The Trial and a coffee-table book on shabby chic decor, both sitting on the cafe shelves), read Natalie Stephens section in Canadian anthology. Not taken w/ the work. Came back and read a bit of AEC book. Found someone online to take my extra ticket for tonight. Listened to Sparrow Spectacular. Left around noon, worked on intro revision 1-5, sent some Frankenstein version of the ch. to Holbo. David Nagler texted proposing we try to get a show together at the Owl, which would be great. Straight from there to Joe’s Pub, had enough time to call my dad. Saw the Mighty Sparrow — he’s around 80, used a cane to get on stage, and performs sitting down, but he was totally commanding, singing strongly and playfully (occasionally throwing in a Louis Armstrong imitation) interacting w/ band and audience. Band itself, w/ 3-pc. horn section, was mostly white session guys, except for the excellent pianist, led by Lane Steinberg on unobtrusive electric guitar, w/ several players I know: Tom Shad on bass, Dave Foster on acoustic, Jeff Hudgins on alto. I’ve probably met the drummer but couldn’t see him. I didn’t know much of the material (Sparrow has written 700 songs) and would like to learn, but the songs were more variegated, esp. harmonically, than what one might naively expect of calypso as a genre. Highlights: “Who Killed the Sparrow?” (Basically a decades-old diss track against Lord Kichener and Lord Melody, both dead), and the cannibalistically signifying “Congo Man.” Great show. Got back around 10, made myself do a couple measures of the horn chart, lights out not long after 11. Also made it through 2 chapters of the Canadian anthology - Gail Scott and Margaret Christikos.