Well, Bud and the Sextet can brag that they survived the North Atlantic Run on the QE2. It was some wild ride, in the teeth of a Force 9 gale, with pianos sliding across the stages, people falling down, plates and glasses flying around.
The band had to play sitting in chairs because no one could stand up, but with true class, they played every single concert, even when the audience was confined to their beds!
It was quite an experience. Spent four days in London recovering and celebrating Bud's 75th birthday with friends and exploring the fascinating Sherlock Holmes Museum.
Then it was back to PT to write, write, write music for the upcoming CD recording session by the Sextet in late July. Bud has written several new songs for the effort, including a tune called "Sausalito" with lyrics by Mrs. Bud.
The band was able to rehearse a lot of the material on the ship, so they are raring to go. They will also play this year on the Mainstage at the Port Townsend Jazz Festival, and most of them will serve as faculty along with others like Jiggs Whigham, Bobby Shew, George Cables, and Ron Eschete at the Bud Shank Jazz Workshop the last week of July. The Festival is shaping up well, with guest artists Cedar Walton, the Frank Wess Big Band, Jim Hall and Joe Lovano, singer Nancy King, and others.
The week prior to Bud's workshop will be spent in Honolulu, where Bud appears as guest soloist with the Big Band at the annual Hawaii Jazz Festival. Tough gig!
Then, as soon as the recording is finished, the Sextet goes to Portland to appear on the Mainstage at the might Mt. Hood Festival of Jazz.
After that? Probably collapse.