Saturday, October 29, 2011

Support Live Music in the California Desert

                          Live Music In The California Desert

We all love winter in the Desert. Not only because it has the best weather in the world but also because there is more live music per square mile than anywhere. In the past I have had many requests from readers asking where the best music is playing.  This season I am posting on a weekly basis where the players and singers are hanging out.  My hope is that this will get more people to connect with and support these performers.  If you will bookmark this post as a "favorite" on your computer, you will be able to check back to it whenever you want to see what's going on musically in the Desert.  I will try to update changes on the post every week.  I won't be out to the Desert until mid January, but I am starting the list now since there is already lots of great live music being played.  If any of my musician friends want to be listed, or if you know someone who is performing, just email me the information and I will add the gig to this post.

Frank DiSalvo
Beverly Jensen
Steve Madaio

Bill Saitta
Derrik Lewis & Jeff Stover
Pat Rizzo

Lee Hartley

Johnny Meza

Lola Rossi

Brian Nova

Larry Capeloto
John Leys                                               

The Ted Herman Big Band

The Jackson Garrett Jazz Band
Mikole E. Kaar

Dan Papaila

Yve Evens

Jeff Olsen

Barnaby Finch

Ruth Gibson

Ron Kalina

Ken Steele

Kelly Corbin

Ron Koklj

Mike Costley

Bobbie Flelecter
Carolyn Martinez

Carol Hampton

Leo Vigil

                                                      Entertainment Detail

Frank DiSalvo: Sings at the Indian Wells Resort on Thur, Fri, and Sat starting 5:30 to 9:30.

Beverly Jensen: Will be singing with the Ted Herman Orchestra at the Indio Performing Arts Center.

Steve Madaio: Performs on Sunday afternoons at Blue Embers at the Las Palmas Resort in Rancho Mirage.

Bill Saitta: Performs live Jazz at Woody's in Palm Springs on Thursday evenings at 7 pm. 317 N. Indian Canyon in Palm Springs.  Reservations: 760-230-0188. Also performing at Backstreet Bistro almost every Tuesday.

Derrik Lewis & Jeff Stover: Performs in the lounge at The Tropicale & Coral Seas Lounge in Palm Springs on Tuesday and Thursday from 5:30pm to 9:30pm. The Derrik Lewis Trio also performs with Michael Holmes Fridays at Azul in Palm Springs.

Pat Rizzo: Performs at Vicky's In Indian Wells on Monday & Tuesday.

Johnny Meza:  Performs at Arnold Palmer's Restaurant in La Quinta every Wednesday and Thursday (6:30 to 10:30).

Lee Hartley: Performs at the "Ted Herman Big Band Ballroom Sunday Dance" at the Indio Performing Arts Center on Sundays from 7 to 9 p.m..

Lola Rossi: Singing every Thursday night with Reggie Vision at the Escena Lounge & Grill 6 to 10 p.m.

Brian Nova: Performs at Cafe' des Beaux Arts in Palm Desert every Wednesday from 6:00pm to 9:00pm.

Yve Evans & Co: To Be Continued As New Info Comes In.

Linda Peterson: Appearing at Backstreet Bistro in Palm Desert every Saturday on the Patio 12:30 to 3:30 p.m.  Also appears at Cafe' des Beaux on Friday evenings.

Larry Capeloto: Performs  at the "Ted Herman Big Band Ballroom Sunday Dance" at the Indio Performing Arts Center on Sundays 7 to 9 p.m.

Rich Bono & Poupee: Appearing at the Indian Wells Resort Hotel in Indian Wells every Wednesday 6 to 9 p.m. with many special guests.

The Jackson Garrett Band: 

John Leys:  Playing great Trombone with The Ted Herman Big Band and Pat Rizzo's big band.

The Debonaires: New big band playing at the Joslyn Senior Center once every month. More details to follow.

The Ted Herman Big Band: Performing every Sunday at the Indio Performing Arts Center on Sundays from 7 to 9 p.m.

Mirage Band:

Mikole E. Kaar: Tues night PRO JAZZ JAM at The PS Tavern from 7:30 to 11:30p.m. 3700 Vista Chino at Gene Autry.  Friday & Saturday at La Brasserie from 6 ti 10 p.m. Corner of 111 and Washington in La Quinta.

The Desert Cities Jazz Band: Performing every Sunday 2-5PM at Vicky's of Santa Fee in Indian Wells.

Dan Papaila: 

Rod Kokolj:

Mike Costly and Friends : Thursdays at Three Sixty North in Palm Springs at 7:30.



Sunday, October 16, 2011

The Top 20 Greatest American Standards: 2011 Edition

It is that time of year when we post a new list of the Top 20 Greatest American Standards.  This year I have decided to remove the requirement that a song be at least 50 years old because I feel it is too restrictive and keeps some exceptionally great songs off the list. The class of 2011 has 4 new songs that have made the Top 20 cut.

    1. "How Do You Keep The Music Playing": 1982 music by Michel Legrand and Lyrics by Alan & Marilyn Berman for the movie "Best Friends".
    2. "Something": 1969 music and words by Beatle George Harrison
    3. "The Shadow Of Your Smile": 1965 Music by Johnny Mandel and Lyrics by Paul Francis Webster for the film, "The Sandpiper". This song won a Grammy for Song of the Year and also an Academy Award for Best Original Song.
    4. "Send In The Clowns": 1973 Music & Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim for his 1973 musical, "A Little Night Music".

1.   You've Changed
2.   What's New?
3.   The Nearness of You
4.   My Funny Valentine
5.   Embraceable You
6.   The Very Thought of You
7.   Here's That Rainy Day
8.   I've Got You Under My Skin
9.   Over The Rainbow
10. Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered
11. In The Still Of The Night
12. Night And Day
13. Someone To Watch Over Me
14. How Do You Keep The Music Playing?
15. Something
16. The Way You Look Tonight
17. They Can't Take That Away From Me
18. Send In The Clowns
19. The Shadow Of Your Smile
20. These Foolish Things

These are my personal favorites and how I rank them.  I am sure you have your own favorites. I would love to get some comments from you!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Eleven Ways Music Therapy Helps Clients Address Mental, Physical or Emotional Health Issues

I recently read a blog article "11 Interesting Facts About Music Therapy" sent to me by It's about the positive effectives of music therapy. I thought that my readers would find the article interesting.  If you like the article, you might want to take a look at some of their other postings.   (
                       "11 Interesting Facts About Music Therapy"
Music therapy is a form of expressive therapy that uses music to help clients address their various mental, physical or emotional health issues. Trained music therapists have clients listen to music in order to relax their mind and body, reduce stress and manage their pain or anxiety. This positive response to music can help clients achieve their goals, whether it's beating cancer or overcoming a learning disability. See why so many people have tuned into music therapy with these 11 interesting facts:
  1. 1.Music therapy works by stimulating different parts of the brain that are responsible for physical and mental functions

    Music therapy works by stimulating parts of the brain that are needed for various mental and physical functions. Different musical styles, beats and rhythms can elicit different feelings or emotions. Music also has the power to distract the mind and help it focus at the same time. Through music therapy treatment, clients can achieve relaxation, stress reduction and pain management, which makes them more receptive to their therapeutic goals.
  2. 2.People of all ages can benefit from music therapy

    Music therapy is beneficial for people of all ages and mental health, developmental, behavioral or learning needs. Music therapy can be done on children, adolescents, adults and the elderly. There is no age restriction or musical talent required to reap the benefits of music therapy.
  3. 3.Music therapy originated in Veterans hospitals after World War I and II

    The concept of using music as a form of healing dates back to the days of Aristotle and Plato, but the kind of music therapy that we know today started after World War I and II, when local musicians played for physically and emotionally traumatized veterans at the Veterans hospitals. When doctors and nurses saw the positive responses patients had, they requested that musicians be hired to play in hospitals. The growing need for properly trained musicians led to the creation of the music therapy college curriculum.
  4. 4.Clients don't need musical talent to benefit from music therapy

    Clients receiving music therapy treatments don't have to be pianists, singers or play in a band to benefit from music therapy. Music therapy can have healing effects on all people, regardless of their music taste, skill or understanding of music. Regardless of a person's musical ability (or lack thereof), they can still achieve the therapeutic benefits of music therapy.
  5. 5.Music therapy uses a variety of music styles

    Music therapists use several different types of music during treatment. There is no one style of music that is more beneficial or effective than the rest. The type of music used in a music therapy session depends on the individual's needs, preferences and circumstances. Although, research shows that patients will respond best to the music they prefer.
  6. 6.Healthy individuals can also benefit from music therapy

    The healing power of music therapy is not limited to people with mental health problems or learning disabilities. Everyone needs to achieve specific goals in life, and music therapy has been shown to help people focus on these needs. The average healthy individual can benefit from using music therapy as a form of stress reduction and relaxation, as well as a motivation for exercise or creativity.
  7. 7.Music therapy can be used to assist with labor and delivery

    Music therapy has its place in just about any environment – even in labor and delivery! Music therapy can be used to help expecting mothers relax, practice breathe properly and work through their contractions before giving birth. Everything from ocean wave sounds to jazz music have been shown to help mothers relieve stress and get comfortable in their delivery environment.
  8. 8.Autistic individuals respond positively to music therapy

    Music therapy has been shown to have a positive effect on individuals with autism. Studies have indicated that autistic individuals display a heightened interest and response to the sound of music, and this form of therapy can help address the social and communication characteristics of autism.
  9. 9.Music therapy can help comfort cancer patients

    Although music therapy is not a cure for cancer, it can have a positive effect on cancer patients as they undergo treatment. When combined with conventional treatment, music therapy can help patients reduce and mange pain and relieve chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting. Music therapy can also aid in reducing stress, relaxing patients and improving their overall attitude and sense of well-being.
  10. 10.Music therapy can assist in the rehabilitation of drug and alcohol addicts

    Music therapy can be very beneficial in drug and alcohol rehabilitation. Not only does music therapy promote relaxation, stress reduction and anxiety management, but it also helps drug addicts and alcoholics take their mind off of withdrawal symptoms and focus their attention on recovery.
  11. 11.Musicians can benefit from music therapy

    Believe it or not, music therapy can also help musicians hone their craft and improve their musical ability. Music therapy can help singers work through vocal problems, improve respiratory function and volume, as well as release endorphins and improve mood. It also has the power to help musicians and instrumentalists with muscle tension and pain management, while relaxing their mind and body.

Monday, October 3, 2011

CD Review: Tony Bennett Duets II

Tony Bennett has just released his new CD, "Tony Bennett Duets II", as a follow-up to his highly successful first Duets CD. Ever since Sinatra released his first and second "Duets" format several years ago, more and more artists are turning to this duets format. From my perspective, I really love these CD's because they all seem to be covering tunes out of the "Great American Songbook".  The two Sinatra Duet  CD's are still two of my favorite CD's. I think this format works because it uses some of the greatest songs ever written sung by a combination of a great seasoned singer with other great singers who in most cases have not recorded songs out of the "Great American Songbook". The last part of the Duet format might just be the most important, it needs to be produced by Phil Ramone.  I don't remember ever hearing a CD that Phil Ramone produced that I didn't love! And I am not alone  respecting the talents of Mr. Ramone who has received 36 Grammy Nominations and 14 Grammy Awards. Bennett's Duets II follows his formula and the results are outstanding.  I love almost all of these Duet CD's because I get to hear new recordings of the songs I love and because, I get to listen to artists that don't usually record this the standards. For the most part, I always seem to be caught off guard by these artists whose taste in music is materially different than my musical tastes and how great they sound singing standards. I find it difficult to listen to some of today's newer music of  and evaluate the quality of the performers' voices and talents.   But when I hear them sing a great standard, I find it easy to evaluate their future musical potential.  In the Bennett CD I heard some singers that I knew, but were not favorites of mine, sing standards that knocked me off my chair.  For example, on Track One Lady Gaga singing "The Lady Is A Tramp". I find it hard to focus on Lady Gaga's voice with all the distractions going on when she performs.  But singing this standard, she is nothing short of outstanding. I know she sells millions of CD's but none of them turn me on compared to hearing her singing one of the great old songs.  Another example on Track Three Amy Winehouse singing the great old chestnut, "Body And Soul". Singing doesn't get any better than this! What a shame we lost her so young! And on Track 5, k.d. lang singing Blue Velvet. I have listened to many of Ms. Lang's CD's and to me they are all just ok.  But everything she has done singing standards with Tony Bennett are exceptional in every way, and her voice reminds me of Jo Stafford. In my opinion, everyone of the 17 tracks on this CD are keepers.   This is a CD worth buying because you will be playing it over and over again for a long time.  All the songs selected by Tony Bennett are just great, and take a look at the lineup of great singers that join him:

Andrea Bocelli
Michael Buble'
Mariah Carey
Natalie Cole
Sheryl Crow
Aretha Franklin
Josh Groban
Faith Hill
Norah Jones
Lady Gaga
k.d. lang
John Mayer
Willie Nelson
Queen Latifah
Alejandro Sanz
Carrie Underwood
Amy Winehouse


CD Review: Clairdee Releases Her Forth CD, "A Love Letter to Lina"

San Francisco based Vocalist Clairdee has admired and been a fan of Lena Horne since she was four years old.  Clairdee was not just in...