Tuesday, July 22, 2008

July 19th: "That"'s it, the final concert

Today marks the final day of an era. It started out as an typical Italian day: Jason Hausbak and I walked to the nearest pizzeria for our 60th/61th pizzas. Im starting to get the hang of this language: "Prego, un pizza cotto e aqua natural"-- Ive successfully mastered the art of bastardizing Italian.
On to the good stuff: the performance. For the 3rd night in a row, we played in an open square in Perugia. Being that it was a Saturday, the square was even more packed than normal. We started slightly early, in an effort to lengthen our total playing time. The set was very ambitious-- it was made up of tunes that we, in general, play very well: Heat of the Day, The Other (a brand new Neil Slater original), Havona, Ordinary Deviation (comp, S. Jacovino), If you could see me now (arr. N. Slater), Beautiful Friendship, Until I met you , Side Effects (Slater), Song for Gabe (E. Weiss), and Got a Match (as fast as possible). Craig Marshall (with the help of our guide, Bobby) explained to the audience that it was the final performance of Neil Slater. He received a very long ovation from the crowd. We received such a long applause after Got A Match, that we played an encore of Machito-- after what I thought was the final note of my One O'Clock career, we proceeded off the stage to pack our horns. The audience wanted no part of this, they kept clapping-- so we had to play another encore: Night Visions-- then we ran off of the stage.
The band presented Neil with a signed poster of the Umbria Festival, a signed picture of Neil (in one of his typical open mouthed/pointing poses), and a bottle of nice champagne.
This show is the last for:
Saxophone: John Leadbetter, Isaac Lamar, Chris Bullock
Trombone: Sara Jacovino, Ben Polk
Trumpet: Sean Foley, Justin Stanton, Evan Weiss
Rhythm: Jiri Levicek, Tim Goynes, Ross Pederson

After the show, our bus driver drove us to the hotel and then back to the square for some celebration. Bobby led Hil, Ross, Tim and myself to a great restaurant (after traversing half of the city and finding every other one full). We enjoyed a huge 3 course meal-- 2 hours later, we returned to the square to find our friends (in general meals take forever over here) Back in the square, we were met by shoulder to shoulder crowds of thousands and hanging out and having a great time.
A few hours later, 4 of us decided it was time to return to the hotel-- This meant getting down the hill. None of us wanted to spend the extra money to take a cab: the most obvious route: run down the hill. It was a refreshing 20 minute jog down a steep hill-- I managed to avoid falling on my face. We were quire overheated and had to go for a late night swim (quite fitting considering that the trip started in a similar manner)

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