Bob Sheppard is still next...

..but we had to re-schedule.  He'll be coming on on Friday, May 18th.  I'll post the episode on Sunday the 20th.  Go back to what you were doing before.


Bob Sheppard is next...

Sax player, composer, Steely Dan vet Bob Sheppard stops by next Friday for a chat.  I'll post on Sunday (5/13) as usual. Haven't seen Bob in a while;  looking forward to a good talk.

BTW - also fixed a problem with the feed of #13, so get your John Daversa fix at iTunes.  Web feed was always OK.


Afterbeat #13 - John Daversa

John Daversa is an interesting, softspoken and gentle guy. Trumpeter, composer and educator, he leads a big band and a small band around L.A. as well as the CSN "A" Jazz Band, whose recent victory at the Monterey "Future Festival" competition earns them a spot on the 2012 Monterey Jazz Festival stage.

Daversa is also the first guest I've had who I didn't know prior to recording, but we had a nice talk.  He's the son of pro musicians - a trumpeter dad and flutist/vocalist mom, so he grew up knowing the drill.  His family moved around some, and so has he since he turned pro. John's back home in L.A. now and busy, but not so busy as not to have definite ideas on creativity, education and how to be yourself.  I enjoyed our time.

Bonus - family dog Bailey makes his afterbeatpod debut.


John Daversa


R.I.P. Levon Helm

Levon's voice was like a distillation of all the voices of American roots music, an original primal thing like the voices of Johnny Cash or Robert Johnson or Bill Monroe or Maybelle Carter.  Like them it seemed to have always been, and it seemed that it would always go on.  There was no mistaking that voice or the great backbeat he played, and no possible reaction except joy and wonder at his ability to combine both at once (how do drummers play and sing at the same time, anyway?).

The simplicity and deep groove of his drumming, a signature of the Band as surely as Robbie Robertson's Tele twang, is not as often discussed as his singing, but it's impossible to imagine The Weight or Rag Mama Rag or Up On Cripple Creek with any other drummer. 

Even with his health problems in recent years, it was hard to think about this voice ever being gone, but we've lost him as surely as we've lost Johnson and all the rest.  At least we have high-quality recordings of Helm singing and playing with the Band and elsewhere.  Listen and remember.  This was a giant.




Take me to the pilot...

It's pilot season here in show-biz land, so there's that keeping me busy, and I'm going out of town for a gig this weekend.  But new eps are in the pipeline, so don't leave this spot.  

Next Friday, April 13th, ace trupeter/bandleader/composer/educator John Daversa comes in for a chat.  We'll be talking about his recent competition-winning visit to the Monterey college jazz band festival.  His Cal State Northridge A-band won the whole thing, so they'll be playing at the main festival in September. Meanwhile, check him out at