Music and Its Industry: Part Six

Next installment: March, 2011. Children's Music with Billy Jonas. 

Of course, there is a story. August, 2009. My friends, Jim and Jena and their two kids, Ethan and Gideon are coming to Cleveland (from Columbus) to hear Billy Jonas at Cain Park. (Cool outdoor venue about 1/2 mile from our house in Cleveland Heights). Would I like to join them? Well - obviously! Two of my closest friends, who are also musicians, are driving up a few hours to hear this guy. I am going. It is a hot day. HOT. The only thing I have with me, besides minimal clothing on my back, is a water bottle that I froze for the occasion. The concert starts and I am immediately drawn in. 

This guy is playing funky beats and his back up singers are winding it out with killer harmonies - and he is playing percussion equipment that he made - from random things you might find around the house, or street...  

At intermission, Billy had a table of swag for sale. I like swag. T-shirts, CD's....and...a BOX where you can fill out a card for a drawing to WIN some swag. oh yeah. As I mentioned, I had nothing with me - so the biz cards were at home. In AC. 

So, on this little card, a little bigger than biz card, I filled out my name and then wrote an entire story about CYO and why he needed to come and play with us. Tiny writing - front and back. 

After dropping it in the box, I shwagged back to our seats and proudly told Jim and Jena what I had done and that Billy was going to pull my card because we were supposed to work together. They laughed at me. I remained confident and held my ground. A few tunes into the second half, Billy held the box above his head and twirled it and spun it. Swooshed his hand around in it and pulled a card. 

He said - and the winner is ....pause....pause...reading...then he turns the card over...still reading....and then...

Liza Grossman!          YUP.

‘Told you so’ was all over my face when Jim and Jena were laughing hysterically. Billy came out after the show and we made plans at that moment to do this in March, 2010. 

We did so many fun tunes for Children - and for the first time, had two shows. We were developing audience capacity (even though we sell out our shows, we were trying to add more people to our list!) The CYO Members had fun.  We did not have full houses for the two shows, so perhaps this was not the one to try this with - but we did reach two audiences! Saturday night people and the Sunday afternoon young children and families. Fantastic!  

The challenge for me was to have the music orchestrated so that it was a challenge for the CYO members. It wasn't technically challenging enough for my taste for them - but we had a good time and they were exposed to a genre that was vital, necessary and potentially something they could do!