Thursday, December 31, 2009

My Woody Allen Experience

First off, I just have to say that I have the best husband in the world. He was willing to take off work and drum lessons for me, despite having missed a lot of both lately with the holidays. He drove the three hours to Austin and back, despite having had to be and perform in Houston on Saturday and Dallas Sunday. All just to make one of my biggest dreams come true. That is the definition of love right there, and I know it.

So, one sentimental ball of mush out of the way and on to another. I spent almost two hours less than 30 feet from Woody Allen. It was one of the greatest things that I have ever experienced. When we sat down in our seats I had a moment to be elated at how good they were before I started to nearly hyperventilate with excitement at what I was about to witness. We were really as close as one could hope to get when they bought last minute tickets, and I had a completely unobstructed direct view to Woody. Clearly, he was what I was there to see, but that whole band is amazing. It was so fascinating to watch a smaller band play together, since my only other experience watching jazz performers has been the much bigger UNT band. Aside from the phenomenal music, I took so much pleasure in being able to watch Woody be Woody. I've watched so many interviews of him over the years that a lot of his little mannerisms are known to me. So when he took his sweater off about two songs in and brushed his hair back with his hand, when he slid his finger between his glasses and face to rub his left eye, when he stretched his arms down his legs and rubbed his knees- it was just him being himself right in front of my eyes. And more than that, I got to see him doing something he truly loves to do, is passionate about doing. Like I said, it was a dream come true.

They played for a little over an hour, and then did two encores which Woody claimed was a record for them, but I find that hard to believe. And they were long encores as well, adding almost 45 minutes on to the show. It's hard for me to know all the songs they played, I am not as familiar with my New Orleans jazz catalog enough to always easily recognize them- especially with a music as variable as jazz can be. I'm still trying to figure more out, but I know they played:

Ice Cream
Tie Me to Your Apron Strings Again
St. Louis Blues
Listen to the Mockingbird
Down by the Riverside
All the Whores Like the Way I Ride
My Old Kentucky Home
Home Sweet Home
Easter Parade
Sweet Georgia Brown

Again, just amazing to me that I've actually done this. It has been a dream for so long that I hardly know what to do with myself now that it's actually come true. Where does one go from here? To be honest, one still wants to go to NYC and see him at the Carlyle, to do it all over again. :)

Crappy iPhone pics from the evening.