Gina Leishman

Composer, Multi-instrumentalist, and Singer

October 1st, New York

October – how is that possible? time time time… it has been raining, and autumn is in the air…

the piece [texts & beheadings] is up and running at the Folger in D.C. – I think it’s good. perhaps the music is a little too “on the money” – it reminds me of Ellen telling me of all those Woolf scholars who didn’t realise it wasn’t Woolf they were listening to in “Septimus and Clarissa” but McLaughlin… the 4 girls finally owned the songs the night before I left D.C. – they are troopers, one and all, and have given their all to make it work… hopefully it will not all fall apart while I’m away from it – but we have a little rehearsal time before it comes into BAM, to put things right if need be… toca madera…

Nephew Chris came to D.C. for a couple of days – I had flown him out to New York and given him my apartment for a week as a graduation present – a great joy wandering the Library of Congress and Botanic Gardens with him, plus a family reunion dinner with charlie and emily green… The pope seemed to follow me around, first in D.C.then in New York… plus the chinese premier in D.C.and Putin in NY.. corridors of power… I have started listening to the radio again (wnyc) – perhaps that’s why I get depressed here – the state of the world is so god-awful if you listen to the news, it’s a wonder anyone gets up in the morning… perhaps best not to listen to the news, just to music… unless one is actually going to DO something about it… the only doing I know how to do is music… altho’ I’m thinking of volunteering as a gardener’s helper in the Hudson River Park – so much weeding to do…

We had a perfectly splendid Kamikaze reunion the other night – what a total joy, warts and all… I billed it as an open rehearsal, since we hadn’t had one, and hadn’t played in 4 years… in the event, we didn’t actually rehearse but played our asses off – but we did sit in a circle, the way we do in rehearsal, and that’s what I want to do from now on (should we ever play again) – the joy of, as doug put it, “making – and being in the middle of, that sound”… it was also the night of the Super, Blood, Harvest Moon with Full Lunar Eclipse – wow – we closed the first set with Homage, exiting the building in full throttle, taking the audience with us, to view the eclipse in all its peach-coloured glory from the Brooklyn sidewalk – when the clouds would permit… a great night… we played 9 to midnight – my poor chops! tho’ doug did a great job figuring out set lists that gave me breathers on piano, accordion or uke… I had a really good time blowing again, particularly the bari – but I do wish reading on the bass clarinet weren’t such a mind-fuck, or I’d play it a lot more… but then I’d have to get Clarence refurbished, not just play doug’s Kohlert, which is so much more in tune…

I also faced the music with the tax man finally – not as bad as I feared, luckily, tho’ not pretty – but I don’t think I’ll lose my home (or my shirt)… toca madera otra vez…

I have bought a ticket to go check in with the other side of the pond in November… needs must, but I really must be mad… tie me up, tie me down…