Saturday, October 6, 2012
The Doorman's Diary: 10.5.12
A brisk Fall night… perfect for jazz. An icon of the local jazz scene plays tonight. On the cusp of turning 80, this jazz guitarist has a list of notables longer than his sleeve. His style along with his advancing age creates a mellow competence. A younger jazz guitarist comes to the club and watches with reverence. I ask the younger to tell me what the old guy’s appeal is, since I admit that the younger has more passion and pizzazz. He says, “You can’t compare me to a god. He is slower than he was but he’s finessing new depths of meaning from every note he’s playing. I learn something new every time I watch him…ways to stretch, bend, or clip notes.” My ears feel like basset hound flaps attempting to suss out hummingbird flight changes. An interesting collection of young jazz enthusiasts occupy two tables in the front. A couple anchors one side: a plaid-shirt guy with short-trim beard and Jerry Lee Lewis black-framed glasses who reeks of cigarettes is with a cute non-smoking young lady. Another couple joins them: a woman who looks like an underage geeky short-hair guy with a chained wallet in her bluejeans pocket. Her equally slim girlfriend has an aura of softness. Her perfect brown hair begs to be pet, which her geek-guy girlfriend occasionally does while they sit enjoying the music. The group of friends is completed with the arrival of a Mercurial. Mercurials are very plain-looking people that exude an attractiveness through a transformative smile or action. It is light switch on-off quick. This Mercurial enters the club wearing a tan Columbo-style belted trench coat. When defrocked from the trench coat she is dressed conservatively plain yet carries herself as though she’s wearing a leopard-print cat suit (meow!). Mercurials are fascinating to watch because they defy expectation and evaluation. Each one in this group of five has a story to tell, but I’m unable to collect them.