Scandinavian Cowboy Jazz!

Heya, this morning Sonny Rollins is Way out West! He’s always been one of my favorites and today’s he’s bringing on the new day with sassy cowboy jazz. He’s got Ben Webster and Charlie Parker influencing his lines but then he adds a wry sense of humor into the mix and that’s how you get Sonny Rollins into your life. He’s been one of my main mentors and sometimes a couple of months go by and I don’t hear him. The imbalance gets to be too much and then I line up all of his tracks in iTunes and even out with his gorgeous tone and darting lines. Today happens to be one of those equalize the world / Sonny Rollins days…

SonnyRollinsWest

Vocalist Sinne Eeg hails from Denmark and she’s living in LA for six months exploring the music scene up and down the west coast. Tomorrow she’ll be joining bassist Gunnar Biggs, drummer Duncan Moore, and me on guitar for a concert at the Rancho Bernardo Library. They have an ongoing jazz and classical music series and have a nice space for live music. I’m thrilled to have Sinne in the loop and she’s one of my favorite vocalists ever. She has an amazing sound and her musical phrasing is golden. We play a few jazz standards, some of Sinne’s original music which traverses from bossa nova to even a neo-country tune (Scandinavian cowboy jazz). We’ve got a few of my originals in there too. Join us for a FREE concert and I know you’ll dig the music.

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On Thursday I’ve got a double hitter with the first up finding us at Palomar College for a noon time concert. It’ll be vocalist Leonard Patton and I searching for truth in sound, hanging out with the kids and actually, these concerts are open to the general public too. Leonard and I are making at duo recording at the end of the month and so this show is a little preview of the album to come. Hope to see you there!

Leonard and Peter winning in Chula Vista! photo by Kevin Kinnear

Leonard and Peter jammin’.
photo by Kevin Kinnear

Thursday night is a Roxy Restaurant Bohemia music fest with solo guitar morphing into a second set of a cast of gypsy’s sitting in and stirring it up. Wild and illegal. Look below for the details.

I’m pointing the car towards Poway on Saturday to make my way, ouch, I’ve got a rhyme going and it’s veering out of control. I’ll stop, (got in trouble with this semantic behavior a few years back). So, on Saturday I’m playing a solo guitar concert at the Poway Library and it’s a FREE gig. It’s at 2pm and for me these are really great musical moments with the pristine quiet element in full play and the entire sonic spectrum available and anxious to be explored. Get your rhyme gear on and come on out!

Happiness is playing the guitar! photo by TJ Best

That’s the word for now and Sonny’s still at it, now chunking along with “Alfie’s Theme”.

good times, Peter

Wamba!

Hey There Friends, Salif Keita is singing “Wamba” and it’s a great moment of music over here at the SpragueLand corporate office. This is from a recording called Soro and the grooves and the spirt are powerful and hypnotizing. I had this CD way back and it’s been years since I heard it and it’s still ringing truer than ever. What a nice way to start this pristine March morning.

Salif Keita

Salif Keita

I love this video below! Nathan and Eva Leach have laundry to do and the homework is stacking up yet here they are in the kitchen sharing a tune. It’s so pretty, it’s homey, and watch until the end ‘cuz there’s a risky circus stunt that could of ruined the whole take. Sweet!

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Last week was a filled to the brim with music and all of the gigs we’re really different and they all launched like we hoped they would. Croces on Thursday found Tripp channeling Lester Young and Duncan and Gunnar laying down the rhythmic pad of bliss. Friday night at Ki’s was Nina in classic form singing standards and widening her music palette right before our eyes. Saturday we all showed up to a sold out house at the Museum of Making Music and it was a night of violins, viola, cello, acoustic bass, drums and other rhythmic offshoots, and my trusty double neck guitar. The Consort ruled the sound waves and it was one of our best concerts ever! Thanks to the great folks at the Museum and also all of our inspired and loyal fans. Next stop for the group is the summer Idyllwild Jazz Festival and hopefully another San Diego show around that time.

The week rounded out with a festive Dizzy’s hit on Sunday night basking in the warmth of the Brasilian samba. Allison Adams Tucker’s group started the show with a set of old and new Brasilian gems and after the intermission our entourage took over. The whole night culminated with all of us onstage (2 drummers included) for the ultima batucada. Super cool and what a way to warm up a rainy February night!

Setting up at Dizzy's.

Setting up at Dizzy’s.

Playing Desifinado with Tripp, Leonard, Duncan, Mack and Peter.

Playing Desifinado with Peter, Tripp, Duncan, Mack and Leonard.

Brasil Festa 2015!

Brasil Festa 2015!

Lining up at the end with Tripp, Peter, Justin, Duncan, Danny, Mack, Leonard, Allison, Julien, and Claudia.

Lining up at the end with Tripp, Peter, Justin, Duncan, Danny, Mack, Leonard, Allison, Julien, and Claudia.

Up for this week I’ll be at The Roxy on Thursday night exploring the further adventures on six nylon strings. Join in!

Bob Magnusson will be in the loop with Gilbert Castellanos and me on Friday night at the Westgate Hotel. I miss Bob and how nice to take it clean and slow and highlight the beauty of music. See you there!

The African 6/8 grooves are still cooking over here and Salif continues on as this gig email fades off in a digital crossfade.

yours in music, Peter

Calling it a Wrap in Arizona

Friends, I’m just coming off the road today and dove-tailing into a super busy week here at home. First up though, how about a flashback into the last two weeks since we last spoke?

I went through multiple back and forth’s from here to the East Coast and had the good fortune of experiencing some whack-cold weather back there. NYC was nine degrees and even Miami was dipping down below what it’s supposed to be. We had great music with Dianne Reeves and the band, got to visit my cousin Shelley and her son Gabe in Hartford, had a wonderful hang at Rob and Raquel Schneiderman’s warm and cozy apartment in NYC and finally a safe landing back in San Diego. Here are some photos:

Here is the band at the Rose Room at Lincoln Center playing the opening instrument tune. That's Peter Martin on piano, Reginal Veal on bass, Terryon Gulley on drums, and me on guitar.

Here is the band at the Rose Room at Lincoln Center playing the opening instrumental tune. That’s Peter Martin on piano, Reginal Veal on bass, Terryon Gulley on drums, and me on guitar.

This is Paul Boothe the tour manager and sound man. He makes everything right but you also don't want to cross him. He's intense!

This is Paul Boothe the tour manager and sound man. He makes everything right but you also don’t want to cross him. He’s intense!

I took a trip on a train up to 125th Street to visit Rob and Raquel and their apartment is one of those off in the distance.

I took a trip on a train up to 125th Street to visit Rob and Raquel. Their apartment is one of those off in the distance.

Peter can wear a suit too! Barely! This is me in the dressing room with mirrors and lights forever.

Peter can wear a suit too! Barely! This is me in the dressing room with mirrors and lights highlighting the imperfections.

Here's Terryon at our Hartford gig striking a very current pose of "what's the rest of the world doing at this very moment" as reported by the almighty smart phone.

Here’s Terryon at our Hartford gig striking a very current pose of “what’s the rest of the world doing at this very moment” as reported by the almighty smart phone.

From our Jazz at Lincoln Center concert this great review in the New York Times emerged.

The Dianne tour morphed into some gigs with the Billy Childs Ensemble. First up was Portland and then last night we shared the sonic revolution with the good folks of Phoenix, Arizona. Super fun times and here you go with a few pics to tell that story.

Arriving in Portland and it's a super clear sunny Mt. Hood to great us!

Arriving in Portland and it’s a super clear sunny Mt. Hood to greet us!

From Portland we traveled to Phoenix and played at the Musical Instrument Museum. Here's the band with (left to right) Ben Shepard, Peter, Becca Stevens, Alicia Olatuja, Billy Childs, and Donald Barrett.

From Portland we traveled to Phoenix and played at the Musical Instrument Museum. Here’s the band with (left to right) Ben Shepard, Peter, Becca Stevens, Alicia Olatuja, Billy Childs, and Donald Barrett.

After our concert they gave us a private tour of the museum and you know I have an interest in double neck guitars. Check out this Ibanez beauty!

After our concert they gave us a private tour of the museum and you know I have an interest in double neck guitars. Check out this Ibanez beauty!

And this vintage Duane Eddy guitar!

And this vintage Duane Eddy guitar!

This isn't a double neck but it's one of the first synth guitars ever made and I too once owned one. It was a DOG! You could hardly survive a gig with the way it tracked.

This isn’t a double neck but it’s one of the first synth guitars ever made and I too once owned one. It was a DOG! You could hardly survive a gig with the way it tracked.

My favorite thing at the museum was this giant upright bass. Oh my! That's Billy standing next to it to give the whole thing some perspective. Big bottom!

My favorite thing at the museum was this giant upright bass. Oh my! That’s Billy standing next to it to give the whole thing some perspective. Big bottom!

Now I’m back home and here for a good chunk of time. As soon as I finish this gig email I’m off to the ocean to catch some waves and attempt to equalize the rigors of the road with a little salt water tonic.

But first, an update on this week’s hometown concerts.

On Thursday night we’re getting the quartet together to play a hit at Croce’s. It’ll be Tripp, Gunnar, Duncan and myself dipping into the straight up swing and samba songbook. Croce’s has really good sound and for this night they’re having a prefix dinner special. Follow the link below for reservations and details. Hope to see you there!

Quartet music with Tripp, Peter, Gunnar, and Duncan

Quartet music with Tripp, Peter, Gunnar, and Duncan

For Friday night at Ki’s Restaurant I’m teaming up with vocalist Nina Francis and my brother Tripp for a night of “Nina Sings the Standards.” Nina has been doing wonderful things back here in San Diego after her four year musical college experience at USC. Lately she’s been focusing on her own music and playing a ton of shows. I love the way she sings jazz too and so upon my suggestion for this gig we’re highlighting the gems in the Great American Songbook, taking a ride where Ella and Sarah have so elegantly gone before. Big fun ahead with jazz, eating great food and gazing out to the wild blue at Ki’s. See you there!

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For Saturday night I’m super excited about presenting the Peter Sprague String Consort at the Museum of Making Music in Carlsbad. This is one of my favorite ensembles and we are thrilled to have cellist Lars Hoefs (back from Brazil) playing the show with us. We have a couple of new songs in the repertoire and judging from how it went a month back at our concert at UC Riverside there’s a good chance the band will achieve liftoff and the follow up show will unfortunately be held on Mars. If you’ve wondered how a classical string quartet intermingles with a jazz guitar trio and what this might sound like, Saturday night at the museum is your chance to hear it live and in person. Look below for the details and see you there!

PS String Consort with Mack, Peter, Bridget, Pam, Jeanne, Lars, and Duncan.

PS String Consort with Mack, Peter, Bridget, Pam, Jeanne, Lars, and Duncan.

Last up for this busy week of music is a show we’re putting together for Sunday night at Dizzy’s focusing on the music of Brazil. Allison Adams Tucker’s group will start out the concert with a set and then it’s on to our group featuring the songs of Djavan, Gilberto Gil, Antonios Carlos Jobim, and this obscure California composer named Peter Sprague. In the band is Leonard singing, Tripp playing the sax and flute, Mack on bass, Duncan on drums and me on guitar. For the very end of the concert we’re putting both bands together for one last tune. Samba until you drop with the beautiful spirit of Brazil guiding your every step. Can’t wait!

Allison Adams Tucker group with me and Tripp too! Also a few others but this is basically one of the ensembles for the Brasil Dizzy's hit.

Allison Adams Tucker group with me and Tripp too! Also a few others but this is basically one of the ensembles for the Brasil Dizzy’s hit.

In between all of this travel I was home for a day to see our daughter Kylie off on a plane to Chile. I also took in a classic Encinitas sunset with lovely Stef.

She's leaving home for Chile. Kylie at the airport off to wild adventures!

She’s leaving home for Chile. Kylie at the airport off to wild adventures!

Stef and I taking a walk with the warm light of the Encinitas sunset.

Stef and I taking a walk with the warm light of the Encinitas sunset.

There it is folks, a whirlwind blending into some ocean lotion and then finally some homespun jazz. Thanks for taking the ride with me. It’s good to be home and it’ll be fun to see you all soon.

adios, Peter