Jazz Politics in Washington!

Hi Good People, I’m coming to you from rainy Portland. Stef and I are on a getaway to check in with our daughter Kylie. She lives up here and is loving it.

There’s a lot to love about Oregon—an abundance of natural beauty, trees forever, clean air, clever food spots with more than usual vegan options, and good happy people. For a few days we ventured to the coast to see Astoria and Seaside and man did the drizzle overcast feature click into overdrive. All day, three days, water from the sky. Nothing new for them but news to me. Now I see why I’m so sold on SoCal with it’s generous dose of sun and warmth. Nice being up here for a change and especially great spending time with Kylie. She’s a good kid!

It’s us! With Stef on the left, me in the middle and young Kylie on the right.

Seaside, Oregon. The most hardcore conditions, big vicious ocean, the longest beach ever, dark sky, and cold. Just a normal day at the beach!

Family portrait at the shipwreck! Bundled up and trying to stay warm in the Pacific Northwest springtime!

Right before this Portland trip I did a quick run to D.C. to play at Kennedy Center with pianist Billy Childs and his group. What a band and what a venue! Playing wild notes while just down the street Congress was fielding wild notes, trying to figure out which way to steer this country. Jazz politics in Washington…

I’m heading back to SD late Saturday and right away on Sunday Leonard Patton and I make our way to the Scripps Ranch Library for a free afternoon concert. It’s a cool venue with good sound and it’ll be a real nice way to re-enter the world after a week a way. Hope to see you there!

Leonard and Peter.

I have 2 new albums just ready to be released! A solo guitar CD Lucy In the Sky that I already have copies and a new recording with vocalist Rebecca Jade called Planet Cole Porter. I’ll have copies of that one on Monday, just in time for our live show at KSDS Radio’s “Jazz Live” event at the Saville Theatre at San Diego City College. I’ll formally get the word out on these new recordings once the dust has settled from my recent travels but for now, please come to our gig on Tuesday night, check out the music, and be the first (not sure that’s really important) to get the new CD. The band is me on the guitar, Rebecca on vocals, Tripp on sax and flute, Gunnar holding down the low end on bass, and Duncan on drums. It’ll be a hoot and we’d love to see you there!

Moving through the week, on Thursday afternoon Leonard and I will play a free concert at Palomar College. They have an ongoing concert series and this week it’s us at the helm, sending music into the room. Good sound over there and good folks too. Can’t wait!

Leonard and Peter
photo by Thomas Westerlin

Friday night at 7:30 finds Leonard and I sharing our music at Harbor Music Hall in Little Italy. We’ve had some inspired moments in this creative spot and it’s a joy to return. Give it a try and I think you’ll dig the downtown scene for a change…

I haven’t been playing the solo Roxy gig lately. The talking background noise started to effect my happiness level. An inner voice kept nagging at me, “you’ve played a lot of notes in your life and if ever the background noise starts to overtake you, pack up the gear and find someplace new.” I’m still on the search for silence and beauty and I’m told the Witch Creek Winery in Carlsbad might work. I’m lined up to play there on Saturday night and I’ll have my solo stuff worked up and ready to launch into the vast sonic unknown. Join me if you can!

There it is folks and lots of good to be grateful for. After this gig email gets complete, Stef, Ky, and I plan to walk through a few parks in the rain, taking in the green, taking in the joy of family…see ‘ya on the next loop, Peter

Zip Lining Through Fremont 

Friends! I’m back from a wild ride in Crazy Town! I joined the circus for a concert at Chapman College in Orange with Dianne Reeves and the band and from there we boarded an early morning flight to the mecca of madness—Las Vegas! We stayed at the Gold Diggers or is it the Golden Nugget? Funny name, hilarious place. It’s old style vintage Vegas, classic Frank Sinatra era at every turn. We played two shows and it was great music for an amped audience. Right outside the hotel the frantic world of the Fremont scene was in full swing. The highlight for me was the zip lines flying overhead complete with strapped in humans living out their superman flying fantasies. Vegas forever!

Here they come!

There they go!

Flying home just in time to do a noontime hit in downtown La Jolla at the Athenaeum yesterday. Great to be with Joshua White on piano and he had the clever notion of nothing planned, just make it up — freedom in sound. I loved every minute of it. It was a full on, around the block lined up turn out, hurray for free concerts serving up free music!

Before the concert starts, Joshua on the right laying the conceptual ground work.

Beautiful setting at the Athenaeum.

Up for this week, the always creative Leonard Patton is curating a concert series at Off Broadway Live in Santee and I’m thrilled to be included for a show on Thursday night. It’ll be just the two of us venturing off the page into the vast world of sound influenced by Hendrix, Cole Porter, The Beatles, the samba, the funk, the swing, Stevie Wonder, and our own creations. The venue is fantastic for sound and setup and I think you’ll love it!

Peter and Leonard in front of a big screen.

On Friday night I’m meeting up with Mack on bass and Duncan on drums for a creative hit at the Harbor Music Hall in Little Italy. What a fantastic spot for music! The whole street is pulsing with activity and inside the Music Hall folks are listening and digging the sounds and the city vibe. Can’t wait!

The trio with Mack, Duncan, and Peter.

Wonderful vocalist Gillian Margot is making the drive north along with my brother Tripp and together we’re having a night of music at Ki’s Restaurant in Cardiff. It’ll be on Saturday night at 7:30 pm. If you haven’t yet heard Gillian sing you’re in for a special treat—her sound is gorgeous and unique and she chooses some clever songs, a real mix of standards, Brazilian gems, Stevie Wonder,and I’m stoked that she learned a few tunes of mine. We’ll have fun and it’ll be even better if you’re there with us… See ya’!

Gillian Margot

Sunday isn’t a day of rest here at SpragueLand and instead it’s the last concert of the week, this time in Fallbrook. It’ll be Beth Ross Buckley on flute along with Fred Benedetti on guitar, Gunnar on bass, Duncan on drums, and me playing the twin neck. We’re playing my Sanctuary Suite composition along with more of my originals for a true chamber jazz experience. It all takes place at the Fallbrook Library which is a favorite venue for us musos as it sounds good and people really listen and stay quiet. We like it quiet except for the inspired hoots and hollers fueled by enthusiasm. Hope to see you there!

Camarada ensemble with Peter, Duncan, Beth, Fred, and Gunnar.
photo by Rick Sokol.

Thanks for tuning in folks and see you on the next loop, Peter 

A Potentially Painless Adventure North

Friends, I’m zipping off tomorrow to join the mini tour with vocalist Dianne Reeves and her band of amazing musos! First stop is Chapman University in Orange, CA. Hey, that’s an hour from here so if you’re thinking you’d like to hear us, you could semi painlessly venture out and join the traffic flow heading north. It won’t be that bad and the music should be great. Look below for more details and I’m told there are still tickets available.

Band photo as we’re readying to leave Mack Island. From left to right, Peter Martin, Branford Marsalis (who was playing the day we left), Terryon Gully, Paul Booth (sound man, tour manager), Dianne Reeves, Peter, and Anna Redmond (Dianne’s personal assistant).

From there we head out to Las Vegas for a Saturday night show. Then I zip home just in time to play a special duo concert with maestro Fred Benedetti on Sunday. Fred’s amazing and we pepper the program with ample Beatles plus some of my tunes and a classic Fred flamenco ditty. Should be great and we’d love to have you along.

Peter and Fred dancing on the double necks!

Turning the corner around the week I’m teaming up with pianist Joshua White for a concert at The Athenaeum in La Jolla on Monday. It’s a noontime gig and this cat plays up a storm. Big fun!

Joshua White live at Dizzy’s.
photo by Bonnie Wright

Short and quick, gotta run! Coming real soon a new solo guitar CD plus our Planet Cole Porter CD will be right behind that.

all best, Peter