Monday, November 12, 2012

Jazz and Colors. Without very much jazz.

This weekend it was absolutely gorgeous on Sunday. Sixty degrees. Sunny. You'd hardly believe there was a blizzard a few days before. Naturally, I spent most of Sunday inside working on freelance projects, organizing my spice cabinet, and watching football. Saturday, which was a grey but warm enough day, I went to the park. The scheduling was not entirely my own. Saturday was the Jazz and Colors Festival in Central Park. I'd never been, nor heard of this before, but I stumbled on it when looking for something free to do around town. Those of you who know me well will probably know that I am not a rabid jazz fan. Or even a fan at all, really. I like jazz as much as the next person, but mostly in small quantities and limited to elevators, hold music slow jams, and saxophone players under bridges in Central Park. There's just something about jazz and Central Park that go together well. Obviously, the parks department must agree. The festival is comprised of 20 bands/musicians set up all over the park so that you can stroll through it and stop and enjoy at your leisure.

Not being a huge jazz fan, my main excitement was in entering the park at the very top. For as long as I've lived in New York and as many times as I've gone to Central Park, I've never seen huge swaths of the southeast section. Luckily, my companion was equally ambivalent about jazz because by misreading the website I got us there not just in time for the start of the second set, but in fact, just in time for the 1 hour intermission. We walked by a good eight performers and traveled all the way from the top of the park to below the reservoir before it was finally time to hear some music. A few musicians along the way were noodling on their instruments though, which was a lot of fun. In fact, I think I probably enjoyed those guys more than the actual performance we saw.

Anyway, my photographer captured some excellent shots of the park. We may not have seen much jazz, but by god, we saw some colors.

The Harlem Meer. A lovely spot I can now check off my things-to-see-in-Central-Park list.

More Harlem Meer. I included this one because if you look to the edge of the willow you can part of a drum set. There was totally going to be jazz happening there in an hour.

A fountain in the Conservatory Garden. Another place I hadn't been. You can't tell, but those flowers were totally beaten down. I think they were planted just after the hurricane so they didn't stand a chance against the random blizzard.

More Conservatory Garden. I can see now why people like getting married here.

The last of the Conservatory Garden trio!

This guy knew his way around a trombone.

An electric fiddle! Something I thought only existed in Lord of the Dance.

This is the only honest-to-goodness jazz band we actually saw perform. They were playing in front of the Met. Honestly, we only ended up staying about 10 minutes. 
Lovely park we've got here. It's not a perfect substitute for actual nature, but I'll take it for now.

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