Tag Archives: Jet

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Well I went back to work today, on a Friday. No one was expecting me to come in, but still, I donned the suit and tie, looking rather sharp I might add. I also looked good on Wednesday morning but that ended badly. I slept ok last night though I did wake up before the alarm clock and could not get back to sleep.

So I got up earlier than usual which was ok. Puttered about, taking my time getting ready. Had a bowl of cereal which made me think, what if the cereal got me sick, not the peanut butter and jelly sandwich I had the night before? I gambled and won. I didn’t get sick from the cereal.

I checked my email again, basically repeating the routine I did on Wednesday and was reminded of a chat I had with an online friend yesterday. He had mentioned that I seem to always be sick. He occasionally read this here blog you see.

I protested that I was sick in October, January and now in February. Not always sick. October and January were viruses, Wednesday was obviously food poisoning. Same symptoms as salmonella and with all the news about peanut butter or peanuts in general I think I put 2 and 2 together. Only it didn’t last that long.

We chatted online about a few things and I brought up my lack of self confidence. He was surprised to hear that. We had met once quite by chance on the street and I guess that’s where he got the idea that I exude self confidence. It must be the suit and tie. I wear a suit and tie and I don’t slouch when I walk, I have my chin up, eyes looking forward and I do feel confident.

ooh! it's Mister Confident!!!!

ooh! it's Mister Confident!!!!

In jeans and t shirt I slouch and generally look unkempt. It’s a good thing I suppose putting forth an air of confidence, it certainly has gotten me some good jobs. You want a good job, you gotta dress the part. At least thats how it used to be.

I’ll find out next March how that works out I guess.

But it weighed on my mind all day, my chat and the perception of being confident when behind the fabric I’m still the same old John, a neurotic, insecure mess at times.

It being a Friday, I planned on leaving early, and of course that didn’t work out. I was busy running around to the bank, to this place and that place errands for everyone. I don’t mind, it’s my job and it’s obvious, if I don’t do it, no one will.

I came in this morning and there was the mail from the past 2 days all over my desk. I sorted it out and delivered it to the proper people. I left around 3:00 this afternoon and made my way over to Bill’s building. It was around 50 degrees this afternoon so that afforded us some extra minutes together which of course was nice.

I got him a nice, cheap pair of cuff links for St. Patrick’s Day of 4 leaf clovers. I got the same for myself. It was a nice deal and I gave them to him this afternoon rather than wait. He loved them and we talked a bit about how we might spend March 17 which will be here before we know it.

No bars, we tried that last year and found every place jam packed with some charging an admission. We just walked around last year, smoking cigars and will likely do the same, staring at the visitors and the vomiters.

I was saddened and gobsmacked to read an email from Harpy yesterday, that Randall Bewley, guitarist for Pylon died the other day after having a heart attack at age 53. I met Randy a few times at McSwells when Pylon played.

Pylon was a band from Athens GA that I first saw with my brother Frank in August 1980, opening up for Talking Heads at the Wollman Rink in Central Park. I can’t say I was ‘ready’ for Pylon, I was definitely more into Talking Heads, plus there was so many people there that August night that Randy, Michael, Vanessa and Curtis from Pylon were swallowed up in that summer night.

Even though I was a big B-52’s fan, it didn’t register that Pylon were from Athens, unlike REM who a year or so later, I first saw opening up for Gang of Four and walked away from my prime spot near the stage saying ‘the only thing they have going for them is that they’re from Athens.’

Maybe a few months after that I was in that long lost record store on Second Avenue in the East Village, Free Being where I saw the cover for Chomp, Pylon’s 2nd album. I bought it just for the cover, vaguely remembering who they were and immediately loved it when I played it.

Played it for my friend Jet as well and he loved it too. Pylon was quitting the music biz at that time, it wasn’t fun anymore. They did get back together a few years later and played McSwells where I was able to DJ for the show and got Jet in to see them not long before Jet passed away.

I vaguely remember Rita having a problem with Pylon, Vanessa might have been off-putting with her style of singing after seeing them a few times opening up for some band Rita would rather be seeing, but I did thank Vanessa after a show and Rita was there and felt her opinion of Pylon was wrong since they were all such genuinely nice, sweet people.

And you could dance to their songs.

Now Randy is gone, and Pylon will be no more. He Left behind a wife and 2 kids. Notices from the B-52’s, REM and even members of Gang of Four among others have come in on various websites stating that they were one of the best bands ever and that Randy was certainly a one in a million guitarist.

Sad to see him go as he was one of the nice ones.


Lately I’ve been listening to Grace Jones quite a bit. Don’t know why, but I do love the albums she recorded with the Compass Point All Stars who included Sly and Robbie among others. Really a crackerjack team of musicians behind her, better than the disco team that recorded her first three albums.

My friend Jet resembled Grace Jones a little bit. He was black and had a fade much like hers. It was the look he was going after and succeeded at least to me after a few drinks. I think the first time I actually heard Grace was when I was visiting my friend Stan in Wallington NJ. We were probably going to a show or something and Stan played the Nightclubbing album which is my favorite Grace Jones record.

Through the years a subconscious gauge on how much someone loved music meant they had to have at least one grace Jones album, preferably one with the Compass Point team. It seemed that a lot of people that I met did. Jimmy Lee, an ex-roommate was infatuated with the song, Living My Life.

A favorite memory of mine, is when I was a bar back at McSwells on Friday nights with Declan and Martha and Slave to the Rhythm was on the jukebox. Slave to the Rhythm is one of my favorite songs of all time, but while bar backing I would invariably play a different version of Slave to the Rhythm on the b-side, called GI Blues.

I called it Heavy Rhythm for a long time. A harder version which is perfect for walking through the streets of midtown Manhattan. I hear it and I am back behind the bar washing glasses, stocking the beer and telling customers that I wasn’t a bartender. After downloading a version of the song I finally bought the album last night through iTunes, which doesn’t make it an album, but rather a download. I have a cassette somewhere.

Today I checked out some YouTube videos and found something that I hadn’t looked for before to my surprise. It was Lambert Hendricks and Ross singing Everyday. I remember in 1988 coming home from McSwells in an altered state one Monday morning and too wired to sleep, I turned on the tv and watched a show with David Sanborn and Jools Holland called Sunday Night.

Either Jools or David introduced a clip from the 1950s and it just grabbed me right from the start. I was captivated, just watching them swinging and singing. Totally captivated. I told my brother Frank about it and of course, he had some info and gossip about Lambert Hendricks and Ross.

It must have been before the holidays because for Xmas that year Frank got me a copy of Lambert Hendricks and Ross’ Greatest Hits. I loved it and played it quite a bit. A few years after that, I’m working at Right Track Recording and I forget who the client was, but a phone call came in for them.

I picked up the call and asked who it was and the caller said, Jon Hendricks. I sort of bent the rules and asked if he was the same Jon Hendricks from Lambert Hendricks and Ross. He said yes, that he was. I told him about seeing the clip from the 1950s on TV and it was amazing, I gushed.

I could tell that he was impressed that the music he made 40 years earlier was being appreciated by a younger generation. It was a small thrill just chatting with him for a minute. He did visit the Manhattan Transfer, that’s who he was calling for and made it a point to see me and shake my hand, thanking me for knowing his music.

A few years ago, Jon Hendricks and Annie Ross were performing together for what promised to be the last time. Dave Lambert died in a car accident in 1966. Annie was upset that Jon had mentioned that Annie was a junkie back in the day. She honored the engagements that were booked, but after that, never again.

I took Bill for an Xmas present to see them at the Blue Note. Cramped and crowded it wasn’t the best venue to see them but at least I had an opportunity to see the two of them for perhaps the last time.

Here’s the clip that I originally saw twenty years or at least I think it is. I still love it!
2.17.2020: Here’s the studio version, I hope you like it, let me know what you think!