Friday, February 17, 2023

Bits & bobs: Winter 2023

Late last year, I spent a delightful couple of hours chatting with Bill Carter, pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania. As some of you know, he's also an accomplished jazz pianist who heads the swingin' Presbybop Quartet, making him a member of the small but wonderfully active "jazz praise" musicians' network.

Longtime followers of Guaraldi and this blog will recall that Bill spent a year getting ready for his church's 50th anniversary celebration of Guaraldi's Grace Cathedral Jazz Mass, which resulted in a marvelous September morning in 2015, as I related here.

Bill also has spent the last few years writing a book, Thriving on a Riff: Jazz and the Spiritual Life, soon to be published by Broadleaf Books. Partly as a means of spreading the word about this project, and partly because he so enjoys discussing the intersection of music (notably jazz) and religion, he was encouraged to "enhance his media presence." He therefore began a fortnightly podcast, The Spirit of Jazz, which has been going strong since last August.

(By now you must have realized that Bill is one of those individuals who rarely pauses to eat or sleep.)

He invited me to be a guest for one episode, but — because our conversation continued at considerable length — he wound up with enough material for two full episodes. (Neither of us can be accused of having little to say.) They are:

While you're visiting, be sure to check out his other episodes; they're all quite engaging (just like Bill himself).


Many months have passed, since the two new releases of Guaraldi's Jazz Impressions of Black Orpheus were announced, back in September. So many months, in fact, that you've likely forgotten that Craft Recordings' Small Batch One-Step Pressing LP finally will be released next Friday, February 24. (New liner notes are supplied by someone I know fairly well.)

Orders can be placed here, or via Amazon, or — better still — request the album at your local brick-and-mortar music store, to help keep them in business!