Arizona tour

Last week I spent among the palm trees and citrus orchards of Arizona. One day I went into the backyard of the house we were staying at and grabbed handfuls of lemons, then squeezed them into a pitcher for lemonade. For someone used to the snow of a New England winter, this was paradise. Also paradise were the fabulous audiences for the music of Vocalogy. Vocalogy is a five-voice group plus piano, bass and drums. We spent the week performing for high schools around the Phoenix area, then went into the mountains -- to Flagstaff -- to perform at the Northern Arizona University Jazz/Madrigal festival. Talk about a high-energy event! When we went on stage the crowd of about 1,000 went completely nuts and were with us every step of the way. We varied the program from our more oblique music like Joe Henderson's "Black Narcissus" to real crowd-pleasers like "Time is a Healer", and the kids seemed to enjoy everything along the whole spectrum. If you're worried about the state of music in the future, you can relax a little bit. These kids were hip to real music, not just the pop flavors-of-the-month. Their energy and enthusiasm also showed in their questions to us, both in the info sessions and informally. They are hungry for music education, and, fortunately, they are getting it from their teachers. I only hope that the many schools we didn't visit also have outlets for that same hunger.

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