| Been a long time
Glad to see that you are still going and that all is well.
Hard to believe that it well over 30 years ago that I first heard you playing in Canarsie.
"Michelle, ma belle. Sont les mos qui vont tres bien ensemble, tres bien ensemble. "
I think that's how you spell that line from the Beatle song. I always wondered if they were making a joke when they sang, "I will say the only words I know that you'll understand, my Michelle". Did they mean that she only understands words of love? Or did they mean that those few words were the only ones they knew in French? "I will say the only words I KNOW that you'll understand".
| The only French I know
le fromage: the cheese
J'mappel Edward: "My name is Edward"
La resistance! The resistance
Vive La France!
(hmmm...for studyinmg Spanish in high school and college I knew more French then I thought)!
I hope you get to record in France, 'cause Von Cello should be famous everywhere.
| Dis Donc!
Tonight we had a party at my house and by popular demand I played the Star Spangled Banner with my electric celtar. One guest was from France. he said his brother has a big recording studio there and he would talk to him about recording me. So who knows, maybe the future is in France. Meanwhile, ou est la bibliotheque?
| Try some of these lines on for size:
I wondered why the baseball was getting bigger...then it hit me.
I couldn't quite remember how to throw a boomerang, but eventually it came back to me.
There was a sign on the lawn at a drug re-hab center that said "Keep Off the Grass".
To write with a broken pencil is pointless.
He drove his expensive car into a tree and found out how the Mercedes bends.
Show me a piano falling down a mineshaft and I'll show you A-flat minor.
Did you hear about the guy whose whole left side was cut off? He's all right now.
| From Rabbi Lederman
And now, this from everybody's favorite Orthodox rabbi:
My first job was working in an Orange Juice factory, but I got
canned. I couldn't concentrate.
Then I worked in the woods as a Lumberjack, but I just couldn't
hack it, so they gave me the axe.
After that, I tried to be a Tailor, but I just wasn't suited for it -
mainly because it was a sew-sew job.
Next, I tried working in a Muffler Factory, but that was too
Then, I tried to be a Chef - figured it would add a little spice to my
life, but I just didn't have the thyme.
I attempted to be a Deli Worker, but any way I sliced it, I couldn't
cut the mustard.
My best job was being a Musician, but eventually I found I wasn't
I studied a long time to become a Doctor, but I didn't have any
Next, was a job in a Shoe Factory, I tried but I just didn't fit in.
I became a Professional Fisherman, but discovered that I
couldn't live on my net income.
I managed to get a good job working for a Pool Maintenance
Company, but the work was just too draining.
So then I got a job in a Workout Center, but they said I wasn't fit
for the job.
After many years of trying to find steady work, I finally got a job
as a Historian - until I realized there was no future in it.
My last job was working in a coffee shop, but I had to quit
because it was always the same old grind.
SO, I RETIRED AND I FOUND I'M PERFECT FOR THE JOB!
| Wedding Professional
Wow, I never played a wedding quite like that! The only one I did on a boat was when someone chartered a boat to get married in the waters of New York City, with a view behind the couple of the Statue of Liberty. It's amazing what people will do in the name of love...and impressing their friends!
Speaking about "the wedding cellist", I have been updating my club date booking site. It is still being fine tuned, but take a look and a listen:
| Tipsy Canoe and lager too!
Amazing...simply amazing. Maybe there's a movie out there currently that mirrors my life....who knows.
And I've heard Jewish weddings are a good time.
One of the people I knew, (not Jewish), from way back in Elementary School got married and I attended the wedding.
It wasn't a Jewish wedding, hell, it wasn't even a Catholic wedding...my friend and the groom were married by a justice of the peace.
It was held in a field out in Underhill, VT under cloudy and cold skies, which is unusual for a Vermont August, but as guests we really didn't care....we were treated to a canoe which housed two kegs of beer, one with Canadian Labatt Blue, the other with what I am convinced is the best VT microbrew out there....Long Trail Blackbeary Wheat, flavored with actual blackberries!
| The Wedding Cellist
Well...yes I did make some money on the side as a wedding cellist, and still do! Like the guy in the movies, I had dreams of making it big with my music and started playing "club dates" on cello as a way to make some extra income. After a few years I met a girl who was a ditzy rocker chick just like the one in the movie. She was hot, and led me on, but in the end she would never get married...just like the one in the movie. Then I finally met a nice girl who was a bit of a goody goody, but who believed in me...like the Drew Barrymore character. To round out the biography aspect, the wedding singer's best friend was a real womanizer who thought he was cool...just like my best friend. And at the end of the flick, the wedding singer gets the girl, and gets a potential publishing deal...and I have had a deal with Oxford for 20 years, and also keep trying to get deals in the pop realm. So, as you can imagine, when we were watching the movie, we were amazed. My wife even asked if I knew Adam Sandler, because he seemed to be making a movie about me!
| "Here comes the bride......."
I have seen "The Wedding Singer", though it's been a while. I do not know what you mean specifically...are you saying you used to sing, or play cello, at weddings on the side to earn extra cash? They should have cast you in the lead role instead of that hack Adam Sandler.
But I'm glad you don't think Drew Barrymore's a horse....my friends used to pick on me for having a crush on her. This is when the new "Charlie's Angels" movie came out. They, (and most young men my age at the time), all had a crush on Cameron Diaz or Lucy Liu.
ButI ask you...does Cameron Diaz come from a family of actors, or does she sometimes direct her own films? Drew does....she's much more then just a pretty face.
And now for something un-related....I was thinking of your "Celltic Jig" the other day and I can't wait to hear it. But if you want to perform more music with a Celtic feel to it, I would personally reccomend the traditional Scottish air "Arran Boat Song". It's got some nice low notes which I think would translate well on the cello. Don't know where you would find the peice, though, just google it and see what you come up with. It's a slow, beautiful, haunting melody like most Scottish airs are. Happy hunting!
| Drew Gimmemore
I liked Drew Barrymore in The Wedding Singer. When Karen and I went to see that movie, we were amazed how much it seemed like a biography of my life. I don't know if you know what I mean. But it became one of our favorities.
Today I was in excercise world. We went to a moving sale a few days ago and bought one of those big universal excercise machines for about 10% of the original price. Today I helped a tech guy unhook it, move it, and set it up again. I can't believe I have one of these things in my house now!
| whoa now!
Are you calling Drew Barrymore a horse?
You may have noticed I have a wee, little crush on her....I guess she's my favorite actress.
And a disclaimer....I know you shouldn't eat danishes every morning, but there's cheese in there, (if they do in fact add real cheese to the filling), so there's your protein! You're good to go!
Hmmm.....that's a new one to me, VC.
You could say it's a horse of a different feather.
Which just goes to prove that you can lead a bee to Danish, but you can't make him drink a horse!
| An update, or the latest "buzz"
In my latest encounter with bees (AKA messengers of God), I noticed some of them swarming around boxes of donuts and other pastries while getting my coffee this morning in Essex. They had apparently flew in to the store by way the front door which was propped open to let in the cold, Vermont morning air. Judging from this little insectoid encounter, there is no doubt in my mind that God has a sweet tooth! (So do I, aparently, because I bought myself a cheese danish).
Yes, I believe God does have a sweet tooth...I mean, how else do you account for the existance of Drew Barrymore?
I highly reccomend renting Barrymore's recent movie "Music and Lyrics".
| Miss you already
Hey buddy, I can't believe you are back across the Atlantic Ocean. Wow, that's weird. But that's life these days.
I spent last night in Brooklyn, over in the East New York area. I played for a Lubavitcher wedding. Here I was with all of these very Orthodox Jews. At one point this little boy, maybe 10 years old, walks by my music stand and takes his hand and slides it across my stand, knocking a few loose sheets of music on the floor. I was stunned. Was it an accident? Did he not realize what he did?
Then, when he was a safe distance away, he turned around and smiled at me! The little punk did it on purpose!
I had to laugh. He was just like us! The next generation of Brooklyn smart alaks are coming up!
| craigs list
now in spain
back summer 08 o july 2 -aug 22
already booked already paid
| No man is an island
They say no man is an island, but they didn't say that no man can own an island. And today I played on an island owned by a family. In fact, there is a bay up around New Haven where there are over a dozen islands, and most are owned by one family, with one house on the whole island.
Ya know...whenever I think I've seen it all, there is always some other corner of America that is so rich it's unbelievable.
| How are Jew?
Courtney Love and Pink...they were a surprise to me too! I am often surprised at who is a Jew, whether we're talking music, science, politics, or almost any endeavor.
As for Dylan, even though this is from Wikipedia, I don't think that is accurate, that he converted. In fact, I read an interview where he said that that rumor was not true. He did look into Christianity (born again variety) but he said it was just to expand his mind. Shortly after that he was hanging around with the Hassidic Lubavitch sect of Jews. He even had his son Jacob Bar Mitzvahed at the Western Wall in Jerusalem.
The people I know who are most into him say that the only constant with Dylan is that he is always changing.
The Irish for their part have produced quite a lot of musicians, poets, and other notables. Not to mention a shit load of Leprechuans!
| Your Word for the Day
"Kwow"!: (pronounced "ka-wow") an expression of shock and surprise upon discovering someone or something is Jewish that you did know was Jewish before:
"You mean bialys are savory, Jewish pastries with fried onions? KWOW! I gotta try one"!
"You mean bagels are Jewish too? KWOWIEEE! Got any cream cheese and salmon"?
| Holy Moly!!!!
Well what-a-you-kwow, you're in good company, Aaron.
Bela Fleck? Pink? Cortney Love? I had no idea!
Kinky Friedman, now I knew was Jewish: "They Don't Make Jews Like Jesus Anymore".
I knew Dylan (AKA Robbie Zimmerman) had a Jewish connection, but I didn't know that he converted to Christianity. Did I tell you I saw Dylan live recently when he came to Vermont? My friend from college had an extra ticket and so she gave it to me at no charge! I saw Bob Dylan for FREE! I couldn't understand what the hell he was singing, but I SAW HIM, and heard his cool harmonica solos, in the flesh! Opening was Texas bluesman Jimmy Vaughn, and I could easily uunderstand his lyrics. By far, I'd he did a much better job on delivery then Dylan.
But back to the topic at hand, I don't think I saw Mel Brooks anywhere on that list....who could forget songs such as "High Anxiety", or "I'm so Tired of Being Admired", "Springtime for Hitler", or how about "The Inquisition, what a show, The Inquisition, here we go...."? His movies were funny, but his songs were equally hilarious....I'd put Mel Brooks on the same level as Zappa, for lyrical comedy and controversy, that is.
| While we're on the subject
NASA had sent the first rabbi to orbit the earth in a shuttle. Upon his return, crowds of people formed to hear his impressions. The rabbi appeared. He was completely
disheveled, his beard tangled flowing in every direction, his kippah was frayed, his tallit was wrinkled, like you can't imagine. They asked him, "Rabbi, did you enjoy the flight?"
He threw his hands up in the air crazily and replied, "ENJOY??? What was to enjoy?? Every five minutes the sun was rising and setting! On with the tefillin, off with tefillin, shachris,
mincha, ma'ariv, shacris, mincha, ma'ariv!... GEVALT!!!!"
| I didn't know he was Jewish!
| But It helps!
Von Cello wrote (quoting from his wife's freind):
"How can Aaron write Irish music? He is not Irish!"
One need not be Irish to write, play and sing Irish music, but it helps! To expand on this, one not even drink whiskey or Guiness, but......you know.
You could say "Irish" is a state of mind.
I'll have to listen to some salsa now that you've discussed the Spanish-Jewish connection.
Again, I apologize to leaving the Jews, Italians and Germans out of my discussion on the "collective music exeperiences" of the musicaly-inclined immigrants in the US 1800's-1900's. There were of couse a bunch of Jews and Italians who made a life for themselves in New York and elsewhere, and those lives didn't just entail delies and family pizza places. I had no idea Gene Simmons was Jewish....is costume makeup kosher? Does this mean that Richard Simmons (a completely different type of person from Gene) is Jewish as well?
| Statistics, facts, and hoo ha
I don't know the demograhpics exactly. I'm sure the majority was from a British Isle background, but there were a lot of Germans and Italians.
As a member of the tiny Jewish tribe, I am always amazed at how much influence we had in America. Of course, the founding fathers were very taken by the Bible, thinking of America as the New Jersalem. Just look at how many towns are named Salem, Caanan, Bethel, etc. One of the great bits of influence was the blue jean, invented and marketed by Levi. Even today many of the people who dress America are Jews, ex. Ralph Lauren (Lipshitiz), Donna Karan, Isaac Mizrahi, Jordache Jeans, etc.
But on to music...the place where there is the most Jewish influence in popular music is in salsa. Yes, that's right. The melodies that you hear in salsa resemble Jewish prayers. Why? Because when the Spanish first came to the Americas (beating out the Brits by about a century) they brought with them their melodies, and at that time, there was a large Jewish presence in Spain.
In North America, Jews were prominent in classical and jazz: Aaron Copeland, Leonard Bernstein, George Gershwin, Benny Goodman, etc. They were also very important on the promoter side, producing and recording the great jazz artists. In rock there were plenty of Jews, though most were not open about it, Mickey Hart (of the Dead), Gene Simmons (the Israeli founder of KISS), David Lee Roth (Van Halen), and others. And there is even this guy who is breaking down the barriers between rock and classical...at least in the cello world! And with his "Celltic Jig", he is breaking down the Celtic-Jewish barrier. As one Irish friend of Karen said, with her perfect Irish brogue (sp?), "How can Aaron write Irish music? He is not Irish!"