Tonight will be one of those truly special nights again, as I take the stage at the legendary Iridium Jazz Club in NYC with not only The Les Paul Trio (headed up by Lou Pallo), but also with my band too! This is such a great venue to play in New York, especially because it just oozes goodness and great memories of all those wonderful nights that Les Paul “held court” there, and it’s so wonderful to feel that I have a part in continuing his legacy, as well as building on my own.
It’s also a special night because the Thank You Les album and documentary I just played on, and that my daughter Lexie Roth sang on is up for Grammy consideration (how could it not?!) as well as my new album All Tricked Out, plus my Live at the Iridium CD, both of which are also up for Grammys! Wow, very “heady” stuff, all this Grammy talk, but the main thing that I look forward to tonight is simply making the best music I can, and having a great audience to go along with it!
New York and the surrounding area have been hit hard by Hurricane Sandy, and there’s no doubt that people are still disabled by the storm (I only got power back last night after a full week without it!), so I expect there to be a lighter than usual turnout since many trains, etc. are still not running on a regular schedule. But New Yorkers are tough, and they love their good music, and they love entertainment during tough times, so I still feel very optimistic about the show! Also, I get to perform again with my sweet daughter, Lexie (and bring in some gasoline for her truck!), which is always the most rewarding part of any gig I do, as long as she’s there.
This is when some “nerves” can kick in, since I have not actually played with my band since before the summer, but as always, and as I have written about in my other blogs, there’s nothing like having players you can really trust! We have no need to rehearse, and even though it could never hurt, it’s still nice to be able to hit that stage with a certain degree of spontaneity to the music, and to what will happen. I believe audiences also appreciate that, and when the band is really working, and we’re having fun, so will the folks sitting at their tables!
So wish me and the group good luck tonight, as we take the stage once again, and keep the music alive, and the Les Paul legacy moving forward!
Gibson.com’s Arlen Roth, affectionately known The King of All Guitar Teachers, is music lesson pioneer and the quintessential guitarist. An accomplished and brilliant musician — and one of the very few who can honestly say he’s done it all — Roth has, over the course of his celebrated 35-year career, played on the world’s grandest stages, accompanied many of the greatest figures in modern music and revolutionized the concept of teaching guitar.