Mingus Big Band at Yoshi’s SF

I had the chance to see the Mingus Big Band, a 14-piece ensemble, play at Yoshi’s in SF Tuesday night. The show was incredible. It was my first time at the new Yoshi’s and it’s quite a bit swankier than the location in Oakland. We had a drink at the bar beforehand waiting for the doors to open to the 10pm show and the entire dining area is, well, swanky.

Hands down, Mingus is my favorite jazz musician. Crazy insane or just insane crazy, his music gets me like no other jazz style musician can. I missed the names of the first few songs, but the second half of the
set was Baby Take a Chance on Me, Ysabel’s Table Dance (which had an
incredible cadenza in the middle by the pianist), Pinkie (from Epithet,
although I couldn’t find that track on the set list from Epithet), and
finished up with Song with Orange.

I was quite impressed with all the songs they attempted. On one of the songs they performed they pulled the music out and told the audience this is the first time they’re trying to play it. Then the band leader turned around and talked off mic to the band for five minutes about the song. He turned around, sat down, counted off and they pretty much sight read the whole piece. Phenomenal. Coincidently the 22nd was Mingus’ birthday, which made the evening that much more special.

Jobs that Pay

From an article on CNN, and kind of a follow up to my post on What America Earns, here are a list of jobs that pay over $20/hour.

  • Casino gaming supervisors
  • Health educators
  • Subway and streetcar operators
  • Respiratory therapists
  • Curators
  • Cartographers
  • Multimedia artists and animators
  • Arbitrators
  • Urban and regional planners
  • Loan officers

I found it a bit surprising that jobs such as cartographers still exist (where’s the haberdasher, then?).

Beijing Olympics 2008 – Want to Join?

I’m heading to the Olympics in Beijing this August and have spare tickets to all the events I’m attending: tennis, beach volleyball, athletics, basketball, triathalon, and football (aka soccer). My buddy and I managed to get them at local prices so we scored four tickets to five events for about $200, leaving each person with only $50 per set of tickets.

The dates are August 15th to August 19th, and flights are looking to be roughly $1300. We’ve also secured an apartement to rent for a week, which will come to $250 per person. Not a bad deal to go to Bejing and see the Olympics.

If you’re interested in joining, get in touch!

P.S. this is my first blog post in nearly two months — and no, it’s not an April Fool’s Joke!