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August 10, 2007

“LomPoke” not “LomPock”!

Last week we ventured south to the city of Lompoc to play the first concert in a summer series of jazz concerts produced by the public library. I had no idea what to expect, and was very pleasantly surprised by the attentive crowd that turned out for our concert, despite the cool weather and overlapping time with another music festival down the street. Interest had obviously been piqued by the well received jazz lectures given by Fred Friedman at the library earlier in the year.

Most of our performances tend to be of a more background music nature, and it was a lot of fun to get a chance to interact with the crowd, speak a little bit about the music, and see people actively listening and singing along. Many, many thanks to my dear friend, Clint Baker, who was able to interject plenty of amusing historical anecdotes into our performance.

To our new found friends in LomPOKE, thanks so much for the warm and enthusiastic welcome!!!

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Anchors Aweigh

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Dave and I had a great evening last Friday night, entertaining on the Papagallo yacht. If you haven’t yet been on the yacht, it’s a fabulous way to celebrate a birthday or anniversary, or just spend a lazy, lost afternoon. We’ve done a number of private and public events on board, and without exception they’ve been great parties. The crew is friendly and inviting, Midge is the hostess with the mostess, chef Len’s food is terrific, and Dennis is rumored to be generous at the bar. The yacht can only hold about 30 people, and so the trip always feels like an intimate private cruise.

We’ll set sail next on Sunday October 14th, from 1-4pm, and I’m on the lookout for the perfect vintage sailor dress!

Past dates have sold out, so be sure to get your tix early!


Around About Town in August

We’ll be hitting all corners of the county in the next few weeks, with public performances in Shell Beach, Baywood Park, Atascadero, and San Luis. Tonight I’ll be at the Carlton hotel, and on Sunday we’ll start the day poolside at the Cliffs and finish off with cocktails at Blue. Catch all the details on our calendar.

August 21, 2007

See You in C-U-B-A

Back in March we played for the Dazzling Diamond Ball, a benefit for the Hospice Partners of the Central Coast. I finally remembered to ask for some photos, and they were so cool I had to put them up. We were honored to be asked to perform for this prestigious fundraiser, and I loved being a part of an event planned with such care and creativity. M.C. and event designer Mark Padgett, along with Corinne Smith out did themselves transforming a vanilla banquet hall into this eye popping tropical hot spot evoking a 1940’s Havana nightclub. We dug being framed by the arch and palm trees, and Ken Wagner’s lighting set the nightclub feel. Julie Wilson captured the energy in her technicolor photos.


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We don’t, unfortunately, play salsa or other authentic Cuban music, so we branched out of our regular swing repertoire to play some fun, Latin and Cuba inspired tunes from the period, including “I’ll See You In C-U-B-A”, “Besame Mucho”, “Siboney”, “Amor, Amor” “Green Eyes” and “Cuban Love Song”.


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I’m kicking myself I neglected to get a photo of my outfit for the evening, a vintage Mexican hand painted skirt from the great online store Blue Velvet Vintage!

October 9, 2007

Calling all food and wine lovers, swing dancers, jazz aficionados, and yachtsmen - We've got great events for you all month long!

October finds Dawn and the gang entertaining throughout the county, playing for candlelight dinners, cruises of Morro Bay, and the Paso Robles Harvest Festival.

Wine lovers, get your tickets today to the Zenaida Cellar's Harvest dinner on Friday, October 19th. Spend a lovely fall evening taking in the gorgeous view at Zenaida winery. Enjoy a courtyard fire, Tapas-style dinner catered by Trumpet Vine Catering, and live music with the Usonia Jazz Band.

Fans of the hot ‘30s swing music of Django Reinhardt won‘t want to miss our free Swing in the Colony performance on Saturday, October 20th in Atascadero, when we will be joined by LA based master guitarist John Reynolds and his brother Ralf, who is one of the world’s greatest jazz washboard players. Grandsons of the silent screen star Zazu Pitts, both brothers are veterans of over 30 years of entertaining and have worked with musical greats including Cab Calloway, John Jorgensen, and the Smothers Brothers and had long residencies at Disneyland.

More info about all our upcoming events can be found on our calendar.

December 23, 2008

Holidays at Hearst Castle!

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Just got photos from the fabulous Mike Larson of the Hearst Castle Holiday Feast. I was so excited when we were asked to play for this event! If I can be so bold, I've always thought our music would be perfect for an event there ;)

It's hard to walk inside the castle and not wonder about the parties that must have happened back in the day, and getting to play inside felt like stepping back in time. (Well, almost stepping back in the time, we do have a modern pa system, a detail I'm working on...). And it was apropos that John Reynolds was able to join us on guitar, he has family history involving the Hearst Castle, his grandmother, ZaSu Pitts, stayed there as a guest.

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It's always a pleasure to work with Mark and Corinne, they have such an eye for detail! I'm full of admiration for the amazing designers and florists we get to work with, and how they are able to transform a place, I don't know how they envision and plan it all. We always show up for an event and they've been there for hours, even days, getting things ready. It's a cool process to watch, and it's fun to have a bit part in all these events. I always feel like we have the easiest job, just being on the line for sounding (and looking) good. Watching them make this event happen really did make our playing feel like, well, playing.




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With all those details in his head, Mark still thought to build us this cool stage - check out the fun Judy (Garland) lights! It's not often I get to step out from behind the piano; I felt like such a diva, and I loved every minute of it! Way too much fun!


Thanks again to the Friends of the Hearst Castle for having us at their party.

January 7, 2009

York, New York mini tour

My old friends in the Boilermaker Jazz Band have invited me to join them on a little mini tour, and I can't wait to dig out my winter coat and boots and head back east. Seriously, it's going to be a ton of fun, so if you're back east dust off your dancing shoes and I hope we're able to catch up at one of the following:

  • Fri 6th @ 9pm, YORK SWING CLUB, York, PA
  • Sat 7th @ 8pm, SWING REMIX, JCC Goldman Sonnenfeld Auditorium New York City, NY
  • Sun Feb 8th @ 8pm EDGEWOOD CLUB Pittsburgh, PA

More details on the calendar

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This page contains an archive of all entries posted to Dawn Lambeth & The Usonia Jazz Band in the performances category. They are listed from oldest to newest.

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