Video from David Amram & Co.’s Inspiring Show at Cornelia Street Cafe

15 Jun
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Every time I go to hear David Amram & Co. perform, I am blown away and walk away inspired to be more creative and to live life more fully. This month with no different.
 
On Monday, June 1, I brought my friend who was visiting from Brazil to Cornelia Street Café to hear David Amram perform with Kevin Twigg (drum, glockenspiel), Rene Hart (bass), Elliot Peper (bongos), and special guest Robbie Winterhawk on congas. They played all the literary-inspired classics, from Arthur Miller’s After the Fall to Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, and Neal Cassady’s Pull My Daisy.
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Between songs, David Amram told stories of how he came to learn to play the hulusi, a Chinese flute made of bamboo pipes that pass through a gourd wind chest; how he met Woody Guthrie (“There was Woody sitting in this little kitchen….” in an apartment between Avenue C and D in New York City); to the fact that Pull My Daisy was written in an exquisite-corpse fashion (“People would come into town and add lines”). The stories behind the songs are themselves sweet melody to a life of passion, dedication, and originality.
 
David Amram uses his platform to inspire people both on and off the stage. He encourages the crowd with words of wisdom:
 
“Every day is an experience. Every day is an adventure.”
 
“Pay attention to anybody and everybody, and you’ll be amazed at what you can learn.”
 
He invites people up to the stage to perform him. 
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People like Frank Messina, who is known as “the Mets poet.” He told a story about playing baseball with some of the legends of baseball while growing up in Norwood, New Jersey. It was so fun to hear because I grew up a few towns over from him and lived across the street from a Yankees player! Messina’s handwritten journal of 9/11 poetry is in the permanent collection of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum.
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And people like Mike Shannon, an actor, who read Kerouac’s “Children of the Bop Night.”
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I happened to have incidentally sat down next to one of the performers, Connie Diamandis. She turned out to be a Greek American from Lowell and that we knew some of the same people! A singer, she did an amazing rendition of George Gershwin’s “Summertime.” She also told a story about Jack Kerouac and friends coming back to Lowell and hearing the Beatles and the new music of the era and pronouncing it good “but nothing like the classics.”
 
You can find out where David Amram will next be performing here.
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3 Responses to “Video from David Amram & Co.’s Inspiring Show at Cornelia Street Cafe”

  1. david amram June 16, 2015 at 12:51 am #

    Dear Stephanie

    Think you for coming and for your nice documentation in words and pictures and videos of a really fine night in Greenwich Village.

    Regardless of the staggering rents , it is still a gem in NYC and during the 40 years i was fortunate enough to live there (before progress got everyone in my block thrown out)i am always happy to return and still feel like a Villager, even though I dont sleep there!!

    Good luck and continues high energy for all the fine things you do.

    Ephraristoh Poli for everything you do!!

    David

  2. Martin D. Brauch June 16, 2015 at 2:12 pm #

    Hi, Steph!

    Although terribly jet-lagged (6 hours ahead) and on a rainy Monday (Monday, of all weekdays!), your friend visiting New York from Brazil (via Hungary) never even thought he should skip this. And the evening proved to be lovely in all respects—venue, jazz, poetry, food, drink, company!—and indeed inspiring.

    Thank you so much once again for inviting me!

    Yours,
    Martin

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