Jul 9, 2008

Seattle (Day 3 - Downtown, Sara Gazarek) - シアトル (3日目、ダウンタウン、サラ・ガザレク)

Great finale to my stay in Seattle!

Because I didn’t have much sleep yesterday, I had a lot of sleep to catch up. I was a little bit less ambitious today by waking up at 8:00AM, which is unusual for me while on tour. Even with over 8hrs sleep, I didn’t feel like I had enough deep sleep for some reason.

Although I wanted to join another tour today, I didn’t in the end simply because I couldn’t decide which one to join. But, in the end, I think that I made a right decision.

Today started with a quick visit to the Pike Place Market, a fun place to visit even without doing any shopping. Having said that, this old chap from the Pike Place Fish Company was very unfriendly towards tourists. While this seafood shop chose to do all these funky stuff in order to attract more customers and tourists, this chap started shouting ‘anyone here buying fish today?’ and got really arsy towards some tourists. I didn’t like that, so I just decided to leave. From the waterfront, I could get a panoramic view of the mountains with snow on top beyond the water.

Then I was going to take a tramway to the Lake Union, which turned out to be a pain in the butt. The ticket machine for the tramway didn’t accept my credit card, while it only accepts coins. By the time I got some coins from the nearest drug store, the tram was gone. Bugger. So I ended up walking to the lake, which wasn’t too bad. Every time I was going back to Vancouver by bus, I could see this view, which kind of reminds me of Sydney, from a bridge. This is Lake Union. They had some beautiful wooden boats parked around the lake.

From the Lake Union, I went to the area around the Pioneer Square, completely the opposite side of downtown. As I walked towards the square, I could hear a sound of music from a distance. It turned out that, just like it happened in Chicago last month, they had a live Jazz session going on in the square. Brilliant! I don’t remember the name of the band, but they were quite groovy. While listening to the music, Kira, a girl who was sitting next to me, started talking to me. She told me she arrived in Seattle last Thursday after working for the military for a while in Chicago. She says she’s trying to make her career as a writer. Good luck, Kira!

After the jazz, I stuffed myself with ordinary fish and chips by the waterfront. It was a classic tourist food with tourist price. The positive side of this is that I became full.

Just like last night, I went back to the Kerry Park this time for a daytime view of the Seattle downtown. It was a little bit hazy, but I could still see the Mt Rainier in the background! It wasn’t as vivid as I would have liked, but at least the mountain was there to be seen. It was so refreshing to have a quick nap in the park under the sun too!

I went back to the Pike Place Market to see if I could buy something. Every time I went to the market, this donut shop was full of customers. Kira told me that it’s because their donut is the best in town! I was only trying to buy a couple of donuts, but it turned out that, because it was almost the end of the day, they were offering a bag full of donuts for only $2! I was only going to buy them for a desert for the day, but now I have stuff to eat on the train tomorrow!

The moment has arrived! Finally, it’s time for a jazz concert of Sara Gazarek, one of my favorite musicians at Jazz Alley. I missed her show on a couple of occasions due to the fact that I was away, so I was really excited about this show. It was nice to see Rob, one of my old business partners, managed to join me for this one. As soon as Sara started singing her first song, there was a real buzz throughout the Jazz Alley. Quite frankly, Sara was sensational! I really like her voice, and the way she sings. While singing, she really looks like she’s enjoying it so much. I remembered what Kenny Loggins said to his son Crosby during the US reality TV show Rock the Cradle – ‘your fans want to see you enjoying your own music on the stage.’ It’s so true. The more the musicians enjoy themselves on the stage, the more fans get into it too. It takes two to tango, as they say. Sara made this show full of fun with some funky songs and remakes, while performing her own classic songs. Her band, led by Josh Nelson, was also fantastic. Just like last Sunday, time went so quickly and Sara finished her 100mins show. I wanted more, but I was more than satisfied by her magnificent performance.

Once the show was over, I was able to thank Sara for a wonderful performance and to speak to her for a few minutes. That was so exciting! She picked up my British accent, and asked me some questions about that. Although I already had her live CD, I bought it because I forgot to bring it with me. What an idiot I am. But I got Sara’s autograph. Yay! I wanted to take a photo with her, but because how the desk was set up was a bit awkward I decided not to ask her. I should have, but hopefully I can do that when she comes back to Japan. She says hopefully she will be back by the end of the year. Fingers crossed! Thank you, Sara and the band, for a wonderful night of groovy Jazz!

I finished today with a sunset view of the waterfront while still buzzing from Sara’s great, great show.





まずははじめにパイク・プレイス・マーケットに行くことに。ここは買い物しなくても充分楽しめるところ。ところが、Pike Place Fish Companyの中年の親父がどういう訳か観光客にかなり無愛想だった。お客さんや観光客を呼び込むために自分たちが好きでいろんなパフォーマンスをやってるくせに、「今日ここにいる人で魚買う人はいるのか?」と怒鳴る上に観光客に対して結構失礼なことを言い出す始末。この態度が気に入らなかったので、すぐにその場を去ることに。ウォーターフロントからは綺麗な水と、雪をかぶった山のパノラマが綺麗に見えた。






ついにこの時がやってきました~!僕のお気に入りのジャズシンガーサラ・ガザレクJazz Alleyでのコンサートで~す。街を離れてたのが理由で、彼女のショーを2回ばかり見逃してる僕としては、待ちに待ったコンサート。昔のビジネスパートナーで友人のロブも今回は参加できたのでよかった。サラが一曲目を歌い始めた途端、Jazz Alleyの場内一帯が何とも言えない興奮に包まれた。はっきり言って、サラはすごい!彼女の歌声、歌い方が僕は大好き。また彼女は歌ってるとき、本当に楽しそうに歌ってる。彼女を見ながらアメリカのリアリティTV番組「Rock the Cradle」でケニー・ロギンスが息子のクロスビーに言ってたことを思い出した – 「ファンのみんなはお前がステージの上で音楽を楽しんでるのが見たいんだぞ。」まったくその通りだと思う。ミュージシャンがステージの上で楽しめば楽しむほど、ファンもそれに入っていくことができる。英語の諺に「It takes two to tango」というものがあるが、まったくその通り。サラは彼女自身の歌にいろんな面白い歌や凝ったアレンジを混ぜて、とても楽しめるコンサートを創り上げてくれた。ジョシュ・ネルソンを筆頭にサラのバンドも素晴らしかった。日曜日同様、時間はあっという間に過ぎてサラの100分あまりのショーは終わった。もっとやってほしかったけど、彼女の素晴らしいパフォーマンスで充分満足できた。



No comments: