The World According to Keitho

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Zagreb

Posted by keithosaunders on August 4, 2015

I forgot how daunting writing can be.  When I started this blog I was nearly 10 years younger, and before that I had kept a blog on another site for several years.  I stopped blogging shortly after moving to California in 2010 and gave it another go in 2013.  That stint lasted two posts owing to the fact that at that time I was sans laptop and wireless; it’s tough to update on a cell phone, 4G or not.

California was not good for my marriage but it has been good for me work-wise.  I gig 5-7 nights a week and my teaching studio is thriving.  Put that all together and it means I can survive, assuming I avoid an automobile accident and/or serious illness. I am happy here and I have met some musicians who I really enjoy playing with.  I’m lucky in that regard.

The other day I did a gig with one of my favorite drummers, Ron Marabuto.  We had a long drive and on the way home we fell into a conversation about the old days in New York.  We barely overlapped in our time there — Ron lived there in the mid-70s through the mid 80s while I moved there in 1984.

We both agreed that real New Yorkers are indescribable to those who have never lived there. The native New Yorkers were what I remember most fondly from my time there.  Not the gentrifying strivers who move to New York fresh off of there Phi Beta whatever degrees from Ohio St or UCLA.  The people who grew up there.  These are the ones that can quote the Honeymooners as if it’s talmud.  These are the folks who will take you to Sheepshead Bay, or treat you to the best pizza in the North Bronx.

After Ron dropped me off I found myself waxing nostalgic for the old days.  There was something about being in my early 20s and living on my own for the first time in my life — well it was heady stuff.  The world was rife with possibility.

By coincidence I came across a video of a gig I did in Zagreb Yugoslavia in 1985 with Richie Cole.  I hadn’t realized this video exited and seeing and hearing my 24 year old self was jarring to say the least.  (though I did have a nice porn stash) I remember that Zagreb was the first stop on the tour and that my luggage had been lost during the flight.  It never did catch up to me —  we were moving from town to town in Europe, barely staying anywhere for more than one night. Consequently I only had the clothes I wore over on the plane as well as a few things I was able to buy once we got to Switzerland.

I remember being very tired and jet lagged after a long flight but I forced myself to stay up and walk around the town since I didn’t think I’d ever get back there.  (I was right) Yugoslavia was still a nation and it remains the only communist country I’ve ever visited, albeit commie-lite. I remember the band being interviewed for either radio or television and that we were raucous and irreverent – possibly due to the jetlag, but more likely due to being 20-something snot nosed jerks.  We played the concert on fumes and got drunk afterwards.

The bass player is Ed Howard and the drummer is Victor Jones.

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2 Responses to “Zagreb”

  1. verdun2 said

    And welcome back.
    v

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