Wednesday, March 11, 2009

we discover the criminals within

Perhaps no one remembers when jazz was something criminal, when mothers and fathers would shudder and make some kind of commentary on that music being nothing more than noise. I don't. But when I think of this time it gives the sometimes stodgy (let's be real now) world of jazz some of that outlaw glamor, makes it somehow hotter, EdGiEr. that!!

I say all that as an introduction to the night of Philippe's and my visit to the embassy, when an invite was "shot our way" to a little jam session featuring among others Philippe's Swedish-born, Swiss educated, and current Berlin resident (I refer to him simply as "confusing" seeing as how people often and oddly think Sweden and Switzerland are interchangeable) Christian. I've met him before, heard him play trumpet, and so I was pretty stoked to see him play again. The location too was doused in "hip," Berlin's New Cologne (neu koeln).

A word on Neu
Koeln: there are certain parts of town where you know gentrification--well--has a long way to go still. nK is one such place, sporting a high Arabic population (as opposed to Turkish Xberg) and a not minor lawlessness problem. This is not saying it is a ghetto or something, but there is a park there in which most of Berlin knows you can get any substance known to man. That having been said, it certainly has outcroppings of true, cool edge, Werkstadt being one.

Metro Stop in nK

The bar was divided into two parts, one drinkin' bar in which Chris was playing and something resembling a gallery in the back, filled with folks wielding posters and that paint-on glue stuff. My impression would be that they could be described as "Trotsky-ists." They just had that kind of vibe.

The jam session, however, had a whole nother vibe going on. These cats for the most part were really on the same page, playing very chill if not a bit conventional jazz. They were 100% into it, very talented, we were having a great time.

Then, at about 9:30 PM, I saw two holstered pistols hovering past. "OMG!! I'm back in Texas!". Then I realized they were attached to two police officers. "OMG!! I'm back at AHS!!" I perhaps unfairly assumed that they were there for the anti-capitalists, so I tried to ignore them, like the musicians were doing, but Philippe kept listening to their conversation with the bartender and overheard the word "laerm" meaning "noise" as in "we got a complaint about all this noise."AT 9:30...IN NEW FRAKKIN COLOGNE!!! Like don't these guys have ANYTHING better to do?! And if we were listening to craptastic pop, would that reaction be any different?!

Well anyway we got busted, and the musicians bashfully packed it in, in order to spend the rest of the night sitting around pondering our CRIMES OF MUSIC (yes, that was meant to be a bit dramaculous). We were pretty annoyed, but then Chris' girlfriend and one of her buddies showed up all
où est la partie?
and we had to tell the story again, "blah blah blah music blah blah blah guns," so they sat down and we just had drinks and complained until very late...11...WHEN IT MIGHT ACTUALLY BE TOO LATE FOR MAKING LAERM!!!!!

Not a fan of the jazz, this one apparently^^

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