Great gigs I haven’t played

My klezmer band, Yiddishe Cup, has not played the following places:

1.The Shrine to American Music, Vermillion, North Dakota
2. New York Mills (Minn.) Regional Cultural Center
3. Southern Cross International Music Festival, Brisbane, Australia
4. Austin (Tex.) JCC, Israel Independence Day celebration
5. Klezmer Festival, Fuerth, Germany
6. Jewish Music Festival, Jackson Hole, Wyoming

We almost did.

Maybe we came in second.

Second stinks. For example, maybe 30 clarinetists audition for the Kansas City Symphony, and 29 clarinetists get to add “finalist” to their resumes.

Australia . . . That would have looked good in our obits.

We’ve been to Texas three times, Florida four times, Missouri nine times. We’ve played abroad twice. The first time was New York City. That’s  foreign. The second time abroad: Windsor, Canada. (Quiz: What foreign country do you reach first if you head due south from Detroit? The answer: Canada. Windsor is south of Detroit.)

For our Australian non-gig, I wondered if Yiddishe Cup’s synthesizer would be compatible with the electrical system in Australia. And should we purchase the airplane tickets, or have the Aussies do it? They might route us through Greenland. Another question: Would the Australian sponsor have enough money to bring us over?

They didn’t have.

Chanukah in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. That was the subject line of an email.  In the email’s text, a Chabad rabbi asked about Yiddishe Cup doing a Chanukah bash at three ski hotels.

We didn’t get the gig. That was right up there with our Australian non-gig.

Not a total loss.  I have now non-surfed in Australia and non-skiied in Wyoming.

About the Author
Bert Stratton is a musician and landlord in Cleveland, Ohio. He is an occasional contributor to the New York Times, Jerusalem Post, Cleveland Plain Dealer and City Journal. Byliner chose his essay "The Landlord's Tale" as one of the best magazine articles of 2012. He blogs at "Klezmer Guy: Real Music & Real Estate."