Day 13: Thursday, July 16

The bus left at 10 a.m. and we arrived at the hotel in Torino, Italy, at 6 p.m. Metropolitan Torino has 1.4 million residents. At 9 p.m. representatives from the JVC Newport Jazz Festival Torino picked us up in Ford cars (Ford was one of the sponsors) and drove us to some park to have dinner before the performance. We locked several of our instruments in one of the cars and ate. After dinner, we rode across the city in the cars that didn't have the instruments, arriving at the Piazzetta Reale, a plaza surrounded by gorgeous architecture. Only one problem: the car with several instruments (including mine) was still back at the park because the lovely person driving it for the evening misplaced the keys. This incident also stranded three or four band members across town. Just as the lovely person gave permission to have the car window smashed with a rock so that the instruments could be accessed, someone arrived, having found her keys. Emotions ran the gamut from frustration to joy: only in Italy! Those of us at the stage were ready to go on as the car finally arrived. Whew! (The next day Phil told a great, relevant, humorous Jerry Dodgion story about the similarities between Italian Hell and musicians on a live TV show in Italy. Rehearsals went beautifully for both days but, when the live broadcast started all mayhem broke loose and the punch line is "they found the hammer.") This solved problem totally overshadowed the weak wire music stands that the trumpet and rhythm sections had to work with . . . again. Paul Merrill and I spotted several unauthorized videographers, we informed Billy, and he got security and nixed several of them, but they seemed to be everywhere. Six hundred people paid only $9 to hear the band close this eight-day event as this festival had major corporate (JVC) and government sponsors.

 

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