Taking the Triplets to the San Diego Symphony for a Musical Triple Play

IMG_6647We took “The Triplets” out to the symphony last night. “The Triplets?” Well, the family joke is that The Girl is 18, The Boy is 14, and between the two of them it is like having twins of 16. Now throw in The Boyfriend, and you get… 15-year-old TRIPLETS!

When I was young, I don’t remember going to the symphony, the theater, or operas. I don’t think we ever visited any of the cultural venues of Los Angeles County. There’s a lesson for aspiring parents- decades later, your kids probably won’t remember if you took them to specific activities! Save a boat load of cash and make up trips, and add in some family anecdotes to make it all seem real: “Oh yes, child, don’t you remember going to the Big City Ballet to see ‘Die Fledermaus?’ Strauss was your favorite as a toddler! Yes, you were three, and so excited to meet the Prima Ballerina backstage that you were sick all over your father’s shoes, so we had to take you home immediately after the show.”

IMG_6656No, seriously though, we went to ball games, on fabulous camping trips all the way up the coast to see redwoods and old family friends, and so many field trips as a school child, my parents didn’t need to revisit the La Brea Tar Pits or Natural History Museums with us. We’d covered that with the schools. My father usually had one of the great Southern California Jazz stations playing on these drives thereby placing a love of Coltrane, Davis, Bill Evans, and Brubeck in my heart. Thanks, dad, I am forever grateful!

IMG_6652I did, however, want to go to symphonies, ballets, operas and other events as I came into my own adulthood, and wanted to bring my children. When they were very young, both accompanied us to Indianapolis’s wonderful outdoor jazz festival- the Indy Jazz Fest, but no symphony or theater. Poor children, no Die Fledermaus for them, they had to settle for B.B. King, Keb’ Mo’ and more of our family’s favorites, like Los Lobos, Buddy Guy, Susan Tedeschi… the list went on.

IMG_6655Last night’s concert was the season finale for the San Diego Symphony. What a fabulous choice of pieces they performed! We love Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3 and Brahms’s Symphony No. 2. We were also introduced to a newer composer, Aaron Jay Kernis. His 1990 “Musica Celestis” was amazing- particularly because I don’t tend to like newer compositions.

A wonderful evening overall. And I love the architectural details found in the symphony hall and snapped a few photos to hold me over until next season. I hope you enjoy them, too!


Jazz Bar Again… Only Took about 30 Years

About 30 years ago my family went on a Caribbean cruise to celebrate my brother’s recuperation from being utterly creamed by a drunk driver. I’m not too sure of the details, but essentially, my brother’s insurance settlement paid for a lot of that trip. I never asked about the details, I was just glad that at 17 I didn’t lose my brother and one year later he was off crutches and healing. PSA- Don’t drink and drive, people.

There was a jazz bar on that cruise ship. Did you know that 18 is the legal drinking age at sea? And what did I do when I saw the opportunity to sit in with the Big People, enjoy their adult beverages, and appreciate good music?  I ordered myself a gin and tonic- (something I thought my martini-loving gramma would have suggested) and went to that bar almost every evening, that’s what I did! Note- one gin and tonic each night… I obviously had issues with excessive drinking, driving or not.

We had a great trip, but what I remember most was how anxious I was to get back home… ten days earlier I had met the most fabulous guy. He was so handsome, funny, smart, attentive and most surprising of all, interested in ME! Jackpot!

Twenty-nine years, five months and a couple dozen days later, he’s taking me to dinner where we can listen to jazz. The music of Gilbert and Lorraine Castellanos is featured at Croce’s Park West in San Diego tonight. I can’t recommend this venue enough- Croce’s Park West on Banker’s Hill is one of the nicest, most comfortable places we’ve spent time at in a long time. The food- excellent, the atmosphere- tops. And the music? Perfect. I think Jim would be proud, Ingrid.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Cocktails at Croce's
Cocktails at Croce’s
Gilbert and Lorraine Castellanos click to link to Lorraine’s site- besosdecoco.com
Live jazz... doesn't get any better!
Live jazz… doesn’t get any better! Click photo to link to Gilbert Castellanos’s site- gilbertcastellanosjazz.com
Croce's Park West, Banker's Hill in San Diego
Photo links to croces.com Loved it!

Croce’s Portal | Portal to all things Croce’s | Jim Croce, Ingrid Croce, A.J. Croce and Croces Park West.