“Holiday” Answers for Holiday Questions

Recently a Facebook post has been circulating titled: 13 things musicians are sick of hearing at the holiday dinner table. 

The blog brings to light the kinds of uncomfortable questions that we musicians are often asked when are forced to be face to face with our “responsible” family members. I for one am not tired of these kinds of questions or comments because for many years I have been awkwardly and brazenly squashing these dinner table chats with a ferocity all my own.

I have answered the questions from the aforementioned blog in a stream of consciousness style to simulate what would be my natural reaction to these kinds of questions. I do have family members that will vouch for my “angry dog in the corner” attitude if any of you have a hard time believing the authenticity of my answers.

I would hope that by now you have developed your own method of staving off the artistic civilians in your lives but just in case you haven’t feel free to use my answers of examples of how to (or not how to) respond.

 

1. So, are you still doing that music thing?

What music thing?

 

2. When are we going to hear you on the radio?

You might hear my music if you pick the right station. Try it on the way home. Make it a game. 

 

3. Hey my neighbor’s kid plays guitar, I think. Seriously he’s really good. You should have him play with you.

Sure. Call him right now. 

 

4. Sing something.

You first (and smile).

 

5. Did you hear the Nelson’s daughter is getting married this summer? Maybe you could play at her wedding. I think they’re on a tight budget so that could just be your gift. BTW, do you think you’ll ever tie the knot? Are you seeing anyone? (and the list goes on and on).

I remember the Nelsons. I can play at the their wedding if they want but I don’t believe in gifts. I don’t think I’ll ever tie the knot. Suicide is against my religion. I’m seeing several people actually. Do you like pictures?

 

6. So, what else do you do for work?  I mean, like, during the day.

Which day?

 

7. Have you tried out for The Voice yet?

I did but I was disqualified….I slept with a judge. That’s apparently a violation of their “rules.” 

 

8. Did you hear that cousin Jason is going to be having a baby? When are you gonna get on that?

Cousin Jason isn’t my type.

 

9. Well, we should probably put the family reunion on the calendar now because Jessica always has her music stuff on the weekends.

I wish I could but I have to set my car on fire that day. 

 

10. Have you heard that new Katy Perry song? Why don’t you sing more Katy Perry?

I don’t think Grandma’s hair is real. (Trust me. A completely “out” response often scares people off for good)


11. Hey, when you open for someone big you should tell me and I’ll come see ya.

Sure. You’ll just have to tell me how I can get in touch with you.

 

12. Can you put me on the list?

YOU have been on my list for years now. 

 

13. Your life always seems so interesting and fun. I wish I had fewer responsibilities.

What are responsibilities?

 

Happy Holidays,

Scott Boni

 

 

Favorite “new” city I visited in 2013

What’s new to me is not new to the rest of the world but it should come as no surprise that I pick Chicago. I have been to Chicago twice already this year and will have been three times by the end of 2013 (and will go for a fourth time early in 2014). If you actually spend any time with me you have probably heard me say “You know what’s a cool city? I mean a really cool city? F–king Chicago.”

I find Chicago to be a mixture of several other places I’ve been to or lived in that add up to it’s unique feel. It’s a very big city in terms of layout. It’s certainly not walkable in the same way that Boston is for example. Chicago also has a really cool mix of some areas that are very “city” (think lots of tall buildings) and other areas that have a great neighborhood feel (think Squirrel Hill or Shadyside if you are a Pittsburgh person). But unlike a lot of “cities” that are really just big small towns, Chicago is a CITY. Very cool things to see and do, delicious food, amazing architecture, great style (very important!), and lots of pretty folk walking about.

Here are some of the things I liked best:

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The BEAN (actually called Cloud Gate)! This work by Indian artist Anish Kapoor has been in Millenium Park since 2006. It’s amazing to see all the people and families that crowd around this piece. You can walk under it as well. Just keep in mind that it weighs 100 tons.

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This fantastic red building. I don’t know what it’s called but it appeared to be a boutique of some kind. For me the fact that it was red was all I needed. This should be my home…in a real cartoonish kind of way.

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The Green Mill jazz club on the North Side of Chicago (near Wrigley Field) is one of the coolest clubs I’ve ever been to. I heard a terrific set from pianist Laurence Hobgood who had Chicago trumpeter Marquis Hill in his quintet that night. I had the chance to speak with both of them which added to the experience. Get to the club early or you can stand in a line like this one.

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The Art Institute of Chicago is one of the most famous museums in America if not the world, but let’s be honest, for many of us it’s “the Ferris Bueller Museum.” This Andy Warhol painting waits to greet you in one of the 20th Century galleries. Works by Grant Wood, Gerhard Richter, Mark Rothko, Jasper Johns, Jackson Pollock, and more are hanging in this museum. What are you waiting for? Unfortunately I did not see Sloane Peterson.

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Chicago has tortas…

photo-12and burgers with TRUFFLE FRIES…

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and coffee and donuts…you get the point. No. I’m not sure how my clothes still fit either. Lots of trips to the gym I suppose.

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You really shouldn’t have a Burberry store if it’s not a plaid building. Chicago has that.

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They also have the Chicago Recording Company where Billy Corgan and Smashing Pumpkins recorded Siamese Dream and where R. Kelly recorded 12 Play. This was my “desk” for four days last February. I can’t wait to go back!

photo-18Next trip I’ll be sure to get another one of these!

So that’s just some of what I did in Chicago and I barely scratched the surface. Never been to the “windy city?” Dude, you should go.

Until next time,

Scott Boni

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Favorite Meal of 2013

The meal I had at Manzo at Eataly NYC is the winner of this category. Walking into this giant Italian market/restaurant is a little overwhelming as it is seems to always be filled with people. However, if you can handle a crowd and can work your way to one of the crowded restaurants you will not be disappointed…or if you are disappointed please don’t tell me. I have no desire to judge you.

I started with Mozzarella with Butternut Squash, Pumpkin Seeds, and Guanciale

Mozzarella @ Eataly NYCThis could have (and probably should have) been my entire meal. It was delicious and filling. The mozzarella is the freshest I have tasted and I learned a new word for bacon (see: guanciale).

If I walk into an Italian restaurant I’m going to order Spaghetti Pomodoro or Gnocchi. This is like my “first date” with an Italian restaurant. I’ll see what you do with one of those and then I’ll know if we have a future together. Eataly’s Gnocchi with Spicy Tomato Sauce and Fresh Ricotta will be seeing each other again we are both just busy right now.

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And for what it’s worth I think it is THE best bowl of gnocchi I’ve ever had. Bataly. Bastianich. Butter (that’s the key)!

And then Fatty (that’s me) wanted desert. So I spoke to the nice bartender and had the Cioccolato with Hazelnut Gelato.

photo-8Jesus, take the wheel was that good. Should I ever be given a “last meal” this is what I’m requesting. No not the entire meal just the cioccolato. It was ridiculous.

A close close second to Manzo at Eataly was Scarpetta (also in NYC). Scott Conant’s famous Spaghetti Pomodoro is well worth the trip. So is the Agnolotti  with Bone Marrow…ok…Scarpetta is going to get a post with pictures next. Stay tuned.

And third place goes to another Mario Batali spot: Otto Enotecca (in NYC – see the pattern?)

Until next time,

Scott Boni