Remembering the Bottom Line – Wintergarden – June 22, 2011
Originally scheduled for Rockefeller Park (at 7), so that’s where I went mucho early (and expected to have little access to musicians for signing). By 5:30, with no apparent preparatory activity, I ask around and the parks staff tell me it’s been relocated to Wintergarden (the weather was threatening). So I figure I will lose my positioning edge, but was so wrong, as I got front row and could stretch my legs.
John Leventhal masterminded the house band (Mojo Mancini) of which I got Shawn Pelton and Brian Mitchell (without any “stokes”). The narrator/host for the evening was Pete Fornatale (what, him again?) and he brought on a cavalcade of performers – musicians mostly but also a few storytellers – to re-live the glory days of the beloved departed Bottom Line. An extremely Greenwich Village-centric affair, including the topics of the tunes. Singers (and thus my sketching opportunities) were limited to one or two songs, so I had to work fast! Even still, I got only about half of ‘em at most. The grand finale (everyone on stage together now) was “Downtown”, which Fornatale informed us that despite having been recorded by a limey, was indeed written about Times Square by Tony Hatch. Gloriously, access easy to all performers for signing, although Roseanne Cash had split by the time the concert ended. Great vibe and still another spectacular only-in-New York event.