Fireworks in Seattle
Celebrants at the 39th Annual Fourth of Jul-Ivar’s Independence
Day festival were witness to not only a great fireworks display,
but also hot performance by Chris and the band. Myrtle Edwards
Park on Seattle’s waterfront was the setting for this day
of music and festivities.
Just as the sun was about to disappear behind
some clouds, the Botti Band took the stage. The stage was
bathed in a warm golden glow that created the perfect ambience
for the evening’s first song,
When I Fall in Love
Hundreds of audience members, on blankets
or folding chairs, with food and drink by their side, settled
in for this just under 90-minute show. Hundreds more were
strolling by on a walking path just off the side of the stage.
Every time the band would start a new song, the strolling
crowd would stop. Some interesting traffic jams were created!
Chris was joined by Shane Fontayne (guitar),
Jon Ossman (bass), Karen Teperberg (drums) and Wayne Linsey
(keyboards). They played a selection of songs off the
CD and some older favorites off
Down the World
Midnight Without You
A really hot version of
ended the evening’s show. This song seemed a fitting end to
the set. The crowd was up and moving—starting the countdown
to finale of the evening—Jeff Kashiwa (a Seattle native) and
For some lucky music lovers, who were at the
right place (a waterfront hotel), at the right time (just
before midnight)—a jam session that included Chris Botti,
Wayne Linsey and saxaphonist Jeff Kashiwa. It was quick (four
songs) and a really great way to end a really great day! (
Chris and band in Dallas
The Majestic Theatre has been holding court over Dallas’ entertainment
for nearly a century. On this warm summer evening, two of
the jazz worlds brightest stars, Chris Botti and Brian Culbertson,
came together to bring their own style of music to the jazz
fans of Dallas.
Brian Culbertson opened the evening with a
nearly hour-long set of high-energy music. The band that Culbertson
brought to Dallas included his dad on trumpet and saxman Michael
With the audience properly ‘warmed’ up, Chris
took the stage with band members Jon Ossman (guitar), Marc
Shulman (bass), Karen Teperberg (drums) and Wayne Linsey (keyboards).
Chris and company opened with
When I Fall
and followed up with several more songs off of
CD. One of the highlights of the
evening was the Botti/Linsey rendition of
My Funny Valentine
Linsey’s piano solo during this song brought a hush to the
audience, followed by thunderous applause.
After the show, Chris and Brian made their
way to the lobby of this beautiful theatre to sign autographs,
take pictures and chat with fans. The ‘buzz’ of the evening?
People making plans to see another Botti show in a couple
of weeks, this time in Houston. (
June 27, 2003
Chris and the band sizzle at the St.
Louis Jazz Festival
Perfect weather, warm spirits and great fun were the flavors
of the day at the U.S. Bank St. Louis Jazz Festival in St.
Louis, Missouri on June 20, 2003. Chris Botti sizzled as he
took the main Emerson stage at 5:30 p.m. in Shaw Park. Greeted
by an enthusiastic crowd, Botti opened the show with
I Fall In Love
. Next on the set was
to the delight of the crowd, a hot rendition of
was to follow.
The solos were spectacular throughout the
show. Marc Shulman on guitar was in fine form as he wowed
the crowd throughout various songs. His energy level was outstanding
and Botti’s ability to let him flow was equally amazing. As
he took command of the drums, Keith Carlock left everyone
breathless during more than one moment of the show. (This
was Keith’s last performance before going back on tour with
Once again, Chris shared his sad tale of love
lost, as he began
Alone in the City
. And again, Harvey
Jones couldn’t help himself, as he chimed in about the gal
who broke his heart. After thinking on the subject ever so
briefly, Harvey managed to roll off a few more names. The
audience laughed when the list was revisited with impeccable
timing throughout the show.
Playing masterfully on
Harvey and Chris left the crowd silent in awe. Watching Jon
Ossman on bass was pure delight, as he continually plucked
out funky grooves all evening long. A couple of youngsters
found themselves being serenaded by Chris at the last part
of the set. The look on one little girl’s face was that of
total adoration, as she swayed in time to the band’s rhythm.
Botti wove a tapestry of brilliant hues, as
he highlighted various songs from his
CD was a flawless work of perfection. The standing ovation
at the end of this show speaks for itself. (
June 20, 2003
Chris wins National
Smooth Jazz Award
Chris was voted the winner in three categories:
*Male Artist of the Year
*Album of the Year-
*Brass Player of the Year
June 18, 2003
THANK YOU MESSAGE
Bottiology caught up with Chris on Friday at the St. Louis
concert and he asked us to convey his heartfelt thanks regarding
last week's National Smooth Jazz Awards announcement (Brass
Player of the Year, Album of the Year, Male Artist of the
"I want to extend a very special thank
you to all of you for taking the time to vote for me. I am
honored and thrilled to have been given these awards. Thanks
again for supporting me and my music. I would also like to
extend my thanks to Kipper, the producer on Night Sessions,
and to Caroline Rhea for her friendship and for helping me
bring my music to an even wider audience over the past several
months. I look forward to seeing all of you on tour this summer.!
Dave Koz and Friends tour
Dave Koz is set to start his 2003 tour in October. Dave will
be joined by
, Marc Antoine and
The following dates are the first to be confirmed:
10.04.2003 Thornton Winery, Temecula, CA
10.05.2003 Thornton Winery, Temecula, CA
10.10.2003 Sunset Station, Las Vegas, NV
10.11.2003 Greek Theatre, Los Angeles, CA
10.12.2003 S.B. Bowl, Santa Barbara, CA
These are the first confirmed dates. Other
dates will be listed as they become confirmed.
Jazz fans arrive early!
Newport Beach California again played host to the
WAVE’S Hyatt Newporter Jazz Festival. This three-day
event brought Chris and the band in early on Saturday
afternoon. If you arrived much past 10:00 a.m., parking
was already at capacity and long lines to get in had
By the time that Chris and the band took the
stage just after 12:30 p.m., the seating and lawn areas were
to capcity. Southern California jazz fans seemed anxious to
get their day of jazz started!
The “West Coast band”, made up of Jon Ossman
Karen Teperberg (drums), Wayne Linsey (keyboards) and
Oz Noy (guitar) started their set with
When I Fall in
Having warmed up the crowd on a cooler-than-usual Southern
California day, the band brought them to their
During the one hour set, Chris made his usual
the stage to serenade a lucky audience member. Chris
also wandered through the VIP section much to the
delight of the crowd.
Judging from the applause level, this group
they made the early morning trek to Newport Beach!
Chris returns to Thornton winery
Colder than expected temperatures in Temecula, didn’t dampen
the spirits of concertgoers who filled all of the outdoor
folding chairs at Thornton Winery, Sunday,
Attendees might have been a little chilled,
however, they were quickly warmed up by the high-energy show
put on by Chris and band. First, the crowd was treated to
an energetic opening performance by Euge Groove. The talented
saxophonist turned up the burners as he strolled into the
audience and wailed away with his trademark grooves.
With the guitar spot occupied by Shane Fontayne,
Chris took the stage playing
December CD. As was the case seven months earlier at the October
Thornton Winery performance, the sound system was a little
uncooperative during the opening number. With sound problems
quickly resolved, Chris and band went on to play beautifully,
much to the delight of the crowd—many of whom had a wine glass
Show highlights included an invitation by
Chris for Euge to join him on
. In a gesture of musician-to-musician
camaraderie, Chris held out his own microphone (attached to
his trumpet) toward Euge’s sax for maximum sound amplification.
Another show highlight was Shane’s vocal and
guitar performance of
off of his own, recently-released
What Nature Intended
. (Chris performs on four
tracks on Shane’s CD, including
.) Also, noteworthy
was Wayne Linsey sitting in on keyboards. And as usual, there
were stellar performances by regular band members Jon Ossman
(bass) and Karen Teperberg (drums).
May 4, 2003
Chris and the band play Jacksonville
Is there a better way to spend a spring break? Florida sunshine,
great music and Chris Botti. Metropolitan Park in downtown
Jacksonville Florida was one of the venues that played host
to the performers at this year’s festival. Chris and the band
took the stage in the early afternoon on Saturday to a very
receptive crowd of jazz music enthusiasts. It was clear that
many were there specifically to hear Chris!
Chris was joined on stage by regulars Harvey
Jones (keyboards) and Jon Ossman (bass). Keith Carlock (drums),
having played with the band during the East Coast shows earlier
this year, was joined by first-timer Oz Noy (guitar). The
two newcomers delighted the audience with their respective
drum and guitar solos.
During the just-over-an-hour set, Chris made
two trips out into the audience to serenade lucky audience
members. He noted that this was the most sun that he had gotten
this year! After the show, Chris made his usual jaunt out
into the audience to sign CD’s, take pictures and chat with
fans, new and old. It was noted by many happy fans that Chris
spent more time at this “meet and greet” than he spent on
stage that afternoon. No one left disappointed!
April 12, 2003
in the desert
Palm Desert's McCallum Theatre played host to the first Botti
Band gig of the new year. Chris and the band made the trek out
to this desert community and were greeted with a sold-out crowd.
The 1,127-seat theatre was filled with jazz fans eager to see
the latest show in the "Fitz's Jazz Café" series,
an annual event at the theatre.
joined by regular band members Jon Ossman
and Karen Teperberg. Shane Fontayne and John Beasley (sitting
in for Harvey Jones) also played in this first west coast gig.
Fall in Love
started the evening's show along with one big
surprise for the crowd. Guitarist Shane Fontayne wowed the audience
when he performed a song from his new CD,
What Nature Intended.
features Shane on vocals and displaying his amazing guitar work.
(Chris does trumpet duty on this track and two others on Shane's
new CD). For many audience members, this was their first time
hearing Shane sing! Judging from the response, the performance
was enthusiastically received. (For more info on Shane's CD visit:
ended with Chris spending nearly two hours, after the show, signing
CD's, posing for pictures and chatting with many happy fans. Shane
Chris in the lobby of the McCallum Theatre to sign his new CD
and chat with the many new fans that were made that evening. (
What could be better than Chris Botti, Craig Chaquico, Patti Austin,
Santa Barbara and raising money for charity? Santa Barbara's Lobero
Theatre played host to "A Night of Jazz" charity concert
benefiting the local Endowment for Youth Committee. This sold
out show brought together these three great artists for a night
of great music and a lot of fun.
Tariqh Akoni assembled an amazing band to back up the evening's
guest performers, who came to the Lobero without their own bands.
First to take the stage was Craig Chaquico, former Jefferson Starship
guitarist. He played a high-energy, 30-minute set that had the
audience on their feet and clapping.
took the stage and started the set with his beautiful rendition
CD). It was truly
a roller coaster ride for the audience. Chris brought a more jazzy,
laid back feel to his set. He treated the audience to several
songs off the Night Sessions CD, his version of
My Funny Valentine
and ended with
. With the audience back on their
feet it was time for Patti Austin.
seemed a bit confused at this point. Ms. Austin did not break
out into song until about ten minutes into her set. She instead
entertained the audience with a stand-up comedy act! Finally gave
the audience what they had come to hear--her great voice.
audience seemed to really enjoy the performers gathered together
for this show It was a warm sunny day in Santa Barbara. The music
was great and money was raised for a good cause. What could be
February 1, 2003
Chris joins Caroline Rhea show
Chris Botti will be appearing on the Caroline Rhea show from now
until late April. Effective with the Tuesday, January 14th show,
he will be appearing on a “regular basis” for all but the last
month of the current TV season.
For ticket information:
Chris plays to several crowds at CES
Visitors to the 2003 International Consumer Electronics
Show in Las Vegas were treated to something new this year—the
sound of Chris Botti playing the trumpet in the south hall
of the Las Vegas Convention Center.
Micro Exchange of Dallas, TX brought Chris
to Las Vegas to help promote its booth at this year’s show.
Playing for about 15 minutes every couple of hours, Chris
drew crowds to the booth with selected songs from
Slowing Down the World
January 10, 2003
New Year’s Eve on Pleasure Island
Chris and the band delighted the New Year’s revelers
with three amazing shows. The evening started out very
windy and wet. Many partiers who had intended to be
outside for the B-52’s and Joan Jett came inside the
Pleasure Island Jazz Company Club and seemed delighted at
the music they found.
The day started very early for Chris, who
appeared on a
local Orlando television show to promote the evening’s
festivities. The evening would include three one-hour shows
—9:15 p.m., 10:45 p.m. and 12:15 a.m.. Fireworks were
also scheduled for stroke of midnight.
The band started out the first set with
I fall in Love
and followed up with many of the songs
that regular Botti Band fans are accustomed to hearing. Chris
joked that he was not sure how they would get through the
three sets, because the band only knew seven songs!
The second set brought Jon Ossman to the microphone
Midnight Without You
. Several attendees at
the first show had such a great time that they stayed for
the second and third show—much to the dismay of those standing
outside hoping to get in.
With the break between the second and third
show at hand and midnight fast approaching, the band was able
to take a quick break and duck outside and watch the fireworks
(accompanied by rain) with friends who had traveled to Orlando
to help usher in the new year.
Back on stage just after midnight, the band
Regroovable, Light the Stars
. Many of the audience members who came in the jazz
club just to escape the bad weather left new fans of Chris’s
music. For those who made the journey to Pleasure Island,
it was a memorable way to celebrate the start of 2003. (
Holiday music jazz style!
Keyboardist Jeff Lorber and saxman Gerald Albright
were joined by Chris Botti to bring the sound of the holidays
to the Pacific Northwest. First stop on their mini tour was
Seattle’s King Cat Club. It was a typical cold and rainy day
in Seattle, but the enthusiasm of the 300-plus concert goers
was not dampened by the weather.
Lorber started the evening by telling everyone
that the beautiful music they would be listening to that evening
were arrangements from Chris’ holiday CD
With that said, they started the evening’s music with
. The crowd was treated to many brass duets
between Botti and Albright. They didn’t seem to mind several
sound problems that plagued the evening’s show. On several
occasions, Chris stopped mid note to look down at his monitor
and tell the audience that there must be a poltergeist living
Judging from the enthusiastic response at
the end of the show and the large number of people that stopped
to talk with Chris and have him sign their CD’s, there were
many happy jazz fans in Seattle that evening. (
your support for Chris!
The Caroline Rhea Show is providing an opportunity for
all of his fans to ask a question of Chris. Just go to:
Scroll down to the bottom of the page and use the form
to tell Caroline how you feel about Chris and pose your question.
No guarantees that it will be answered, but it is
a great way to show your support for Chris and maybe get an
(December 10, 2002)
Bachs Selmer TR300-H Trumpet auctioned on ebay.
Signed trumpet fetches $$
A Chris Botti autographed trumpet
was auctioned-off today for $515 on ebay. Chris signed the
trumpet for Sony (who posted the auction) a couple of weeks
ago while in New York. A portion of the net proceeds from
the autographed Bachs Selmer TR300-H Trumpet will be donated
to The Kristen Ann Carr Fund and Musicians On Call. A total
of 18 bids were received before bidding closed. (
included in jazz reference book
just released (October 2002) All Music Guide to Jazz--4th
Edition features references to more than 1,700 jazz musicians
and 18,000 recordings. Included is a section on Chris Botti
which gives an overview of his career and reviews of some
of his solo projects.
is just under 1,500 pages--is a must-have reference tool for
any jazz aficionado. (
November 25, 2002
Chris journeys solo up CA coastline
Huge waves crashed along the rocks below the Pacific Coast
Highway and the rain from the first winter storm washed rocks
and mud down from the hills. Regardless of the weather, the
farming city of Oxnard located an hour north of Los Angeles,
stood ready to welcome (for the first time ever) Chris Botti
and several other smooth jazz artists. The performers were
branded, if only for the evening, as the West Coast All Stars.
The Oxnard Performing Arts Center held 1,604 seats, most of
which were occupied by locals starved for jazz music. The
event was being recorded for a live CD and DVD, adding to
the evening's excitement.
The large stage was cluttered with equipment
belonging to about 15 musicians, all appearing at one time
or another during the two-hour plus show. A thick, dry-ice
fog hung above the stage, giving the lights an eerie golden
glow. A husky offstage voice recited a long introduction about
the creation of the world and the importance of music. “Music
is color you see with your ears,” the voice boomed. And then
the West Coast All Stars took the stage, playing a mixture
of jazz, funk and hip-hop.
Chris was introduced early in the show and
, accompanied by the All Stars. He
followed with a jazzy version of
Slowing Down the World
CD. He clearly enjoyed the
challenge of playing with a new group of musicians and walked
around the stage, playing to the keyboard player, the drummers
in the back of the stage and to the audience. His laughter
illustrated the fun he was having with the group.
After a brief intermission, the funky divas
of En Vogue excited the crowd with a few numbers off their
latest album. Tom Scott, the talented multi-reed player, followed
with a fabulous performance on saxophone, playing his song
Just a Little
off his latest album
Next on the stage was the amazing South African
vocalist and guitarist Jonathan Butler. He played
, a selection off his 25th CD,
just released. His acoustic guitar artistry was inspiring
and had the whole crowd on its feet for the first time that
evening. He continued with a soulful rendition of a Bob Marley
No Woman, No Cry
the audience. Chris joined Tom Scott in the horn section during
Saxophonist Eric Marienthal finally arrived
toward the end of the show, straight from Las Vegas, where
he had just finished performing earlier in the day. His travel
had been delayed by the storms. Even though Chris had to catch
a very early flight to the East Coast the following morning,
he graciously stayed until the very end of the show and joined
Eric on stage to perform Stanley Turrentine’s
with Eric, just as he had done with Jeff Lorber on Eric’s
CD Turn Up the Heat. It was an evening of magical performances
that Oxnard will be talking about for quite awhile. (
Sycuan Casino plays host to Botti Band
The smoky haze and the jingle
of hundreds of slot machines were telltale signs that the venue
for Chris’s Thursday night show was not a normal California
concert hall. In fact, the show was held on the Sycuan Reservation,
about 30 miles east of San Diego, so California’s smoking and
gambling laws did not apply. Above the din on the casino floor
was the Showcase Theater, a 456-seat arena well suited for an
intimate performance by Chris and the Botti band; not surprisingly,
the show had sold out several weeks before. Karen Teperberg
and Jon Ossman appeared well rested, coming off a short break
after their East Coast tour and “the Ambassador” Shane Fontayne
rejoined the band after a month-long absence. Sitting in for
Harvey Jones was John Beasley. Also no stranger to the group,
he was last seen playing with the Botti band at the Chronicle
Pavilion show in Concord in August. (
News, August 17, 2002
The audience gave Chris a warm welcome as he
walked onstage, dressed in his dark blue Prada suit and white
linen shirt. He launched right into
When I Fall In Love
followed by several songs off
he called his latest CD by sheer force of habit. He quickly
followed up his slip, saying that it actually wasn’t his most
recent release, but he’d get to more on that in a minute.
The crowd was already loosening up; just as
Chris was about to start another song, someone from the audience
yelled out “Hey, nice suit!” He laughed shyly and admitted that
it was a Prada suit, but added that he did get it at the Prada
outlet just outside of Milan.
, which had
not been performed in more than a month due to Shane’s absence,
Chris mentioned his new holiday CD
. He told
the audience he didn’t really feel comfortable playing any of
the holiday tunes that night and asked if it wasn’t hard for
everyone to get into the Christmas spirit before Thanksgiving.
“Not when we listen to your new CD,” someone from the crowd
shot back. Chris and Shane went on to play a beautiful version
of the song with Jon joining in on bass.
After a very jazzy rendition of My
by Chris and John Beasley on keyboards, Chris
gave the band a short rest by telling an extended version of
his sad story of the lost love which inspired
Alone in the
. He described the noise he heard every night from
his tiny apartment in the meatpacking district of New York City
(comparing it to a scene straight out of
He continued on about how his girlfriend had just left him the
night before and of watching the huge snowstorm blanket the
city accompanied by a hush over Manhattan. Chris jumped off
the stage and strolled half way back into the audience to serenade
a lucky couple. The venue’s lighting technicians had a hard
time keeping up with Chris and he played half the song in the
dark before the spotlight finally found him.
As usual, Chris stayed after the show to autograph
CDs and meet some of his fans, although ringing slot machines
were a new backdrop for him. Once the line of fans dwindled
down, Chris was presented with a glass bowl filled with
contest entries for a personalized autographed copy of
With much fanfare, Chris drew the names of the three lucky winners
and duly personalized the CDs. With that done, Chris was off
to Oxnard, the next stop on this weekend visit to Southern California.
November 7, 2002
Fourplay with Chris Botti,
Devoted Chris Botti fans had been looking forward to the October
25th Chicago show for months and the day had finally arrived.
The close-to-sold-out, 3,605-seat Chicago Theatre would be one
of the largest venues the band would play in all year. Its location
in the center of the country made it ideal for fan pilgrimages
from both coasts and many states in between. The venue also
brought back warm memories for Chris who had played Chicago
Theatre with Sting in December 1999 at the beginning of the
Brand New Day
tour. (Evidence of that tour was left
in the way of a caricature of Sting’s band drawn on a backstage
wall by guitarist Dominic Miller.)
Sponsored by WNUA, Chicago’s smooth radio jazz
station, the show also featured jazz super group Fourplay. Additionally,
the station was promoting the release of its Smooth Jazz CD
Sampler Volume 15, benefiting Cares for Kids charities.
Chris, elegantly dressed in his brown Dolce
& Gabbana pinstriped suit, opened the show with the classic
My Funny Valentine
. From the very first enthusiastic
round of applause, it was clear that Chicagoans loved jazz—Botti
As the band settled into the regular set, the
applause continued to build. As usual, Karen Teperberg anchored
the back of the huge stage from behind her drum set. Marc Shulman
on guitar and Jon Ossman on bass stood on the left side of the
stage while Harvey Jones sat behind his keyboard to Chris’s
Many of the popular songs from Night Sessions
were covered and, judging from the crowd’s positive response,
very well received. In his intro for
Chris (ever the comedian) mentioned that he thought parts of
Chicago would qualify it as one of the naughtiest cities in
crowd favorites. Each band member added their individual sound
to the songs—Jon on
, Karen on
. Harvey contributed a poignant rendition of
and Marc set the stage on fire with his
In what has become his trademark, Chris ventured
off the stage and into the audience midway through the show
to find several unsuspecting serenade candidates. In the third
row of the orchestra pit he found a five-year-old little girl
sitting with her parents. He stopped in front of her and began
When I Fall in Love
. Chris wandered farther
back along the aisle and stopped to play for a couple of other
women before finishing the song.
With Chris back on stage, one of Marc’s strings
suddenly snapped during
Since it was at
the end of the set, Marc decided to finish the song with five
strings instead of six. His playing was so mesmerizing, that
the crowd never noticed.
At the end of his show, Chris announced that
he would be signing CDs during intermission. Many who had traveled
long distances to attend the shows had the opportunity to get
an autograph and a quick photo. In fact, the line was so long
that Chris was still in the lobby chatting with fans when Fourplay
took the stage almost 45 minutes later. Pianist Bob James, bassist
Nathan East, drummer Harvey Mason and famed guitarist Larry
Carlton entertained the crowd. It was also their first appearance
in Chicago in a few years. Even so, judging from the empty seats
that had popped up for the second half of the show, many had
come just to hear the first half of the program. Yet another
instance where the opening act can be just as (if not more)
popular than the main event.
(October 25, 2002)
The eyes of an entire nation were focused nervously on the Maryland/northern
Virginia area late last week as news of yet more random shootings
were confirmed by the local authorities. Everyone who planned
to attend the Annapolis and Alexandria shows breathed a collective
sigh of relief when the news of the sniper’s capture was finally
announced, the same afternoon that Chris and the Botti band
arrived for their sound check at the Rams Head Tavern in Annapolis,
Maryland. With the sniper off the streets, everyone could relax
and enjoy the music.
The Rams Head Tavern
is a local landmark, the site of the first brewery in the area,
dating back to the early 1700’s. It is an intimate club with
a casual atmosphere, and a perfect place to hear live music.
Chris and the band had performed at the Rams Head earlier this
year, and many in the audience were returning fans eager to
add to their Botti experiences.
to the usual set, Chris threw in a few surprises.
, off his
Midnight Without You
CD was a nice
addition. The East Coast fans were also treated to their first
sampling of Jon Ossman stepping up to the mike to sing
, which had the crowd up on their feet. Marc
Shulman astounded the audience with his incredible solo work.
club-like atmosphere allowed for greater interaction with the
audience. Fans shouted out their requests to Chris—most popular
was the desire to hear material off his brand new holiday CD
. Chris thanked everyone for their interest
and support but said he wasn’t ready to break out the Christmas
music until after Thanksgiving.
After the second
set and his usual marathon autograph and photo session with
the fans, Chris joined the other members of the band for a quick
bite to eat and then it was on to nearby Alexandria, Virginia
for the next night’s show.
The Birchmere Music
Hall was another familiar venue for the band. Chris mentioned
to the audience that he had last played there February 11, the
night before he and the band left for Park City, Utah, where
they played an outdoor concert at the Winter Olympics. Chris
told the story of how his trumpet kept sticking to his lips
because of the subzero temperatures, not something he is anxious
to repeat anytime soon.
warm up shows in Annapolis, the band continued building on their
high-energy performance. Marc Shulman collected many new fans,
most witnessing his red-hot playing for the first time. The
show followed the usual set, opening with
My Funny Valentine
covering many of the
tracks with a few
of the earlier numbers thrown into the mix. Just like the night
before, the enthusiastic crowd was able to coax Chris and the
band back onto the stage for an encore at the end, and both
times they were more than happy to oblige.
time to waste, the equipment was packed up and ready to go to
the main event on their mini tour, the elegant Chicago Theatre.
(October 23-24, 2002)
Chris joins Sting at L.A.
Chris accompanied Sting
last night as a featured soloist at the star-studded Carousel
of Hope fundraiser, held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, Beverly
Hills, CA. Chris shared the set list with bottilogy.com
the morning after the event—
Every Little Thing She Does is
Englishman in New York
Every Breath You Take
Along with Chris, several
other familiar faces joined Sting. Present were Dominic
Miller, Vinnie Colaiuta, Christian McBride and David Hartley.
In addition to Sting,
there were notable performances by Elton John and B.B. King
to benefit Hollywood’s largest health charity fundraiser.
For photos, visit
use “sting” as a search word. Chris can be seen playing
the trumpet in image #
the Trumpet Studio – An Evening of Fun and Surprises with Birthday
Boy Chris Botti
Early in the show, many Chris Botti fans must have wondered
if they had mistakenly moseyed into the local comedy club instead
of Houston’s hot new jazz venue, the Iris Jazz Resort, on Saturday
night. There was so much laughter mixed in with the music;
from the beginning of the first set to the raucous standing
ovation for the encore to close the extraordinary second show
, it was clear that Mr.
Botti was out to enjoy himself. After all, Chris was celebrating
birthday, and was delighted to share his
special evening with the
The first show began calmly
enough, with Chris and the Botti band taking the stage shortly
All the familiar
faces were there with one exception: instead of Shane
Fontayne, the talented Marc Shulman wowed the crowd with his
amazing electric guitar work. Marc operated in his own
little postage-stamp corner of the stage, surrounded by an arc
of pedals and gizmos, which he pushed and tapped dramatically
throughout the show to accentuate his guitar sounds. Chris
and the band launched right into a beautiful rendition of
I Fall in Love
to start the show. The tables were
packed in so close together along the edge of the stage, all
front row guests were treated to their own personal serenades
from Chris at one point or another. Early on, Chris showed
his mischievous side. During Marc’s solo, Chris noticed
that a fan had called her friend to share the music. Chris
walked over to her table, grabbed the cell phone and placed
it on the music stand right in front of Marc so the person could
get an ear-full. Chris just howled with laughter at his
In between songs, Chris
was unusually chatty. “When Condé Nast ranked the top
‘naughtiest’ cities, I think Houston came in second or third,
,” he grinned. The
audience roared in agreement. He went on to mention that
the last time they’d played in Houston (in 1999 at the Aerial
Theatre), he and Harvey sent the other band members ahead to
the next destination so they could stay and play in Houston
for a couple of days. They had such a great time, they
barely made it to
in time for the next
show! Chris was already worried about which stories he
could tell the Sunday night crowd because his ex-girlfriend’s
mother (who lives in
Houston) was coming to
the show. Talk of the ex-girlfriend led to his next song,
Alone in the City
, which prompted Chris to begin the
extended version of how he wrote the song at the outset of one
of the biggest snowstorms to hit New York (Harvey’s cue to provide
chilly snow-drift sound effects), about his apartment in the
meat-packing district with a view of the Empire State Building,
etc. etc., and how the girl from Houston had dumped him the
night before. Members of the audience chimed in with elements
that Chris had forgotten to add to his story. Someone
shouted, “That’s not what you say on the DVD,” which had Chris
giggling on the stage and looking to his long-time fans for
a response (more laughter). Someone from the bar offered
to send him some sake since it was his birthday, but Chris politely
declined. Chris continued with more stories of how he
and the ex got back together months later and took a trip to
the Amalfi Coast, where he wrote
The Steps of Positano
This gave Harvey a chance to provide more ribbing for Chris,
all in good fun.
The intimate club setting
also gave fans a chance to shout out requests, of which there
were many. At one point in between songs, Chris
stopped in mid sentence, peered out into the audience and asked,
“What is this? Inside the trumpet studio?? Do we
have a call…? Why yes, it’s Gina from Oklahoma and she’d
like to request Hall and Oates’
,” he snickered.
The first show ended with
My Funny Valentine
, a song made famous by Chris’s favorite,
Miles Davis. At the end of the set, the owner of the club
brought up a birthday cake and introduced Chris to a young lady
who shared his birthday; she was turning 17. Chris graciously
did a quick
on his trumpet and the two
blew out the candles on their cake. What fans didn’t realize
was that the first show was just a warm-up and the real fun
was just about to begin.
After an hour break, which
Chris spent mostly chatting with fans and signing CDs, the band
returned for the second set just after 11:00 p.m. Most
of the people from the first show stayed for more. Chris
, something he rarely performs
from his second album. Next they did
and Marc Shulman, the “Shul-maniac” as Chris calls him, took
off playing until there was almost smoke coming from his electric
guitar. Continuing the string of rarely heard songs, Chris
played a very emotional
Light the Stars
which he hasn’t
performed publicly (for West Coast fans) since last spring.
Chris ventured out into the audience to serenade a special friend
from Houston with his favorite song
Harvey accompanied on keyboards.
Taunts for Chris to sing
came from the audience in between numbers. Although Chris
sings two tracks on his new CD
, he wasn’t about
, even on his birthday. Someone else
Midnight Without You
and Chris just laughed
louder. He explained, “We haven’t played that song publicly
for seven years and we haven’t rehearsed it for ten…it’ll be
a train wreck!” The usually mellow Jon Ossman stepped
to the front of the stage and offered to do the vocals.
The audience roared with encouragement. Chris just shook
his head in disbelief and started to play. Jon came up
to the microphone and began to play and sing and lo and behold,
he sounded great! His voice was perfectly suited to the
song, originally covered on Chris’s CD by the same title by
Paul Buchanan of the Blue Nile. The crowd was on their
feet, cheering Jon on; by the time he finished, the whole house
was going crazy. Chris closed the show with a soft
When I Fall in Love
, but the crowd wanted more.
Chris thanked the audience for coming to share his birthday
evening, bade them all a goodnight and was off the stage.
Jon and Karen were already beginning to pack up their gear when
Chris was lured back onstage for an unprecedented encore.
The crowd insisted on more music and the band obliged them with
another song. Birthday streamers cascaded down from above
the stage and the audience remained on their feet for the rest
of the number, almost drowning out the band with their frenzied
At the end of the show,
Chris stayed to sign a few more CDs and chat with friends.
Jon was surrounded by a group of new fans, all praising his
excellent performance that night. As they say, things
are always bigger and better in
and Chris’s fabulous
birthday celebration shows were certainly no
exception. It’s a shame these special events only come
along once a year! (
October 12, 2002
a sound for all venues
From the Getty Museum to Old Pasadena to a winery in the desert…the
sounds of Chris Botti’s trumpet were heard in three distinctly
different venues over the Oct.4-6
The weekend festivities
started Friday night where Chris was a guest soloist at a Julia
Fordham concert at the picturesque Getty Museum situated high
up on a Los Angeles hilltop. The fact that reservations
to the concert “sold out” in a record seven minutes was a harbinger
of things to come.
English-born Fordham displayed
her multi-octave trademark voice accompanied by noted area musicians—including
Jay Bellerose on drums and Jennifer Condos on bass. Chris
was brought in to add his trumpet flair during three of her
numbers and also for the encore. In short order, Fordham
fans became Botti fans and visa versa.
With a day of rest in
between, it was time for Chris to join his bandmates for back-to-back
shows at two different venues. The Botti Band originally
had been scheduled to open for Al Jarreau on Friday night.
Due to last minute back surgery for Jarreau, the concert had
to be cancelled. Verizon jazz organizers were able to
slot Chris in at another area concert—this one in a park setting
in Pasadena during the same weekend.
Hay bales, set up in rows
created seats at the front section of this outdoor venue.
Open lawn followed to accommodate those who had brought their
own chairs and blankets. The midday heat was felt as the thermometer
started climbing toward ninety degrees on this first Sunday
in October in southern
Chris and company took
the stage just after 1 p.m. amid rousing applause. The
heat and bright sun didn’t dampen spirits as those in attendance
showed their approval of the customary set list. A surprise
guest was well-known saxophonist Bob Shepard as Chris invited
him to stretch out on one of the songs. (Shepard also
performs on the soon-to-be released
At the end of the 45-minute
set, Chris did his customary autograph signing while the rest
of the band quickly removed equipment from the stage and loaded
it into vehicles for the two hour drive from Pasadena to Thornton
Winery in Temecula.
The winery provided a
much different setting as arriving guests were treated to empty
champagne goblets ready to be filled with the variety of available
vintages. Saxophonist Warren Hill opened the event with
a set that had guests on their feet several times during his
Then, as the sun began
to lower in the sky, the Botti Band took their places on stage.
The setting was a large, open-air Spanish-type courtyard that
had been filled with rows and rows of white folding chairs.
A beautiful concrete fountain occupied a spot in the center
of the chair-filled space.
The first song—
plagued by several false starts due to sound problems.
With that quickly addressed, the rest of the concert went on
without a hitch. Both of the Sunday shows were punctuated
by several serenades, which honored young musicians and those
with birthdays. Also, notable at the Temecula show was
the addition of
to the set list—a song that
West Coast concertgoers hadn’t heard in several months.
There was also time for
good-natured teasing of guitarist Shane Fontayne—a staunch New
York Yankees fan—who was in mock mourning due to the team’s
playoff loss the day before to the Anaheim Angels. The
winery staff also took a moment during the set to bring Chris
out a celebratory cake in advance of his birthday next weekend.
As the pitch-black night
quickly extinguished the daylight, small twinkling lights threw
off subtle shading onto the jazz fans while the musicians were bathed
in soft spots. The set ended amid a standing ovation and one
more hour-long autograph line for Chris in the desert night.
October 6, 2002)
A huge American flag hung proudly above the entrance to the
Garden of Eden, the premier LA nightclub that has played host
every Wednesday evening to the WAVE radio station’s “LA Jazz
Nights” all summer long (
see News, July 24, 2002
This Wednesday marked the first anniversary of 9-11 and
in tribute, a very special benefit, “A Wave of Peace,” was organized
by the WAVE as an evening of remembrance of the victims through
music and unity.
portion of the evening’s proceeds would go to the Windows of
Hope Relief Fund, aiding families of the victims of the WTC
tragedy who worked in the food and hospitality profession throughout
the Trade Center complex.
Answering the call to perform was a virtual “who’s who”
of smooth jazz musicians and all came to give generously of
their time for a truly memorable evening.
A long line of eager fans snaked around the block, onto
Hollywood Boulevard long before the doors opened.
By the time the music began, the venue was packed to
Radio personality and sax player
extraordinaire Dave Koz and his morning radio partner Pat Prescott
see News, June 10, 2002
opened the show.
They introduced Eric Marienthal
who, along with his band, formed the core group of musicians
on stage, to which others came and left as the evening progressed.
Eric is one of the most popular and highly acclaimed
saxophonists in contemporary jazz today.
The legendary Greg Adams (more than 40 years in the business,
noted for his time with Tower of Power) added his distinct muted
trumpet tones to the group.
The ever-popular Mindi Abair joined the group on sax.
Next, ultra cool Freddie Ravel
(played with Earth, Wind & Fire in the mid-90’s) cranked
up the heat on keyboards.
Ellis Hall (another Tower of Power alum) played keyboards
and sang Stevie Wonder songs, much to the delight of the audience.
Mark Ledford, a veteran of
many sessions and touring bands such as Pat Metheny, played
a curious instrument, which Chris later explained was a pocket
trumpets have the same range and key as the conventional trumpets,
but their brass tubing has been “pretzeled” into a much more
Jonathan Butler, a LA Jazz Nights
regular, strapped on his guitar and offered several classic
George Benson tunes which blended perfectly with his beautiful
Bassist Brian Bromberg (recruited
by the legendary Stan Getz at 19 and who Lionel Hampton once
called “the greatest bass player in the world”) switched gears
and asked the crowd for silence as he made an eloquent speech
about 9-11 and the healing power of music.
He then asked the audience
to join him in an emotional rendition of the classic Beatles
on his well-worn upright bass.
Just nearing the halfway mark in
the program, Euge Groove lit up the stage with his sax.
The crowd roared as he jumped
off the stage and wandered out into the throng of dancing bodies,
like Moses parting the Red Sea.
Richard Smith played a few
numbers on guitar and Rob Mullins rocked on keyboards.
After a short break, Dave Koz returned
to introduce his good friend, “one of the best trumpet players
in the business,” and Chris Botti hopped on stage.
Dave teased Chris about being
the best dressed as usual, and hoped that he might get just
one of Chris’s hand-me-downs someday.
Chris began with a soulful
My Funny Valentine
and Mark Ledford returned
to jam with Chris, while Eric and Greg Vail blew their saxes
in front of the stage.
Karen Briggs (who toured with Yanni and was featured
prominently in his show “Live at the Acropolis”) sizzled on
Before he left the stage,
Chris took the mike to thank all those who came out this special
night and acknowledged how important it was for musicians and
audience alike to come together to heal.
He was glad to be part of
this special evening and remarked that there was no place like
it in New York.
Vocalist Phil Perry ended the evening
with a powerful version of
America the Beautiful
many of the night’s performers came back to the stage to close
out the show.
a day otherwise filled with sad memories, everyone left with
a little joy in their hearts. (
September 11, 2002
music played in stained-glass venue
With evening light filtering through beautiful stained-glass
windows, Chris and band took the stage Saturday night at
Sheslow Auditorium. Chris had never before performed solo in
the state of
crowd was eager to witness
his instrumental pop sound.
The evening opened with
When I Fall in Love
and continued through the familiar
set list of
which point, there was a departure.
The September 7
show was just four days
ahead of the one-year anniversary of the September 11
attacks on the
Chris honored the memory of
those who had lost their lives by playing
song from his
Midnight Without You
album that he has
not performed publicly in years.
“We were the last band
to play at the
Chris told the
“We’d like to play this song
in memory of those who lost their lives.”
The band went on to play
a longer-than-usual set, which crossed the 90-minute mark.
It was punctuated by the usual
comedic leads-ins to
Alone in the City
noted addition, was Chris good-naturedly ribbing
some technical keyboard problems.
to borrow a silver-colored keyboard last minute to replace a
had covered the borrowed keyboard with black draping which prompted
Chris to tell the audience that
an aversion to silver-colored keyboards.
In turn, this forced
remove the draping and reveal the “offensive” keyboard color
much to the audience’s amusement.
The band’s reward at the
end of the set was an enthusiastic standing ovation from the
Their resounding applause
brought Chris and company back out for an encore—which was followed
by the usual snaking, hour-long, autograph line.
September 7, 2002
Colorful flags fluttered in the distance, lining the hillside
where the Chronicle Pavilion at
stood ready to welcome fans to the latest
stop of the JVC Jazz Festival.
Fans made the long trek up the hill, carrying picnic
baskets and blankets, ready for an evening of great music.
Chris and the band headed
a line-up that included Wayman Tisdale, Fourplay with Larry
Carlton, and Dave Koz and Friends (Norman Brown, Brian Culbertson
and James Ingram).
“friends” would be revealed later in the show.
Most of the 12,500 seats were filled and
the upper lawn area already a patchwork of picnic blankets when
Chris and the band took to the stage shortly after
Chris wore a Prada suit, this
time with a pale lavender shirt.
Soon the rich sounds of the
“new” older Martin Committee trumpet filled the arena, much
to the delight of the crowd.
It was only after the fourth song that Chris finally
took the microphone in hand and welcomed everyone to the Pavilion,
saying it was one of his favorite places to play.
voice was unusually low and husky, due to a bout with laryngitis,
which he blamed on a few too many plane rides lately.
Chris introduced the band
and told the audience they were in for a real treat. Sitting
in for Harvey Jones was John Beasley, a famous jazz keyboardist
in his own right, having toured and recorded with such music
legends such as Miles Davis, Stanley Clark, Steely Dan and Christian
McBride among many others.
Although John provided excellent backup keyboards, he
was no match for
regular comedy routine with Chris.
With very little voice, Chris told an abbreviated
version of how he came to write the next song after being dumped
the night before a huge blizzard hit
He then jumped off the stage and wandered into the audience
Alone in the City
to a lucky lady.
A stagehand helped pull him
back up to the stage at the end of the song.
Shane “the Ambassador” Fontayne
and Jon Ossman stood side by side to play the opening of
and a hush fell over the rowdy crowd as they enjoyed their beautiful
guitar sounds blending perfectly with Chris’s soft trumpet.
Chris mentioned that
was the featured song
from the movie
, which prompted him to plug his
everyone would run out to buy the DVD, although he admitted
that he didn’t own a DVD player or even know how much one would
He also announced that the
song is featured on his upcoming Christmas CD, due out in October.
Karen Teperberg, clearly the crowd favorite
received a standing ovation for her amazing drum solo on “
In fact, the cheers were louder
for Karen than for any other band member, which encouraged her
to play even more spirited than ever.
Chris closed the show with
a very special rendition of the jazz favorite
My Funny Valentine
with John Beasley providing his talented artistry to the keyboard
After the show, Chris patiently signed
CDs, posed for photos and chatted with fans new and old.
Although he had a little trouble
talking, he was relaxed and happy.
Chris had one more surprise
up his sleeve for his fans, and returned at the end of the evening
to play with his good friend Dave Koz.
It was a perfect way to wrap
up a midsummer’s night dream concert.
August 17, 2002
Bottiology can bring you the official news that Chris
is now playing a recently-acquired 1941 Martin Committee trumpet.
The trumpet was delivered
to him after the
Regis Monarch Beach Resort show on July 21
We have it on good authority that he spent most of that first
night taking the trumpet through its paces, reluctant to put
trumpet’s sound is further enhanced by a very rare 1929 Vincent
explained to Bottiology backstage before the August 3
that mouthpieces of that era were handmade, enhancing the sound
his point, Chris first played the 1941 trumpet with the 1929
mouthpiece and then replaced it with the 1980 mouthpiece he
had been using on his 1949 Martin Committee to demonstrate the
differences in sound quality.
1949 Martin Committee is no longer on tour and has now been
designated as the backup trumpet.
Fans catching upcoming shows
will be able to experience the rich, buttery sound of the new
trumpet for themselves.
Summer Sizzle in Milwaukee
Chris and company were the headlining act Saturday night
at Summer Sizzle - a jazz festival, sponsored by the local smooth
jazz station 93.3 F.M., WJZI.
The Botti Band was the fifth band
to take the stage during the all day event featuring outdoor
exhibits, food stalls and outstanding jazz on two performance
stages on opposite ends of Milwaukee’s historic Third Ward district.
Streets were blocked off enabling
jazz enthusiasts to set up folding chairs and tarps on lawn
and asphalt alike.
band took the stage shortly after 9 p.m. playing to a packed
only were people seated thickly together in front of the stage,
but onlookers stood on the sidewalks around the entire stage
The midsummer night had set and
the sky had blackened.
The band was bathed in multicolored lights and Chris
mirrored the visual in a multicolored striped shirt and purple
But more importantly, this was
the debut leg of Chris’ new trumpet (more here).
The newly-acquired 1941 Martin
Committee was played for the first time publicly in Birmingham,
AL on August 1
, followed by its second performance
in Robinsonville, MS the following night at Gold Strike Casino’s
The notes were “buttery” as Chris
and company went through the familiar set which was punctuated
by the unfamiliar.
The seasoned performers weathered
three power outages during Why Not, a heckler during the middle
of the set who declined Chris’ invitation to come up and sing
and a broken string on Marc Shulman’s guitar immediately before
his solo on Regroovable.
Marc restrung in record time and was able to launch into
one of his fantastic grooves.
(Regular guitarist Shane Fontayne is on a mini tour with
Marc Cohn on the West Coast and will be rejoining the Botti
Band on August 15
at the Bend, OR show.)
Another set highlight was Milwaukee
saxophonist Gary Davis who joined Chris on stage during Blue
band had performed immediately before the Botti Band set.)
And long after the last note was played, fans
queued for as long as an hour to get a chance to meet Chris
and get his autograph.
Chris at the Garden of Eden
A large crowd was on hand Wednesday night for the kickoff of
a new weekly summer event, "LA Jazz Nights at the Garden of
Eden," organized by Los Angeles Smooth Jazz radio 94.7 the WAVE.
The nightclub, a paradise of Moroccan decor, is a sanctuary
hidden amongst the office buildings right off the chaos of Hollywood
Boulevard, in the heart of old Hollywood. Through the fortress-like
entrance, an exotic oasis welcomes the visitor. Rich ochre-colored
walls, lush fabrics and Arab-influenced artifacts decorate the
room, candles flicker on the tables and a roof-top garden terrace
allows people to listen to the music in a relaxed setting.
"LA Jazz Nights" offers WAVE listeners
a chance to see their favorite smooth jazz artists play live
in an intimate setting. The special evening began with Gregg
Karukas on keyboards, playing with the Nightshift Horns trio
(Ken Ross, Nick Lane and Tom Saviano). Clearly a favorite with
the listeners, Chris Botti joined them on stage for a memorable
rendition of My Funny Valentine, much to the delight of the
audience. Chris played a few songs with Gregg and then mingled
with the crowd. Jonathan Butler, guitarist, and the ever-popular
David Benoit also played sets. Chris clearly enjoyed the informal
event, and told Bottiology he'd be back to play next Wednesday,
and whenever his schedule would allow. For more details, see
Music on the beach at Dana Point
Chris and the band were all smiles on Sunday as they took to
the "stage" on the South Botanical lawn overlooking the golf
links and sparkling Pacific Ocean at the St. Regis Monarch Beach
Resort and Spa in Southern California...and who could blame
them? With the beautiful Tuscan-style buildings and palm trees
serving as an elegant backdrop, Chris and Shane began the afternoon
set with Hallelujah, the new song from the upcoming (still untitled)
Christmas CD. Judging from the reaction of the crowd, this is
going to be a real favorite.
Next, Chris was already off the stage
and into the audience, stopping to serenade a lucky fan in the
fourth row. In keeping with the posh surroundings, Chris looked
very smart in his Prada suit and stylish Prada shoes and Jon
wore his best plaid pants for the occasion. Humor was once again
an important element of the day. Chris started his saga about
the snow storm sweeping over New York, but before Harvey could
supply the usual sound effects, someone in the front row added
their own sarcastic remarks. Before things got out of control,
Chris had to warn him to keep the risqué commentary to himself.
After all, Chris warned, it was the early show!! After a few
giggles, Chris hopped off the stage and waded into the crowd.
He settled in front of another lucky lady to play "Alone in
the City." What Chris didn't know was that she was celebrating
her 40th birthday! For her, a surprise gift from Chris that
she won't soon forget. The sun dipped lower in the sky as each
band member added their own special touches to the familiar
songs in the set. Everyone sounded relaxed and happy; 400 room,
ocean front luxury resorts have a way of doing that to them
Second on the bill for the first Sunset
Jazz series at the St. Regis was the legendary Michael Franks.
He thrilled the crowd with old favorites such as his 1976 hit
"Popsicle Toes." After the show, both artists stayed for long
"meet and greet" sessions out by the pool. The dramatic surroundings,
spectacular ocean views, warm summer weather and great music
made for an unforgettable day at the St. Regis; with all that,
who needs room service?
(July 21, 2002)
outdoor jazz festival in a shady city park is hard to beat especially
on a beautiful summer night.
The first folding chairs were in place on the lawn at Birmingham,
MI Shain Park at 3:30 p.m. for a concert that was slated to
kick off with Chris Botti and band at 6 p.m.
What had threatened earlier in the day to be an overcast and
slightly rainy evening turned into an evening filled with a
golden sunset, with a gentle breeze and balmy temperatures.
The lawn started to fill up slowly but surely, until the enthusiastic
crowd was more than ready for the band (who didn’t take the
stage until 6:30 p.m.)
The audience was quickly wowed as the set once again began with
—one of the tracks from his upcoming Christmas
by Shane Fontayne on guitar, mesmerized the crowd while Harvey
Jones (who doesn’t perform in this number) sat cross-legged
with the audience in the front row, watching his
As since this was a festive park atmosphere, many of those
present had brought their children.
Chris serenaded one lucky
young miss, who at a tender age had already perfected the art
of being coy.
this set, Chris took not one, but two separate trips into the
to the young girl, he serenaded a woman with a ringing cell
phone and several other women who were clearly pleased at being
The band was particularly on fire in Birmingham, fueled by the
enthusiastic audience and the beautiful summer night.
Of particular note were
As usual, Karen played an outstanding solo on
The opportunity also presented itself for Chris to take a new
twist when teasing his band mates
from the stage.
Jones (keyboards) is originally from Birmingham, U.K. and he
was playing in Birmingham, MI and Shane was playing in Shain
An additional bonus
for Chris lovers, was that Larry Carlton, the headlining performer,
invited Chris to sit in on a couple of songs during his set.
The night ended with many
appreciative fans taking the time to thank various band members
as they made their way around the city streets after the show.
(July 19, 2002)
The Mediterranean-style Villa Montalvo in the hills of Saratoga,
CA once again played host to Chris and company. This time the
band performed in the Garden Theater, an intimate 1150-seat
outdoor amphitheater surrounded by majestic pines. The venue
allowed fans an up-close-and-personal musical experience under
the stars. Also on the bill were Steve Cole (sax) and the charismatic
Craig Chaquico (long-time lead guitarist for Jefferson Starship)
who ended the evening with an electrifying performance which
brought everyone to their feet.
"Chris was introduced by a DJ from San Francisco's KKSF as a
"living doll," much to the amusement of many in the audience.
Everyone was in for a real treat, as Chris began the set by
debuting a new song called
from his upcoming
Christmas CD. Written by Leonard Cohen, the song is familiar
to most as the love-theme from
. Chris' muted trumpet
tones and Shane's powerful guitar chords make for a truly emotional
song. (Chris is very pleased with the Christmas CD, which he
announced is currently scheduled for release in October.) He
followed that by immediately moving out into the audience to
play to some young fans. The response to songs off of "
" was tremendous.
In a mischievous mood later in the show, Chris was in the middle
of his story about the inspiration for
Alone in the City
when he noticed a couple making their way up a side aisle at
about 8:30 p.m. "Nice of you to join us," Chris teased. "Find
your seats and I'll be up to see you soon," he grinned. With
that he was off the stage and hiking up to upper rows, trumpet
in hand, where the couple had settled. He immediately asked
to see their tickets, pointing out that the show started at
8:00 pm, much to their embarrassment. Of course this was all
in good fun, and Chris stayed to serenade the lucky couple.
The show ended promptly because Chris and the band had to catch
a red-eye to New York for Saturday's taping of the wedding of
the last woman pulled from the World Trade Center wreckage.
(A short clip from the performance aired on the CBS Early Show
on Monday, July 15, 2002.)
Chris mentioned that he was one of the last musicians to play
one of the weekly midday concerts between the two towers before
the attacks, and he was honored to be part of this special celebration.
He planned to serenade the couple with his rendition of
I Fall in Love
. Although pressed for time, Chris stayed
for a short meet-and-greet out in the sculpture gardens, to
the delight of his fans. Evening concerts at Villa Montalvo
are always magical, and this one was no exception. (
Christmas in June
Los Angeles’ historic Capitol Record building is where Chris
has been spending his spare time lately recording his new Christmas
CD. Bottiology was treated to an early Christmas this year,
listening to Chris and other musicians masterfully laying tracks
under the guidance of producer Bobby Colomby. (Colomby and Botti
had worked together on prior projects such as
.) Although specifics
on track details and session musicians are not being released
at this time, Bottiology can report that Botti Band regulars
Shane Fontayne and Jon Ossman have participated. A release date
has not yet been announced by Columbia Records. We’ll bring
you more info as it becomes available.
(June 28, 2002)
Breezes, Botti and Band
With temperatures hovering in the humid mid- seventies and
a gentle breeze blowing in off the
) Harbor at dusk,
Chris and company started the outdoor set with a romantic
I Fall in Love
although Botti was booked as the opening act for the Rippingtons,
it became obvious early on that that 1,500 plus attendees were
also there to support him.
Sitting under the gull-winged,
canopy covering, fans were treated to powerful renditions of
Streets Ahead, Lisa
Alone in the
The evening’s performance was marked
by the usual comedic exchanges between Chris and Harvey Jones
particular delight in teasing U.K.-born
’s recent loss in the quarter-final World
countered with sound effects as Chris described a
New York City
with snow as the lead in for
Alone in the City
Other notable gig highlights
included skillful solos by Karen Teperberg (drums) and Jon Ossman
(bass). And sitting in on guitar was Marc Shulman. (Marc fills
in for primary Botti Band guitarist Shane Fontayne during scheduling
The warm summer night also
provided the perfect setting for an extended “meet and greet”
following the show.
signed autographs and took photos with fans for well over an
hour under the moonlit sky. (
June 22, 2002
Le hot jazz at the
The second day of the 27
Annual Playboy Jazz
Festival at the Hollywood Bowl not only featured hot jazz, but
also sweltering mid-90s temps, as Chris and band took the stage
Cosby struggled several times with the pronunciation of Chris’
last name, finally getting it right at the end of the performance.
Since Chris’ appearance
was early in the day, the venue was not yet filled to capacity.
Nonetheless, observers report that
judging by body language and applause level at the end of the
short 40-minute set, many audience members who may not have
been familiar with Chris’ music at the outset, were rapidly
notable aspect of this show was that percussionist Everett Bradley
was part of the band.
previously been spotted logging stage time with Chris and band
at some of the higher profile gigs.
Cosby, urged the audience
to give the band a big round of applause further saying that
“he gave it his all in this hot weather.”
And although a meet and
greet wasn’t scheduled, Chris surprised fans by taking time
after his set to say hello to fans and sign autographs.
June 18, 2002
Chris rides the WAVE
Chris Botti was the guest co-host Monday morning
on L.A.'s smooth jazz station, 94.7, the WAVE. (He was substituting
for Dave Koz, who is taking a few Mondays off to tour.) Chris'
time slot was supposed to be 7 to 9 a.m., but a faster than
expected commute put him at the radio station just before 6
a.m. L.A. listeners were treated to an extra hour of Botti airtime
as he and cohost, Pat Prescott exchanged on air banter. (Chris
and Pat have known each other since their mutual former residencies
in New York City.)
On air conversations including subjects
such as Chris’ touring with Sting,
promoting Chris’ upcoming appearance at the Playboy Jazz Festival.
After the broadcast, Chris took a seat in the promotion director’s
office and signed jazz festival T-shirts. (For those interested
collectors, the performing artists names appear on the back.)
that he enjoyed the experience and
had fun working with Pat.
(June 10, 2002)
Chris picks up new trumpet!
Bottiology caught up with Chris at the airport last Friday
via his ever-present cell phone.
He was about to board a shuttle
on the way to
pick up his new, custom-made David G. Monette Co. trumpet.
Needless to say, he was excited
and looking forward to playing it for the first time. Insiders
now tell us that trumpet is in hand and Chris is busy putting
it through a workout.
Christmas CD scoop…
Rehearsals for the new Christmas CD are going “really well,”
according to Chris.
have it on good authority that he’s working on it all hours
of the day and night.)
here’s something that will probably add to everyone’s holiday
cheer this year.
He told Bottiology that we might
just get to hear him sing again.
Stay tuned for more updates!
June 5, 2002
Bottiology has been created as a place for Chris Botti fans to visit
for up-to-date information. In addition to late-breaking news on
new projects and other Chris happenings, Bottiology researches upcoming
gigs and provides detailed concert and ticket information. Our goal
is to make going to see Chris and Band as easy and enjoyable as
possible. We hope to see you at a future show.