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Saturn in the 4th House

Posted in A Day in the Life, Recession Proof Musician | No Comments »

“Saturn here usually brings heavy responsibilities with the parents and the family. For instance, you may have to care for your parents in their old age…One of your parents may have been very stern with you when you were young and consequently you have a rather suspicious or even fearful aspect in your inner nature. You feel you have had a hard childhood. Whether this is true or not, this is the way you see it…Liza Minnelli and Bette Middler both had a difficult youth with Saturn in the fourth house. Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor are also on this list.” – Robert Pollini, Astrologer


After hearing the marching bands during Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, that night I watched Drumline with Nick Cannon on DVD. It’s the story about a young Harlem drummer with a college marching band scholarship. He’s a gifted natural drummer, with the attitude to match, but he can’t read music. Orlando Jones (in a more serious role) is the Band Director, Dr. Lee, who insists on nothing less than dedicated musicianship. This is a lively movie with lots of exciting marching band action a la the HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) marching band style, and I’ve enjoyed watching this DVD many times.

While I’ve often told other people that I did not come from a musical family, watching Drumline Thanksgiving night reminded me that I had TWO first cousins (sisters) that played in their high school marching band. One played flute, and the other played clarinet. Even though they haven’t played since high school (they’re 10+ years older than I), that still counts as musical family members. And their youngest sister also sings in the choir.

Then I recalled that two other aunts played organ for their church in some capacity, and I was definitely pushed to go in that direction myself (However, I was allergic to practicing piano).

So while it seems like I’ve enjoyed the idea of being the only musical person in my family, it seems that I’ve rewritten history, haven’t I?


Happy Thanksgiving 2008!

Posted in A Day in the Life, Recession Proof Musician | No Comments »

To anyone reading this real-time tonight, Happy Thanksgiving!

I’m grateful for my health, loved ones, and music. Here’s a photo blog of my Thanksgiving in NYC for 2008.

My boyfriend and I left home around 8am to go the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade. Perhaps we should have left home earlier.

There were a couple of big tow trucks sitting in the middle of the street, and the kids were happy to get a good spot to see the balloons

At the edge of the crowd, even CEO Warner Music Group Lyor Cohen was right there!

I have to admit, I felt like a kid myself when I saw the huge balloons and heard the marching bands


I did say heard the marching bands, since I couldn’t see them, but they sounded great. I have to admit that I got a little misty-eyed thinking about all the bands performing in the parade today, who had come so far, had bake sales, car washes, and all kinds of other kinds of fund raisers to get to New York City to represent their school or hometown at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade. Their parents and grandparents are going to be glued to the TV, and when they see their cousin, sister, grandson performing in one of those Macy’s marching bands, it’s going to be an exciting moment. Love that!

When evening came around, we decided to go to one of our favorite Asian restaurants for Thanksgiving dinner. But when we arrived at Saigon Grill, it turns out that they were closed for the holiday. Now what?

While driving down Riverside Drive, we noticed that the George Washington Bridge was lit up for Thanksgiving. Since this bridge only lights up on major holidays (the electric bill must be crazy), we drove around and took pictures of it


By then we were hungry for Thanksgiving dinner, but didn’t have a clue where to go. We drove around the neighborhoods of Manhattan, Bronx, and Inwood, seeking inspiration. On thing was obvious, though. Christmas in NYC had arrived


I remembered a deli we had visited earlier near the parade, called Great Farm Deli. They had a $7.29 per pound food bar, and I remembered that they had even had a whole turkey that morning. After we arrived at Great Farm, I actually wasn’t in the mood for turkey, but their salmon looked excellent. As a matter of fact, all of the food in their all-you-can-eat-if-you-don’t-mind-paying-for-it food bar looked pretty darned good, and I couldn’t help but compare their plentiful offerings with the Pilgrim’s original Thanksgiving


All in all, every Thanksgiving that I spend as a citizen of New York City, as a musician living in the greatest city of the world, is a good one.

And I am most grateful.