Hi Friends, just regrouping over here after a super cool concert at Mesa College with vocalist Kevyn Lettau - big fun traversing familiar songs and stirring up some new avenues. The school concerts are the best! I’ll be searching out some new ones but it’s a challenge with the budget in a meltdown. Let me know if you know something I don’t.

Back in January pianist Josh Nelson brought his band into SpragueLand and recorded music for his new CD. (If you've heard us play our nights of Stevie Wonder's music recently you'll know Josh's brilliance from those shows.) It was one of the highlights of my year recording him and the band. Josh is an incredibly talented pianist and composer and the whole direction of his project was filled with originality and great depth. His song choices travel from his originals to creatively reworked jazz standards to even Jerry Goldsmith’s movie theme to Chinatown. Josh has assembled a fantastic group for the recording and I was blown away by these guys’ musicality and artistic commitment. Ben Wendel and Tom Catanzaro played saxes, Hamilton Price and Sam Minaie played bass, Kevin Kanner and Zach Harmon played drums and Charles Altura played brilliant guitar. All of this mixed in with Josh’s gift on the piano makes for one great record. It’s called “I Hear a Rhapsody” and you can click here to jettison to Josh’s site and gain more info on how to hear and hopefully buy his recording. It’s one of the best collections of music to come out of SpragueLand ever!

A couple of months ago violinist Yale Strom and his band came to SpragueLand to record an epic protest song. The musician’s backgrounds were diverse including a Pakistani guitarist and singer named Salman Ahmad, an Indian tabla player named Samir Chatterjee, Yale on violin, Elizabeth Schwartz on vocals, Gunnar Biggs on bass, Tripp Sprague on sax and myself playing guitar. We launched into a 14-minute version of Yale’s tune “What Time Will it Be?” and I think we caught some magic. At one point Salman comes in singing tribal and yeah man, now we’re talking! You can check out the tune along with Yale’s visual imagery here.

Peter and the stick. photo by Kevin Kinnear

For this week I’m meeting up with Kevyn Lettau at my favorite Roxy Restaurant in Encinitas on Saturday evening. The Roxy gigs have been such a highlight for me. I’ve had so many creative nights of music there and mix that in with the deluxe Encinitas vibe and great food, it’s a great night out on the town. I hope to see you there!

best, Peter

Thursday, September 17, 2009   Peter Sprague Quartet  

2009 STAR Awards:
A Night Under the STARs
COMPASS Family Center honors
Dr. Sarita Eastman and features Peter Sprague
Mother Rosalie Hill Hall, School of Leadership and Education Sciences
(SOLES), University of San Diego
5998 Alcala Park, San Diego,92110
Tickets: $55.
(619) 446-6926 or
Optional valet parking is $5.

Peter Sprague — guitar
Tripp Sprague — sax and flute
Gunnar Biggs — bass
Duncan Moore — drums
  6 PM to 9 PM   The COMPASS Family Center is pleased to announce its 4th Annual STAR Awards event. A full program planned that includes drinks and hors d’oeurves, live music from local celebrity jazz musician Peter Sprague, an award ceremony honoring Dr. Sarita Eastman, a live auction and a raffle. Proceeds and donations will support families caring for children and adults with special needs.

Saturday, September 19, 2009   Peter Sprague and
Kevyn Lettau
The Roxy Restaurant
517 S. Coast Highway 101
Encinitas, CA
Peter Sprague — guitar
Kevyn Lettau - vocals
  7 PM   Just like the old days but we're older and wiser and more funny.

Sunday September 27, 2009   Peter Sprague Trio  
The Bernardo Winery
13330 Paseo Del Verano Norte
San Diego, CA 92128
(858) 487-1866
Peter Sprague — guitar
Lisa Hightower — vocals
Gunnar Biggs — bass
  2 PM   What a thrill to reconnect with vocalist Lisa Hightower and Gunnar for a trio afternoon gig in September. Sounds perfect and I hope to see you there.

Thursday October 1, 2009   Peter Sprague Trio
Jazz At The Merc
Old Town Temecula Community Theatre
42051 Main Street
Temecula, CA 92590

Peter Sprague — guitar
Tripp Sprague — sax and flute
Gunnar Biggs — bass
  7:30 PM   Heading inland for a jazz show with the trio at the classic old theatre in Temecula.

Saturday October 3, 2009   Peter Sprague and
Fred Benedetti
San Diego Folk Heritage Society
San Dieguito United Methodist Church
170 Calle Magdalena
Encinitas, CA 92024
Peter Sprague — guitar
Fred Benedetti — guitar
  7:30 PM   Maestro Benedetti and I will explore the worlds of sound living inside the guitar.


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