'The Same Way the Water'

'Motor Land'

These two poems and another from the album-in-progress Make Magic GO!, 'Santiago, East and West of Cuba', Alex and Hamid and I recorded in

the Marigny Studio of New Orleans, June of 2018, at the same time as were

gathered with Kidd Jordan to record for filmmaker Melissa Gregory Rue.

Rick G. Nelson was our engineer. All the principals for recording with Melissa and her husband Dave are pictured below. Photos are by the gifted  and hard-working and innovative Ryan Hodgson-Rigsbee.

Melissa Gregory Rue, Hamid Drake, Kidd Jordan, Don Paul, Alex de Grassi, Rick G. Nelson, and Dave Rue.

The GALLOP Quartet with Kidd recorded for Melissa's feature-length documentary "Live Out Loud!"

The GALLOP Quartet with Kidd recorded for Melissa's feature-length documentary "Live Out Loud!"

Alex and Hamid recorded for the soundtrack to Melissa's "Esperanza's Turn"---an imaginative, compassionate piece that's already won awards in 2020.

 Make Magic GO!, is also a book. It travels from Reno and California, 1956, to the Pacific Northwest and southeast Alaska and the Gulf of Mexico and Cajun Louisiana and Tanzania, Japan, Brasil, Nicaragua, the Soviet Union, Chiapas, New Orleans, Haiti and Cuba, 2018. It's a sentimental journey and traveler's notebook of the poignant and extraordinary. It runs through woods and several kinds of fields. It cites songs billions know and registers shocks we same billions felt. It meets more eye-popping and/or funny

moments and beautiful people than can be counted.

Alex and Hamid are perfect, interpretive companions for this trip. They get everything right away. We first met on a Sunday afternoon, April 13, 2014, in Paul Canales' Duende restaurant of downtown Oakland. We essentially met in Duende's stageless upstairs performance-space, as Hamid and I had driven up from L.A. after shows at Beyond Baroque for a gig set to start at 3:00. "Hello, Alex, I'm really glad to have you here," Paul said to me

--how's that for a likeness? And it was great--instant sympathy and rapport--among this Trio from initial explorations onward. We did about 12 poems and songs at Duende with a nice crowd, joined by Donald Robinson and Biggi Vingelo for the closing few, then a differeent dozen at the S.P.A.C.E. Theater in Ukiah the next night.  Improvisation total, sincere, and often fun.