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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Oct. 30, 2009 / 12 Mar-Cheshvan 5770

Midiris Knock 'Em Dead at Pismo

By Greg Crosby



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Hmmm. I guess the title of this piece says it all. And if you think I overstated the audience reaction to this talented group of musicians, you should have been there. I was at every single Midiri Bros. performance during the course of the 3 day Pismo Beach Jubilee by the Sea Jazz Festival this past week and let me tell you it was electric! Every one of their sets (seven in all) ended with standing ovations. Not cursory, polite little standing ovations, I'm talking about jumping up out of your seat, screaming, hooting, and whistling, standing ovations.


In case you haven't a clue who I'm talking about let me put you wise. Joe and Paul Midiri are two guys that just happen to be the most talented musical brothers to step onto a stage since the Dorseys. They play swing like they invented it. Joe plays clarinet and saxophones while Paul does duty on the Vibraphone, xylophone, trombone, and drums. Joe's influences are Artie Shaw and Benny Goodman, and Paul's are Red Norvo and Lionel Hampton. And the Midiris certainly does these four legends of jazz proud.


A couple of Jersey Boys, they make their way out west several times a year, usually for jazz festivals like Pismo Beach, the Monterey Jazz Festival, and the Sun Valley Swing-N-Dixie Jazz Jubilee. When I caught them in Pismo their sextet was filled out with long time Midiri drummer Jimmy Lawlor, trumpeter Danny Tobias, bassist Ed Wise, and guitarist Bob Leary. Each man a jazz pro individually, together they set the stage on fire.


I first wrote about Joe and Paul in my column last summer after listening to a couple of their albums. After I watched a snippet of them performing on YouTube I knew I had to see them with my own eyes live on stage, so last Friday morning I packed up my wife Jane, and off we went up the California coast.


Since neither of us had ever been to a Jazz festival before we didn't know what to expect. It was amazing. Venues all over town, huge tents set up to accommodate more than 400 people at each venue, plenty of food and drink and more happy music than you can imagine. It's kind of nice to be at a place where so many other people are gathering who happen to enjoy the same great music that you do. It's sad but there are not many places to hear good jazz anymore.


The Midiri sextet was worth the trip and more. In addition to his hot clarinet playing Joe does a mean impression of Louie Armstrong. Paul simply makes love to his vibes with a sensitivity that must be heard to believe. Drummer Jim Lawlor stepped out from behind the skins every now and then to scat a Louie Jordon tune like "Caldonia." Danny Tobias has a way with a trumpet that gives you goose bumps while bassist Ed Wise, in the words of my wife, "makes his bass talk." Bob Leary was a surprise - not only a wonderful guitarist, Bob sang a couple of fun novelty numbers like a great send up of the old Ink Spots song, "If I Didn't Care."


The author with with the Midiri Brothers Sextet.
From left to right Paul Midiri, Dan Tobias, Ed Wise,
Greg Crosby, Bob Leary, Jim Lawlor,
and Joe Midiri


Joe's renditions of the Shaw classics "Begin the Beguine," and "Airmail Special" were tremendous. He has developed a breath control that is truly awesome. I remember reading that Frank Sinatra learned breath control from watching Tommy Dorsey play, Joe has that same control. Paul played Joyce Kilmer's "Trees" with a beautiful delicacy and listening to him play the old hymn, "How Great Thou Art" was positively stirring.


What's really terrific to see throughout the sets, is the way Paul and Joe watch each other when the other is playing a solo. There is a genuine pride between the brothers that absolutely comes across. Yes, they kibitz and zing each other as part of the show, but they didn't fool me one little bit. The mutual respect and love between Joe and Paul is all right there on stage. It's as strong a love as is their love for music, and that's a lot. And it's something I can't wait to experience again.


I know the boys are kept busy on the East coast but I just wish the Midiri Brothers could get booked at some local LA jazz clubs like the Catalina Bar & Grill in Hollywood where John Pizzarelli has performed or Jack's Bar & Grill in Glendale where Jack Sheldon has performed. Their sextet would fit in beautifully at those spots and believe me; this town could use the talent.

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JWR contributor Greg Crosby, former creative head for Walt Disney publications, has written thousands of comics, hundreds of children's books, dozens of essays, and a letter to his congressman. A freelance writer in Southern California, you may contact him by clicking here.

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© 2008, Greg Crosby

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