16 January 2016


In case you missed it when I wrote about it several months ago, I must recommend to you a delightful video that is highly appropriate at this time of year. It features Chloe and Conrad.

But first I must tell you about a wonderful coincidence.

Nearly a year ago one of my readers - Phil in America - recommended that I should look at this particular video made by these two people of whom I had never heard. I was completely charmed and bowled over by it and I have since watched it many times.

It was Chloe Feoranzo and Conrad Cayman playing (and singing) What Are You Doing New Year's Eve? - a Frank Loesser song from 1947. Have a look. You won't regret it.
And here's the coincidence: on Wednesday 8th April 2015, I happened to be visiting New Orleans for the first time in very many years. That night, at The Spotted Cat, I thought I recognised the guitarist guesting with The Shotgun Jazz Band. It was none other than Conrad Cayman. I had admired his work and he had enjoyed my blog. Although we had never met, we were instantly so happy at this chance encounter. As Conrad said, isn't this indeed a wonderful world - in which technology can bring together as instant friends two people from opposite sides of the globe?

Conrad told me he is now a full-time professional musician, working mainly in traditional jazz in the Los Angeles area (for example with Chloe in The JC Jazz Crew and in The Big Butter Jazz Band), though he has various other musical projects. You can find a good range of the work of both Conrad and Chloe on YouTube.

We also discovered an interesting example of how ideas spread in the world of traditional jazz. I had commented in one of my posts about the way Tuba Skinny - in a particular tune - had reversed the usual situation by having the 'front line' play stop chords as support to a solo chorus from a banjo. Conrad decided to try a similar technique on his forthcoming JC Jazz Crew album with guests Katie Cavera and Corey Gemme (see their Facebook page): the horns hit the 2nd and 4th beats while the bass takes the melody in a Verse. Conrad said it worked really well.

Chloe and Conrad are both regular members of The JC Jazz Crew, together with Justin Au.

Conrad is rightly proud of the videos of himself and Chloe and also those of Justin with his brothers and uncle. You could try these and then explore where they lead:
or (including Katie Cavera)
Like me, Conrad was having a holiday in New Orleans and getting involved in the jazz scene as much as possible.
I meet Conrad Cayman

We have this photo souvenir of our meeting; and I'm pleased to say Conrad immediately emailed it to Chloe, who was touring in Australasia.

And you can watch the video I made that evening of The Shotgun Jazz Band (including Conrad) giving a storming performance of Climax Rag. Just click here  and you will see why I considered that one of the highlights of my visit to New Orleans. With Conrad - John, Twerk, Haruka, James and Marla were all on terrific form.

Happy Christmas and a Happy New Year to you too, Chloe, if you read this!