Tunes on Tuesday: Let A Smile Be Your Umbrella

Why this tune? This week’s inspiration comes from the delightful Umbrella Cover Museum on Peaks Island in Portland, Maine, which we visited over the weekend. The museum was founded by Nancy 3. Hoffman in 1996, when she found herself with several umbrella covers she didn’t know what to do with. That odd decision evolved intoContinue reading “Tunes on Tuesday: Let A Smile Be Your Umbrella”

Tunes on Tuesday: Polka Dots and Moonbeams (for Symme)

Why this tune? Last week I remembered my late father Mel, who got me started on a lifetime of playing and appreciating music. This week I’m remembering my stepmom Symme, who would have turned 94 this week (Aug. 22). “Polka Dots and Moonbeams” was (at least according to our dad) her favorite song, which I’mContinue reading “Tunes on Tuesday: Polka Dots and Moonbeams (for Symme)”

Tunes on Tuesday: Song For My Father (for Mel)

Why this tune? Horace Silver’s classic “Song For My Father” was inspired by the rhythms of Brazil and the melodies Silver heard from his Cape Verdean father when he was growing up. I’m dedicating this version to my father Mel (z”l), who would have turned 97 this week (Aug. 16)Thanks to my father, we grewContinue reading “Tunes on Tuesday: Song For My Father (for Mel)”

Tunes on Tuesday: Cherokee

Why this tune? Cherokee (Indian Love Song) started as a dance tune written by the British bandleader Ray Noble for his orchestra in 1938. According to, it was part of a larger work, a five-movement “Indian Suiteā€ (Cherokee, Comanche War Dance, Iroquois, Seminole, and Sioux Sue). It quickly became a jazz standard, ranked byContinue reading “Tunes on Tuesday: Cherokee”