Back To Als Site
Back to Al's Text Humor Page

Dear Band Leader

Dear Band Leader:

We look forward to your group's performance at our daughter's wedding. If you don't mind, we have a few requests.

During the reception, please play a Keith Jarrett composition from his solo series. Arrange it for full ensemble in the key of B, but nothing in 4/4 please. Then how about Mahavishnu Orchestra's "Dance of the Maya." It would great if your guitarist could play John Mclaughlin's solo from the Nov. 16, 1972 live performance at Chrysler Arena. My wife and I were at that show and dug his use of polyrhythms. And, for a closer, how about one of Coltrane's duets with Pharaoh Sanders? I know our guests will love high register tenor saxes!

Then, right after the toast, a little Stravinsky would be nice. The Mrs. prefers "The Rite of Spring" at a tempo of a quarter-note = 94. And transpose it down a minor-third; the lower register will be much more appropriate for this occasion.

For the candle-lighting ceremony, let's have Zappa's "The Grand Wazoo." The original key of B flat would be fine for the instrumentalists, but when my cousin Jeannie starts to sing the baritone sax solo, modulate to the key of D as her voice is rather high. When they do the garter removal ceremony, instead of "The Stripper," play Varese's "Ionization." It's much more appropriate.

For the couple's first dance, slow things down a notch with Barber's "Adagio For Strings" instead of "We've Only Just Begun." And when my wife and I join in, segue to Monk's "Ruby, My Dear" in honor of my wife's mother, Ruby. It would mean a lot to her family.

Thanks for your help. Depending on the outcome, we'll recommend your band to our friends. I'll have your check for the fee of $1,250 (minus our expenses in contacting you of $12.50) by the end of next month: we're a little short as the young lady doing the balloon arch wanted her $2,850 in advance and the DJ had to be paid his $2,500 up front too.

Our daughter assures us your love of music is greater than your need for money and that you welcome the exposure you'll get from playing her wedding. Before you leave, feel free to ask the caterer for a snack sandwich and a soda (either return the bottles or pay the deposit to the butler). And use the back entrance to avoid disturbing our guests.

John and Rose