Raul Espinoza's Biography 

Born in the slums of Rio de Janeiro Raul never learned an instrument. His family was too poor to be able to afford what would have been an extreme luxury.  Still Raul loved music and took it in whenever he could.  A job as an errand boy when he was 8 allowed him to get a Walkman CD player to listen to music. He relied heavily on the libraries as his source of music although shop lifting also came in useful.  He also used the libraries as a source of obtaining musical scores.  He was particularly drawn to…

Read more

What To Do When You Have Tendinitis 

Barney was feeling a little bit lost. He had been diagnosed with tendinitis in his right shoulder. He was told not to play guitar, or at least play as little as possible. He wasn’t sure what to do with the time that he had normally put into his music and guitar. He had his jazz band The Swingin’ Shards, they had 2 more gigs to play and then a planned layoff had come along. His bass player, Splendido, had to go to Europe for reasons he could not divulge to Barney. Barney knew Splendido would not make up…

Read more

VLAD IS MAD 

       He burst in the front door at the Mind Fry Complex. He moved quickly. Babakar and John were in the kitchen. He said nothing to them. Hans came out of the bathroom and Vlad told him “Grab your sticks we’re jamming.” Hearing this John and Babakar gave each other a look of curiosity. Vlad was pissed, Vlad was mad. They could only speculate. Still Babakar went and set things to record. He didn’t know what was up but recording it couldn’t hurt. The bass and drums were still set up from when they…

Read more

Reunion 

Babakar stood in front of Amadou and patted the horse on its nose. They were good friends. He had just returned from a trip to Timbuktu and he had left Amadou with his friends Penda and Mariam. Amadou was glad to see his friend Babakar. He stood quietly nudging him with his nose. Babakar pulled from his bag an apple and held it for the horse to eat. It sniffed it and then gingerly took the fruit out of Babakar’s hand and ate it. It was an hour after sundown and Babakar had excused himself from the 2…

Read more

Improvise 

The pace was hot and fast at The Coal Bin, an underground jazz club on the east side.  The musicians looked at their instruments with sidelong glances at each other.  The guitarist, riffing like he was sent from hell... or perhaps like he would go there if he didn’t play well, was oblivious to all but the sounds that permeated the smoky club air.  The group was a quartet.  Officially they were called The Barney Cole Quartet.  Ordinarily Barney had his group The Swingin’ Shards, but tonight he was playing…

Read more

Vlad The Mysterious 


They’d been working in the studio most of the morning and afternoon. It was Barney and Babakar and Vlad and they were helping their friend John McGrail out with his next single. They’d gotten a lot done. For some reason John, who was a good guitar player, wanted Barney to play on this particular tune. Babakar was just there to oversee things. He’d been in the country working on trying to decide what tunes were to be included in the next Headwhiz CD and John had asked him to come by and loan him his ears…

Read more

Bop Stop Boppin' Stop 

Vlad and Barney were in Cleveland for some recording at Mind Fry Studios. Tonight however they were downtown in Cleveland. They were looking for some live music and were having a hard time finding anything they liked. They had stopped in at a couple places and it was all crap. The one place over on Superior by the bridge sometimes had good jazz but tonight nothing. They still stopped there because they wanted a drink. They knew the woman who tended bar and they liked her. She had a nice easy going…

Read more

2 Glasses of Calvados 

Barney and Jean-luc had just left. They were heading over to a local bistro. The rest of the Consort that had been assembled that day had gone off to other commitments. Babakar Wade and John McGrail were sitting in the kitchen of the Mind Fry Complex. A pot of tea was steeping. On the table was a bottle of Calvados and 2 glasses.


“Sorry for having to use regular whiskey glasses, all our snifters have been broken. Even the little one that you liked so much.” John said.


“It’s OK, shall I pour us a bit…

Read more

It's Your Accent 

     Barney and Jean-luc walked into the bistro, at least it had the word ‘bistro’ in its name, they wanted to get something to eat and they wanted more importantly to get something to drink. They were laughing when the hostess asked them “how many”. They’d just gotten done with a session at Mind Fry Studios. It had gone well. The band had started a dirge like groove and were simmering along with it. Babakar had not yet arrived so they were just jamming. Luckily John McGrail was in the control room and…

Read more

Angry Art 


Art was angry. They had just put out their 2nd album and this one had taken a good 10 years to get out and once again they didn’t have any parts for his Lambeg Drum. He went out the front door of his place and walked up the street to Mickey’s, the local pub he drank at, and pulled up to the bar and ordered a Smithwicks. He also ordered some chips. He knew that the Lambeg was limited in its application but he thought there had been spots that where it could have been used. “Fucking Babakar, he’s a goddamn…

Read more