On Sundays, during warmer months in Albuquerque, an old Railway train barn opens its huge metal doors. Vendors set up inside to sell produce, art, clothes, soaps and lotions, health food, get signatures for green projects and alternative lifestyles, listen to music and enjoy.
This Sunday, I come to see Chad’s jazz quartet, Sax Therapy.
It is quaint here, good to see an old dilapidated unused piece of functional architecture used for better than a roosting place for pigeons.
In the concrete floor are rails that used to bring trains into this barn to be repaired, outfitted, cleaned, and re-conditioned. Now, the only Albuquerque train is Amtrak that has ticket sales in what remains of the original Alvarado Hotel. The real Alvarado was demolished in the 60’s to make room for buildings that never followed.
Seated at the south end of the train barn, Ruby and I watch dancers twirl to forties style big band music. A college singer croons Rosemary Clooney. Following them is Sax Therapy featuring two alto saxes, one tenor sax and one baritone sax. They do a Monk tune, a twenties style ragtime classic, and a Texas style blues wail.
Chad negotiates his bari with ease, his eyebrows going up when he hits the upper register and eyes looking to the ground when he goes low.
It is great Sunday morning for jazz and even our teachers get down and dirty.
I think I hear a train whistle moving towards us in straight four four time.
Learning to play jazz is a childhood dream that is only now being realized.
Life gets in the way of dreams but dreams are hard to stamp out.