On February 16th,a crowd of music groupies from ‘the good old days’ gathered at Le Poisson Rouge(formerly the Village Gate) on Bleecker Street,to hear a new composition by one of their favorites, David Amram, and to enjoy what felt very much like a family reunion.
After describing how he came to write his new Greenwich Village Portraits, celebrating his friends Arthur Miller, Odetta and Frank McCourt, Mr. Amramreminisced about some of the many musicians and writers who had been close to him through the years- Charlie Mingus, Dizzy Gillespie, Leonard Bernstein, Pete Seeger, Alan Ginsberg and fellow Beats. In true Amram tradition, he also introduced a lively variety of other musical artists whom he had invited to perform, ending the evening with a special tribute to one of his closest early Village friends, Jack Kerouac, one of whose poems was read by daughterAdira Avram, after which the evening ended with a rousing rendition of Pull My Daisy.
The good news for those who missed this first performance of Greenwich Village Portraitsis that it will be included in afree concert of Avram chamber music at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts in April. Details of this and other future programs, including the premier of a documentary,DAVID AMRAM: THE FIRST 80 YEARS, can be found at