Tuesday, 21 July 2009

The Top Man

Usually when I work the extra day in London I am tired by the third day. My poor sensitive system cannot cope with the rigours of the third day. Especially if I go out on the night of the second day.

So sure enough when I woke up this fair Tuesday morning, I did not feel like a third day. But trooper that I am, I have trduged into the office to perform my functions.

On opening up the emails I found that the saxophonist who played at dad's funeral is playing in the pub next door to the Guardian tonight.

Well book me in. Tommaso Starace was dad's saxophone teacher a few years back. While clearing up dad's flat just after I got the news of his death, I saw cards dotted about with Tommaso's name and numbers. I remembered that dad had got me to listen to one of Tommaso's CDs just after it came out.

I called Tommaso and left a message on his phone to say that if any lessons had been booked then obviously dad wouldn't be coming and also to thank him for giving the lessons because I knew that dad had really enjoyed them.

I left it at that but while I was going over to my sister's for lunch I thought wouldn't it be good to hire Tommaso to play at the funeral.

Tommaso texted me back, we spoke and he asked me if I wanted him to play at the funeral. I said I'd foot the taxi bill. He said there was no need to do that.

At the funeral I gave the eulogy after Tommaso's solo of 'Round Midnight. I just about held it together for the oration. Outside the crematorium afterwards when I saw him I burst into tears and gave him a huge hug - you can do that kind of things with italians. He'd made the service for me.

He consoled me and said it was an honour to play at Victor's funeral.

I've emailed Tommaso to say that I will be there on Tuesday night to listen in. He's written back to give me an idea of his agenda. Playing at the Royal Festival Hall's open space and then up to the Cross Kings to play with a few other chaps in an Anglo Italian band.

I had lined up an evening of sorting out dad's stuff.

I think this is one time I can change the plans. It doesn't matter if I get home round midnight.