Monday, October 3, 2011

mack the knife

It was time to get out and into the city on a Saturday night.  Beautiful weather, a sexy sax, and a crescent moon.  (You know you're to make a wish on a crescent moon, don't you?)

And four food trucks.  Four!

This was the Grand Opening of Two Corks And A Bottle, a wine bar in the Quadrangle.  They'd had a soft opening a few months ago but tonight was about getting serious with wine and food and for me of course, music.  It took some us back to the days of decades long gone, spent in and around the Quadrangle.  The days of Baby Routh and 8.O...   

The Mark McKenzie Duo was playing the early shift.  I'd recently asked Mark if they play Mack The Knife, suspecting they do ("But of course.") and that I've probably heard the quartet play it numerous times, but for-the-life-of-me I couldn't recall.  Perhaps because the song screams for a big band accompanying Bobbie Darin.

Oh, the shark babe, has such teeth dear
And it shows them pearly white.

Mack The Knife has a long history, from its original German production in 1928 to the first English language, American show in 1933; the Threepenny Opera.  The character, who's become known now as the worst type of gangster, was named Mackie Messer, messer being the German word for knife. 

The lyrics are wild and the vocals in Darin's version are rich with all the "huh"s and that "eeek".  But you don't need to know all this to enjoy it.  You just need to feel the drums give it that kickstart....and there you go.  You'll find yourself humming it for days.

So, special thanks to Mark and George for playing it.  Play it you did, even without Jon on drums and Ray on bass! 

Then there was food...

I hit the Three Men and a Taco truck first; a single serving of Spicy Asparagus on Rice.  My sister had Ssahm's Potato Fries with Caramelized Kimchi and Chicken.  Both snacks forced us to share a second bottle of Sauvignon Blanc.  I swear; they were hot!  We also ordered Panzeroti, little breaded and fried, potato croquettes from Geonarino's to cool us off. 

My palate recovered, and five songs later, I was ready for that Vietnamese 12" baguette with daikon radish, jalapenos, and spicy mayo but the truck had pulled out.  Learned my lesson.

The Grand Opening was a grand night.  Robin won these glass coasters as a door prize.  I want them.  I'll buy her dinner at the next food truck if she gives them to me. 

I drove home under the light of the crescent moon, listening to Mack The Knife, full of wine and food and a saxophone.  Full of happy.

Oh, the shark babe, has such teeth dear
And it shows them pearly white
Just a jackknife has old MacHeath, babe
And he keeps it ... ah ... out of sight. 

Ya know when that shark bites, with his teeth, babe
Scarlet billows start to spread
Fancy gloves, though, wears old MacHeath, babe
So there's nevah a trace of red. 

Now on the sidewalk ... uuh, huh ...
whoo ... sunny mornin' ... uuh, huh
Lies a body just oozin' life ... eeek!
And someone's sneakin' 'round the corner
Could that someone be Mack the Knife? 

A-there's a tugboat ... huh, huh, huh ...
down by the river don'tcha know
Where a cement bag's just a'droopin' on down
Oh, that cement is just, it's there for the weight, dear
Five'll get ya ten old Macky's back in town.

Now, d'ja hear 'bout Louie Miller?  He disappeared, babe
After drawin' out all his hard-earned cash
And now MacHeath spends just like a sailor
Could it be our boy's done something rash?

Now ... Jenny Driver ... ho, ho ... yeah ... Sukey Tawdry
Ooh ... Miss Lotte Lenya and old Lucy Brown
Oh, the line forms on the right, babe
Now that Macky's back in town.

Aah ... I said Jenny Diver ... whoa ... Sukey Tawdry
look out to Miss Lotte Lenya and old Lucy Brown
Yes, that line forms on the right, babe
Now that Macky's back in town ...

Look out ... old Macky is back!

Mack The Knife
Written by Kurt Weill/E. Bertolt Brecht/Marc Blitzstein

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