Posted on 11/4/2009at 10:22 AM
At the end of September, Inside Straight went on an odyssey to the Kayenn Jazz Festival in Cayenne, French Guiana. It was a very good gig, but getting there was…..deep. My manager told me what the travel was, but I didn’t really hear him. Believe him is more like it.

Stay with me here….

Flight 1:
Tuesday, September 29th.
New York to Santo Domingo:

Although I knew we were having an overnight layover, I didn’t mind. I was looking forward to seeing Santo Domingo, DR. I was a bit tired, so I didn’t see much. Oh, well….

Flight 2:
Wednesday, September 30th.
Santo Domingo to San Juan:
3.5 hour layover.

Flight 3:
San Juan to Pointe-a-Pitre, Guadelupe:
Um, I wasn’t mentally prepared to have another overnight layover. Are you kidding me??

Flight 4:
Thursday, October 1st (5am lobby call, mind you….)
Our flight from Pointe-a-Pitre to Fort de France, Martinique (which apparently, there’s only one per day) was canceled due to mechanical problems. So now what do we do? We hop back into the cab to go back to our hotel for another overnight layover. Jeez…

Flight 5: (Keep in mind, this is our FOURTH day of traveling, and we’re still not there yet!)
Friday, October 2nd
Pointe-a-Pitre to Fort de France, Martinique:
Quick layover

Flight 6:
Fort de France to Cayenne, French Guiana.
(Frankly, at this point, I forgot where we were supposed to be going in the first place)

We only had a couple of hours to pull everything together before we headed over to soundcheck. Thank goodness, the staff at the festival were very, very sweet, so that made it better for all of us. We heard wonderful bands and we got fed REALLY well! The food was SMMMOKIN’!! Ok, maybe the six flights were worth it.

But, wait, we had to get to Roanoke, Virgina the next day.

Roanoke from Cayenne??? Uh, oh….

Flight 7:
Saturday, October 3rd
Cayenne to Fort de France
(upon landing, we stay on the plane for about 30 minutes. Then…)

Flight 8:
Fort de France to Pointe-a-Pitre
(then, dig THIS one….)

Flight 9:
Pointe-a-Pitre to MONTREAL(!!)
(Can anyone on earth explain THAT one???)

Another overnight layover. Sigh…..

Flight 10:
Sunday, October 4th
Montreal to Washington, DC
(short layover)

Flight 11:
Washington, DC to Roanoke. (Do I really feel like doing a gig now?)

Fortunately, the gig in Roanoke was attended by some soulful people. And if we thought the food was great in French Guiana, my man, John Schopp THREW DOWN!! John is one of the baddest chefs in the country. “Brother Mister” had sirloins, fried chicken, bbq ribs, fish, burgers, veggies, salad, yams, greens, cakes, pies, candied apples….I mean…John did it to DEATH!! Thanks again, John.

We also saw a wonderful school that the Jefferson Center in Roanoke is opening for young kids learning music. Incredible. Check out the website:

Ok, now we gotta get home from Roanoke.

Flight 12:
Monday, October 5th
Roanoke to Charlotte
(two hour layover)

Then, finally….

Flight 13:
Charlotte to Newark.

Ok, let’s put this into perspective:
Two concerts = seven days and THIRTEEN FLIGHTS!!

Why do some of you think touring is so glamorous? ☺ Frankly, I’m tired again after remembering all of this.

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