Rick Cutler

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Transmitting From Munich, Germany... We arrived yesterday & are here for a series of 4 shows (none of which are in Munich, by the way). We're being based in Munich for the 1st 2 & driving to the cities as opposed to switching hotels, much like we did in Birmingham for part of the UK tour a couple of months ago. The drives are longer but, ultimately, it's less stressful as we can stay in one hotel for a few days & settle in a bit. We shared the plane over with the band Arrested Development, remember them? They had a couple of hits in the '90s that I kind of liked. (I think one was called "Tennessee"). I found out that they wound up suing the TV show of the same name & won! They're still hitting it after 18 years. Who knew? One of our reed players, Frank Perowsky, has a son named Ben who's a phenomenal drummer. He was playing down the road yesterday with the great jazz vocalist, Bobby McFerrin & the Hamburg Radio Orchestra. We were able to attend the soundcheck which was very cool. The orchestra is funded by the government. Can you imagine a jazz orchestra in the US, where you're actually paid a yearly salary by the government? I can't. Europeans put way more emphasis on the importance of the arts & it's an amazing thing. I'd never seen Bobby live & was very impressed. Gotta catch him the next time he comes through town back home. After our show today, we have a couple of days off so it'll be nice to be able to explore the town a bit. Luckily, our hotel is very centrally located which will make that easy. By the way, we arrived right in the middle of the festivities celebrating Munich's 850th birthday. There's a ton of performers (both stage & street) & food vendors all around. Thousands of people in the streets, which are mostly closed to traffic. I'm hoping it'll be a little less crazed after the weekend. I'll be reporting any other news of note from this trip if it occurs. Till then...