When Is a Gig Not a Gig? 


Dear editor:

Is Evan Parker, as described in the Reader Critic's Choice on 5/8/98, "stunning" and "breathtaking"? Yes indeed. Is his playing "extraordinary" and "meticulous"? That is perfectly true. Is it a "religious experience"? Having not had one, I wouldn't really know. Was Friday's performance his "first-ever live solo gig in Chicago"? Only if you discount our diligent efforts at Southend Musicworks on October 7, 1992, when Parker was presented live and solo to Chicago as part of the London Jazz Composers Orchestra "Subsets and Intrasections" concerts.

Mr. Margasak may perhaps someday see one of his successors refer to themselves as Chicago's first writer to deal with improvised music (probably in the Reader, given its overall slope in music writing). Then he can tell us: what type of experience is that?

Nick Horcher

N. Seminary

Peter Margasak replies:

Call me a nitpicker, but performing one short solo piece, as Evan Parker did at the concert to which you refer, is not the same as a full-length solo performance.


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