Floating Stage

Floating Stage

Side view at dusk

Side view at dusk

WIth Korean Saxophonist

With Korean Saxophonist Im Dohl Kwun joining us

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Everyone involved after the show

WOW! We finished in a big way in Seoul tonight. We performed on the Yoido Hangang Floating Stage. As you can see the stage is spectacular as it sits on the river overlooking Seoul. The stage had incredible sound, and simply felt amazing. More importantly there were 2000 people there watching us at this free outdoor concert. As it was our last appearance in Seoul we played with intense spirit as always, but because of the huge attendance, setting, and great sound, we really had a spiritually uplifting performance. All the interns from the State Department were just incredible, and there was a jazz society that helped us with every move. Every time I dropped a stick or tried to move something in place, someone was there to pick it up. The crowd was very appreciative, and I saw god tonight while playing. I felt my late mother, and inspiration looking down on me. It was so beautiful out there. This is what we live for. To play our music to huge appreciative crowds. Basically the entire week has been a huge cultural experience, a great success, and we were able to help bridge the gap between organizations like The Seoul Jazz Society, and the US State Department. This program is all about that. Bridging those gaps. Afterwards there were many pictures taken with us as tomorrow morning we leave at 9 am for Shenyang China for the next leg of the tour.There were lots of hugs for us with many people who simply said to us ” I love you”. Please come back to Seoul. We need you here. Your music has touched us all”. What an amazing week!!!

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Mark Sherman/TIm Horner 4tet Russia Arrival

Mark Sherman/TIm Horner 4tet Russia Arrival

View from Hotel

View from Hotel

Fire Escape Rope

Fire Escape Rope

Fire Escape Drop

Fire Escape Drop

The Mark Sherman/Tim Horner 4tet began the Rhythm Road/US State Department tour with a flight from NYC to Seoul Korea. The flight was uneventful. I personally have flown to Japan, and other flights that are 14-15 hours, and after all these years it is still just as uncomfortable as it always was. It takes such a tremendous toll on your body. My sinuses were so messed up after the flight from the pressure of being 40,000 feet in the air for 15 hours. The whole thing really messes your system up. Anyway we arrived safely in Seoul, and checked into the Airport Transit hotel, which is generally used for people who are changing planes and have an overnight wait as we did. The rooms were small but adequate. The only drag was there were no windows in the hotel as it is actually one flight above the airport itself. The next morning as we were walking to our gate for our flight to Russia, I turned to Tim Horner and said, ” Man we have not seen daylight or had a breath of fresh air in 24 hours. I really noticed this, and missed the air. The hotel had air conditioning of course, and prior to that we had been flying the long flight, so I really noticed that I had not taken in any fresh air in a long time. That air conditioning and airplane air just dries you out and creates a lot of stress on your body. Anyway we caught our flight to Vladivostok, Russia, and arrived safely. A few interesting things happened upon arrival. As we exited the plane a mean looking security officer pointed a laser beam at everyone entering Russia as we passed the flight cockpit. I found out that this was a method they use to detect if anyone is running a fever. This is their way of preventing H1N1 from spreading into Russia. Very interesting as I never experienced that form of security. Next the entire plane piled into a bus that would take us to the terminal. Well they piled us in like sardines and eventually the doors closed. We literally drove 10 feet to an entrance to the terminal. We all looked at each other in disbelief as we all simply could have walked the 10 feet to the terminal. That was really funny. Like something out of a comedy movie. Anyway we arrive by van safely to the Hotel Hyundai in Vladivostok where I checked into a really nice room with a view of the naval port and the Pacific Ocean. When I opened the window in my room I saw a black bag and said to myself “oh man someone left a black bag on the window ledge”. I opened it and found a thick rope wrapped around a large spindle. I looked out the window and saw a 100-foot drop and realized that this rope was tied into a giant hook on the ceiling of the window casing. It is the fire escape. If a fire occurs your escape is climbing down this rope 100-200 feet down, which in itself is really dangerous, and you would have to be in great shape and have some rock climbing skills to do it. “DON’T LET GO”!! Totally unbelievable. This would never pass building code in the US. Finally had a good night sleep and we will play music today. More to come!