Tag Archives: Pink Martini

Pink Martini & The Von Trapps

Ray talks to Thomas Lauderdale, founder of Pink Martini:

Two months ago, I had heard of the Pink Panty Pulldown, though admittedly not at all since my college days, but I had not heard of Pink Martini.

pink martini

Pink Martini is a band.  A damn good one, too.  I wish I could tell you what kind of band they are, but categorizing them would be a disservice.  They play old school bachelor pad songs.  They play ballads that will make you bawl your eyes out.  They interpolate classical pieces within standards.  I’m sure they’d do a heck of a pro wrestler entrance theme if I asked nicely. Pink Martini also has adapted their unique style to that of another outstanding group, and together they are releasing (next week) a bad arse album.  They and that other group, our old pals The Von Trapps, are playing the Murat Theatre at Old National Centre Saturday night (March 1).

The Von Trapps are the only reason I know jack about Pink Martini.  To recap, here is my interview with them when they spent much of December in Indy as part of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra’s Yuletide Celebration:

Ray with The Von Trapps, December, 2013:

The Von Trapps dropped the 411 that they were releasing an album with Pink Martini.  I assumed that meant they were celebrating a new album in a more grown up fashion now that they were of age, well three of them anyway.  Then, I figured out they were talking about a band.  I looked up Pink Martini.  Holy cow, are they good.

Thomas Lauderdale is a HOOOOOSIER (you have to say it like former state school superintendent Tony Bennett).
Say HOOOOSIER with Tony:

Thomas left Indiana when he was 12, became a classically trained pianist and founded Pink Martini roughly 20 years ago.  Thomas is a heck of an interview, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.  And what in the blue heck are you waiting for, go see them Saturday night.  We’re getting a foot of dang snow on Sunday, so you might as well get your rear end out while you can!

The Von Trapps know where they came from, but they also do their own musical thing

LISTEN: The Von Trapps on the ISO’s Yuletide Celebration and their own Indy concert:

von trapp

Before she brought them to the studio, the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra‘s communications director, Jessica DiSanto, asked that I not refer to the Von Trapps as “The Von Trapp Children.”  I thought it an odd request, because the bill at the Hilbert Circle Theatre for the ISO’s Yuletide Celebration plainly says “The Von Trapps.”  It obviously meant others who had interviewed them had made that mistake, and Jessica was just doing diligence, which is her job.  So, I said “sure. No problem.” (To be sure, based on their web site name, it’s an easy mistake.)

After the quartet arrived, the Von Trapps themsevles, unaware that Jessica had already done so, also asked that they not be referred to as “children.”  I asked, incredulously, “people still call you ‘children’?”  “All the time,” they said, even though August, the youngest, is now 19.

I then imagined every interview they must go through; people saying (as I use my best Monty Python, Terry Jones fake woman’s voice), “oh, I just LOVE The Sound Of Music, and it’s SOOO wonderful how you CHILDREN are keeping the memory of the Baron and Maria alive.  It’s SUCH a BE-YOUUUU-tiful love story, and you CHILDREN are SOOOO inspiring blah blah blah blah blah.”  It made the swerve I planned that much more satisfying; I don’t really care for The Sound Of Music.  (My sister is reading this and, simultaneously, ripping up my Christmas card.)

My wish was to ask about anything other than Sound.  But the Von Trapps are proud of where they came from and happy to perform some of the old songs, including Edelweiss. That’s despite the fact that many people are mistaken in thinking the original Von Trapp family sang Edelweiss 70 years ago; it’s a Rodgers and Hammerstein song from the musical. The Von Trapps are also doing their own material in traditional style – you hear a sample at the 5:30 mark of the podcast; August is writing some bad booty daddy music.

After they finish their run with the Yuletide Celebration, which includes their own, stand-alone concert on Monday night, December 16, they will return to their home base in Portland, Oregon to finish work on an album with the wonderful group Pink Martini (who is coming to the Murat next March!)  The album should be out in the spring of 2014, and we can hope the Von Trapps will be back for a tour to push that album.

I can hear August Von Trapp asking his sisters; “bad booty daddy? ”  It’s okay.  It’s a good thing, August.