September 11, 2001, I woke up early with my son, who was only 3 months old or so. Turning on the TV, I saw the images I assume everyone else did: the World Trade Center in flames, and then crashing down. I didn't know how to process it, I just kept holding my son in my arms.
Later, I had to go to work at the Aladdin, which is now the Planet Hollywood. Normally bustling with customers, bells, and alarms, today it was strangely quiet. Everyone seemed to be in a haze, aimlessly wandering the casino floor.
Of course, the news was on all the TVs at every bar. But there were signs posted that said that any guests who wanted could go to rooms prepared in the ballrooms to watch the "events of the morning." This phrase has stuck with me for years.
At the time, I always kept some music manuscript paper with me. At lunch, I wrote a little sketch, which included stacked minor 6th intervals. I wanted a "sad," unsettled sound, but not as dissonant as a diminished 5th. I couldn't figure out how to play what I had written on the guitar, so I started moving notes around. up and down in relation to the written page, until I found something I liked. I had a really cool riff, but didn't know what to do with it. I knew it was connected with that phrase, "Events of the Morning." I decided I would eventually finish the piece as a "classical" style piece, but never did.
Finally, after about ten years, I decided to use that passage as the basis for improvisation, so that "Events of the Morning," is always changing, but is something I'm satisfied with. I don't always announce it as my "9/11 song" at gigs, but that's what it is, I guess.
The recording that will be up was recorded live at Money Plays, a local Las Vegas bar, and recorded and mastered by Mike Ziethlow. (He is almost single-handedly building a new scene with his Vegasonthemic.com open mics.) It's a short version, because I got a little nervous, but I think it gets it across.
Remember those lost on 9/11, and those who bravely entered that hell to make a difference.