Paris: The New Portland

The historic Folies Bergères, in Paris

Though Pink Martini was formed in 1994 in our hometown of Portland, Oregon, I believe the first place the band truly enjoyed success was in France, around 1997, after we released a single in French that speaks about not wanting to work, only wanting to forget everything, and smoking.  (In Europe, the song is titled, “Je ne veux pas travailler,” which means, “I don’t want to work,” but elsewhere, its title is “Sympatique.”)  This song was released about the same time France had officially shortened the work week from 40 hours to 35, so the song was a huge hit!!  Of course, the smokers of France, of which there are many, took a liking to the song, too! Continue reading

Amsterdam: Totally Smitten

ted-amsterdam5-2

Hard to believe it has been almost twenty years since I was last in Amsterdam, and it’s crazy to think that Pink Martini has never played here until now, considering we have played almost every major city in the world! We have a great fan base (so we learned on this trip), which makes our switch of allegiance from United Airlines to Delta, a perfect choice. They have a direct flight from our hometown, Portland, Oregon, to Amsterdam, a now indispensable first stop on our regular European tours.

My favorite cities in the world are all very different from one another, but they have one specific thing in common; an exhilarating, thriving restaurant and bar scene. Not only can you smell it, but you can feel how in-tune the people are with food and drink. Amsterdam, however, is inching towards the top of my list. Continue reading