Tuesday, April 17, 2012

DC's Ambidexterous Dentist

Dr. Steven Kaufman, a specialist in the periodontal trade, has talents well beyond preserving and implanting the oral outcropping of our precious skeleton. When in rhythmic fashion  he picks his way through uppers and lowers at exam time (3-4-2-6 etc), he might just be counting notes since he is also an accomplished trumpet player. (Ambidexterous can mean "exceptionally dexterous") One of his venues outside his jazz-infused downtown Washington office is Maryland's Glen Echo Park where he sometimes toots his horn on Saturday nights. Check info@glenechopark.org. He once was one of four trumpet players in a band called the Doc Dikeman Jazz Ensemble that recorded a CD labeled "Swing Session" - the Doc being a graduate of the Georgetown University School of Dentistry and, according to record notes, a performer during his Duke University years with the "famous" Duke Ambassadors. This was a band that Les Brown had directed five years early, say those same notes. (See line drawings of famous jazz artists here on my blog.)  Kaufman says this particular band is no more but the memory lingers on..as does fame by association. After graduation from Duke, 'Doc's band had performed one time alongside Dizzy Gillespie and Ella Fitzgerald. Not to brag but yes to relish-the-memory-of, I was able on best behavior to 'sketch' live up close DG as well as many others in the  pantheon.

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