Thursday, August 03, 2006

Cyro sits in with Wynton Marsalis

On July 23rd, Beat The Donkey played The Bethel Woods Performing Arts Center. This is the location of the original Woodstock Festival. It is a beautiful piece of land where they've built a top of the line new amphitheater. The bill included Chris Botti, Diane Reeves, and Wynton Marsalis. The groups were all full of incredible musicians!

The festival closer was Wynton. On his second tune he announced a special guest, told a funny story about eating shrimp, and brought Cyro out with heartfelt praise. He said, "ladies and gentlemen, truely one of the greatest musicians in the world, Cyro Baptista."

Summer Tour!!

(left to right - Tim, Steve, Eleonora, Cyro and Brian)

Here are some wonderful emails we received from our fans when we got home from our latest tour! We always love to hear from all of you!!

There are also some photos from the summer tour! Enjoy!!

I don't know what to say about Beat the Donkey except that I felt I was having a once-in-a-lifetime experience (unless they return next year). The festival was wonderful this year. I live on the road behind the fairgrounds and have been coming every year, this year was one of the best. Thank you for your perfect performance, you were the "find" this year. Come back again.

Geri - Grassroots Festival, Trumansburg , NY

I saw your show at the Grassroots Fest in Trumansburg, NY and you blew my mind! GREAT SHOW! I was surprised and delighted by the twists and turns, and by the many diverse influences present in your music. I was trying to describe it to a friend of mine later, and I explained "it's like Frank Zappa meets Sonic Youth and Santana, and they decide to compose psychedelic prog rock spanning every genre you've ever danced or nodded your head to". Very cool, guys. Please come to Grassroots again... I try to go every year (I've been going to it since 1997), and you were a breath of fresh air.

anonymous - Grassroots Festival, Trumansburg , NY

The Baptista Effect - Music and Spirit Reaching New Heights

By the end of this last string of dates with BTD, all agreed that the band had reached a new musical level. Personally, I can measure my own growth through a deeper understanding of our leader and his concept. Cyro is a storyteller and a vehicle for sonic images. He doesn't want to complicate, impress, or confuse; he wants share, inspire, and connect. We all work diligently in specific formats, learning to play changes, read music, and feel swing. With such intense focus one can easily loose sight of original inspiration. For me, that inspiration has always been to communicate through music. Cyro is deeply connected to that inspiration and breaths conviction into every note he plays. In BTD we are digesting new cultures, embracing new influences, and nurturing our roots. This place where we first planted the dream of living with music. We come to you, humbly offering the fruits and seeds of loved labor, born in the spirit of collaborative creation, and channeled through voices, rhythms, and song. To Cyro, Eleonora, Chikako, Tim, Ze, Lisette, Brian, and Steve; Thanks for sharing your stories and for helping me stay inspired! You really brought your A game this time Bro-Dogs. Pau na Mula!!! Lets Go!!! Lets do it!!!

- Clay Ross