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Valli Scavelli

Photo by Serge Seymour

Vocalist and Co-Composer of "Get off the Ground (The Bottom End)"

What can I say except I feel this has saved my life. I've said that without singing I'm only half alive. The feeling of gratitude and joy are beyond words. A renaissance, revitalization has happened to us through the Internet. Seymour Nurse, Gilles Peterson, and all the unsung heroes with songs in their hearts are contributing to what I believe to be a Renaissance of music, HALLELUYAH!!!

Who knew that after 23 years Santa would come knocking at our door in the form of Seymour Nurse? What can I say about a miracle, that to my amazement has become an historical recording called "The Holy Grail"? I don't remember anything intellectual about the M&K "Get off the Ground" session (to me, it was about 1976) but I can tell you how it felt and feels, Glorious, Spontaneous, Exuberant, Thrilling, Exciting, overflowing with Joy and Love, Ecstatic, Grateful.

I was just so happy singing, "Get off the Ground" with Baaska, Jamie, & Ken (Phenomenal Musicians), and recording direct-to-disc with Ken Kreisel engineering. I was standing up and dancing around, who could be still with that track, its just natural. Ken Kreisel first heard us at the Celebrity Center in California. We had a different drummer then and Jamie would play with us when he was free.

Ken liked our sound and wanted us to record direct to the disc. This was the first time we played together on "Get off the Ground". Awareness seeking songs were my cup of tea; I learned the lyrics and melody we had at the time. Baaska and I went over it a couple of times, the ending and cut on "down upon the ground" were my ideas.

After that we recorded 2 other original songs with Ken Kreisel & The Jim Morris Big Band, "Sad Song" & "The Road Out", also done with a smaller combo. "Get off the Ground" may have also been done with Jim's band, but I don't recall. Ken was thinking about releasing the tracks, but I think he was more into instrumentals, so he didn't release them. The tapes are lost to my knowledge or stuck away someplace nobody knows about. That's all I can remember about that session, and I loved doing it.

Talk about Santa Claus!! After a relentless 23 year search, Seymour Nurse found us and gave us back our music, which I consider the greatest gift anyone could have given us, for its not just the music, it's life. When he called from England I couldn't believe it.

He, his family and friends never gave up. This is exceptional! I love his work as a DJ, and the music he puts together I find the most Aesthetic! His writing and never ending support of our music including all the dancers, and artists from the "original" Electric Ballroom, and now "The Bottom End" jazz room (the name on the original 12 inch of "Get off the Ground") never ceases to amaze me, and is continuing to this day.

I trust him implicitly; he's a man of integrity. Being on the Aesthetic wavelength, it seems he makes his life in such a way that it has a poetry of spontaneity, of love, of joy. A life of celebration!

"Every moment you're happy is a gift to the world." (Harry Palmer)

Well, there are lots of gifts going out. Thank you for inspiring us, and bringing us back to our music. Thank you Seymour and Co. There really is a Santa Claus!!

Valli Scavelli

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