Dallas Voice (Dallas, Tex.), Vol. 23, No. 47, Ed. 1 Friday, April 6, 2007 Page: 30 of 72
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As Thomas Lauderdale spreads Pink Martini's global gospel, the queer bandleader
offers his take on popular music, the rnulti-culti political landscape
and the group's role as cultural ambassadors from the oft-misunderstood U.S.
— . —. ""r
SYMPATHIQUE SYMPHONY: Pink Martini, featuring Thomas Lauderdale, center, bring their dulcet tones to North Texas. And their big sound might help us understand "it's a small world, after all:
You don't often hear bandleaders refer to
their musicians as "diplomats." Then
again, there aren't many bands like Pink
Founded in 2004 by gay, classically trained
pianist Thomas Lauderdale, the Portland, Qre.-
based ensemble makes music that's as timeless as
it is unprecedented. Mining musical styles from
such diverse locales as Cuba, Croatia, France and
Japan, the 12-piece mini-symphony's songs fall
somewhere between musical travelogues and
selections from a long-forgotten '50s film sound-
Originally formed for the purpose of perform-
ing at local progressive fundraisers, Pink
30 I dallasvoice.com I 04.06.07
By Gilbert Garcia Pop Music Critic
Martini's universally appealing sound quickly
found fans across the country. Charity and wed-
ding gigs soon gave way to critically acclaimed
recordings. Before long, the band was perform-
ing in such far-flung cities as Beirut, Tokyo, Paris
and Cannes. Today, Pink Martini's shows largely
consist of showcases alongside symphony
orchestras in cities large and small across the
U.S. and around the world.
Earlier this week, as Pink Martini prepared
for a four-day engagement with the Fort Worth
Symphony Orchestra at Bass Performance Flail,
Lauderdale took a call from his home in Portland.
He discussed his take on popular music, the
American political landscape, and Pink Martini's
role as cultural ambassadors from the oft-misun-
Recalling the band's early days — raising
money for social causes — does the increasingly
busy group still consider themselves to be politi-
"Yes, very much so," Lauderdale says, listing
public libraries, civil rights and environmental
causes among some of the group's more recent
civic efforts. "Everybody in the band is very
attached to the community here in Portland," he
Do they lend their efforts to bigger national
Continued on Page 32
DRINK UP PINK MARTINI
Two years ago, when Pink Martini jammed
with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra the
cosmopolitan ensemble brought the house down
with an eclectic blend of classical, jazz, Latin,
Parisian lounge and Japanese film noir. Fans
have been eagerly awaiting a second round. With
FWSO conductor Jeffrey Pollock, they're coming
back for a four-day run at Bass Hall, which clos-
es out the Pops season.
Bass Performance Hall, Bass Hall, 525
Commerce Street, Fort Worth. April 12-15: 8
p.m. Thursday-Saturday; 2p.m. on Sunday.
Tickets $24-$76. www.fwsymphony.org. 817-
665-6000. FWSO Ticket Office, 330 E. Fourth
Street, Suite 200, in downtown Fort Worth.
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Nash, Tammye. Dallas Voice (Dallas, Tex.), Vol. 23, No. 47, Ed. 1 Friday, April 6, 2007, newspaper, April 6, 2007; Dallas, Texas. (https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth238955/m1/30/?q=thomas%20lauderdale%20fort%20worth: accessed January 29, 2020), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, https://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Special Collections.