A Note Addressing Your Concern…

March 19th, 2011

Dear Family, Friends, Colleagues and Fans,

I’ve received a number of messages via various avenues from some of you expressing concern about my travel to Japan this weekend in light of the challenging situation there at present. Thank you so much for expressing your affection and regard for me in this way – it has touched me deeply. I haven’t responded since I myself have been agonizing over what decision to make concerning fulfilling my professional obligation once I found out that the Phil Woods tour would be going on as scheduled. The past few days have been spent in following events as close as possible, conducting due diligence on the range of possible outcomes, and becoming clear on what specific conditions would make it obligatory to cancel. As of this morning, my conclusion is that though conditions might be less comfortable than normal for Japan, the risk will be manageable and the situation not severe enough for me to cancel and by doing so compromise the group that I’m a part of. I know some of you may not agree with my choice, but I hope you  understand that I would not make a decision like this without a lot of careful thought and consideration. It seems that we are living and working in an increasingly uncertain and unstable world. Anyone like myself who has travel as an integral part of his or her profession must constantly access and calibrate what level of risk is acceptable balanced against the fulfillment and rewards of their career. In this case I’ve come to the conclusion that my personal level hasn’t been exceeded. My apologies for any anxiety I may be giving you, especially to my loved ones; I promise to be extremely careful and vigilant while I’m away. I will be back in NY on Monday, March 29. I’ll put updates on my blog, Twitter, or Facebook as time and situation permits.

All My Very Best,


3 Responses to “A Note Addressing Your Concern…”

  1. Yes, please be careful and travel safely. Looking forward to seeing you in Boston when you return. Unsung Heroes sounds so good on the radio!!!

  2. SHU says:

    As one of Japanese Jazz Fans, I admire your decision not to cancel your trip to Japan.
    Although we are suffering from some electricity shortage in Tokyo, now you know that Japan (especially both Nagoya and Tokyo) is very safe and there is nothing to worry about.
    Actually, the situation in northern part is terrible and we are so sad to see the news everyday.
    For this one week, all we hear is this sad news and there is some depressed mood in Japan.
    But I know that Music has a power to cheer people up.
    So there is a meaning for you to play here this time.
    Plaese show your powerful play and also please talk with audiences after the show.
    I’m going to Cotton Club (maybe on Wednesday).
    This is a great venue and I bet you like there.
    I’m looking forward to meeting you there.

  3. […] 4) You recently returned from a week touring in Japan, including gigs in Tokyo. What was your impression of the country and the people you met, following the disasters that befell Japan earlier last month? Was your tour affected by the earthquake/tsunami/nuclear plant calamity in any way, and if so, how?Our tour wasn’t directly affected. Radiation levels in Tokyo, where we were most of the time, were less that they were in Denver. We didn’t experience any discomfort or inconvenience in any way. But it was a solemn, tense time due to the tragedy and uncertainty. I think we (Phil Woods Quintet) were the only group from the U.S. not to cancel after the disaster. I have to say people were surprised to see us, but they were very happy we came. Check out my blog post on why I decided to go. […]

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