, Newburyport, MA


September 13, 2013

An evening to remember


Some of that would be buzzing in my inner self as Danny Harrington, eyes closed, late in the program plumbed the depth and caressed the upper range of his baritone sax to the swish, swish of Les Harris Jr.’s brushes, Jack Senier’s sensitive touch on the Steinway and Mark Carson’s gently roving bass.

Prior to that, Danny Harrington had spoken of all that Les had meant to him when he, as a young man with an exaggerated opinion of his ability, was set aright by Les as to how far he had to go and what it would take to get there.

Having made that extended journey by meeting Les’ goals, he too, would come to teach others at Berklee.

The program would have been incomplete if Les Senior hadn’t played, but topping even that was the performance of bassist Aubrey Harris, his 16-year-old granddaughter, who played a set with her father, Les Jr.

Both father and grandfather, mother Annie and grandmother Janet, and I suspect everyone else in addition to myself, was grinning ear to ear through the set, and exploded with applause when it ended.

Well they might have.

Aubury Harris will be a freshman at Berklee with a full scholarship a year from now.

Given what her father and grandfather brought to Berklee, as well as her current ability, she was welcomed with open arms.

What her grandfather has brought to Newburyport’s musicians, old and young, has resulted in an honoring plaque that will find its way to a suitable public setting.

That all of that could be an outcome of the celebration of Jonathan and Betsy Woodman’s 50th wedding anniversary gratifyingly is truly for the ages.


Bill Plante is a Newbury resident and staff columnist. His e-mail address is

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