Suz Doyle at the White House
Suz Doyle & her instrumental duo, Another Dave (David Cudo on soprano & alto sax), played at the White House in 1997. Their album December Breeze prompted the invitation to perform there. Pictured here downstairs at the White House are (from left to right): Suz’s daughter, Lyris, Suz, Dave’s wife Catherine & daughter Jennifer, and Buddy, President & Mrs. Clinton’s dog.
Check out Another Dave’s scrapbook of photos and commentary below.
P.S. Yep, Buddy did have his own secret service agents!
“Of all the musicians who performed [at the White House], you [were] the closest to sublimity.” – Cody Petterson, White House Intern, Dec. 1997.
Playing in the Ballroom
Everyone at the White House was so friendly and engaging. Suz made the mistake of leaving a bag of music unattended for a short time. It was instantly surrounded by secret service agents, who tend to view bags with suspicion. Oopsie.
Luckily, the only thing dangerous in the bag was Another Dave’s arrangement of “Amazing Grace.” Thankfully, all turned out for the best (even after our sequin dresses set off the metal detectors). Er, just to clarify, Dave wasn’t wearing a sequined dress — just the ladies.
Don’t leave your bags unattended!
Extreme Limo service
You could fit an entire choir in a limo this size. Yikes! However, the White House required that we arrive in a limo, no more than 15 minutes ahead of our performance. After a dog bomb-sniffed the limo (no bombs to be found, unless you count our arrangement of a certain song — just kidding!), we sashayed over to the entrance to have our bags searched and set of the metal detectors with our sequin dresses. Meanwhile, as required by White House guidelines, our driver remained outside waiting for us until we left the building.
Speaking of leaving the building: Yes, it’s true that, while touring the city afterwards, Suz did roll down the window while next to another car and say “Pardon me, have you any Grey Poupon?” Seemed the fitting thing to do, somehow. Perhaps next time we play the White House, we should request the smallest limo they have (maybe even an electric car!) , just to balance things out.
“Pardon me, have you any Grey Poupon?”
Presidential M & M’s
Punch and cookies were the order of the day after we played. Not quite as fancy as might be expected — but after a private tour of the place, we were each gifted with boxes of M & Ms, complete with the presidential seal & signature of the Prez, which was the gastronomic highlight of our trip to the White House. Hmmm, do you suppose signing M & M boxes is in the official job description of our commander in chief? Is that what he is really doing while on camera pretending to sign bills into law?
My fellow Americans, I sign these chocolates into law . . .
A sign of the times?
After playing our set in the White House ballroom, we looked at the sign that had announced our group — and found a funny typo: “Another Dave, CORN-vallis, Oregon”.
Heh heh. Must have been a busy day in our nation’s capital.
* for you non-Oregonians, the town is actually spelled: “Corvallis,” which means heart of the valley.
By the way, this all happened over the Christmas Holidays, so the entire place was festooned with Christmas trees and decorations galore from across the country. A memorial booklet: “Santa’s Workshop” was handed out, which details decorations throughout the White House, from the East Garden Room to the Grand Foyer. Ornaments were created by some of the world’s most famous fashion designers from the Council of Fashion Designers of America (who knew there was such a thing?), glass artists from across the country, and needlepoint artists from the National Needlework Association. We especially enjoyed the Parlors, which included the Green Room, Red Room, and Blue Room, and the State Dining Room, the West Wing Lobby, the East Garden Room, and the Grand Foyer. Although the Presidential Library was pretty nifty, too!