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Claudia Gomez‘s sound showers with Trio Gadjo and Besos de Coco

“Playing again has lifted everyone’s spirits.”

Besos de Coco: Claudia Gomez on tap/percussion, Evona Wascinski on bass, and Lorraine Castellanos on vocals and guitar. “Oh my gosh, that was such a blast.” Gomez says.
Besos de Coco: Claudia Gomez on tap/percussion, Evona Wascinski on bass, and Lorraine Castellanos on vocals and guitar. “Oh my gosh, that was such a blast.” Gomez says.
Dancer Claudia Gomez seems quite fond of that pillow.

Claudia Gomez keeps a lot of irons in the fire. She’s a musician and a tap dancer, and she taught at Tap Into Yoga & Reiki all over San Diego until just before the pandemic hit when she decided to open up her own studio in North Park (3930 Oregon Street). She was even doing the occasional show at her new space.

“I had a had a few events before the shutdown and then I thought I’ll just continue to do this outside with masks and social distancing,” said Gomez, speaking of her regular live performances held at Bird Park (28th & Thorn, every Saturday.) “I just said ‘let’s go for it.’ We’ve been doing these for just over a month now. It started out with just a few musicians who would come out and sit on the wall and I decided to bring the band Trio Gadjo (Aaron Mahn, Jeremy Eikam, and Jason Durbin) out to the park. I would promote it and tap dance, and during the second set (shows typically run from 5:30 p.m. to sundown) we’d open it up for a jam session.”

What kind of response have these events in the park been getting?

“People really love it,” says Gomez. “People keep telling me how much they’ve missed the music. And why not? You know it’s so beautiful out and the weather has been perfect. And music has a healing effect. I call these ‘sound-showers,’ because when we play our instruments, when I dance, it feels good for everybody.”

On August 8, the event featured a reunion of the band Besos de Coco, featuring Gomez on tap/percussion, Evona Wascinski on bass and Lorraine Castellanos on vocals and guitar. What was that like?

“Oh my gosh that was such a blast. It feels so good to play with them. It was special because Lorraine just had a birthday and it was Evona’s birthday and it was so great to reconnect with them, because we’re like sisters. It was the perfect time and a lot of people came out to see us perform.”

Afterwards, Trio Gadjo played with special guest Gabriel Sundy sitting in on tenor saxophone. There were numerous local musicians including Robert Dove, Mike Benge, Dan Atkinson, and Rob Thorsen who brought their instruments for the jam session during the second set. It felt kind of like a celebration of the jazz community.

Music in the park on a sunny afternoon sounds pretty idyllic. But what about safety in this time of Covid-19?

“I actually do feel safe,” Gomez explained. “I feel safer than most places, because the park is such an open area and we’re out in the sun and for the most part, people observe the social distancing. It feels good to play in an open environment and feel good about it. Because a lot of people have been feeling isolated and depressed and they haven’t had any motivation to go out and do what they love.”

“Putting on these shows and doing my classes outside has really saved me. At first I was feeling crappy and isolated. It was ridiculous. I wasn’t motivated to go out or exercise or anything. Playing again has lifted everyone’s spirits.”

Do you have a message for people who want to attend when it comes to wearing masks?

“Yes,” she answers, “We don’t want any excuses that would lead to us getting shut down. We’re staying healthy and at the same time we’re following the rules so that we can continue to do what we’re doing.”

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Besos de Coco: Claudia Gomez on tap/percussion, Evona Wascinski on bass, and Lorraine Castellanos on vocals and guitar. “Oh my gosh, that was such a blast.” Gomez says.
Besos de Coco: Claudia Gomez on tap/percussion, Evona Wascinski on bass, and Lorraine Castellanos on vocals and guitar. “Oh my gosh, that was such a blast.” Gomez says.
Dancer Claudia Gomez seems quite fond of that pillow.

Claudia Gomez keeps a lot of irons in the fire. She’s a musician and a tap dancer, and she taught at Tap Into Yoga & Reiki all over San Diego until just before the pandemic hit when she decided to open up her own studio in North Park (3930 Oregon Street). She was even doing the occasional show at her new space.

“I had a had a few events before the shutdown and then I thought I’ll just continue to do this outside with masks and social distancing,” said Gomez, speaking of her regular live performances held at Bird Park (28th & Thorn, every Saturday.) “I just said ‘let’s go for it.’ We’ve been doing these for just over a month now. It started out with just a few musicians who would come out and sit on the wall and I decided to bring the band Trio Gadjo (Aaron Mahn, Jeremy Eikam, and Jason Durbin) out to the park. I would promote it and tap dance, and during the second set (shows typically run from 5:30 p.m. to sundown) we’d open it up for a jam session.”

What kind of response have these events in the park been getting?

“People really love it,” says Gomez. “People keep telling me how much they’ve missed the music. And why not? You know it’s so beautiful out and the weather has been perfect. And music has a healing effect. I call these ‘sound-showers,’ because when we play our instruments, when I dance, it feels good for everybody.”

On August 8, the event featured a reunion of the band Besos de Coco, featuring Gomez on tap/percussion, Evona Wascinski on bass and Lorraine Castellanos on vocals and guitar. What was that like?

“Oh my gosh that was such a blast. It feels so good to play with them. It was special because Lorraine just had a birthday and it was Evona’s birthday and it was so great to reconnect with them, because we’re like sisters. It was the perfect time and a lot of people came out to see us perform.”

Afterwards, Trio Gadjo played with special guest Gabriel Sundy sitting in on tenor saxophone. There were numerous local musicians including Robert Dove, Mike Benge, Dan Atkinson, and Rob Thorsen who brought their instruments for the jam session during the second set. It felt kind of like a celebration of the jazz community.

Music in the park on a sunny afternoon sounds pretty idyllic. But what about safety in this time of Covid-19?

“I actually do feel safe,” Gomez explained. “I feel safer than most places, because the park is such an open area and we’re out in the sun and for the most part, people observe the social distancing. It feels good to play in an open environment and feel good about it. Because a lot of people have been feeling isolated and depressed and they haven’t had any motivation to go out and do what they love.”

“Putting on these shows and doing my classes outside has really saved me. At first I was feeling crappy and isolated. It was ridiculous. I wasn’t motivated to go out or exercise or anything. Playing again has lifted everyone’s spirits.”

Do you have a message for people who want to attend when it comes to wearing masks?

“Yes,” she answers, “We don’t want any excuses that would lead to us getting shut down. We’re staying healthy and at the same time we’re following the rules so that we can continue to do what we’re doing.”

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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