Yo-Yo Ma sends thank-you note

Assorted ramblings from the world of entertainment:

l Yo-Yo Ma’s visit to the Mahoning Valley in August and his concert at the Warren Community Amphitheatre was a memorable day for everyone in attendance.

Apparently, it was a memorable day for the cellist as well.

Ken Haidaris of Sunrise Entertainment, who handled the logistics for the amphitheater show, received a thank-you letter this week from the artist.

“I was deeply honored to be in the Mahoning Valley on August 13, sharing the day with the city’s magnificent cultural citizens — the people and organizations who, like you, are working so hard to put culture in service of society — and with the many people you are so visibly helping,” the typed letter states. “I thank you profoundly, not only for your many efforts in making this day happen, but also for all of your ongoing work.”

The letter also states, “I hope we can continue to stay in touch and to think about what we can all do together that we can’t do alone.”

At the bottom is a handwritten note: “Ken, What a remarkable day for us all — thank you for bringing all of us together.”

It’s signed, Warmly, Yo-Yo Ma.

“I was honored,” Haidaris said. “I thought it was really nice of him, and then to hand-write that. I recognized his handwriting … I think he’s genuinely a nice person, real receptive to people.”

The free concert drew thousands to the downtown amphitheater. Many were from out of town and many were attending an event there for the first time, and Haidaris said he could see a lasting impact from the concert.

“It had a nice halo effect for the amp and the town,” he said. “People are still talking about it.”

l Last week, Warren native Dave Grohl released the vinyl edition “Play,” a 23-minute instrumental opus on which Grohl plays all the instruments and with each part being recorded in a single take.

Next week, fans will have a chance to bid on the gear he used to make the recording.

The auction starts Tuesday at www.reverb.com and will run through Oct. 21. All of the instruments used on “Play” were donated by DW Drums, Fender, Gibson, Gretsch, Ludwig, Masters Of Maple and Zildjian, and have been signed by Grohl.

Grohl was inspired to make “Play” by watching his own children take music lessons, and the mini-documentary made in conjunction with the recording talks about the rewards and challenges that come from trying to master an instrument.

“Seeing my own kids start to play music and take lessons brings me back to the time when I was their age, chipping away at it and learning from my mistakes,” Grohl says in the press release. ” It’s a lifelong obsession, but at the end of the day — just like any kid — the reward is just to play.”

With that in mind, proceeds from the auction will go to, “organizations that help young generations of musicians ‘just PLAY,'” according to the press release.

l Now on display at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Museum is “Something Going On: Jeff Rusnak, A Rock & Roll Life.”

Rusnak was a concert photographer who died in 2016 at age 60 and regularly shot concerts in New York City, Philadelphia and New Jersey. In many cases, he photographed bands at the beginning of their careers, including U2, The Clash, Black Flag and Ween.

His collection of photographs was donated to the Rock Hall after his death.

The work on display at the museum features such acts as David Bowie, Henry Rollins, Joe Strummer, Elvis Costello, Frank Zappa, Stevie Nicks, Nancy Wilson, Tina Weymouth, Annie Golden, Wayne Coyne, Jello Biafra, Peter Gabriel, the Who, Talking Heads, Adam Ant, Devo, Ramones, the B-52’s, Frank Zappa, Flaming Lips, Yes, Gary Numan and Chuck Berry.

Rusnak’s entire collection is housed at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Library & Archives, and fans can make an appointment to view the collection by emailing library@rock hall.org.

Andy Gray is the entertainment writer for the Tribune Chronicle. Write to him at agray@tribtoday.com.