Before The Music, Tony Bennett Painted

and finish late in the afternoon when the light fades, I become so absorbed that it feels like only 15 minutes have passed. I usually listen to the Sinatra station on Sirius satellite radio or to WBGO, the local jazz station. Both get my creative juices going. I’ve always loved jazz. Now I’m working on a sketch of [tenor saxophonist] John Coltrane. I love his soundyou can tell how much he loved jazz by how he plays. I also read about art in my studio. One of my favorite books is “The Art Spirit” by Robert Henrian American painter and teacher who died in 1929. I’ve found that the creative choices made when painting are similar to judgments made when singing. Both are about line, form and colorand both have different levels of depth. Singing requires that you feel the story in lyrics.

Column: Almost Music is Omaha’s newest record shop

Almost Music grand opening Live music from Simon Joyner, Noah Sterba and others When: Saturday at 6 p.m. Where: Almost Music, 6569 Maple St. Admission: Free Last week, Smith and I sipped coffee in the shop while he played Alabama Shakes and Dexter Gordon records. I was most curious why Smith would open a record store now when more shops have closed than opened in recent years. Smith knows theres a niche for his store, which he said carries only records in good condition and quality. (Some of the prized pieces at the shop are a rare recorded play called A Black Mass and Conor Obersts first tape, Water.) Hes been to lots of record stores over the years, and hes confident Almost Music will do well in Omaha. I know I can do as good and I know I can do better, Smith told me. I have friends who say they cant find a good record store. Smith has the experience. In 1993, the late, legendary Dave Sink asked him to be a partner in Antiquarium Records, where Smith often went to blow all his money saved up from his high school job. Smith remained at the store for several years until he and fellow Antiquarium partner Chris Deden broke away to sell records exclusively online. Sink was fond of saying, in only the way he could, The Internet is the new CB radio.