Phil Woods is standing on the deck that runs the length of his mountaintop home in the Poconos, surveying his front yard. “Someday, this will all be mine,” he laughs. The idyllic surroundings of a small village like the Delaware Water Gap might appear almost too serene for the intense Woods, who seems to operate at twice the speed of a normal human being. But he clearly loves the bucolic area that he has called home for over 30 years.
“For a village of 500 people, it’s really swingin’,” the 73-year-old says. “There are so many great musicians here-Dave Liebman, Steve Gilmore, Urbie Green, Nelson Hill. One of the world’s oldest jazz clubs, the Deer Head Inn, is right down the street. We have the Al Cohn Memorial Jazz Collection [at East Stroudsburg University] and the COTA Festival, so it’s a pretty vibrant scene.”