You'll find that, these writings are more about capturing the mood than being extremely educational as that's more the forte of others. You'll just have to be the judge as to how much you agree with me on any and all as you see fit. Also, it's worth noting my tendency toward the "strait ahead" as being something that gets mention here. Other things have been enjoyed also but, that's just not what's discussed here at this time.
let me grab the text from an email advertising a performer that i've gone to see at Vicinos before. and actually; we'll be discussing my memories of shows there until i sayotherwise.
You'll get a better feel for the place by virtue of the text in the email below.. and yes, I just went to this next show mentioned below..
Vicinos; The Washington DC Metro Area's Most Intimate Jazz Club
Monday, March 11, 2013
7:00PM to 9:30PM
Jamie Broumas (vocals), Bob Butta (piano), Michael Bowie(bass),
Harold Summey(drums), and special guest Charlie Young(alto sax)$25 admission
Reservations are recommended as seating is limited
For reservations call: 202-726-6515 or 202-270-0107
Vicino's is located at: 959 Sligo Avenue
Silver Spring Maryland. 20910
For more information visit us on the web at www.jazzknights.com
at any rate, Jamie is very cool, a little like
Diana Krall as you'd see when sampling the music on her site or catching her live. Her Version of Wayne Shorter's Foot Prints is always fun, nice and slow too... She does a set list that's uniquely her. the often neglected Cole Porter Tune Thou Swell is always a treet.
Vocalist George Ve Johnson:
I believe that That date found us with drummer Lenny Robinson, basist Herman berney, Pianist Alan Johnson, and george on vocals. Lets just say that, he's singing songs that noone else sings much that i know of. It's really as cool as it gets to catch him doing things that you may have known as instrumentals or only heard at a jam. Noone else would dare try and sing the songs he does or could write the lyrics he does. but George did it.
The other musicians on the date were,basist Steve Novesel, pianist Toney Nalker, and last but not least, her hubby,Harrold Summey on drums.
Seemingly,she's just becoming more delightful and uniquely great as the years go by. The first time i got to hear her live was in much less of a listening room; thus, on this occasion, things were easier to hear, and did seem more special than ever. She mixes in some African Chanting such that Round Midnight and All Blues become something very special in deed... Actually, anything she does is but, certainn things are worth pointing out as its not always easy to find something that's unique and musical both at once..
Paul's another one who has often included Harrold on drums and this was so during the concert that night. Past experience and a usually good memory tells me that, The rest of the band was probably Michael Bowie on bass and Allan Johnson on piano. at any rate, Paul's seriously musical tennor playing, coupled with his choice of songs and aranging, really made for a heck of a good time. and in fact; There was one of Paul's original tunes that i still just can't get out of my head. It's a tune called, Musically Yours. A lot of what makes the song is this extremely hip dotted bass rif placed over a swing patern for part of the tune, thus it goes back and forth between that and "walking" swing. Without a doubt, one of the coolest things i've ever heard.
Pianist Danny Mixon: http://www.dannymixonsounds.com/
This time it was Steve Novosel on bass, and Keith Kilgo on drums. If Johny O, mentioned below was a delightfully musical presence that kept your attention as if the hand of God mandated it; Dannie was the equally amazing and slightly more wile and crazy guy who you just have never quite heard the likes of. Truely a wonderful example of a cat who's really doing his own thing without chucking the baby with the bath watter. Never easy to achieve and these days maybe even more so what with all that competes for our ears during the course of a day. Totally entertained and satisfyed, I kind of found myself saying at times, did he really do that?
Pianist Johnny O’Neal: http://www.johnnyoneal.org/
He performed there with his trio, and that one was just amazing, and,If you didn't know He's the guy who played the role of Art Tatem in the movie Rayhe. Thus you'd suspect that you'd be in for a treet, and yup! He plays his but off. Just real tradition mixed with his own delightful unique slich something that's really deeply fun. It was truely the kind of playing that i just love, the type that you might have even forgotten you wanted even needed to hear more of. Recent events in the form of a show curtacy of the pianist mentioned above have jogged my memory such that i'm pretty sure that Keith Kilgo was on drums that night. It could have been Herman Berney on bass. Usually i look for certain drummers hwen deciding to attend a show but, that's not always true. Lets just say that it's a good thing that i, let my curiosity about this pianist get the better of me.
We'll leave Vicinos and the Carter family who run that gig now to discuss other performances.
Hendrick muerkens: Http://www.hendrikmeurkens.com/
but with Chuck Redd ON drums this time:
Warren played the Jazz Night at West Minster. and on that night he played with his quintet that included sax, bass, drums piano, and himself on vibes.
John Lamkin was on drums and again it escapes me who else was on that date - thus i understand if you doubt me when i claim that i'm usuallly pretty good at recalling who was on a date for a jazz performance that i liked. Warren just really did great stuff, and between his choice of songs and styles, and the rest of the bands chemestry, well it's easy to see why he's succeeding as a jazz musician. Oh and he plays Piano drums and bass as well.
The Potomac Jazz Project: http://www.potomacjazz.com/
So another jazz quartet i thought as friends and I prepaired to order a little something at a Thai restaurant called Sala Thai. This is where I found the Potomac Jazz Project moste recently, and, though i can't say that any one song of the evening sticks out in my mind, lets just say that I was pleasantly surprised. it will be said here that their sound was just wonderful. Just really fun easy to listen to music, which is not always easy to come by, especially in jazz today, or at least some of us would argue that. I found their sound to be great during the other occasion where i got to see them perform as a quartet live as well. If I hadn't said it yet, the sound of a band is as important as anything as if I need to where ear plugs in order to enjoy myself, or the other extreme situation is true where its hard to hear them at all.. is happening, well, needless to say it's a miss match some how that is seldom as fun as it might be.
The Mid Atlantic Jazz festival: www.midatlanticjazzfestival.org/
Run by the previously mentioned Paul Carr and his wife, This is an event that happens annually during every presidents day weekend, and this case found me there during 2012 and there were a couple of shows that deserve mention for sure.
One of them was a group called cloudburst, Http://cloudburstdc.blogspot.com
This is a vocal group that i had the great pleasure of playing with myself during a previous occasion. I'll take someone elses description of them for my own selfish purposes now;
"Cloudburst" is the DC area's only all vocalese group, specializing in recreating the original sound of Lambert, Hendricks and Ross. Their repertoire also includes songs and arrangements by Eddie Jefferson, King Pleasure, Al Jarreau, and Joni Mitchell/Charles Mingus
This group is Lead by Pianist Wayne Wilentz. Otherwise usually on the date with them are drummer Jim West, and basist David Jernigan.
There’s a fine young drummer by the name of Aaron Seeber, and his group's performance at the fest was an excellent example of what can be done when true understanding of the art form is present. After all, when it comes to jazz lets face it, plenty of older people seem clueless when it comes to jazz, and it’s not that they can’t, it’s just that they lack that understanding. It’s like, expecting me to play classical music, I’m just not going to do well at it as it’s just not something I’ve invested much effort in trying to understand.
Chris's doing some great music at the very classy Mandarin Inn with more quality musicianship, and it's jazz vocals that are the specialty. These shows happen on Friday and Saturday nights. as adrummer myself, let me say that, since Lenny Robinson often plays drums for those occasions, I recommend those evenings, to say the very least.
Actually,There was one of those nights, when Deloris King Williams, was the featured vocalist of the evening. I was just so totally blown away by that night that I can’t even describe it. She did a version of My Favorite Things that was well; as good as it will ever get.
Erick has done some memorable concerts. He's someone who does groups of
various sizes but is also known for leading a big band and doing the Nut Cracker Suite and it's a really good rendering of that that I recommend and it's actually the second mention of his that I make here. Erick is another musician who makes me jealous that I don't also play more than one instrument.
The first one I'll mention was a smaller version of the big band, maybe eight musicianstotal. This one was at the Felix, kind of a classy venue in DC, and, Harold, again, was playing drums and just burning it up!. I’ve never heard better swing, feel, and improvisation on the part of a drummer comping with a medium sized big band. This was the band that was doing tributes to Frank Sanotra. Paul Piper was playing guitar and there was no lack from the absence of a piano that night I can tell you. Odds are good that that did not get recorded and it's why I encourage people to get out and see this music as if you don't you'll probably miss out on moments like that one.
There was another big band thing of his, this time with the big big band, that Erick did at Blues Alley, www.bluesalley.com/ and, Chuck Redd was playing drums on this one, which is also hard to complain about. There's plenty of nice wood and carpet almost guaranteed to make any music sound great. Also, any time things get too loud, well one can usually remedy that just by moving to the bar - an assential feature of any room where I don't run the sound :)
it would be impossible to find better big band drumming than Chuck's , and I’ve never enjoyed anything more than that gig that night. This was Erick's anual christmas time rendering of Duke Ellington's The Nut Cracker Suite.
Chuck red Playing vibes this time:
This is the new and improved one on U Street, which is a huge improvement sonically speaking, thus i recommend it highly because everything has a way of sounding good there. at any rate, they once had a gig a couple few years ago with pianist Noah Hydu., the names of the basist and tennor sax player, allude me but, with drummer Billy Hart, it was really quite the amazingly memorable show. Noah just kicked but, Billy just was as good as it will ever get, Billy all by himself was just absolutely gripping and riveting. Actually, the entire ensemble just totally kicked ass, better than most, and the horn player was just right there with them. Truely another special event, and an occasion that probably didn't get recorded and so I'm happy to have been there.