Saturday, March 8, 2014

"There will be other nights...(No doubt, Al, no doubt!)

Submitted by Al Kanovsky 03/08/14 this". At least I hope so. The plan was for Ms. Jackie Deering to accompany me and be the chauffeur,  driving M'lord to a couple of musical events. The first, Troy Anderson at the Coral Gables Museum and then on to Jesse Jones Jr. at Le Chat Noir. Jackie lives north and west of me. Traffic tie-ups and railroad crossing stops caused her to be somewhat late. Cause and effect-----change of plans. Being adaptable to change we headed for Soykas and Oriente. It turned out to be an excellent choice. Good wine, good food and a great band. Eddy (El Gato Fresco) Balzola (guitar/vocals), Doni Felix (bass guitar), William Peredes (trombone) and the effusive Orlando Machado on drums. William's wife Julia was there. They are expecting a baby girl next month. Congratulations.----yeah, yeah. I know. Get to the point --- O.K. THE MUSIC. They opened with "All Blues" and of course they employed Latin rhythms. William has the first solo. He never fails to impress and has Jackie in the palm of his musical hand. They do "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy" and Doni catches a groove. Mark Soyka makes an appearance while the band is playing "Body and Soul". They feature William and they do it in "Island style". Next "Idiano" which is a 'tour de force' for this band. Everyone gets their chance to show off. A Cuban traditional 'son' brings Eddie to the mic to sing "Chan, Chan" interlaced with "Life Without Music". They won't play a set without a little be-bop and so we are treated to sonny Rollins' "Pent-up House". They slow it down with "Summertime" to end the set. Jackie and I thank the band for the music and head south for Le Chat Noir and Jesse. Alex, Gio and Enzio are gracious hosts and if you want to hear JAZZ live in a room that defines the word this is the place. We get there just in time for "Caravan". Brian Murphy playing piano, Bob (Bebob) Grabowski on bass and David Nazari on drums. The band and the joint are swinging. Jesse loves to play ballads and when they do "Skylark", you can tell why. The emotion is apparent. I often wonder why a lot of horn players 'think' they can sing. Not with Jesse---he CAN sing and does so on "The Best Things In Life Are Free" including a blow me away scat portion. Next they play "Song For My Father" with Jesse using his horn as a vocal instrument. Be-bop Grabowski 'walks the dog' with his solo on "Mister PC". They do a Bud Powell number with Brian displaying his creativity. Staying in the 'bop' groove "Night In Tunisia" with Jesse quoting "Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho" - they are on the same continent-- and Brian quoting Thelonius Monk.

Jesse picks up the mic to announce the next tune. He and the band are dedicating it to a friend in the audience. Me. The song is "I Thought About You". I must confess that I was deeply touched by the thought and just a touch of a tear appeared. Music is my way of life and these and other JAZZ & BLUES artists help keep my cup full. After a break they come back to do Cannonball's "Sweet Georgia Bright". It has a complex bop melodic line. I am trying to figure it out---then Eureka---it's "Sweet Georgia Brown" backward---yes backward---Holy s---! Just plain great. Jesse picks up the flute to do "Coming Home". You can hear the recorded version on the Real Tracy Field (WLRN) show as her closer. Scatting along Jesse goes into falsetto tones proving again his vocal chops. They swing "Just Friends" with Jesse and David trading 4's. Next, "Without A Song" and then "Black Now". Jesse asks for last number requests. They are all over the place. Ballads, swing tunes, standards, novelties. I, being a traditional drunk, ask for "Melancholy Baby". I don't really mean it. They choose "Somewhere Over the Rainbow". Jesse rides it for all it's worth and I do a few steps with Jackie. Lourdes Valentin, Jeannette Pina, Howard Moss and Keith Clarke  are in the audience and we all 'hang' and talk. By the way if you visit Le Chat Noir enjoy the great wine list and the live JAZZ but before you go have the 'crème brulee' We say "Goodnight" and Jackie and I head out. Jackie has parked on Flagler St. It's about 2:30 AM or so. As we near the car we see several homeless people asleep in the front of a store. The temperature has dropped into the 50's. Jackie Deering, American Airlines Flight Attendant, dear friend and dance partner, reaches into her back seat, takes out a blanket and covers one of the homeless men. He mutters a thank you. She says "You're welcome". 

Jackie, "There Will Never Be Another You."    

Al's Disclaimer:
A short note: The reason I write this is because I love music and words. I do not book acts. I do not promote acts. I do not accept invitations to review artists. I go to venues of my own choice. When and where is not influenced by anything other than who I would like to hear that night or day. If I don't like what I hear, I won't write about it. When I like it I let you all know. I never mention a name without asking permission. "Pardon me, Miss. Would you like to dance?"       

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