Saturday, November 29, 2014

Where can you find...(Allen Kanovsky these days? Think SNOW, not SAND!)

Submitted by Al Kanovsky 11/29/14, craft beers, 200 or so cigar box guitars, a mural with JAZZ/BLUES artists past and present and live JAZZ in one place? You can find one or two of the quintet in a lot of places. The only place you will find all 5 is Coal House Pizza on HighRidge Road in Stamford, CT.  My annual visit to the frozen North gives me occasion to visit unusual musical venues.

Tomorrow night I expect to listen to live JAZZ again----at the bar of a Japanese restaurant.

Last night at CoalHouse I enjoyed the Tony DiCerto trio with Tony on guitar, Greg DesTroit on keys and Josh Carrethers at the kit. They accompanied vocalist Dan Swartz. The American songbook was the genre. An instrumental version of "Softly" opened the first set and afforded the trio the opportunity of showing off their individual and collective JAZZ chops. They can PLAY. When Dan came up to sing he had a music stand holding charts. He sang "On A Clear Day", "You'll Never Know" and "Close Your Eyes". It was Ok but the back-up was better than the vocal, He set aside the music stand to do "L is For the Love" and it was a completely different guy, Different attitude, different demeanor and transformed into a JAZZ singer. It was no longer just Ok, It was worth listening to. 

The trio reacted to the change and now we were 'swinging;. "Ain't No Sunshine", "Come Fly With Me", "What A Difference A Day Makes", "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow" and closing the set with "Every Day". I had been joined by some of my family and all were enjoying the 'sounds'. 

During the break I looked over the display of unique hand-made guitars. Amongst them were instruments made from license plates, washboards, tin cans, hat boxes and even just plain old planks, Of course there were 150 or so different cigar boxes. 

The 2d set, as usual, was even better than the first. The play list included, "Time After Time", "Just the Two Of Us", "I've Got You Under My Skin", and 5 or six more. Greg sang a BLUES with some really good keyboard work. Tony's guitar was worth listening to and I could have done that all night. Josh was the bus driver keeping them all on the right path. "Shadow of Your Smile" was done to a samba rhythm and rhumba surfaced with "Embraceable You". 

When the music stopped I looked at the mural, recognizing faces from long ago and not so long ago. Yardbird, Miles, Lester, Ella, Billie, B.B. --- If you ever get to Stamford on a Friday night, check out CoalHouse. 

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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