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Saturday, April 11, 2015

GIJF Day One: David Sanborn/Jon Cleary & Jon Scofield/New York Brass Band

David Sanborn (alt); Ricky Peterson (keys); Andrew Berry (bs); Micky Morota (gtr); Chris Coleman (dms); Paolo (perc).
(Review by Lance).
Sanborn is a blower, no mistake about it! If, in the unlikely situation that he went to the aprés festival jam at the Globe, the natives would take to the hills! Although maybe one or two of the local gunslingers would hang around. An amazing technique that allows him to sweep and soar with seemingly effortless ease marks him down as the giant that he is.
Or is he?
I have to be honest, I've heard Sanborn live three times and he always leaves me wanting just that little bit more - more feeling, that punch, that variation, the suggestion that maybe once - just once - he may overshoot the chord, hit something out of left field and prove he is human but it doesn't happen. He's a machine - if Sanborn blew a bum note  it would be apocalyptic. He didn't, so the four horsemen missed the gig although a couple of them would have added a bit of warmth to the proceedings. As it was, it was left to the solid sidemen to kick the gong around with Peterson outstanding on keys, Morota likewise and a rhythm section to die for. 
While the Earth didn't exactly move for me it did exhibit a slight tremor.
Jon Cleary (pno/vcl); John Scofield (gtr).
I'm unsure as to whether Cleary is a Kentish Man or a Man of Kent However, irrespective of which side of the Medway he hails from, his spiritual river is the Mississippi. Sitting at the Steinway singing and playing the blues as if he were in a honkytonk tavern on Bourbon Street, he connected!
The pairing with Scofield was, on paper, as bizarre as any of the duo settings the Jazz Café concocts on a Saturday night!
Fortunately, like most of the couplings at "The Caff", this one worked too. Scofield, better known for his work with Miles, Mingus and other contemporary icons (he's an icon among guitar buffs himself), adapted to the setting and delighted the audience with some dazzling solos and rich harmonic chording.
The festival had begun!
New York Brass Band.
Earlier, the New York Brass Band who are actually from Old York gave a spirited performance that, in the cavernous area known as The Concourse did them few favours acoustically. Having heard the NYBB in more sympathetic settings I know them to be a fine N'orlins style marching band dealing out excitement in (dirty) dozens.
As I left, James Birkett and Bradley Johnston were beginning their set and it sounded good but my carriage awaited.
Lance.

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