Hello friends. Monday night, 9:40. I only hope you see this before Wednesday morning. Sometimes life gets in the way... But this is a big week for our continuing and expanding jazz experiment. Tomorrow we feature one of the hottest septets anywhere. Wednesday we invite you to an open big band rehearsal, and on Friday we feature one of the leading B3 players on the planet. Here are the details…
Tuesday, 12/6/2011 at the Iris Restaurant 7:30 - 10:30
Three Brothers & a Distant Cousin
Phil Sims - trombone & arrangements Andy Weinzler, Russ D'Alba, Kelly Bucheger - tenor saxophones George Caldwell - piano Paul Zapalowski - bass your host - drum set
This band is ridiculous, as are the individual practitioners. Any sax section that features Andy Weinzler as the leader is in rarified company. Andy is among the most intense, electrifying and creative tenor players you will hear anywhere, anytime. In fact, Phil’s directions to the section are, “Everybody come to Andy”. So those other two guys can’t be just "anybody". Russ D’Alba's musical curriculum vitae is almost as impressive as his business resume. Russ is known to most Buffalo listeners as an alto player, but when I heard him on tenor for the first time, I was sold. Marry a huge tenor sound with those alto chops, and you’ve got a formidable musician. And in a town renown for saxophonists, Phil could have called any of a number of world-class experts to complete the section. He called Kelly Bucheger. And what a compliment to Kelly... How do you move to a city with our saxophone lineage, and establish yourself as an equal? Competence, creativity, and a considerable lineage of your own… We may even play one of Kelly's arrangements, in addition to the canon of charts that Phil has penned for this band. As to the origins of the band, let’s just say that Phil likes to challenge himself. Or maybe he’s a frustrated saxophonist. Why else would he lift a bunch of Hank Mobley soli, and harmonize them for 3 tenors & trombone? What sane trombonist would do that? (Which begs the question as to whether there is such an animal…) If you know anything about the sackbut, you know that prodigious flourishes of technique are not among the common tbone skill set. But to a guy that likes a challenge, why not write a bunch of impossible arrangements, and put yourself in the middle of a flesh-eating saxophone section? Add George Caldwell & Paul Zap to feed the chords and advance the beat, and you have a band that's come to play. Please join us. Send the energy back to the bandstand, and help us keep our tradition alive. Still the Iris Restaurant, in the Maple-Ridge Plaza, Maple & Sweet Home Roads in Amherst. An easy commute, a well lit parking lot, and on this special night, a New York night at a Buffalo price. We hope to see you.
Wednesday, 12/7/2011 at the Iris Restaurant 7:30 - 9:30
Buffalo Brass Big Band
Sometimes procrastination pays. I didn't even have to think. Phil sent the following to his mailing list, and I like his writing better than mine anyway... That's right, the 17 piece juggernaut big band is alive and well. I'll not list 17 names here, but if you know our pedigree, you can all but fill in the names yourself. Here's the scene: this is an open rehearsal. We are in the club to rehearse. It's not a gig. No cash exchanges hands save for from us and yourselves to the waitresses at food and beverage time. Now it's not like we're going to play the same four bars over and over until it's perfect, nor are we taking requests. But here's your chance to see behind the scenes of one of the greatest big bands around, if I do say so myself. We'll be going after it. And there will be full blown charts from front to back to listen to along the way. The doors are open, it's a new scene and we plan on joining you at the Iris once each month to work out new material and perhaps even surprise ourselves. Please join us.
Friday, 12/9 at the Iris Restaurant 8:00 - 10:30
Bobby Jones, Hammond B3 Bobby Militello, saxophone & flute yours truly, drum set
You know, if the gods musical were to ask me how I would finish off the perfect week, this is it. This Friday, I get to accompany one of the greatest Hammond B3 players of all time. Take me Lord, I'm done here. If you've heard Bobby Jones play his native instrument, you know I speak the truth. There are a few B3 players who have earned an international reputation, and deservedly so. But do any of them play pedals like Bobby Jones? Back in the day, Bobby was playing organ six nights a week all over town. You could go, have a taste, check him out, and go home knowing he'd be playing somewhere else next week. Those days are done. And no one gets to witness the genius of our friend and prodigy unless some fool rents the organ and books the space. This is indeed, a very special one night performance. If you want to witness history, you will be there. And as a bonus, the other guy on the bill has made a name for himself as well. Two world class musicians performing before their home town audience... Merry Christmas Buffalo.
next Tuesday, 12/13 at the Iris Restaurant 7:30 - 10:30
Phil DiRe & Bobby Militello, saxophones Richie Marlo, trumpet Matt Michaud, guitar George Caldwell, piano Sabu Adeyola, bass your host, drum set
upcoming at the Iris Restaurant...
Tuesday, 12/27 Rick Strauss
Tuesday, 1/17 Miles & Wayne Tucker
The genius of my hero...
For small creatures such as we, the vastness is bearable only through love.
- Carl Sagan