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ep1str0phy

Night of the Cookers

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Long time listener, first time caller. I didn't see an actual topic for this gig, although it's been mentioned often enough. Regardless, I went to the 8 p.m. show last night... it was pretty hot. The lineup was phenomenal, the compositions were tight, the playing was excellent.

Not one person should be worried by the recent lineup shuffle. Tolliver and Harper carried out the front line duties commendably. Harper was breathing fire from square one, intermittent microphone problems notwithstanding. Tolliver started off a little cold, but warmed up fast--by the second number, he was breaking the place apart. John Hicks was wonderful--I sat right in front of him--and provided an excellent foil for the horns' derring-do. Dwayne Burno and Roy McCurdy--the two "lesser" (take or leave the term, if you will) names in the group--held up the bottom end just fine. Altogether, the band was shockingly flexible, wrangling the difficult charts with ease. Then again, at this level, superlative is kind of redundant, right?

I can't recall all the numbers, but they did play Harper's "Thy Will Be Done," "Pensativa," and "Right Now." Tolliver really let 'em have it with the last one... made me seriously reconsider his playing. The cat has a phenomenal command of the middle register, juggling loping harmonic twists with staggering timbral control. It's almost a pity he didn't play on McLean's version (right after the show, I ran out and bought "Jacknife," by the way).

If you're in the bay area, drop what you're doing. Who knows how long these guys are going to last? It's nice to see that what once verged on the avant-garde--now the old guard--is still playing with fire.

Thoughts? Violent criticism?

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Long time listener, first time caller. I didn't see an actual topic for this gig, although it's been mentioned often enough. Regardless, I went to the 8 p.m. show last night... it was pretty hot. The lineup was phenomenal, the compositions were tight, the playing was excellent.

Not one person should be worried by the recent lineup shuffle. Tolliver and Harper carried out the front line duties commendably. Harper was breathing fire from square one, intermittent microphone problems notwithstanding. Tolliver started off a little cold, but warmed up fast--by the second number, he was breaking the place apart. John Hicks was wonderful--I sat right in front of him--and provided an excellent foil for the horns' derring-do. Dwayne Burno and Roy McCurdy--the two "lesser" (take or leave the term, if you will) names in the group--held up the bottom end just fine. Altogether, the band was shockingly flexible, wrangling the difficult charts with ease. Then again, at this level, superlative is kind of redundant, right?

I can't recall all the numbers, but they did play Harper's "Thy Will Be Done," "Pensativa," and "Right Now." Tolliver really let 'em have it with the last one... made me seriously reconsider his playing. The cat has a phenomenal command of the middle register, juggling loping harmonic twists with staggering timbral control. It's almost a pity he didn't play on McLean's version (right after the show, I ran out and bought "Jacknife," by the way).

If you're in the bay area, drop what you're doing. Who knows how long these guys are going to last? It's nice to see that what once verged on the avant-garde--now the old guard--is still playing with fire.

Thoughts? Violent criticism?

I was in SF a month ago....damn, I wish it was now!!!!! I'd LOVE to see this show. Sounds awesome. Thanks for the review and don't be a stranger!

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:tup:w:tup

Went to last night's show and it was as good as I was hoping for - maybe better. Everyone was "on". I wish I could have stayed for the second set.

They did 6 tunes: Harper's "Insight", Hicks' "Slowly But Surely", Harper's "Priestess", Monk's "Round Midnight", a Tolliver tune (who's name I can't place) and an encore that I didn't know. While the focus was definitely on Billy and Charles, Hicks got a lot of attention and Roy McCurdy did some tasteful solos. In fact the show opened with a drum solo that led straight into "Insight".

I had seen the Charles Tolliver Big Band in NYC earlier this year, but was a bit disappointed in not seeing him play much. This was a much different situation, obviously. There was a nice rapport between Billy & Charles, too. They truly seemed to be enjoying themselves in front of the enthusiastic full house.

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[

I was at the first set.The whole thign was fantastic. An hour and a half show, no breaks no ballads. Highlight (for me) was a burning version of Jackie McCleans "Right Now" There were no weak links in the band and I highly recomend to anyone to cathc these guys if you can.

Viva Hard Bop

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