New Year Blast
Jazz on Inklings Stage opened 2019 with a packed and enthusiastic crowd and a memorable battle between two tenor sax players who were ready to reignite the 1950's contests of LA's Central Avenue. Unrehearsed, Noel Catura and Benny Torres had a spontaneous blast. Matching and surpassing each other's solos, they took the contest to the last notes of the night and fought to an honorable draw. Spurred on by the drumming of Geechi Taylor, and Inklings duo of Matt Finders and James Hall, the two tenors seemed inexhaustible, their only respite being the dramatic interventions of James Hall on vibes. The prolonged standing ovation at the concert's end was well-earned.
This was intended as a fun night, presented as theater, and its reception by the audience was rewarding for the musicians and encouraging for the promoters.
There will be a shift of gear for the next concert on Friday February 8th.
SF trumpeter Erik Jekabson will make a second appearance at Inklings, accompanied by percussionist Jeff Marrs. Erik has the technical mastery and lyrical gift that enables him to do justice to the greatest exponents of jazz trumpet. On his last visit he paid tribute to the great Clifford Brown and this time he will play tribute to the wayward genius, Chet Baker. Expect some gems of Romanticism from the Great American Songbook and some exciting jazz standards.
Thanks to sponsorship, admission will be free, but anticipate Inklings and Downtown parking problems. Seating is limited but seats can be reserved on Eventbrite and are held until 6.45 pm.
Roger Hall (PJS)