I tried to go to Peter Brontzman and Han Bennink at Roulette. Now, I do know that it’s a good idea whenever possible to double-check to make sure the show is going on before venturing out, regardless of whether I have a ticket or not. All kinds of things can happen, and I could be mixed up about the date/time or something. I didn’t do it last night and arrived about 7:45 to an empty Roulette. I figured I got mixed up. Well, I was ready for some music, and that means head up to The Stone for the 8pm set, whatever it is. I got there just in time, and it was packed. When I can’t sit up right up front, I prefer standing so I can see better and so I can move a little.
Oh my, was that amazing. Everyone thought so. The applause were so long and meaningful, we even got an unplanned encore. Then, another round of major applause. It was one of those “I’m so glad to be alive in NYC” moments. Just stellar avant-garde. Only a little out there at times. Incredible.
Jim Black (drums) Cuong Vu (trumpet) Skuli Sverrisson (bass) Chris Speed (tenor sax, clarinet) Ted Reichman (red accordion)
I did later see that the Roulette gig moved to Clemente Soto Valez at 7pm instead of 8. Oh well, it’s OK since I got something else that was truly great and special.
I did go over to Sullivan Hall later for Surprise Me Mr. Davis, which is The Slip with Nathan Moore. I’ve just really wanted to see The Slip since 2 of them played with Marco in that last Jan run. I had no idea what this show was. I saw there were 2 opening bands, and I tried to time it so I would miss both of them. I ended up getting there just as the 2nd opener was ending. I went up front to wait it out. They were playing a James Brown album, which was great. This guy up front in a suit started clapping way out of time and I kind of got worried. I asked him in a very polite way if he was going to clap during the show. He said “yeah, right in your f***ing face”. Then told me how they wore their suits for this show. I smiled and said I was going to move then. Inside I wasn’t so happy, and realized I didn’t want to be there even before that interaction. I did want to check it out, though, so I decided to stick around and if it grabbed me, I’d stay as long as I could.
It did grab me at first. It wasn’t what I was in the mood for, it was kind of “Southern meets Rock” (not Southern Rock). Something like the 2nd or 3rd song was really awesome and kind of funky. I was incredibly impressed with The Slip musicians. I just wasn’t in the mood and ended up leaving early so I didn’t have to be too tired today.
You’d think I would just go home. But no, on my way home I had the brilliant idea to stop by Banjo Jim’s (which is kind of out of my way). I was very curious about The Hounds, which listed Andy Hess on bass. I had no idea what that was,either, but the last time Banjo Jim’s made a big deal about getting to the show it was awesome. They were on set break when I got there, and there was no Andy Hess in site. Still, I don’t know what possessed me, but I decided to stick around to see a little of the next set, which started around midnight. It was good, but not as good as the billing, although I wasn’t quite in the mood for it. They had a pretty good pedal steel guitar guy that never played with them before. Everyone else in the listing was there, except for Andy Hess. I did see different people on their website when I looked today. It was more soulful l than the Sullivan Hall stuff, but The Slip musicians were higher caliber. Most of the songs were too mellow for that late at night.
It was also kind of a drag that they complained in between each song about not making enough money. I mean, there are 6 of them playing for tips at a tiny place for all of their friends late on a Sun night. What did they expect? I don't think they have a cd, which is usually a good strategy for getting some better income at a low-paying gig.
Anyway, it might be better than I thought and I was just in a mood to not be so happy. Still, I’m not going to try to get to their other gigs this week.
9:30 pm till late The Hounds!!!
Jason Blum (guitar, slide and vocals), Jason Darling (guitar and vocals), Gabriel Gordon (guitar and vocals), Jesse Murphy (keyboards and vocals), Andy Hess (bass) and Shawn Pelton (drums) - there's no place else to be!
So, that set at The Stone would have been fine for me. Maybe a little Garage Mahal would have been nice. No big deal as there is plenty of great stuff coming up right before I hit jazzfest.