Saturday, May 10, 2008

Miles From India 5/9/08

Simply amazing! That was a very special and awesome show at Town Hall last night. It turned out to be 2 bands because even though many of the musicians were the same for both sets, there were major differences. The biggest difference was the 1st set was acoustic and the 2nd was electric. Every moment was mesmerizing and fantastic.

I have a dancing spot at Town Hall, right by the soundboards. No one ever seems to mind that I'm over there and I'm aware not to get in their way. It makes me really like that place for "Hall music". I also really like the size.

They played all Miles tunes with an Indian flair and the meshing was phenomenal. I was intrigued by the carnatic violin. I did a little skimming and it looks like it is a regular violin and it's just the way it's played that produces those Indian sounds.

We had Ron Carter, who was awesome. I was disappointed in the Carnegie Hall celebration of him last year, but I think that was due to the Carnegie sound people not doing a good job, I suspect they aren't that good with jazz. He sounded great last night.

Vijay Iyer played the 1st song in the 1st set and then was there for the whole 2nd set. He is amazing. The first song was "So What" and it was awesome. There was a lot of that Indian voice percussion and the Indian drummer was awesome.

Both drummers were on stage the entire time, but they didn't both play the whole time on the first set. They played together a lot more the 2nd set. They were awesome. We also had a phenomenal tabla player and another indian drum, which I think is called the mridangam. All those drums is always a recipe for awesome in my book.

The biggest highlight was the tabla solo in the 2nd set. He had several and it was absolutely amazing. The sound was fantastic and everyone was quiet. That solo alone was worth the price of admission. The whole show without that solo was also worth the price of admission, it was really great.

I think we only had the sitar for the 1st set, but I really liked it. The 2nd song, "Blue in Green", started and ended with just the sitar and it was really cool. We had a different piano player for that and the 3rd song, "All Blues".

That 1st set was about 45 min and then we had a 20 min intermission. I was elated, and knew the best was to come. Next up was the electric set with keyboards, guitar, bass, all the drums and percussion from the 1st set, still the awesome caratic violin, Wallace Roney on trumpet, and Rudresh Mahanthappa on sax. Rudresh was also on a little the 1st set.

Now I could really get down. "Spanish Key", "Miles Runs the Voodoo Down", "Ife", "In a Silent Way", and "It's About That Time". I'm reading all of this from the program. I'm familiar with these tunes, but couldn't name them if I tried.

It ended around 10:30, possibly a little before. It was really great and while I hadn't planned on buying a cd, I ended up getting it for $20. I don't need too many more jazz cds, but the Indian flair made me want it.

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