I'm in the West Village, it's a little after 10, The Bad Plus are playing at The Vanguard, it's a Wed night, and it's highly likely I'll get into the 11pm set without a reservation. In other words, all things were aligned to get me to this run that I was having trouble fitting it.
I better never think about skipping a Bad Plus run again. My appreciation went to a whole other level. I mean, whoa.
I was able to get my favorite seat right up front and center. There are 2 little tables up front, and I had the seat on the far right, right next to the drums and a perfect vantage point to see everything. Every single thing!
I'm getting blown away again just thinking about how great this set was. I mean, I keep thinking about how I can back there before it's over.
Sitting next to the drums is an amazing, mind-blowing experience like no other. While I was crazy about every note each of them hit, I was going ga ga over the drums. OK, I was ga ga over everything, but the drums were grabbing a little more of my attention.
My absolute favorite was an arrangement based on Neal Young's Heart of Gold. I'm getting chills thinking about it. It started with just drums, being very avant-gardish. Running the stick across the cymbal and the whole bit. Slowly bring in the keys and then I can tell where the melody came from. Ease in the bass. There was a point in the middle where they stopped playing and sang together "Keep Me Searching For A Heart Of Gold" several times, acappella, in this amazing way that is reminiscent of Neal. I can't really do justice to the description. I was singing it on my way to work the next morning, getting goosebumps all over again.
I've got to get back there this weekend. I can't believe how much I love this trio, and that night just made this love even deeper.