Friday, November 14, 2008

Don Byron plays Mickey Katz @ Jazz Standard 11/13/08

I think I knew at one point, but forgot that the Don Byron 50th Birthday Celebration at Jazz Standard is different every night. I also had no idea who Mickey Katz was. All I knew is there was an amazing lineup of musicians scheduled for last night and I loved the last time I saw a Don Byron thing at Jazz Standard. Plus, I missed the place. I haven’t been there in about a month. Too long.

I was very happy with the music, even though I didn’t get the jokes. Mickey Katz did parodies of English-Yiddish songs. I love that klezmer stuff and with that lineup it was phenomenal. Don was having lots of fun up there. He was also able to get the audience to clap to the music in a not-so-in-your-face-kind-of-way. I never clap because I can’t get in sync with everyone else. But, it is nice when it’s not all over the place.

I love that clarinet,violin, piano playing Yiddish music sound. The trumpet was great in there as well.

Tonight is also a great lineup, doing the music of Duke Ellington and other swing. I have to go to that.

Last night:
Don Byron Plays the Music of Mickey Katz
Don Byron, clarinet
Ralph Alessi, trumpet
JD Parran, saxophones, clarinet
Alan Ferber, trombone
Todd Reynolds, violin
Uri Caine, piano
Kenny Davis, bass
Ben Wittman, drums
Jack Falk, vocal

A re-formation of the groundbreaking and virtuosic klezmer ensemble that recorded Byron’s eponymous Nonesuch album and spearheaded the klezmer revival in the 1990s. Dedicated to the music of the great Mickey Katz, clarinetist, humorist, and musical director for Spike Jones in the fifties and sixties.

Bug Music Sextet
Don Byron, clarinet
Rob DeBellis, saxophones
Ralph Alessi, trumpet
Uri Caine, piano
Mark Helias, bass
Ben Wittman, drums

Named after Byron’s best-selling 1996 album Bug Music, this stellar sextet performs razor-sharp arrangements of works by three great composers of the Swing Era – Duke Ellington, Raymond Scott, and John Kirby.

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