Friday, April 29, 2011

Henry Plays Ray @ Jazz Standard 4/24/11

That's Ray Charles curated by Henry Butler. I thought this should be phenomenal. I'm surprised every time when I go to see Henry and see that he's blind. Oh yeah ... Ray Charles was blind, too. I didn't pick up on the fact that they were both piano players from the south that can sing, either. I just knew I had to see Henry play Ray's music because that would be awesome. I also know that Henry is a lot happier. He made Ray's music feel happier that night.

This was an amazing band that blew us all away. Henry stayed on piano and left the keyboard to the very capable ___  (damn! - he's not listed and I can't remember his name.  Henry told us he's played with Aretha before). The sax was unbelievably good! If it started sounding like more horns, it was coming from the keyboard. The drums and bass were phenomenal. It was a blast!

Sunday April 24
Henry Butler - piano/vocals
Vincent Herring - alto saxophone
Cocoran Holt - bass
Ali Jackson - drums

Genius + Soul = Jazz placed Ray Charles at the head of the Count Basie Orchestra with cornetist Thad Jones, guitarist Freddie Green, and saxophonists Billy Mitchell and Frank Wess all on board for the date. Charles played Hammond B-3 organ on this mostly–instrumental set, vocalizing only on two blues numbers, “I’ve Got News for You” and “I’m Gonna Move to the Outskirts of Town.” Ray’s Latin–soul rendition of “One Mint Julep” (arranged by Quincy Jones) reached Number One R&B/Number Eight Pop – the biggest hit single ever to bear the Impulse! logo. Closing out the incredible 5-night run of Impulse! music, the great blues and jazz pianist/vocalist from New Orleans, Henry Butler, will bring down the house with 2 sets of rousing music celebrating “Brother Ray!”

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