The good news is that another Sidney Bechet Society concert is around the corner on Monday, September 15. There is no bad news.

Evan Christopher is back in town, heading a new small group, “Django a la Creole,” which combines the all-strings instrumentation of the QHCF with Evan’s deep New Orleans roots. Evan will be playing alongside guitarists Matt Munisteri and Pete Smith, and bassist Sebastien Giradot. And, if that were not enough, the special guest star is Jon-Erik Kellso. (Evan, Jon-Erik, and Matt are a wonderful team, as the Arbors CD BLUE ROOF BLUES proves.)

The concerts will take place at 6:15 and 9 PM at Symphony Space (2537 Broadway at 95th Street). Tickets are $25 for Bechet Society members, $30 in advance, $35 the day of the concert. The hall has excellent acoustics and good sightlines. Evan’s 2006 and 2007 concerts sold out; this one will too. To order tickets, visit the Bechet Society website at

Even though it’s only a fragment, I was delighted to see this YouTube clip of Evan and a version of this admirable small group. Here, they play a wistful version of “Way Down Yonder in New Orleans,” making yearning, intimate jazz. Evan’s delicacy reminds me of late Pee Wee Russell, a great compliment.


  1. Bill Gallagher

    It never fails to interest me when an artist completely changes the “accepted” tempo of a familiar tune. “Way Down Yonder in New Orleans” is generally played in a quicker tempo, but this version by Evan Christopher brings a whole new dimension to it. Nicely done!

  2. Michael: Actually, there is bad news: You don’t supply the date (Mon, 9/15), & the link to Bechet Society you provide doesn’t work. Had to Google it. I’ll only be in Apple 9/11 & 9/12 this trip, so I’ll have to miss the concert, but I do have Christopher’s Delta Bound CD, on which he displays firmer tone & technique on his difficult instrument than the better-known Dr Michael White.

  3. Bill, this is nearly the tempo of the original record made by Bix and Tram, and our own Peter Ecklund made a lovely slow recording of this tune, revealing its sweet character.

    John, thanks for trying to keep me up to the mark: I’ve added the date but have yet to make the link work. As you say, though, it’s on the blogroll, where I hope it does not disappoint.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s