Eddie Condon told the story of how, when you did or said something that Fats Waller approved of, his response was “Fine! Wonderful! Perfect!”
That’s how I felt last Sunday night at The Ear Inn.
And since it would be greedy of me to keep all that pleasure for myself, here are three performances from the first set.
The Ear Regulars, that Sunday, were co-founders Jon-Erik Kellso and Matt Munisteri, with charter members Harvey Tibbs, trombone; Jon Burr, bass.
Let’s start off at the top — a grieving, steady exploration of Ellington’s SOLITUDE, where Jon-Erik’s feelings are so intense that they need to be harnessed inside a plunger mute:
Then, a romp on ORIGINAL DIXIELAND ONE-STEP, full of surprising twists and turns:
And a song that only The Ear Regulars play (even though Louis did it beautifully in 1929), DALLAS BLUES:
Fats would be as happy as I was. And this was only the beginning of a glorious night in jazz. More to come!