My friend Henry Maldon (one of JAZZ LIVES’ roving reporters) sent this dispatch from the field.
Sorry you missed the Monday night gig (“Three Devils and an Angel”) at Joe’s in Burbank. What a great evening! Three of your favorite players were there — Hal Smith on drums, Katie Cavera on bass and vocals, and Chris Dawson on piano. The hot tenor man Alvin Alva (have you seen him with Jonathan Stout’s band?) was there, and he played wonderfully. Dave Stuckey sat in on guitar. I didn’t know him (usually he plays with Western Swing and Rockabilly groups), but he played Freddie Green rhythm. You can bet that this rhythm section was a real treat! Albert Alva is a very strong player and his solos were tremendous. Chris Dawson outdid himself with Hines/Wilson/Basie stylings. Katie did her Pops Foster bit and I love her singing, as you do — and Dave did a couple of duets with her. Hal played as he always does, for the band. Great music all night long. I know you’re in California but I wish you had been in Burbank on Monday with your video camera to get this band for posterity. I hope they have more gigs soon!