Music is a way of creating energy, and what follows is especially lively.
One of the reassuring New York City musical happenings is the first-Tuesday gig (6-8 PM) of reedman Ron Odrich at San Martin, 143 East 49th Street. Ron’s usual group is James Chirillo, guitar; Gary Mazzaroppi, string bass; “Cenz,” drums, and a guest star, in this case reedman Dan Block.
I knew Ron as a splendidly nimble clarinetist but hadn’t heard him play tenor saxophone; he is a delightful player. Dan and he had a delightful time, and the unaccompanied two-horn duets heard on BLUES IN THE CLOSET and AUTUMN LEAVES were especially pleasing.
Incidentally, the spirit of the music was intense yet deeply friendly. Watch Ron and Dan, respectively, grin at each other. It was more a series of endearing conversations than a JATP session, collaboration rather than aggression. And the audience loved it.
Here’s some of the music the Quartet-plus-Dan created that night.
IT’S YOU OR NO ONE:
BLUES IN THE CLOSET:
THE MORE I SEE YOU:
A BEAUTIFUL FRIENDSHIP:
ONLY TRUST YOUR HEART:
THIS CAN’T BE LOVE:
Watching this scene in real life and again in the videos, I thought of some jazzman’s oral history, perhaps Art Hodes. He describes a club in the Twenties where the music was so pervasive in its rhythm that everything vibrated sympathetically: the bartender shook his cocktail shaker to a syncopated 4 / 4, the waiters put the plates down on the right beat, and so on.
I’ve never been to San Martin when there was no music, but I like to think that the eager, attentive waiters rushing to and fro with plates of pasta and the pepper mill were swinging along to Ron’s beat. The joint, as we say, was jumping.
May your happiness increase!