The question I pose in my title becomes rhetorical as soon as Rebecca Kilgore, Paolo Alderighi, piano; Dan Barrett, trombone; Phil Flanigan, string bass, and Jeff Hamilton, drums, begin to play Gene Krupa’s DRUM BOOGIE at the 2014 Monterey Jazz Bash by the Bay —
During this set, a musician I know casually sat down behind me, tapped me on the shoulder while Jeff was elevating the proceedings even higher, and said with a grin, “Big Sid’s in the house.” Jeff Hamilton doesn’t imitate anyone, but he has Catlett’s beautiful sense of sound and space. And that’s not to ignore Becky, Dan, Paolo, and Phil — who make the rhythm romp as a matter of course. As for me, I’m still floating.
A second helping of The Ivory Club Boys, a hot band that satisfies. (Here is the first helping, for those who’d rather listen than read.)
On Sunday, March 2, 2014, while the rest of America was watching the Oscars, the Beloved and I were having a wonderful time with the Ivory Club Boys (presented by the Hot Club of San Francisco) paying tribute to violinist Stuff Smith and his Onyx Club Boys, at Rancho Nicasio in Nicasio, California.
The Ivories were (for this occasion) Paul Mehling, guitar and vocal; Evan Price, violin; Clint Baker, trumpet, euphonium, clarinet, and vocal; Sam Rocha, string bass, and guest star Mike Lipskin, piano.
And before we proceed: the Ivories aren’t a repertory band devoted to reproducing Stuff and Jonah’s hot sounds right off the record — so the scholars may find a certain liberty in their improvisations. (Whisper this: the Ivories even perform songs Stuff never recorded.) But they don’t want to make history; they just want to swing. Four-four, if you don’t mind. Charlie Christian and Teddy Bunn are at the bar, too.
Here are more rocking numbers from their second set:
ROSETTA (vocal Sam Rocha):
Stuff’s own IT’S WONDERFUL:
SOME OF THESE DAYS:
I COVER THE WATERFRONT:
SOLID OLD MAN:
This band was so rewarding. I’m looking forward to their next gig, their CD, their DVD, the world tour, the t-shirts, keychains, their own Facebook page. Until the Ivory Club Boys come to your town, enjoy this set.