All the Things… New York Jazz and More

Exploring New York City and Brooklyn jazz scene

Posts Tagged ‘55 Bar

Donny McCaslin Quartet @ the 55 Bar

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Donny McCaslin, Nate Smith, Fima Ephron, Ben Monder

Donny McCaslin (tenor), Ben Monder (guitar), Fima Ephron (bass), Nate Smith (drums). It was quite packed (I suspect that there was a high concentration of musicians in the audience again). So for the first set, I had to stand at the hallway next to the stage area (from where I actually could peek at the sheet music, pretty great spot, actually). They played original tunes by Donny McCaslin, some of which seemed to be brand new, testing their reading skills somewhat, and also Energy Generation and Perpetual Motion from McCaslin’s latest CD, Perpetual Motion.

The energy of the concert was great, especially in the second set. Ben Monder played some beautiful chords (that only he seems to find on the guitar) and some wild overdriven solos with sound and energy that would put many rock guitarists to shame… But Nate Smith and Fima Ephron were grooving so meaningfully that for me, it was, at times, even a bit difficult to concentrate on everything else that happened musically… Very danceable (never mind the changing time signatures).

Written by Ines

January 13, 2012 at 5:32 pm

Vic Juris Trio with Tim Hagans @ 55 Bar

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Vic Juris trio with Tim Hagans @ 55 Bar

It was great to hear some good jazz on January first: Vic Juris (guitar), Jay Anderson (bass), Adam Nussbaum (drums) and Tim Hagans (trumpet) @ 55 Bar (the early set). Very nice crowd and atmosphere 🙂

They played a beautiful version of Ornette Coleman’s Lonely Woman.

Written by Ines

January 2, 2012 at 7:15 pm

Nir Felder Quartet @ 55Bar

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Nir Felder Quartet @ the 55 Bar

It is pretty great to be back in town 🙂 Went to hear Nir Felder’s Quartet @ the 55 Bar: Nir Felder on guitar, Mark Guiliana on drums, James Genus on bass and Shai Maestro on keyboards.

As a listener I actually enjoyed most what Shai Maestro got out of the tunes: he had a lot of variety and playfulness in his phrasing, and a variety of musical tools to keep it moving. In the same time, I was a bit perplexed about about Nir’s approach. He sounds really original and takes the music into new territories (away from jazz I guess) but as a listener I feel I’m just not given enough cues to get involved and follow him. It’s difficult to hear any melodic or harmonic movement (mostly just a lot of chromaticism), or feeling of tension and release in the phrasing…I enjoyed the more spacious and beat oriented tunes a lot though (in the end of the first set): I think Nir really excels in the context of creating color and landscapes that give open space for Mark’s drumming. In that sense, Mark’s own Beat Music concept speaks even more clearly to me.

Nir definitely seems to have a following and many fans here as the place was quite packed.  They even have a tap these days (with Brooklyn lager and everything)! Haven’t been there for ages, so I ordered a bottled Yuengling at first and felt a bit out of date… 🙂

55Bar have really great things coming up in the next month, so I’ll try to go back soon.

Written by Ines

December 23, 2011 at 4:52 pm

Adam Rogers Trio @ 55 Bar

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Adam Rogers trio @ 55 Bar

Adam Rogers (guitar), Fima Ephron (bass), Nate Smith (drums). I heard the first set, even though I missed some of the beginning songs. 55 Bar was pretty packed, people seemed to be digging on it. I mainly went to hear Nate Smith :D, I think he’s such a great grooving drummer. But generally, the band as a whole somehow didn’t sound so balanced to me. The compositions fell a little bit into a similar category. Dice was my favorite of the lot. Adam Rogers has just exceptional technique, I’m sure there’d be no trouble packing the venues with aspiring guitar players even only for that reason. But I thought this wasn’t the perfect situation to enjoy Nate Smith’s drumming. Which was unmistakably spectacular, though.

Written by Ines

July 18, 2010 at 7:54 am

Donny McCaslin Group @ the 55 Bar

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Sunday night @ the 55 Bar

W/ Adam Cruz (drums), Joe Sanders (bass) and Ben Monder (guitar). Lot of people, I came for the second set and couldn’t even find a seat at first. Was a great gig 😀 Really enjoyed listening to Ben Monder again…  I guess it was the last New York jazz concert for me this year, though, because I’ll be out of town for a while. Really don’t know when I’ll be back.

Written by Ines

December 29, 2009 at 5:22 pm

Avishai Cohen’s Triveni @ 55 Bar

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Nasheet Waits, Omer Avital, Avishai Cohen

Hanging @ the Jazz Gallery that night I realized that the place to go after the Members’ Party was 55 Bar, no other way, really.  Avishai Cohen (trumpet), Omer Avital (bass) and Nasheet Waits (drums) – just can’t miss it if these guys are playing together. The 1st set, especially, was out of this world. Yeah. There is actually even an overload of talent when they get together – one can get really overwhelmed with all that goodness happening from three such unique ways, all at once. Omer Avital really freaked my brain out with his chops as well. And Nasheet Waits was just so good it made me want to cry. I think, in the sound of his drums is the pure soul of jazz.

They’re going to record an album next week. And play on Tuesday @ Rose. Can’t wait.

Written by Ines

December 10, 2009 at 4:35 pm

Avishai Cohen's Triveni @ 55 Bar

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Nasheet Waits, Omer Avital, Avishai Cohen

Hanging @ the Jazz Gallery that night I realized that the place to go after the Members’ Party was 55 Bar, no other way, really.  Avishai Cohen (trumpet), Omer Avital (bass) and Nasheet Waits (drums) – just can’t miss it if these guys are playing together. The 1st set, especially, was out of this world. Yeah. There is actually even an overload of talent when they get together – one can get really overwhelmed with all that goodness happening from three such unique ways, all at once. Omer Avital really freaked my brain out with his chops as well. And Nasheet Waits was just so good it made me want to cry. I think, in the sound of his drums is the pure soul of jazz.

They’re going to record an album next week. And play on Tuesday @ Rose. Can’t wait.

Written by Ines

December 10, 2009 at 4:35 pm

Aki Ishiguro Group featuring Ari Hoenig @ the 55 Bar

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Aki Ishiguro Group @ 55 bar

I broke the promise not to go to the 55 Bar anymore – it didn’t make much sense anyway.  Haven’t been there in such a long time, so it was actually kind of nice. And nobody gave me trouble this time :Dand I didn’t give trouble to anyone 😉  Yeah. In fact, the bartenders didn’t even ask if I wanted a drink. Which was good, I’ve been drinking way too much anyway.

So it was Aki Ishiguro’s Group with Alex Terrier on sax, Sean Wayland on keys, Aidan Carroll on bass and Ari Hoenig on drums. I really liked the bass player! Great band, burning young cats – I wonder what Aki eats for breakfast to get that kind of chops 😀 So I was sorry that I got there pretty late. Even though I heard them @ Coco 66 a couple of weeks ago. 55 Bar was really packed. Well, I got to go again some other time.

Written by Ines

November 22, 2009 at 4:08 pm

Dave Binney Quartet @ 55 Bar

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Dave Binney @ 55 Bar

Dave Binney @ 55 Bar

Dave Binney (alto), Craig Taborn (keys), Dan Weiss (drums), Thomas Morgan (bass). I made it to the second set, it was killin’! This is one of New York’s leading jazz bands, I guess, playing regularly @ 55 Bar every other Tuesday. It was quite packed this time. Another great thing about New York –  you can actually fill a venue with people totally digging this modern and advanced jazz 😀  And it was really happening there.

Written by Ines

August 26, 2009 at 1:30 pm

Davy Mooney Quartet; Arthur Kell Quartet @ 55 Bar

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Davy Mooney Quartet @ 55 Bar

Davy Mooney Quartet @ 55 Bar

What a nice shelter from the rain – I spent the whole evening @ 55 Bar last night.  Early set was Davy Mooney Quartet – Dave Mooney (guitar), John Ellis (tenor sax), Orlando LeFleming (bass), Greg Ritchie (drums). Great choice of sidemen :D. Having that good sidemen might be dangerous though, but I guess it worked out. Davy Mooney did some singing as well – he has a really nice voice. I liked the drummer a lot. And John Ellis is just so incredibly expressive. He seems to have mastery over so many shades of sound and dynamics.

Arthur Kell Quartet @ 55 Bar

Arthur Kell Quartet @ 55 Bar

And the next band, Arthur Kell Quartet was just amazing! Nir Felder on guitar, Loren Stillman on alto, Mark Ferber on drums, Arthur Kell on bass and compositions. They were so tight and everybody was really killin’! The first set was especially good, I enjoyed it so much! 😀 Hearing that kind of music makes me not want to leave New York. Nir Felder really surprised me again – even though he suffered from a jet leg, that was some very inspired ground-breaking guitar playing there. He seems to get better with every time I hear him, or is it just me? Anyway, it was fun to hear him play next to Loren Stillman – those guys both play so incredible lines and have amazing sound. How can they be so killin’ when they just seem to be sight reading?  😀 Yeah that first set was one of my favorite concerts here, so far :D.