All the Things… New York Jazz and More

Exploring New York City and Brooklyn jazz scene

Posts Tagged ‘55 Bar

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.

Todd Marcus trio @ Garage and Mike Stern @ 55 Bar

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Todd Marcus trio @ Garage

Todd Marcus trio @ Garage

There’s another jazz music venue called Garage on 7th Avenue @ Grove Street, Greenwich Village, that has 2 acts of live jazz every day with no cover and no minimums. And they had $4 draft beer as a happy hour deal even @ 10:30 PM. I went there actually to hear a good friend and burnin’ bass clarinet player from Baltimore – Todd Marcus. I was there for the first set with some great standards playing. But the bands play at that venue ’til 2:30 AM, that’s three sets, I guess. I got the impression that the bartenders there aren’t the friendliest people ever, though.

Mike Stern trio @ 55 Bar

Mike Stern trio @ 55 Bar

On my way home I thought I should check out what’s happening @ 55 Bar. It was Mike Stern trio having the regular, every-other-Wednesday gig. The place was almost packed. The bass player- Tom Kennedy was just ridiculous – more than perfect technique, great groove and sound. The live vibe was happy, energetic and relaxed at the same time.

And Mike Stern just sounds like a superstar, with his inimitable sound that for me seems to be friendly, open and personal all at once. Anyway, for having a good time, Mike Stern concert is a great option. When usually they end last sets @ 55 Bar somewhere arounf 1 AM, then this time it went on for about forty minutes after 1. They finished with a really burnin take of Straight No Chaser. I wonder what the tempo was when they switched to double time with the already uptempo tune.

55 Bar regular

55 Bar regular

Written by Ines

July 23, 2009 at 12:08 pm

Femi Kuti @ Prospect Park and Vardan Ovsepian with Tim Miller @ 55 Bar

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Prospect Park hang

Prospect Park hang

Went to hear music @ Prospect Park again – this time it was Femi Kuti (and the Positive Force), the saxophone-playing and singing son of the legendary father of afrobeat, Fela Kuti. Warmed up by Melvin Gibbs (bass) with the group Elevated Entity. What a great hang at Prospect park, these days. So much weed in the air 🙂 – summer is here, finally. It was fun to see all those black ladies in bright colorful robes. None of  that in Estonia. There might be jazz, occasionally, but no afrobeat and no black ladies :D.  I liked both bands a lot this time, great vibe. Too bad I didn’t donate at the gate, but hope they’ll keep it great despite of that. 🙂

Afterwards I went to 55 Bar to hear the Armenian piano player Vardan Ovsepian who actually had Tim Miller in the band. They say if you want to fill a house, call in Tim Miller, because all the guitar dorks will show up. I guess it worked. Tim Miller has a great overdrive sound, I can’t believe it comes from the Boss pedal that’s on the stage. That must be a trick to fool the guitar dorks. I liked everything again, but not so much the fact that there were vocals in the band – I just can’t help not being into jazz vocals that much. It’s so rare when that makes anything better. This time maybe flugelhorn would have been the perfect thing instead. Just my taste – I know lots of people only really listen to vocals and take everything else as background music.

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Brad Shepik trio @ Solo Kitchen Bar and Mike Moreno Quartet

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Brad Shepik trio @ Solo Kitchen Bar

Brad Shepik trio @ Solo Kitchen Bar

Couldn’t make up my mind about what I should hear last night so I tried to have it all – first went all the way down to Flatbush, Brooklyn to Solo Kitchen Bar to hear Brad Shepik’s trio. This time it was Adam Niewood on sax and Mark Guiliana on drums. Just can’t get enough of Mark Guiliana’s drumming! Almost can’t believe my ears at times, all this great music coming from just one guy playing the drums… I really recommend everybody to check him out, who hasn’t already. Don’t know much about drumming but never heard anyone play like that. How come I never really even noticed the drummers so much before coming here anyway? And here I end up mainly listening to the drummers.

Not me on the picture :)

Not me on the picture 🙂

The second stop was intended to be 55 Bar. In some mysterious way the subway followed a really weird route back to Manhattan – I was supposedly on a 2 train Bronx express, but it stopped at really wrong places according to the map and I ended up at an unexpected station and walked to 55 Bar. So I actually only heard the last tune of Mike Moreno’s Quartet – it was a good one :). Liked the sound a lot, actually there was Tim Collins on vibraphone – really would have wanted to hear some New York vibes playing. Next time then, I guess. We hanged around for a couple of beers at a bar next door, Kettle, with Mike Moreno, Kristjan Randalu, Tim Collins and later on a Canadian double bass player girl. Really had a good time with them.

Leni Stern @ 55 Bar

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Image087Hüppasin eile õhtul koduteel (jah kõige kiirem ja lihtsam tee Park Slope’ist Brookylnist oli läbi West Village’i ) … veel korra läbi 55 Bar’ist, kus mängis Leni Stern Aafrika muusikutega. Üks huvitav pill oli – kora. Mõnus positiivne. Publikut oli vähe. Kuulsin terve II seti. Esimest korda sõitsin metroovagunis päris üksinda. See pole õhtusel ajal tegelikult eriti soovitav.

Täna hommikul ärkasin selle peale, et keegi linna-teenistusest (??) tuli kontrollima korterit – kas kusagilt lekib jne. Imelik. Shan oli ka kodus õnneks.

Image088

Written by Ines

May 13, 2009 at 9:45 pm