After the Summer hiatus, suddenly a queue of gigs. First up was the return of the Be-Bop club with Clifford Brown-loving trumpet (or cornet) player Damon Brown. His quartet for the night (with Andy Hague and Thad Kelly) was greatly energised by the formidable Spanish piano player Ignasi Terraza. He managed to tame the clangourous, and rather over-amplified piano at the Bear, and is a real virtuoso. If Catalonia and jazz pianist makes one think of Tete Montoliu, the comparison does him no harm at all.
Brown is no slouch, either, and demonstrated his nice tone and line on a standards only programme, mostly hard bop anthems from the mid-50s on. He saved his most involved and involving soloing for Brown’s Joyspring, a second set highlight along with Terraza’s roof-lifting solo feature. Would be great to hear him at length on a first class instrument.
After this pleasant if slightly predictable night it gets busier. I assume anyone looking at this will know the Future Inns club at Cabot gets going next week with Don Weller on Thursday, but they seem to have missed out on Venue’s listings so maybe worth mentioning – we already have tickets for Martin Carthy and Dave Swarbrick that evening at St George’s, which is a shame. Haven’t heard Swarb for many years, but I’d dearly like to catch Weller as well. Damn. Then there’s more at Cabot the following night, competing now with the Be-Bop club, and the one day Festival at Colston Hall on the 20th with Abdullah Ibrahim…
The weekday evening gigs are sanity-savers at the moment, as days are spent entirely on screen revising a book. Looks like policy from now ’til Christmas will be to go to as many as possible.