Thursday, March 15, 2012

Snakebite Six in Columbus, Local Jazz, Swan Lake and More

The Snakebite Six Dixieland Jazz Band
"I can't tell you how happy the music made me. It was so... contrapuntal: the clarinet's notes [hovering] above the stage like an emerald hummingbird while the trumpet's weft and warp danced with more melodic emphasis and the gregarious trombone's sliding baritone easiness as smooth and embryonic as a nocturnal lullaby sung by lunar-beam drenched fairies; the music had everyone in the audience smiling and moving to the groove like butterflies trained in ballet." -singer and poet Rusty Taylor from his blog at about a performance by The Snakebite Six Dixieland Jazz Band on January 20, 2012, at The Loft in Columbus, Georgia (full post).

Friday night (3/16) in Columbus at The Loft, you can hear The Snakebite Six Dixieland Jazz Band. I heard them at the Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art last year (spring 2011) when George Rodrigue came to town, and they were very, very good. Good swing feel, very good solos, and excellent presentation. Definitely worth the drive over to hear. They play 7-9 PM Eastern time, as do all of the Friday-night jazz groups there.

If you want to know who plays there each week, get on the email list of the Columbus Jazz Society. The Loft's calendar keeps up with its jazz artists sporadically, and its Facebook page is not much better. It is a great venue, though, and well attended.

As for the Six, they have no online presence. But with a name like Snakebite Six, and playing as well as they do, I think they could capitalize on a little mystery, maybe popping up where you least expect them. The Six's personnel is Bob Murray on clarinet, Tom Chadwick on piano, Paul Vander Gheynst on trombone, Jim Evans on trumpet, Edward Robinson on bass and David Morgan on drums.

Jazz Locally

Starting with what's not happening this week in Auburn, nothing is on the Auburn University music calendar and we will not be having lunch music at the museum due to AU Spring Break. Jane Drake will not be singing with her trio at Piccolo MAL on Thursday night for the same reason. Maybe it's for the best, since two thirds of her trio are in NYC jazz-club hopping. Also, I think they went to see Letterman.

The rest of the weekend at Piccolo is on, but I don't know yet who's up. I had a very good gig there last Saturday with regional heavyweight Alex Pershounin, bassist and head of Columbus State's jazz program, and Patrick Bruce on guitar. Alex did a few features. As a classically trained bassist, his bowing was lovely on the ballads. He did "Georgia on My Mind," and "Stars Fell on Alabama," not as an intentional tribute to our wider community here, but rather they were requested by a new Auburnite from Chicago who DJ'ed a jazz show on the radio up there. I requested he do "There Is No Greater Love" which was terrific. He has an easy way of filling up the rooms there at Piccolo with his solo sound, then returning to the ensemble balance. As an improvisor his ideas are impeccable. And I always enjoy playing with the other Patrick. We do a duo at Hamilton's on Magnolia every first Monday.

As for Piccolo this week, I'll update this post or do a new one once I know more, but you can get on its mailing list by going to the Auburn University Hotel and Conference Center's newsletter page. They usually send something out about the weekend on Thursday or Friday. I do know that Patrick Bruce will return in a trio to play the brunch there at Ariccia this Sunday (3/18), 11-2.

UPDATE: On Friday (3/16), hard-grooving Troy saxophonist La'roy Bodiford will headline at Piccolo with Troy vibist Eric Ward (Troy University bio), and bassist Chris Hodges from Dothan. On Saturday (3/17), Atlanta saxophonist John Sandfort (pretty sure that this is his MySpace page with some great playing samples) will headline with pianist Geoff Haydon (Georgia State University bio) and Auburn's own Tim Chambliss on drums.

LaGrange, Swan Lake, and a Choice to Make

Next Tuesday (3/20) the Lagrange Symphony will do its Concerto Festival. Composers featured are Hertel, Martin, Dvorak and Tchaikovsky. More on the pieces and the soloists at this page on the orchestra's website. It's about an hour's drive.

Also about an hour away on Sunday (3/18), you can watch the ballet Swan Lake at the Rave Festival Plaza 16 at 7:30 PM. Here is the Fathom Event page about the production, prerecorded in London. Enter in "36116" to the zip code field at the bottom for a link to tickets.

Start now thinking about what you'll hear next Thursday (3/22). AU Piano Lecturer Josh Pifer will do a recital at Goodwin Hall that night as will Grammy-award-winning classical guitarist David Russell at the RiverCenter in Columbus. Here's the event page on AU's music calendar for Dr. Pifer. Here's the event page for Russell on CSU's Schwob College of Music calendar. I've heard Dr. Pifer play at the museum. It was beautiful.

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