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No. 5, April 2000
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Bebop-Legends: A tribute to Milt Jackson
Hank Jones, piano
Bobby Hutcherson, vibraphone
Kenny Burrell, guitar
Ray Brown, bass
Mickey Roker, drums

 
The concert by five legends of 20th century-jazz at the Tonhalle Zurich, April 1, was a tribute to the late Milt Jackson. The vibraphone player was supposed to play with them but unfortunately died in early October 1999 and therefore had to be replaced by Bobby Hutcherson. The five elderly gentlemen - the oldest musician, Hank Jones, was born in 1918 and the youngest, Bobby Hutcherson, in 1941 - were a real joy to listen to. In the beginning, Kenny Burrell, born 1931 in Detroit, Michigan, had some difficulties with creating a clear sound on his guitar, but soon managed to bring these problems under control. The Quintet also needed two or three tunes to coordinate their play and start jamming (almost) as if they were in the prime of their lives.
 
With their first tunes, they set the mood for the evening: a warn, smooth and relaxed ambiance with jazz standards ranging from swing to bebop, from Duke Ellington to Charlie Parker and Thelonious Monk. Nothing extravagant, no surprises, but entertaining, sometimes easy listening and often with a touch of humour.
 
All the musicians got their moment of individual glory, such as Hank Jones with a piano-solo tribute to Duke Ellington, before the rest of the quintet joined in. Kenny Burrell and Bobby Hutcherson shone in their tribute to Milt Jackson, Charlie Parker's composition Scrapple from the Apple. Bag's Groove written in 1958 by Milt Jackson - his nickname was "Bag", due to the rings under the eyes - was a tribute to the late vibraphone player. The tune is the Modern Jazz Quartet's best known anthem - the MJQ were Milt Jackon's most famous group. The stars of the evening were Kenny Burrell and, above all, Bobby Hutcherson on the vibraphone. Among the compositions played by the quintet was also Dizzy Gillespie's A Night in Tunisia, since Milt Jackson used to play it often. Ray Brown's solo towards the end, a chamber music-like tune, almost reminiscent of Marin Marais, was outstanding. The five musicians left an enchanted public in an overcrowded Tonhalle.
 
For the pages of the concert organizer, Allblues, check: Musiclinks
 

www.cosmopolis.ch
No. 5, April 2000
current edition & archives
Art  Film  Music  History  Politics  Archives
Links  For Advertisers  Feedback  German edition  Travel

Copyright 2000  www.cosmopolis.ch  Louis Gerber  All rights reserved.