The Jazz.com Blog
January 28, 2008 · 0 comments
Jazz.com's arnold jay smith was in attendance at Sweet Rhythm for the benefit to help jazz pianist George Cables, currently recovering from kidney and liver transplants. He sends in this report.T.G.
When one of our own needs help the jazz community turns out. Sweet Rhythm was sold out for eight (8) sets of enthusiastic jazz for our colleague, pianist George Cables.
Coordinated by Sonny Fortune and Russ Musto, Sweet Rhythm, the club formerly known as Sweet Basil in Greenwich Village, and its owner James Browne hosted two nights, four sets each of jazz, jazz and more jazz for their comrade. Cables is recovering from kidney and liver transplants.
On Friday night it was difficult enough getting into the place, and once you did there were so many people with whom you just had to press the flesh, some we haven’t seen for a bit. I opted for a table near the rear, close to the restrooms --as if I had a choice. It was to the side of the stage so it became the musicians’ table as well.
The set in progress was led by Fortune on alto, and featured Valery Ponomarev, trumpet, Rufus Reid, bass, Louis Hayes, drums. Pianist Michael Weiss slipped in towards the end of the last tune, “I’ll Remember April.”
Cables was in absentia but he sent a note which host Rob Crocker (WBGO) read during each set. It was delivered as a thank you for all in attendance –musicians, friends and fans alike. For his musicians friends Cables said how pleased he was that so many of those with whom he played were on the bandstand. “I’ve gotta play better,” the note stated.
The small room was cleared after each set so as to allow those waiting outside in the cold to enter, and pay their $25 which went directly to Cables who won’t be able to perform for at least a year.
The second set featured the Turres: Steve on trombone and his wife Akua Dixon on electric cello. But it was her vocal on a dirty blues (italics hers), Dinah Washington’s “Big Long Sliding Thing,” which had them whoopin’ and hollerin’. The rest of the band were no slouches: James Spaulding, alto & flute, Paul West or Lisle Atkinson, bass, Weiss, piano, and Leroy Williams or Billy Drummond, drums. The other selections were “What Is This Thing Called Love,” with some “Hot House” licks, “I Mean You,” “Footprints,” “Just Friends,” with rhythm only, and “All God’s Children Got Rhythm.”
George Cables has some heavy and fine friends. Godspeed!
This blog entry posted by arnold jay smith.