George Wein and the Newport All Stars
(George Wein Bio)
George Wein on Piano
Randy Brecker on Trumpet
Lew Tabackin on Tenor Saxophone
Peter Washington on Bass
Kenny Washington on Drums
Howard Alden on Guitar
Frederick P. Rose Hall
Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola
Broadway at 60th Street
(Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola Website)
Todd Barkan, Artistic Administrator
Scott Thompson, Press
Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
October 2, 2007
The second set at Dizzy’s was sold out tonight for this virtuosic ensemble, led by the renowned George Wein, of Festival Productions Inc., of the Newport Jazz Festival, Newport Folk Festival, JVC Jazz Festival, and much more. George Wein is also a pianist, and tonight he seemed in his glory. He also turned over the bench to Michel Camilo, who happened to be in the audience and is well versed in the genre. The Newport All Stars ensemble included Randy Brecker on trumpet, Lew Tabackin on tenor sax, Peter Washington on bass, Kenny Washington on drums, and Howard Alden on guitar.
“Johnny Come Lately” found Lew Tabackin carrying the theme on his sax, over George Wein’s bubbly piano. Randy Brecker on trumpet came in next with punctuated clarity as nighttime in NY glistened through the windows. Howard Alden added a danceable, upbeat guitar solo, and his lively melody was passed to Peter Washington on bass, who added rich ornamentations. All the while, Wein was in charge, and, with Kenny Washington’s rhythmic percussion, explosive, but blended, solos shone through. Tabackin and Brecker fused brass with a sassy swing beat.
A Dizzy Gillespie piece featured Randy Brecker, while George Wein effortlessly played the bluesy theme, accented by the rhythm section: guitar, bass, drums. Lew Tabackin, in tiny black sunglasses, added coolness and soul, as he carried the theme up and down the scales. Alden exuded scintillating rhythm and musicality, as Peter Washington focused on his mellifluous and meandering solo. Randy Brecker’s trills soared outside Dizzy’s Club, toward the visible and vibrant skyline.
The ensemble was trimmed for the next piece, with Lew Tabackin joining Kenny Washington and Peter Washington in skipping, repetitive refrains. A bee-bop style lifted Dizzy’s Club, with the Washington brothers fused in duo delight. Soon Howard Alden returned, featured with soft cymbals and bass, a study in poignant tones. This soothing work was on the heels of jazzy swing, as Randy Brecker took a flugelhorn and guest artist, Michel Camilo, took the keyboard, right in the midst of the music. Dynamic effects were daringly added with a seamless pulse and a wild piano-sax duo. A hint of “I’m Confessin’ that I Love You” was thrown in for good measure.
“Take the ‘A’ Train” closed the set, with Michel Camilo still onstage, and an Ellington extravaganza engaged the crowd. An After-Hours set followed with smooth, dissonant contrast. Check the Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola Website for current and upcoming events.
George Wein at Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola
Photo Courtesy of Frank Stewart/Jazz at Lincoln Center