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Charles McPherson Quartet

- Jazz and Cabaret Performance Reviews

Charles McPherson Quartet
(McPherson Website)
Charles McPherson on Saxophone
Chuck McPherson on Drums
Ronnie Mathews on Piano
David Williams on Bass

At Birdland
315 West 44th Street, NYC
Gianni Valenti, Owner
Andy Kaufman, Business Manager
Tarik Osman, Manager
See Original Birdland Reviews on

Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
July 28, 2004

Tonight’s second set at Birdland with the seasoned saxophonist, Charles McPherson, began with a song about a Marionette, and Williams presented a lovely bass solo joined by Chuck’s (son of the Bandleader) edgy and energetic percussion on the side of his drums. Contusions, Confusions, and Illusions in Blue blazed with a driven saxophone and repetitious percussion. The Mathews’ piano trills were unusual and incredible. Darn that Dream was melodic and smooth, and Chuck’s brush embellishments washed over the Quartet in a dreamy delivery. The lightness and clarity of the keyboard created a fusion of abstract and melodic themes with Chuck’s percussion occasionally muffled and occasionally melodramatic.

Billy’s Bounce featured Mathews on piano with intriguing improvisations and radiant sound. He caught the airiness of the “bouncing” notes in a Be-Bop fashion. Mathews has the ability to cushion with softness and then to go wild. Seventh Dimension brought McPherson’s sensational sax to a moody dissonance, esoteric and electric, and Mathews and Williams accompanied in reverence. There was no melody here, but rather magnetic momentum, as McPherson held the attention of his Birdland fans.

Charles McPherson on Saxophone
Photo courtesy of Roberta Zlokower

Chuck McPherson on Drums and David Williams on Bass
Photo courtesy of Roberta Zlokower

Tarik Osman, Charles McPherson, and Ronnie Mathews
Photo courtesy of Roberta Zlokower

Brad, Birdland Sound Technician, and Receptionist
Photo courtesy of Roberta Zlokower

Charles McPherson, David Williams, Ronnie Mathews, Chuck McPherson
Photo courtesy of Roberta Zlokower

For more information, contact Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower at