Sunday, September 27, 2015

Chick Corea and Bela Fleck

This past weekend we celebrated our upcoming 25th wedding anniversary by going up to north Jersey to leave the kids with my inlaws, and then going off on our own to so some things without them. The original plan was to go into New York city Saturday morning, see a show, eat a good meal, spend the night, do something Sunday and then pick up the kids and drive home. We ended up deciding to spend more money on shows and less on hotel, but more on that later.

The first part of the weekend was to get to north Jersey Friday afternoon (avoiding the Pope's visit to Philly that weekend, and the resulting mismanagement by the mayor with regards to shutting the whole city down for 4 days, but that's also another story...). We would leave the kids with a babysitter, and us, my sister in law and her husband, and another couple would go to the Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown NJ to see a jazz concert by Chick Corea (piano) and Bela Fleck (banjo). I like jazz very much, and have quite a bit of it on CD, but I am no expert by any means, and there are a great many people whose names I recognize but know little about. These were two of those.
Bela Fleck and Chick Corea

A clip from last year is here:
  • Mountain - Chick Corea and Bela Fleck, 2014, Los Angeles.

The short version of the story is that we had a nice (but very rushed) bite to eat before the concert at an Irish pub across the street, a fabulous concert, and a nice drink and snack at another nearby place after.

As for the concert itself, it was a mix of "classic" style jazz, bluegrass influenced stuff, classical influenced stuff, and a whole lot else in between. Taking out an intermission, they played for about an hour and forty minutes. Not tremendously long, but certainly long enough to get your money's worth. Both were amazing musicians, and they played off of each other very well (as can be seen in the clip linked above). Corea was amazing, all the more so considering that he is 74 years old, and Fleck was a blur on banjo. His was lightning fast, and unbelievably clean. They seemed to enjoy themselves on stage, and had good banter and rapport with the crowd.

I would give this show the highest possible marks, even more so considering that the tickets were about $28 each after all fees and taxes. Hard to believe. Perhaps the best thing I could say about the show is that I have every intention of picking up the two albums that these guys have done together (one studio, one live), and looking into their other stuff as well.

A great start to a great weekend...

No comments:

Post a Comment