Jazzitalia - Ann Hampton Calloway and Jennifer Leithem Lead Two Sets at Dizzy's Club 'Coca-Cola'
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Ann Hampton Calloway and Jennifer Leithem Lead Two Sets at Dizzy's Club "Coca-Cola"
Jazz and Cabaret Corner
Roberta on The Arts

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Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola
Presents:
Ann Hampton Calloway
Swings the Great American Songbook

With:
Ann Hampton Calloway
on Vocals
Ted Rosenthal
on Piano
Peter Washington
on Bass
Willie Jones III
on Drums

After Hours Set:
Jennifer Leithem Trio
With:
Jennifer Leithem
on Bass
Sherrie Maricle
on Drums
Tomoko Ohno
on Piano

At
Frederick P. Rose Hall
Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola
Broadway at 60th Street
NY, NY
212.258.9595
Todd Barkan, Programming Director
Scott Thompson, Press


Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
February 18, 2010



After the ballet at Lincoln Center, I caught the end of tonight's second set of Ann Hampton Calloway's band, as she sang the swinging-est Great American Songbook, and the Club was rocking. As I arrived, she was creating a brand new improvisational song, with audience participation, putting words and music together for "Meet Me at Columbus Circle", adding some Harold Arlen musical magic. Her fans loved this generous involvement, and I was immediately struck with Ms. Hampton's intense vocal talent. When she belted out "At Last", all eyes were on the stage. Ms. Hampton added a few original phrases, like "What took you so God damn long?". Ted Rosenthal was on piano, Peter Washington on bass, and Willie Jones III on drums. Their sound is magnetizing, and I wish I'd heard more.

The After-Hours set featured the Jennifer Leithem Trio, with Ms. Leithem on Bass, Sherrie Maricle on drums, and Tomoko Ohno on piano. They were hugely entertaining, and Ms. Leithem also involved the audience in back and forth conversation, revealing her personal reflections, related to the songs. "Stick It in Your Ear" was her first song, and the rollicking, vibrant mood was firmly set. "Turkish Bizarre" was next with some exotic tones. Ms. Leithem took a long bass solo, with rapidly paced rhythms, and the mood swung from mellow to explosive. Ms. Ohno's piano riff was melodic and rambling, a rich refrain. The band's presentation was effervescent and authentic, and this piece ended once again in a soft motif, as percussion and piano merged for background effects. When Ms. Leithem played solo bass, an original work, midnight mystery appeared.

The highlight of the set was a commissioned arrangement of three Bernstein songs from West Side Story: "Something's Coming", "One Hand, One Heart", and "Somewhere". Ms. Leithem took full lead in "Something's Coming", before Ms. Maricle's drums added tension and momentum. Ms. Ohno had an extra long piano riff, and we were transported right to the Broadway show, but in ardent, jazzy genre. The bass took the theme again and embellished it with some of the Jets' musicality. In "One Hand, One Heart", bass and piano exchanged the soulful theme, with deeply emotional harmonies created. Ms. Leithem owned the moment, though, front and center, until Ms. Maricle took her drum sticks to the bass strings, while Ms. Leithem played the higher end of the instrument. The audience loved this original take on the theme. Without a pause, "Somewhere" was introduced with a Latin clavé beat. Ms. Ohno ran with the theme in rambunctious interpretation. The set ended with Oscar Pettiford's version of "Tricotism".




Ann Hampton Callaway and Her Band
at Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola.
Courtesy of Frank Stewart/Jazz at Lincoln Center


Ann Hampton Callaway and Her Band
at Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola.
Courtesy of Frank Stewart/Jazz at Lincoln Center







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