Scarborough Jazz


The Firebird Quartet (18th March, 2015)

This excellent band's energy enlivened The Cask audience from their first number.  They chose Nature Boy, giving it the lively rhythm of a Brazilian bembe, which took it a hundred miles away from the mawkish version by Nat King Cole.
The individual talents of the quartet were clearly demonstrated during this opener and whetted our appetites for what else was to follow.  This turned out to be accomplished musicianship showcased by a well chosen repertoire.
Leader Ian Chalk clearly enjoyed himself, his trumpet playing was cool and inventive or brisk and robust as required.  His spoken introductions had just the right blend of information and humour.
Pianist Martin Longhawn sparkled - and smiled - throughout and was endlessly inventive.  His extended introduction on Folk Song was delicious.
John Marley brought a five string electric bass as well as his double bass and was nimbly fluid on both.  His four bar exchanges with the drummer on Sonny Rollins's Blue Seven were a delight.
The crisply driving drumming of Tim Carter generated intense excitement. On a couple of numbers, his enthusiasm threatened to swamp the band, but this could be down to his youthful verve.  This can be forgiven when considered against his lively contribution to the group's considerable ability to swing.
This band generously used interesting and attractive riffs to great effect and intelligently made refreshing changes to the group sound.
The Firebird Quartet gave us an evening of stimulating jazz all the way through to their sizzling encore.  The audience went home on a could of delight.

Dick Armstrong

Posted on 24 Mar 2015 by admin
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