The Brisbane Jazz Club moved to our temporary new home at the Queensland Russian Community Centre in Woolloongabba, on May 6th, 2019.
Already we have enjoyed many stand-out performances, and tonight’s band of musiciens extraordinaire maintained the very high bar set by our early performers.
Shining at the centre of it all, band leader and one-man Horn Section, Mark Pradella, caressed every faultless note from his clarinet, tenor sax, alto sax, soprano sax and EWI, (Electric Wind Instrument, with which he can deliver 2000 different sounds, in 8 octaves!!).
In orbit around Mark, were the masterful skills of Sam Pace at the grand piano and electronic keyboard; Benny Wood on guitar; Phil Jack on electric bass; Ian Towson on drums; and Barry Sutton on percussion.
The set list, which featured a blend of Jazz standards and several less frequently heard tunes, was equally divided between instrumentals and vocals. And when the latter were on show, it was Mr. Peter Vance and his silky baritone voice, who stepped up to the microphone.
With his trademark power and drive, and sensitivity when called for on the sweet ballads, Peter slipped seamlessly into this line-up of skilled musicians.
And as a bonus, we enjoyed a pop-up guest appearance by Tom Henderson and his trombone, on Just Squeeze Me.
Tonight’s show was titled, Heart & Soul, and that is exactly what the band put into it. And it is exactly what we got from their set list and their performances.
With a lively New York/Birdland vibe, the musicians delivered Mark’s stirring arrangements with in the pocket precision; as a combo, or on one of their many exquisite solos.
This personality-plus band obviously love what they do. And so did we. Their shared enthusiasm and sense of fun on stage was matched, moment by moment, by an attentive and appreciative crowd. And while much of the night was delivered at a very dance-able pace, the audience’s preference was to sit, listen, appreciate and enjoy.
And so it stayed until the end of the night, when a small group of lively ladies got out on the dance floor, and shared the love by encouraging several more dancers to join them for the finale; The Doobie Brothers’ Taking It To The Streets.
Thank you Mark and your band. This was a great night, and our temporary home is all the better for performers and performances like yours.
So, Brisbane Jazz fans, you might be missing our riverside location and unbeatable CBD views, but with candle-lit tables and the house lights down, performances like this are ensuring that the Brisbane Jazz Club is absolutely alive and pumping.
We will be here for a few more weeks, so join us at the Queensland Russian Community Centre, 19 Lotus Street, Woolloongabba, for more of the best of Brisbane Jazz. Soon.