Eric Reed Quartet@Catalina’s 04.29.14

Since leaving the chair as Wynton Marsalis’ sideman, pianist Eric Reed has carved an impressive niche by celebrating the music of the masters ranging from Monk to Ellington to the Great Church Songbook. This night at Catalina’s, brought together some of the best musicians from the West Valley, with Wesley Anderson/dr, Hamilton Price/b and Danny Janklow keeping the flames of hard bop alive and well.

In the trio format, Reed’s fiery clearly enunciated touch on the ivories was in all its glory on a simmering take of “Stablemates” as well as on the unlikely rock indie tune “Black Tables” which mixed Hamilton’s viscerally pensive solo and Anderson’s reflective tom toms to creat a gracious hymnlike reflection,  not unlike a church stained glass window. But, once young and spry Danny Janklow jumped on stage with his red hot alto, the temperature inside the club became as hot as the desert heat outside, and Janklows blowing on “New Boundary” seared through the pocket created by the rhythm trio.  Highlighting material from his third album dedicated to the jazz icon Thelonious Monk,  Reed displayed some digital dexterity on the solo intro to the acutely angular “Evidence” that had the music moving in a herky jerky motion like a submarine pitcher, while the nimble “Gallop’s Gallop” was wonderfully eccentric and “Work” was feisty and assertive like a caffeinated weightlifter.

As he stated before his tribute to the recently departed jazz pianist Cedar Walton on the flowing “Torquoise Twice,” that “we’re here to keep the legacy of jazz alive,” Reed is passing on the vision of jazz to not only his disciples on stage but to the congregation in the club who gave an appreciative “Amen” to the musical sermon this hot April evening.


Leave a Reply