Caught some great music last night. First up, Matt Perrine, Paul Sanchez and John Rankin at the Columns hotel. I believe John Rankin has a regular gig at the Columns( don't hold me to that) but on this night, he had two accomplices elevating the music to an even better level. Sanchez, (formerly of Cowboy Mouth fame, and a slew of solo and group projects around New Orleans) has been taking lessons from Rankin and the two talked and joked about their lesson/sessions which gave the performance a great intimacy feel, (besides the fact, the Columns tea room is not a big room,) and gave us listeners an insight into the creation of the songs. The two traded songs and really showed the versatility of new orleans songwriters and songs. Matt Perrine, on the sousaphone for this performance, gave the songs an added depth, the sousaphone filling up the room with the low end and making the songs bolder and richer. After the trio returned from their first break, they performed a John Prine tribute, performing two of Prine's pieces and completing the triumvarate with a composition in the vein of Prine. The three played and fed off of each other effortlessly, and if one of the guys didn't know the tune or progression, Sanchez had an iphone app with songs and progressions for quick easy reference(Holy Technology Batman!!)
I split after the Prine tunes and headed to the Blue Nile upstairs to catch Rex Gregory and his band performing for a live broadcast on WWOZ as part of the open ears music series I was not familiar with Gregory or his bandmates. A friend clued me in to the players and their origins, most from New Orleans. Apologies for not knowing you guys until now. The pieces sculpted jazz and groove music, interlaced with aside movements. I remember listening to the opening piece, (and no, I don't remember any names of the pieces, something to work on,) and thinking this is what it sounds like if I was swimming inside of a glacier, thinking of colors created from light bouncing off the ice prism walls and translated into sound. Make Sense? Eh, Probably not, but that is where the music took me. All of the musicians were exceptional, and listening to drummer Simon Lott is a thrill caus he can pull so many sounds and grooves from his kit: mindboggling. I stayed for about an hour and headed home, to gear up for tomorrow's music exploration.
Two completely different performances from different perspectives of New Orleans music, and yet so, comfortable to my ears and so "As it should be" feeling. Only in New Orleans. Tomorrow is not known so if you think a show might be worth your time, definitely check it out, caus it just may change your life.