The GH Hotel lounge walls have been transformed in baby blue, as have a variety of new cushions and chairs, and I wanted to think of American ‘57 Chevy Cool, but others corrupted that image with allusions of their own. However, in the playing room the curtains over side doors and at the performance end were their familiar velvet crimson-red, like rows of smoking jackets hung to coalesce with the smokin’ set that would be underscored, as ever, by the Blue Vanguard Trio. I can only repeat: the various soloing was exemplary, as were the accompaniments to all songs intuited by jazz knowing rather than lengthy rehearsal.
Last night’s guest was Christian Brewer, a saxophonist who played with blistering pace and gusto on a number of interpreted standards, as well as beautiful touch and feel on a couple of ballads. Never good at remembering titles, I am good at remembering the class of what I hear, and he treated us to many classy moments. It is always good to see the guest artists being so appreciative of the house band, as Brewer so obviously was, and of course it is the amalgam of such fine musicianship that makes these evenings so superb to attend.