PHJB: a Preservation Hall Jazz Band Review

Last week I was fortunate to see and hear the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, a New Orleans band that tours America to packed concert halls. Although the band’s music is rooted in the wonderful old music of the French Quarter and has all its accessibility, tunefulness, soul and rhythm, PHJB’s musicians (all N.O. natives) are master players and incorporate many styles. Trumpeter Mark Braud at times could be mistaken for Freddy Hubbard or Clifford Brown, clarinetist/saxophonist Charlie Gabriel (an astonishing aged 81) and tenor saxophonist Clint Maegden are in the Stanley Turrentine class. Add in pianist/Hammond Organist Rickie Monie, Freddy Lonzo (trombone), drummer Joe Lasti Jnr and Ben Jaffe on double bass and this is one hugely talented band. Braud and Maegden are also impressive singers. This is happy, grown-up, foot-tapping music and not a strummer in sight! If this band comes your way, do not miss it!

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