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The Frank Wess Quintet TONIGHT at Birdland!

January 2, 2013

wessalbumFrank Wess, who turns 91 this week, is aligned in history with Count Basie’s great second phase: the 1950s bands, whose reed and brass sections gave off an almost conversational feeling, as well as a blinding power used in sudden punches. Mr. Wess was already in his 30s when he joined Basie’s band, but it imprinted him: his music still has that antic and elegant character.

From his Basie days, he formed a unique partnership with fellow tenor player Frank Foster and introduced the flute as a distinct jazz sound. Wess and Foster continued working together in a quintet called “Two Franks” for almost twenty years. In the 1980’s and 90’s, Wess led a successful Basie-style big band featuring many Basie alumni such as Harry “Sweets” Edison, Joe Newman, Snooky Young, Al Grey, Benny Powell, Marshal Royal and Billy Mitchell. In 2007, Wess received the prestigious NEA Jazz Masters Award.

You can catch Mr. Wess and his quintet TONIGHT at Birdland celebrating 91 candles! Ahh, Jazz the way it was intended….

Here’s the line-up;

Frank Wess (tenor sax/flute)
George Cables (piano)
Roni Ben-Hur (guitar)
Santi Debriano (bass)
Victor Lewis (drums)

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