The Sidney Bechet Society hosted Dan Levinson's Jam Session of the Millennium at Symphony Space in Manhattan, New York City - and though it may still be early days/years, I don't think it's an inappropriate/boastful title at all! An absolutely incredible event.
Besides the fantastic musicianship, what was truly evident was the fun everyone on stage was having - and judging from the cheers from the audience, and the standing ovations, they weren't the only ones! A stellar lineup was announced, including the core of Mona's Hot Four: Dennis Lichtman, clarinet; Gordon Webster, piano; Nick Russo, guitar/banjo; Jared Engel, banjo/bass; Dalton Ridenhour, piano; Mike Davis, trumpet; Gordon Au, trumpet; Matt Musselman, trombone; Josh Holcomb, trombone; Dan Levinson, clarinet/sax; Rob Adkins, bass; Kevin Dorn, drums; Marion Felder, drums.
The evening followed a format of Mona's (although with much more space and air!), but with four-hands-one-piano, and two drum kits. And as if that wasn't enough, special guests Cassidy Holden (bass, banjo), Bria Skonberg (trumpet) and Andrew Nemr (tap dancer) joined the ensemble for a jam session second to none.
Thank you, sincerely, to all involved.
For more information about the Sidney Bechet Society and other upcoming concerts, http://www.sidneybechet.org/
And to get a small (and crowded) taste of a jam session like this again, head to Mona's on Tuesday nights from 10:30pm until the wee hours, on Avenue B, between 13th & 14th Streets.