It was a pleasure to listen to the smooth sound and intricate bop lines of Rex Wertz on tenor sax, our guest artist at the November lunch concert. He is a quiet and unassuming man who plays in the very professional 5 piece jazz band at the Grand Floridian Hotel on the Disney property. Rex is a long time friend of bassist John Huber, and they played together in Harrisburg PA early in their careers. This concert was the first time they’ve had the opportunity to play again since then, and it was a treat for all who attended.
The trio opened with the Miles Davis tune “So What”, and then brought Rex on stage with “Bye, Bye Blackbird”. It was followed by a Latin-swing version of “I’ll Remember April” and the ballad “Someone to Watch Over Me”. Then John and Rex led the quartet by doubling (playing in unison) on the complex melody of a Billy Taylor bop tune, “One For the Woofer”. We then played the soulful C.A. Jobim bossa nova “Triste”, and the highly spirited Calypso tune “St. Thomas” by Sonny Rollins. The show ended with an up-tempo Latin-swing version of “Skylark”.
We all enjoyed working with Rex, and hope to have him back soon. Many thanks to all who attended and showed their enthusiastic response, and we hope to see you at the next one. On December 19th we will feature Valerie Gillespie as our guest artist, and will perform some jazzy Christmas tunes along with standard jazz repertory.
Rex Wertz and John Huber