The Orion Trio played to a packed room of almost 300 people at the Savannah Center on Thursday, January 29, 2015. Our guest artist was Rudy Turner, guitarist and vocals, along with the usual suspects John Huber on bass, Jerry Bruno on drums, and Thomas Pizzi on keys.
The trio opened with the Bobby Timmons tune “Moanin'”, and then brought Rudy onstage with “Autumn Leaves”, which he opened with a beautiful solo guitar intro. Then we went into a Wes Montgomery tune titled “West Coast Blues”, which was an unusual blues form written as a jazz waltz in three, followed by a Rudy Turner original called “Unknown Song”. This had a calypso feel and a haunting melody, which I found myself humming days later. We featured Rudy and Jerry on Rudy’s arrangement of Brubeck’s “Take Five”, which was in four, and then Rudy played the melody to the lovely ballad “My One and Only Love”.
At this point I called a switcheroo from the planned program, and we played Chick Corea’s classic “Spain”. We then played the Ray Brown arrangement of “Summertime”, which is a funky version, and ended the show with an up tempo Richard “Groove” Holmes tune, which featured a Hammond B3 sound. I wanted to do this tune because I used to listen to Groove Holmes when I was young, and it turns out Rudy toured with him for a while.
This show had a particularly spontaneous feel to me, because we didn’t finalize the set list and order until just before the show, and even then it wasn’t final. I think that’s par for the jazz course, and adds a certain kind of energy to a performance. It’s always a pleasure to work with and listen to our good friend Mr. Rudy Turner, a uniquely talented man based in Ocala, FL. He plays around town as a one man act, and worth catching it if you can.
In February we’ll be playing on Thursday the 26th, and will have an unusual line up featuring two artists. Sheryl Genco will join us on violin, playing excerpts from Claude Bolling’s “Suite for Violin and Jazz Piano Trio”, popular in the 70s. Then Phil Caltabellotta and his magic harmonica will share the stage with the trio performing jazz standards. If you’ve never heard Phil, you’ll be amazed at the virtuosity of a world class player on his instrument.
Our best regards to all who were there for this show, thanks for coming and we hope you enjoyed it. If you’re planning to see us Feb. 26th, please buy your tickets soon because I understand it’s 2/3 sold out already.