Monday, October 10, 2005

In His Own Sweet Way

Maestro Erich Kunzel embraces his friend, Dave Brubeck, after an unforgettable performance at Music Hall (Photo: Glenn Hartong, Cincinnati Enquirer)

Cincinnati was the capital of the jazz universe Sunday night as the Dave Brubeck Quartet joined forces with the Cincinnati Pops to celebrate Maestro Erich Kunzel's 40th Anniversary with the Cincinnati Symphony.

I had been looking forward to this very special event for weeks and invited my friend, bassist Mike Sharfe, to be my "date" for the night. Mike was excited to have the chance to see former Cincinnatian Michael Moore, the Quartet's bass player, again and made a beeline toward the stage when Mr. Moore appeared to arrange his equipment prior to the concert. Later, Mike pointed out to me that Mr. Moore plays an unusual Czech-Ease Acoustic Road Bass, with all of the qualities of a conventional string bass while reduced in size and weight enough to fit in a taxi cab, through airport x-ray machines and below the maximum size restrictions of airplanes.

Anyway, our seats were outstanding, in the sixth row of the orchestra (Thank you, Steve!). A measure of just how wonderful they were is that seated across the aisle, just five seats away, was financier and philanthropist Carl Lindner and his wife Edythe, whose generosity is making possible the Pops' upcoming tour of China.

Dave Brubeck, piano; Bobby Militello, alto sax and flute; Michael Moore, bass; Randy Jones, drums