|Zach Bartholomew Trio - 2/15/12|
I must say I was immediately taken with the maturity of sound coming from these 3 twenty-somethings. Bartholomew is definitely his own man stylistically and shows all the confidence and prowess of a player twice his age. The trio has melded into a wily and flexible unit that manages, like most famous piano trios, to give the listener several angles to focus on, while never losing cohesiveness or taste.
The overall effect of the music is easy-going, comforting, intelligent, always swinging, with enough passages of intensity and passion to keep your ears in focus-mode. The set began with a smart and simple turn through Herbie's "Dolphin Dance". Once the band got warm, the interplay and freedom was pleasantly reminiscent of Bill Evan's classic line-up with LaFaro and Motian.
Zach then launched into a samba version of "Ladybird" that was both engaging and dreamy, thanks to a repeated single-note figure that began and ended the fresh interpretation.
Broader harmonies and a more angular approach followed in Chick Corea's jazz waltz "Windows" and Cole Porter's "I Love You"; and the night ended on a real nice high with a downright brilliant version of Rodgers and Hart's "I Didn't Know What Time It Was" - arranged in 5/4, perhaps the best and most comfortable 5 I've heard live in FL so far.
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Kudos to Three Dogs Grille owners Bob Plugge and Barry Markey - who assure us that they are 'in it' for the long haul - in other words, jazz has taken up permanent residency here in Palm Coast. Next time you see them - let them know you love jazz and appreciate what they're doing. Til next time! - PCJ