TOP CONCERTS OF 2012
Story by Richard Brody
Photographs by Stanley Johnson, Andrzej Pilarczyk, Jason Spiro
1. The Tedeschi Trucks Band @ the Palace Theatre, Albany, 12/2/12
In the midst of end of the semester grading, this was just the right tonic. The band was on fire, and their rendition of “Wade in the Water” brought it all together.
2. Hiromi’s Trio Project @ Freihofer Saratoga Jazz Festival at SPAC, Saratoga Springs, 7/1/12
I had never heard of them, but on a tip I went into the amphitheater and was blown away by the trio’s musical dexterity and an energy level that made levitation a distinct possibility.
3. Bootsy Collins @ Albany Riverfront Park, Albany, 6/14/02
He had more costume changes than Cher in Vegas and a band that laid down some serious funk. The Mothership landed – what a party.
4. SF Jazz Collective @ The Egg’s Swyer Theatre, Albany, 3/4/12
Their frequent trips to The Egg are always a treat and this tour was dedicated to the music of Stevie Wonder.
5. Ravi Coltrane Quartet @ the College of Saint Rose’s Massry Center for the Arts, Albany, 3/15/12
Why mess with success? I was knocked out by Ravi and his band at the 2010 Albany Jazz Fest, but he decided a different band was in order, and from the ad libbed opening musical moment, you knew that spontaneity, adventure and humor would be served up in large doses.
Dave Gilmore and Ravi Coltrane (photo by Andrzej Pilarczyk)
6. Terence Blanchard Quintet @ Skidmore College’s Zankel Music Center, Saratoga Springs, 6/26/12
He composes, arranges, instructs, and he always has incredible band members.
7. Tom Harrell Quintet @ A Place for Jazz at the First Unitarian Society Whisperdome, Schenectady, 9/14/12
A superb performance by the band in one of the outstanding venues anywhere
8. Pedrito Martinez Quartet @ A Place for Jazz at the First Unitarian Society Whisperdome, Schenectady, 11/9/12
A great show – read J Hunter’s review…
9. Santana with the Allman Brothers Band @ SPAC, Saratoga Springs, 7/27/12
Both bands were in peak form, and if like me, you wanted to hear songs from their Fillmore days, you left with a big smile on your face.
10. Richard Thompson and Friends @ the Bearsville Theater, Woodstock, 7/19/12
This was not the usual Thompson show as he shared the stage with his sons, Teddy and Jack, as well as instructors at the Frets and Refrains Music Camp, but his playing, singing and deadpan humor were fully in place.