There are some bands who are spectacular live. I will pay to see them every time they come to Winnipeg…but I don’t own any of their music. I LIKE their music, but sometimes that live magic, energy or vibe doesn’t translate well in the studio.
That wasn’t the case tonight. I feel like I probably could have bought the CD and stayed home instead. Let me explain…
The pamphlet for this show used the words “dazzle”, “driving”, “caliente (hot)” and “joyous expression”. There’s a picture of David Buchbinder playing his trumpet and it’s pointed to the sky like he’s playing his heart out. The picture looks like unbridled energy; it looks like a party.
What I ended up getting was five really talented musicians reading sheet music (insert sad trombone notes here).
I am not an expert on Jewish music. As a matter of fact, Dictionary.com just taught me what “Klezmer” means (a Jewish folk musician traditionally performing in a small band). That’s cool, and joining that with Latin and Jazz, is even more interesting; and the songs WERE interesting. But when I go to a show, I’m paying to be visually entertained as well. I want to see musicians who move. I want to see expressions. I want to see connections with the audience. I want a musician’s passion to pull me into a song.
All of that is impossible while reading sheet music. There’s very little connection to the audience when a musician’s face is buried in notes.
At the beginning of the show trumpeter, David Buchbinder mentioned the band had just met local bassist, Steve Kirby, so obviously he’d have to read sheet music. But I’m spoiled when it comes to Steve Kirby. I’ve seen Steve play numerous times without sheet music and I know what Steve is capable of. I pay for what I know Steve is capable of. So I was disappointed I didn’t get the Steve Kirby I’m used to.
I was also disappointed everyone else used sheet music too; EXCEPT for drummer, Joaquin Nunez Hidalgo. He played percussion and the kit at the same time without sheet music and he saved that show for me. He was full of wonderful expressions and passion and movement. Every negative comment I’ve said in this review does not apply to him.
The second tune had a really fantastic improvised part and I came alive, but then it was back to the notes and I slumped in my seat again.
There was another song that showcased David and pianist, Hilario Duran. David played the violin part of the song on his trumpet which was interesting.
Steve started two separate songs, a really sultry number and another tune called “Walk To The Sea” which was written about David’s trip to Havana. The percussion was also great in that song.
After the last tune people applauded and some stood to get their coats on. The band came out again to take a bow and David said they couldn’t play an encore because they only gave Steve the notes for the show, not an encore. I found that strange because I’ve seen set lists which specify encore songs. But I’m not a musician. Maybe songs for encores aren’t always discussed ahead of time. I don’t know.
It’s possible I’m being too harsh. But damn it, I wanted a “dazzling, driving, caliente” trumpet pointed to the sky party. Sigh…oh well.
The music really was good, people were bobbing their heads to the beat and obviously they’re all very talented musicians. But the performance fell flat for me.
TicketMOMster is a Rock and Jazz-loving Mom; single-handedly keeping Ticketmaster alive in Winnipeg. Follow her musical journey here: www.facebook.com/TicketMOMsters