David Royko Psy.D
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Statman + Grisman = Ecstasy
Never got to see John Coltrane and Eric Dolphy together (or separately for that matter), nor Bill Monroe with Earl Scruggs, Albert Ayler with Don Cherry, John Lennon and Paul McCartney...but last night at Chicago's City Winery, I finally got to hear Andy Statman and David Grisman together, and I am VERY happy. Statman began each of the two sets on clarinet with his superb and long-standing trio (drummer Larry Eagle and bassist Jim Whitney), before Grisman joined them, Statman switching to mandolin. Their sets were all over the map, hitting klezmer, bluegrass, jazz standards, "Mandolin Abstractions" style avant/free mandolin improvising, a wildly deconstructed -- and reconstructed -- fiddle tune, and a delightful "You Are My Sunshine" (my long-departed granddad's favorite song). They've been playing together (and friends) for almost a half-century, and the pleasure they obviously get from this kind of gig was palpable. And the music - sublime. April 9, 2013.