The Jazz Cafe hosts the fine new member band, the Weeks & Peterson Quintet
Dan Weeks and Joe Peterson make up the rhythm section of one of the JSJBF’s newest member jazz bands, the Weeks & Peterson Quintet. On this night they made their Chubby Pickle debut at Board Member Joseph Vincent Riggio’s Jazz Café. If you’re a fan of instrumental jazz, this was a night not to be missed. With Dan on the skins, Joe on upright bass, Greg Gispart on sax, Jim Josselyn on guitar and the man, Steve Jankowski, on trumpet and flugelhorn, they treated those in attendance to some of the finest playing this side of the Blue Note.
The night was divided into three sets, and all were outstanding. They kicked off the evening with “Alone Together,” a song introduced in the Broadway musical “Flying Colors.” The show title was an apt description of their interpretation of the tune, with each member soloing over the melody in dramatic fashion, letting us know this was going to be a special night of jazz. The following tune, “Whisper Not,” was written by the great Benny Golson and was done in a minor key, with the shout chorus done by Steve on trumpet. “Mr. October,” an original tune penned by guitarist Jim Josselyn, fit nicely within the set list and his Epiphone George Benson model guitar had that melodic sound. The classic, “Moanin’” by Art Blakey and made famous by his Jazz Messengers, followed and was a traditional arrangement featuring Steve’s muted trumpet. Another original, “Coffee Bean,” by bassist and band leader Joe Peterson, was inspired by a late night post gig visit to The Inkwell in West End, which for generations, was a hangout for denizens of the night. The first set ended with a fine rendition of Hank Mobley’s “Up A Step.”
The second set began with “One By One,” which paid homage to Wayne Shorter who recently passed away. “Four On Six” by jazz icon Wes Montgomery, refers to a 4/4 rhythm superimposed over a rhythm of 6/8, and the group showed us how it’s done in fine fashion. The surprise highlight of the night was Erez Lirov standing in on flugelhorn. A next generation player, he went toe to toe with his elders, giving us hope for the future of jazz. Another Wayne Shorter composition, “This Is for Albert,” closed out a short but excellent set.
The final set led off with another Hank Mobley tune, “Funk In A Deep Freeze,” and Hank would have been proud of Greg Gispart’s sax on this version. “Clarisse,” another original tune by Jim was a fine addition to the set, and I later learned that Jim is recording in Steve’s Jankland studio, so this was a great way to introduce some of his material to a live audience. “A New Joy” by Roy Hargrove featured Steve on the horn with ample support, especially by the rhythm section. Dan’s drumming and Joe’s upright bass were solid all night and outstanding when called on to solo. The Latin based “Ceora” by trumpeter Lee Morgan was dubbed a “jazz bossa,” and on this night was given an improvisational treatment which was much appreciated by the jazz aficionados in attendance. The final tune of the night “Oleo” by Charlie Parker was done in up tempo, ala Miles Davis, and was over much too quickly, but all good things must come to an end.