Review by Bill Barton

The second night of The Seattle Jazz Showcase had a relaxed, intimate feeling.

Bassist Jon Hamar led a wonderful trio with Dawn Clement at the piano and Matt Jorgensen on drums. Hamar’s composition “Oblivion” was a particular standout and featured a rhythmically ingenious and driving piano solo. Another brilliant performance was Dawn Clement’s lovely, melancholy arrangement of John Lennon’s “Julia.” Hamar’s solo had the resonant depth, melodic imagination and subtle power of Charlie Haden at his best: an impressive solo. The blend of this piece, original compositions by Hamar and one by Astor Piazzolla provided plenty of variety.

Mark Taylor’s quartet featuring Los Angeles-based pianist Gary Fukushima (making a one-night-only appearance in Seattle) plus bassist Jeff Johnson and drummer Byron Vannoy presented a multi-faceted set with Taylor on alto saxophone for a majority of the time and on soprano for one tune. His composition “After Hours” was particularly exciting. Each of the players had eloquent solo moments throughout the set.

All in all it was a delightful evening of music.

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Review, Seattle Jazz, Seattle Jazz Showcase