by Natalie Wilson
Well, it was definitely the Carl Saunders show last Sunday. He showed us that after being around for many years, he is still at the top of his game. There is no one that plays the trumpet better or has the same sound. And he brought some great players along to help get his jazz message across. Opening with the Johnny Mercer tune, I Thought About You, we were introduced to the young, phenomenal pianist, Sam Hirsh who continued to wow us with his solos all afternoon. While playing a blues tune, Carl did his show biz thing and took over the bass, the drums, and then the piano, playing some far out altered cords. And that’s not all, he sang belting out an original, You’re So Cute…complete with scatting! At one point, Carl asked for requests and the audience suggested a couple of standards and the band obliged with I Can’t Get Startedand a rip roaring, Night In Tunisia. On all the tunes, Carl left room for his excellent sidemen, Sam on the piano, bassist Dave Stone and drummer Kevin Kanner to stretch out and solo. It looked like the musicians were really enjoying to play for our appreciative audience. It was such a pleasure to hear such fine musicians play our timeless jazz standards.