Hartford, Ct-based jazz pianist/composer/vocalist Warren Byrd has found an outlet at Tools Bar and Grill in New Britain. The new jazz & Blues venue is where general manager Dave Mardis labors to make a home for music artistry, staging provocative tal-ent and wowing appreciative clients.
Friday night, members of the Afro-Semitic Experience and will present a work-shop performance called “Jazz Souls On Fire”: versions of selected spiritual and religious songs by jazz composers. This symposium will bear the largest and most distinct cast with Warren: Abu Carter on hand percussion, Alvin Carter jr on drums, Stacy Phillips on Dobro, fiddle, and lap steel guitar, Will Bartlett on woodwinds, Saskia Laroo, appears again on trumpet and electronics, and co-founder David Chevan on bass. The culminate night is another tribute to an unlikely subject–a famous jazz recording. Miles Davis’s Kind of Blue has lyri-cal resonance and serene sophistication that continues to charm listeners of all kinds after over five decades since it was released. Warren hopes to capture that essence that Saturday night in a “tribute to Kind of Blue” with the internationally celebrated bassist Nat Reeves, Saskia “Lady Miles” Laroo on trumpet, Jackie McLean acolyte and Winard Harper member Javon Alexander on Tenor Saxophone, and J McLean grad and journeyman Ben Biello on drums. How did Tools’s Mardis come up with the term “Symposium” to describe what could obviously become in manner more like a festival? Byrd doesn’t know, but he says, “if you really care, cite the freedictionary.com definition, sense#3: ‘.a con-vivial meeting for drinking, music, and intellectual discussion.’” and with this he feels at home. Once again “Where’s Warren” 4-Night Jazz Symposium runs through Saturday, June 23, 8 p.m. to 12 a.m. each night.