Blue Note 70th Anniversary Tour at the Kimmel Center
McCoy Tyner's classic "Search for Peace" from The Real McCoy was highlighted by a beautiful trumpet solo by Payton and a flute solo by Wilson, and constituted ballad relief from the rapid fire pace of the other numbers. The set concluded with Cedar Walton's "Mosaic," with glowing solos by Coltrane, Wilson, Payton, and Charlap. Nash's concluding drum solo was remarkable for its musical intelligence, powerful technique, and creative force. Payton mentioned, in connection with his survey of the audience about which Philly steak joint is the best (Gino's, Pats, or as one audience member added with a shout, "Jims!"), noted that Nash is a vegetarian. If his youthful appearance, Zen-like focus, and concentrated energy come from his diet, we should all be vegans!
For an encore the group performed Philadelphia legend Lee Morgan's "Party Time" in a fine arrangement by (Peter) Bernstein. The surprise of the evening came when Nash scat sang a solo. If Roy Haynes is any indication, drummers may harbor profound wishes to be vocalists. Nash did quite well at it.