We had a jazz quartet tonight that I had been looking forward to hearing. Jazz guitar, drums, Hammond organ, and tenor sax. No bass. I'm accustomed to seeing a big-honking stand-up on the stage and holding the beat with its heavy-raindrop plumping sound. But it wasn't missed. The group sounded great. I complimented the guitarist leader during a break, telling him that he's the "epitome of cool." He was taken aback a bit and said, "I've been called a lot of things, but 'cool' has never been among them. In fact, when I was younger, I was the kid getting the wedgie." I said, "Your y-front is safe here, because you're definitely cool." The crowd tonight was modest sized. Among them was a lone wolf who sniffed out the one lone woman in the club. He was a friendly, mostly earnest, chatty guy who seemed to really like the club and the music. By the end of the night, he was very close to being irritating. There was another couplenot the wolf and wolfette I've been describingthat were seated in one of the three known Vortexes of Love in the club. The Vortexes of Love are cosmic anomalies where couples who are seated in them are pheromonal-driven to engage in PDA (public display of affection). There are three locations in the club where the magic occurs. This couple was seated in the weakest of the three locations, which is weaker by virtue of the fact that it encompasses a greater span than the other two locations, which are clearly two-seat concentrated vortexes. At some point, with greater observation, it may become clear if we have two overlapping vortexes or maybe it's a zone. I'll keep you posted. But for this night, when an out-of-town sit-in tenor was engaged in a Kansas City-style "dual to death" blow off with the quartet's tenor, their frenetic saxophone interchange became the sound track for the Vortex couple's passionate eating-face PDA.January 30
The bassist growls. When he plays his stand-up, he scats with the notes. Very jazzy. Quintessential. His playing perfectly matched the 82-year-old jazz guy sitting at the bar wearing a black beret and sipping Cabernet. With his handsome, lined face, the old jazz dude could be the poster-child for the club. Jazz does soften hard edges. As The Doorman, I see the difference between the faces of people when they walk in and when they leave. The cynic would say: "Yep, that's what alcohol does." But, the jazz club clientele is not of the drink 'till you sink ilk. The music is the magic. Harsh street faces soften and worry lines are Botoxed away with a little Sonny, Miles, and Monk. Case in point: A pleasant-looking woman had entered the club and joined two other middle-aged friends. She joined her friends late and left them earlysure sign of an active, involved person... my kind, one of my peeps. As she left, I said: "Leaving us early..." Her softened jazz face changed back to the intensity of her life as she exited while saying, "Yes, I've got commitments." I thought, yes... commitments.