484

Eddie Marshall Quartet featuring Nir Naaman at the Douglas Beach House, CA

Bill Leikam By

Sign in to view read count
Eddie Marshall Quartet featuring Nir Naaman
Douglas Beach House
Half Moon Bay, California
March 22, 2009



According to the Lincoln Center's biography of featured performers, "Eddie Marshall is acknowledged as a leading figure in the evolution of San Francisco's contemporary jazz sound." Marshall's jazz drumming first came to this reviewer's notice back in the 1980s, immediately provoking admiration for his finesse and his range. He was one of the finest drummers I'd ever heard, so upon reading that he was to perform with his quartet at the Douglas Beach House (aka Bach Dynamite and Dancing Society) on Sunday, March 22nd, I immediately reserved my ticket for the concert. The band included bassist Glenn Richman and pianist Matthew Clark, and featured multi-award winning Israeli saxophonist/composer Nir Naaman.





Maybe my initial overall expectations were too high. From the first tune "Holy Mischief," written by Eddie Marshall, through the third, the musicians took excessively long to jell as a working whole. (Admittedly, the group had been formed only recently.) Clark seemed to be working too hard on the keys, and played as though his heart wasn't with the music. At times Richman seemed to take his bass in one direction while Naaman took the music elsewhere. They struggled to pull it together, all the while Marshall laying back and holding a firm groove. Eventually, by the end of the third composition, all four musicians were in stride and the band began to meld.

By the fourth tune "Dilemma," an original by Naaman, the band had warmed up and began to visibly stir the audience. Marshall kept his smooth touch on the drums while Naaman soared with remarkable dexterity on his alto sax. From there on, the band was a solid unit. Marshall's drums flowed and moved within an unshakable foundation. He indeed is a "classic" jazz drummer, the kind that delicately plays in the background with melodic lyricism, firmly there but not overpowering the rest of the instruments like many unpolished jazz drummers of today. Yet, when the moment seemed ripe or during a solo, Marshall exploded with a driving intensity, rising, holding a firm beat and sometimes playing with interesting and varied time signature changes.

By the last tune of the second set, "Super Trooper" composed by Marshall, the audience was jazzed, heartily applauding each solo and thus wiping from memory the rough beginning. When the tune ended, the ample audience rose to their feet with extended applause, shouts, and whoops of sincere approval, calling for an encore. "Knuckle Bean," another original by Marshall, swept the audience away emotionally and physically, closing the evening on a high note at the Douglas Beach House on this memorable Sunday afternoon.


Photo Credit
Bill Leikam


Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Redwood City Salsa Festival 2017 Live Reviews Redwood City Salsa Festival 2017
by Walter Atkins
Published: October 17, 2017
Read AJAZZGO Festival in Cali, Colombia Live Reviews AJAZZGO Festival in Cali, Colombia
by Mark Holston
Published: October 13, 2017
Read CEO Experiment With Kurt Rosenwinkel at The Sugar Club Live Reviews CEO Experiment With Kurt Rosenwinkel at The Sugar Club
by Ian Patterson
Published: October 11, 2017
Read "Miles From India at SFJAZZ" Live Reviews Miles From India at SFJAZZ
by Walter Atkins
Published: April 14, 2017
Read "Pat Martino Quintet at Chris’ Jazz Café" Live Reviews Pat Martino Quintet at Chris’ Jazz Café
by Victor L. Schermer
Published: November 29, 2016
Read "Penang Island Jazz Festival 2016" Live Reviews Penang Island Jazz Festival 2016
by Ian Patterson
Published: December 23, 2016
Read "Houston Person at Kiawah Island, South Carolina" Live Reviews Houston Person at Kiawah Island, South Carolina
by Rob Rosenblum
Published: January 10, 2017
Read "Mike Zito at the Iridium" Live Reviews Mike Zito at the Iridium
by Mike Perciaccante
Published: June 24, 2017
Read "2017 Tri-C JazzFest Cleveland" Live Reviews 2017 Tri-C JazzFest Cleveland
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: July 3, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.