Adam Glasser Quartet
The Birley Centre, Eastbourne
Tuesday 11th November 2014
This was the first time that I’d been to the Birley Centre in Eastbourne and it is essentially a purpose-built music block with an acoustically designed auditorium, that is part of Eastbourne College. The acoustics were excellent, helped by the great Robin Aspland performing on a Steinway grand piano.
Not surprisingly, a large part of the concert was spent performing music from Glasser’s South African heritage with tunes by the likes of Dudu Pukwana, as well as a mixture of more familiar jazz standards.
It was the rarely-heard jazz tunes that were the most memorable, which included a bright version of Cedar Walton’s Bolivia, with some tight drumming from Ian Thomas, and Ray Bryant’s Cubano Chant, featuring some fine soloing from pianist Robin Aspland.
Adam Glasser also took the time to explain a bit about the harmonica as an instrument and recommend his favourite harmonica album: Affinity by Toots Thielemans & Bill Evans.
What characterised all of the pieces performed was the amount of energy from the ensemble, as well as the chemistry and interplay between the players.
I hope to see many more jazz concerts at this venue.