Here’s To New Old Friends

Thursday evenings at Tapalaya Restaurant in Portland have long been the preserve of preserved jazz brought to us by the Milneburg Jazz Band, led by bassist Dave Duthie, regularly accompanied by Dave Johnson on guitar and ‘Gentleman’ Jim Buchmann on reeds. Jim was committed elsewhere on their latest outing and so the search for a qualified replacement was on. Two Daves are company, would three be a crowd?

We have long been in the know about David Evans, the Alabama transplant with a rich history in the music – whenever I get exhausted trying to recall his resume, I settle for the experience he had with Pete Fountain. That’s PLENTY good enough for me. It was a particularly important evening, then, to see Mssrs Duthie, Johnson and Evans join together to play a delicious evening of good ole good ones.

Early in the evening, they presented us with the tasty IS IT TRUE WHAT THEY SAY ABOUT DIXIE?

It was plain that however good the southern style food was going to be at this place, and it is usually pretty decent, my palate was going to be most satisfied by these three gentlemen reaching into their musical history books.

Check out how faithfully Mr Evans honours the original work of Louis on STRUTTIN’ WITH SOME BARBECUE after Rick Campbell (sitting in on soprano) sets him loose.

The highlight came near the end of the night when Australian visitor Phil Hatton joined the party. Phil used to reside in Portland and led his own band, The Jazz Dingoes. Since moving back to Perth, Western Australia, he leads Phil Hatton and the ManHattons in a vibrant jazz scene there. This was my first experience of Phil and how I wish he was not merely a visitor! He called BENNY’S BUGLE, not a tune I hear much called these days. The original was notable for having Count Basie on piano with Benny Goodman on clarinet, Charlie Christian on guitar, Cootie Williams on trumpet, George Auld on sax, Artie Bernstein on bass and Harry Jaeger on drums. Check out the Milneburg Jazz Trio with Phil Hatton and the work between Harris and Evans!

It pays to keep your eyes peeled on the local jazz listings!



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