Chuck Mangione at Blue Note

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On June 7th, Lois and I saw Chuck Mangione at Tarrytown Music Hall. Last night, we saw him (with the same group) at the Blue Note Jazz Club in NYC. I wrote a long post about the Tarrytown show, all (except for the tribute to Jim McKay) applied to last night’s show, so I encourage you to read that one for more detail on the musicians and the music.

At the bottom of that post, I mentioned that they would be at the Blue Note for six straight nights (two shows a night!) this week. There are still four nights left to this run, and I encourage you to get to the Blue Note if you can, you won’t be disappointed in this show!

Lois and I had planned to see them again last night. It was a loose plan made with a very good friend of mine who has a girlfriend (do you still use that term at our age?) that Lois and I haven’t yet met (though we want to meet her badly, and she wants to meet us as well). In the end, with life’s complications, she couldn’t make it this week. I didn’t end up making reservations for the show.

On Tuesday, Lois asked me when we were going. I told her that because our friends couldn’t make it, I didn’t make the reservations. She was disappointed. So, she called on the spot and made them for last night (the only night that would have worked for us). Our godddaughter and husband had just officially moved to NYC that day (Tuesday), so she made the reservation for four, hoping they would be available. They were. πŸ™‚

So, we went last night. We got there at 5:55pm (doors open at 6pm). We were seated at the stage, dead center (the band had to walk by our table to get up on the stage). We don’t have any good photos of them playing, because we were really close up (which might have been really distracting to them even without a flash) and because the band members all wear black on a black background, so the contrast was really bad. So, here is one photo of each band member (taken with a flash) while they were setting up. Chuck wasn’t on the stage, so no photo of him.

Gerry Niewood

Gerry Niewood

Apologies to Corey Allen, who had his back turned at the time Lois snapped the photo:

Corey Allen

Corey Allen

Charles Frichtel

Charles Frichtel Kevin Axt

Dave Tull

Dave Tull

Coleman Mellet

Coleman Mellet

So, they were as good last night (all of them) as they were in Tarrytown. That said, because we were right up front, in a much more intimate environment over all (which we prefer in general), there was an even better feel to the show. When Chuck played the Flugelhorn, he was all of four-five feet from us. When he played the keyboards, he was two feet from us. Dave Tull, one of the most incredible drummers you will ever hear, was less than five feet from us. Wow!

We got to shake every one of their hands after the show, and tell them how incredible they all are. Like I said earlier, they had to walk right by us, whether they liked it or not. πŸ˜‰

As noted above, and in more detail in the previous post, Chuck paid a great tribute to Jim McKay’s passing at the Tarrytown show. Lois was very moved by it, and last night handed Chuck a note to that effect as he left the stage. It was another benefit of being right there. We certainly hope Chuck appreciated the sentiment.

The four of us all enjoyed our meals very much. I had the marinated skirt steak (I’ve always been a big fan of skirt steak, even though it’s a cheaper cut of meat). I had one extremely minor disappointment. My entire odyssey of chocolate martinis began two years back at the Blue Note with their Nutty Angel.

Unfortunately, it’s no longer on the menu. All of the bartenders are new (according to our waitress) so they didn’t know what was in it. I setlled for an Italian Chocolate Martini. It was good, but was thicker than any other one I’ve had (more like chocolate milk with vodka).

To make up for it, I had a Nutty Irishman coffee as my dessert. It had Bailey’s Irish Cream in it, but more importantly, it had the word Nutty in the title, so all ended well with the evening. πŸ™‚