LIVE: Bopitude @ Jazz on Jay, Schenectady, 08/05/2021

SCHENECTADY — Hard Bop was the dominant style of jazz that arose from the late 50s to early 60s. It was born out of bebop, the revolutionary style that swept the post-World War 2 jazz world with its fast tempos, complex chord progressions with rapid changes and improvisation, and occasional references to the melody and was generally not danceable. The hard bop style was made more palatable to a wider audience by combining elements of the more popular emerging r&b, gospel, and soul styles that were competing for the public’s attention. This genre is still heard in jazz bars and in concerts. Michael Benedict’s Bopitude focuses on this music and brings it to the 21st century.

Bopitude Jazz on Jay 821 3319

The virtuoso group for this Thursday’s gig was a classic configuration for the genre. A tenor sax and trumpet as the dual lead instruments, with keyboards, bass, and drums.

Mike called out the tunes, many are familiar to those who are fans of this genre. Included were Dexter Gordon’s “Cheesecake” ( As Mike explained tactfully is a tune about pictures of pretty ladies in the vernacular of the 40s-50s), Art Blakey’s “A La Mode”, Freddie Hubbard’s “Crisis” and James Williams “ Alter Ego”. A ballad Clifford Jordan’s “Down Through the Years” was played to change the pace.

As with most hard bop performances, plenty of room was given for all musicians to solo. All of this on beautiful sunny afternoon.

Michael Benedict – Band leader & drums
Mike Lawrence – bass
Dave Gleason – piano
Brian Patneaude – tenor
Chris Pasin – trumpet

The series will continue next Thursday at noon with the Dadtet.

Photo Gallery by Rudy Lu

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