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WAYNE SHORTER QUARTET @ Koerner Hall (April 22, 2017)

Brilliant moments are few and far between.

When it happens, the stars align and brilliance shines.

In the case of the legendary Wayne Shorter, you have aligned your star with some of the greatest jazz musicians in history. To name a few: Max Roach, Art Blakely, John Coltrane, Jimmy Smith, Sonny Rollins, Maynard Ferguson, Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, Carlos Santana, John McLaughlin, Jaco Pastorius and Miles Davis.

And to Shorter’s credit, his brilliance continues to navigate new realms of syncopation ambition.

Flanked by another generation of great musicians: Danilo Perez (Piano), John Patitucci (Bass) and Brian Blade (Drums), the audience at Koerner Hall were about to experience an extraordinary night.

The only predictability about Wayne Shorter is the unpredictable nature of improvisation,  “With the quartet, we want to do the drama of struggle and victory, but to show that those things are temporary, short-lived,” he said in 2008. “We’re going to be taking a lot of chances, and we’re not worried about being picture-perfect.”

Improvisation, along with Shorter’s knack for cohesive, creative harmony has driven Shorter to fantastic soundscapes of  spontaneity and beauty. The audience were immediately drawn to the collective of musical vocabulary, precision notes, slowly but dynamic exchanges, methodically forming new sonic languages, creating new tales of wonderment and joy. Ever hanging, bewildered, where would this journey transcend?

Instinct and precision melodically flowed between musicians. The sense of jubilation, triumph, and interplay-adventure enraptured the audience. Many stunned by predictably, unpredictable connective musical affinity.

The audience were mesmerized, as The Quartet ended their set and began the walk off stage, the atmosphere super-charged with more anticipation. The Koerner Hall audience would not accept the natural denouement narrative of resolution. This time the anticipation needed greedy satisfaction. 

The Wayne Shorter Quartet walked back on stage, greedy anticipation followed with loud, limitless audience energy.  Symmetry engulfed the audience and The Quartet, both standing, appreciative of inspirational atmospheric  moments.

The opportunistic breathe of two more encore performances did not die down the air of anticipation for the audience. Like a child asking for one more bedtime story, the audience never faltered in reciprocating The Quartet’s evocative attunement.

Brilliance touched every heart…

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