2/1/09: Sachal Vasandani Trio @ North Square Lounge (10/100)

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Special note: Officially this is band #10, but really it’s day #10. Obviously, I will wind up seeing more than 100 bands in 100 days. But the real idea is seeing music for 100 consecutive days. If I see a great opening band, I’m going to want to write about them, even if they’re not the band I intended to see. Just to clear that up. 

 

 

Day #10 brought a new challenge I have yet to deal with: getting some day music in before the Super Bowl. I wasn’t sure if I could sit through a band tonight – totally full of chicken wings, beer, football and America. Everyone was telling me, “Go to jazz brunch.” But I sort of felt like that was cheating. Odds are it would be some no-name weekenders playing some lame background music, and I wasn’t sure if that really qualified.

Then I found (ok, my girlfriend Sunshine did. Thanks Sunshine.) a restaurant/lounge that has jazzy brunch, but with a real set time, and a guy who has music on Amazon and iTunes: Sachal Vasandani. So, for anyone who still thinks this is a cop out, tough. He’s got a CD. He’s got a myspace page. He’s got a page on VH-1. He counts.

I call in advance, make a reservation for the first set at 12:30, turn up right on time, grab my table, order my food and wait. Paul Meyers (guitar) and Neal Miner (bass) are warming up as I get there. They jam on a song to get things going, and the room sounds nice. I’m sitting right next to the band, but alas, I don’t need earplugs for this one. 

Sachal arrives as does my overpriced 8 oz. bottle of Coke and chicken club w/roasted peppers, sauteed onions and sun dried tomato mayo . So I’m ready. Let’s get this jazz rolling.

They start off the set with a bunch of old standards: 

“I Get A Kick Out Of You”

“Almost Like Being In Love”

“Honeysuckle Rose” 

And then balance things out with some tracks I don’t know. Halfway through the set, Sachal calls out to the bar, asking if Roz would like to come on up and sing one. I look back and see who turns out to be Roz Corral, another regular jazz singer here at North Square. She tries to refuse, but Sachal won’t have any of it. She grabs the mic, confers with Paul and Neal, and then launches into a song…one that I wish I had written down because now I can’t remember. Doesn’t matter though, she’s great. You can tell that when it’s her night, she’s holding court. She’s no Ruth Brown – who I was lucky to see before she died (Thanks Al) – but she’s still got a voice and charisma to her.

After blowing through her song, Sachal grabs the mic back and asks if she wants to do a duet. Roz thinks about it, but then passes and takes her seat back at the bar. Sachal and his Trio swing their way through a few more numbers, I finish up my chicken club, the set ends, and I’m into the double digits at last. So I got that going for me.

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One Response to “2/1/09: Sachal Vasandani Trio @ North Square Lounge (10/100)”

  1. [...] 12:30 jazz set with the Roz Corral Trio. I’ve been to North Square once before on Day 10 to see Sachal Vasandani. And I’ll repeat what I think I talked about way back [...]

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