Sunday, September 07, 2008


Oxford, Mississippi
Thursday, September 4, 2008

On a recent Thursday night we shelled out 50 bucks for a babysitter so we could enjoy some top-notch live music in nearby Oxford. The event for this evening was the Stanton Moore Trio, at the intimate Proud Larry's, our favorite music venue in Mississippi.

Stanton Moore has established quite a name for himself as the virtuoso drummer of the modern New Orleans funk-rock band Galactic, a band that's been in our top 5 for years. Regular readers will recall that we saw Galactic twice last spring, in Oxford and Birmingham. However, in addition to Galactic, Stanton has been prolific in his contributions to the music scene, collaborating with other bands and forming several other bands of his own.

With his Trio, Stanton teams up with keyboardist Robert Walter and guitarist Will Bernard, virtuosos in their own right.

The result is a modern take on the funk-jazz genre with a New Orleans twist that satisifies on so many levels; most jazz lovers would be impressed with the spectacular improvisational solos, while even the most casual music lovers are entertained with the upbeat, highly danceable grooves. It's a bit like going to see a jazz show where the audience stands and dances instead of sitting. To get a taste of this infectious instrumental music, click here to go to Stanton's website, where you can listen to several of the tunes from his new CD.

Robert Walter is particularly impressive on the organ, playing all the keyboard solos with his right hand while simultaneously playing all the bass lines with his left (there is no bass guitarist in the band). Robert got his start in the San Diego-based Greyboy Allstars, whom we saw here at Proud Larry's last February. Robert also led his own jazz-funk instrumental band, 20th Congress, for nearly a decade; however, they are currently on hiatus since Robert has relocated to New Orleans.

As for Will Bernard, he's also led his own jazz-rock instrumental band Motherbug for nearly a decade, and he got his start in the San Francisco Bay Area with Peter Apfelbaum's Hieroglyphics Ensemble.

The show featured mostly tunes from the Trio's two CDs, with a few exceptions. A local trombone player sat in for a traditional New Orleans song, and The Trio closed the 2nd set with a medley that included The Meters' "Li'l Ol' Money Maker" and Led Zeppelin's "Good Times Bad Times".

We had thought about leaving the show early so we wouldn't be too exhausted for work the next morning (Friday), but the music was too good and we couldn't drag ourselves away! So, we finally made it home around 2am and got about 4 hours sleep. It was worth it!

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