Marco Benevento Trio Poster via Downright Music and Art
Saturday night brings a special performance to Downright Music and Art in Collinsville (Canton), Conn. The Marco Benevento Trio will bring their experimental jazz act. Opening for Benevento’s trio will be local band The McLovins, a group of high school-aged youngsters made famous by their cover of Phish’s “You Enjoy Myself” that spread like a wildfire on Youtube.
A natural pianist, organist and composer, Benevento is a seasoned musician and has played with a number of legendary artists in the jazz arena and beyond. Most notably might be the time he spent accompanying Phish’s Trey Anastasio and Mike Gordon. Benevento, along with drummer Joe Russo, forms the aptly named Benevento/Russo Duo and joined Gordon for a series of shows over the course of six months. Anastasio joined them for a show in Cleveland in 2006. Russo has recently joined legendary Grateful Dead members Phil Lesh and Bob Weir in their new band Furthur.
With Benevento will come bassist Reed Mathis (of Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey and Tea Leaf Green) and drummer Andrew Barr (of The Slip). The trio will perform at Downright Music and Art 41 Bridge St. this Saturday night.
On a person level, I find Downright to be a hidden gem nested inside Connecticut. I haven’t checked out the new indoor performance venue they apparently built (where this concert will be held) but I look forward to doing so. I would this Saturday night if I didn’t already have tickets to the USF @ UConn football game. So instead of groovin’ to the tunes of The McLovins and Benevento, I’ll be freezing my butt off watching UConn’s last regular season game of the season. A fair trade off, though.
The one time I did attend Downright was this past summer when Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey paid a visit. You can check out my review of that show on my own personal blog. Music aside, the place was great. They played an outside show and despite the rain things went off without a hitch. The atmosphere was great and the people were greater. It’s certainly a hippie heavy scene, but they’re a relaxing and freeing change of pace to the uptight pace the rest of our state takes on. So even if you can’t catch this show, catch the next. Or just head to the supremely quaint town and visit their music store.
And make sure you get there for The McLovins, the wondrously talented band of high schoolers. These three kids can play. They’ll likely play a couple of covers and then material off their album Conundrum. Let it be known that Guitarlovin’ will blow your mind with his guitar work. He’s far advanced for his age. The rest of the band follows suit. It’s going to be worth getting there early to see these on-the-rise musicians who have already been featured in Rolling Stone magazine.
Benevento, who has recently joined up with Garage a Trois, an ever-changing jazz troupe, has recorded three solo albums, four albums with Russo and the one with Garage a Trois. He also just recently released a DVD of a special night in New York where he was able to gather an impressive collection of jazz musicians. After Benevento stops by Collinsville he’ll play a few shows with Garage a Trois.