Jason Moran at Jordan Hall

By JON GARELICK  |  February 3, 2012

The halfway point of the concert was a hymn tune that Monk liked, "This Is My Story, This Is My Song." Half the band left the stage, Waits began a drum solo, and the brass (trumpet, trombones) began singing the tune. Waits's free solo took on the shape of the tune, then he left, while the horn players kept on. They rose and paraded offstage, faded out. Monk's voice — the rehearsal tapes — came on, with video supertitles over concert photos. Elsewhere, there was a statement about Monk's slave ancestors. Waits and Moran pounded out a West African rhythm that turned, quite naturally, into a Monk tune. The sound more or less found a balance (or we simply adjusted), but with everything going on it was still easy to miss how beautifully Moran himself played throughout — his crystalline tone, his incisive commentary.

At the end the band paraded off, playing percussion and horns, to the rhythm of one of the rehearsal moments: the sound of Monk's feet, from one of his impromptu little dances, pounding the floor.

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