David Sanborn and Jonathan Butler bring JAZZ ROOTS to Cobb Energy Centre
On Wednesday night the audience at Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre were treated to an evening of great jazz from two of the genre's best, saxophonist David Sanborn and guitarist and singer Jonathan Butler. The 2012-13 JAZZ ROOTS series at the Cobb Centre came to a close with a show called "Satin and Soul" and surpassed everyone's expectations as these two jazz legends delighted the crowd.￼
David Sanborn came on stage first and played a number of his hits including "Brother Ray" a tribute to Ray Charles and two of Charles' contemporaries’ saxophonists, Hank Crawford and David "Fathead" Newman. He also played "Straight to the heart" characterized by a phenomenal duet between Sanborn's saxophone and Nicky Moroch's guitar so intense that the audiences were left breathless.
David Sanborn performing at the Cobb Energy Centre, Atlanta, Georgia. May 22, 2013. Photo credit:
Photography by Andrew Snook
"Maputo" allowed Sanborn's band to demonstrate their incredible musical skills while Richard Patterson was unbelievable on bass guitar in "Run for cover."
Sanborn finished his set to thunderous applause after one of his biggest hits, “The Dream."
After an intermission to allow the audience to catch their breath, Jonathan Butler came on with his distinctive Smooth Talker guitar and played a set that was remarkable with so many highlights. After two songs his daughter Jodi joined him on stage and she accompanied him on some great versions of "If I ever lose this heaven," "Sarah, Sarah" that were early in the set. Butler finished the set with "Don't Walk Away" followed by a rousing version of "Brand New Day" that had the entire audience singing along and dancing in the aisles.
However the highlight of the entire evening was Butler's cover of Bob Marley and the Wailers' "No Woman, No Cry."
There are certain songs that should never be covered. For example, John Lennon's "Imagine," is one and anything by Queen are another. Until I heard Jonathan Butler's version I would have said Bob Marley and the Wailer's "No Woman No Cry" was also on that list but Butler completely reworked the song stripping down its reggae beat to its most simple melodic element.
He started the song with just he and his acoustic guitar. The audiences were so wrapped up in his vocals and his guitar you could have heard a pin drop. As he worked his way through the song his vocals became more intense and his daughter and the other band members joined in building up to a crescendo before he finished the song as it started with a melodic guitar solo. It was musical art in its purest form and, as a result, spectacular! A wonderful highlight in an evening of wonderful highlights.