You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Chick Corea Elektric Band

This edition of Chick's Elektric Band roared, sighed and carried on with remarkable internal discipline and intuition, like a single instrument.

With:
Band: Chick Corea, Eric Marienthal, Frank Gambale, Victor Wooten, Dave Weckl. Opened and reviewed Dec. 18, 2007. Closes Dec. 23.

The atmosphere was festive in the packed Catalina Bar and Grill on a rainy Tuesday night, and Chick Corea playfully invited the audience to do pretty much whatever they wanted at this so-called rehearsal. Yet the musicmaking was anything but ad hoc or casual, for this edition of Chick’s Elektric Band roared, sighed and carried on with remarkable internal discipline and intuition, like a single instrument.

The band opened a weeklong stand at the nitery three years after the release of the first Elektric Band album in a decade, “To the Stars” (Stretch/Concord). In some ways, this is now a back-to-the-future band, for the lineup of musicians is almost identical to that of the Elektric Band of the 1980s, with bassist Victor Wooten the only new replacement. Also, Corea loaded one keyboard stack with modified or new versions of old instruments that he played in the jazz-rock 1970s.

Thus, Corea could re-create his stylish Rhodes electric piano signature licks and silvery, slippery Moog synthesizer lines from the second Return to Forever band. Allowing for a slight contemporary digital glare, the old sounds mix more lusciously with the high-energy interplay of the Elektric Band — and Corea even revived some wonderfully weird, outer-space, ring-modulator effects from long ago to conclude “Johnny’s Landing” (now renamed “Dave’s Landing” after drummer Dave Weckl).

Alto and soprano saxophonist Eric Marienthal proved that context is important, for while his R&B-inspired licks might have sounded mundane with a smooth-jazz rhythm section, they fit beautifully and powerfully into this complex jazz-rock rhythmic web. Frank Gambale wailed like a rock guitar hero, and every stroke of Weckl’s busy, sophisticated drumming registered with pinpoint clarity. When the band veered into the backbeat-driven funk of “Beneath the Mask,” Wooten slapped away exuberantly.

Underneath all of the energetic soloing, one could also groove all night on one of Corea’s least-appreciated strengths: his telepathic ability to listen, adding all kinds of delectable, sometimes witty, often pithy fills and accompaniments without upsetting the line of the soloist.

This Elektric Band, a pleasure to listen to, reclaimed the legacy of jazz-rock before it became tamed and neutered into smooth jazz. Corea announced Tuesday that he would indeed venture back into jazz-rock’s roots next year, reuniting with Stanley Clarke, Al Di Meola and Lenny White as Return to Forever for U.S. and European tours.

Chick Corea Elektric Band

Catalina Bar and Grill; 225 seats; $50 top

Production: Presented inhouse.

Cast: Band: Chick Corea, Eric Marienthal, Frank Gambale, Victor Wooten, Dave Weckl. Opened and reviewed Dec. 18, 2007. Closes Dec. 23.

More Scene

  • Brandon Flynn, Timothy Granaderos, Alisha Boe,

    Alisha Boe Says Brock Turner Case Was Her 'Bible' for '13 Reasons Why' Season 2

    The atmosphere was festive in the packed Catalina Bar and Grill on a rainy Tuesday night, and Chick Corea playfully invited the audience to do pretty much whatever they wanted at this so-called rehearsal. Yet the musicmaking was anything but ad hoc or casual, for this edition of Chick’s Elektric Band roared, sighed and carried […]

  • Yara ShahidiMTV Movie & TV Awards,

    Yara Shahidi, Noah Schnapp, More Talk the Dangers of Social Media at MTV Awards

    The atmosphere was festive in the packed Catalina Bar and Grill on a rainy Tuesday night, and Chick Corea playfully invited the audience to do pretty much whatever they wanted at this so-called rehearsal. Yet the musicmaking was anything but ad hoc or casual, for this edition of Chick’s Elektric Band roared, sighed and carried […]

  • A Night in the Writers' Room

    Parity Takes Center Stage at Variety's 'A Night in the Writers' Room' Drama Panel

    The atmosphere was festive in the packed Catalina Bar and Grill on a rainy Tuesday night, and Chick Corea playfully invited the audience to do pretty much whatever they wanted at this so-called rehearsal. Yet the musicmaking was anything but ad hoc or casual, for this edition of Chick’s Elektric Band roared, sighed and carried […]

  • American Black Film Festival opening night

    Trevor Jackson Was Originally Told He Was 'Too Young' to Star in 'Superfly' Remake

    The atmosphere was festive in the packed Catalina Bar and Grill on a rainy Tuesday night, and Chick Corea playfully invited the audience to do pretty much whatever they wanted at this so-called rehearsal. Yet the musicmaking was anything but ad hoc or casual, for this edition of Chick’s Elektric Band roared, sighed and carried […]

  • Women In Film Crystal and Lucy

    Brie Larson Says She Learned Her Own Strength Playing 'Captain Marvel' Role

    The atmosphere was festive in the packed Catalina Bar and Grill on a rainy Tuesday night, and Chick Corea playfully invited the audience to do pretty much whatever they wanted at this so-called rehearsal. Yet the musicmaking was anything but ad hoc or casual, for this edition of Chick’s Elektric Band roared, sighed and carried […]

  • 2018 NBCUniversal Upfront

    Andy Samberg on Returning to NBC With 'Brooklyn Nine-Nine': 'It Feels Like Home'

    The atmosphere was festive in the packed Catalina Bar and Grill on a rainy Tuesday night, and Chick Corea playfully invited the audience to do pretty much whatever they wanted at this so-called rehearsal. Yet the musicmaking was anything but ad hoc or casual, for this edition of Chick’s Elektric Band roared, sighed and carried […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content