Chris Bergson Band - Live at Jazz Standard
by Bernd Kreikmann

New York and Blues, that reminds me a great not overseeable man of enormous stage presence from the Bronx. Playing heavy riffs and clear sometimes bawdy lyrics, he is driving us since long years through his shows.
Chris Bergson is the antithesis. New York citizen, at home in blues and jazz, he loves the quieter sounds , the perfect harmonies and restrained appearance. Unrestrained improvisation orgies are not his thing, every sound is seated, the stakes of the musicians are perfectly timed.

With little things he does not give away, the classic power trio is not his style. On the live CD, recorded at the famous New York Jazz Standard, were next to Chris Bergson (guitar, vocals), bassist Matt Clohesy, drummer Tony Leone, the organist Craig Dreyer and a three-piece horn section involved. So all of them good old friends that were supported by other distinguished guests.

The fifteen songs of Live at Jazz Standard were recorded on two nights in June 2013, in addition to the seven pieces already present on CD eight brand new [original] tracks were recorded.

The range of pieces (own material) moves between the opener "Greyhound Station" (in the accompanying text called blues rock) and "High above the Morning", an (almost) pure jazz title.

But away with the box thinking - here are rounder at work, the audience rewarded the very forcefully and expressively performed pieces with due applause. The critics celebrate Chris Bergson as one of the great exponents of the new blues - I appreciate him as a musician and songwriter whose pieces are already timeless.

The review is appended a video, showing some emotional moments of the show. Especially that Chris Bergson is not only one of the great guitarists, the man can really sing well - giving him a welcome difference to some other guitar gods.

The excellently produced (great sound quality) album is a great one, you can sit back, close your eyes and feel transported into the club. The compilation of the pieces is clearly structured, based on rather quiet suspense - it shows the jazz musician in Chris. I'm sure Chris Bergson can also let it rip right in a more blues-oriented environment - but that will then be different than its opposite pole (see above). A dear friend has told me that Chris Bergson might be expected to tour Europe soon. Bring on the man, he will also enrich our blues scene sustainable.

Video of "Heavenly Grass" - Live at Jazz Standard