Chris Bergson Band - Live at Jazz Standard
Hittin' the Note Magazine
Issue #84 April 2015
by Tom Clarke

The Chris Bergson Band sets a bold new standard for roots music on Live at Jazz Standard. Recorded at the venerable supper club in Bergson’s hometown New York City, the album moves continually from one very hot type of song to another. An eloquent songwriter, Bergson paints as vivid a portrait of the funky, strutting “Mr. Jackson” as he does the man walking the levee in the dewy “Heavenly Grass.” In the latter—a spare, acoustic-based blues—Bergson exhibits his dazzling way with a guitar. The former—big, funky, and brass-pumped—shows he’s a first-rate bandleader. As loose as rolling dice, but Rolex-precise, these are all players’ players. “The Only One” cavorts in classic soul city fashion. “High above the Morning” soars with potent Catskill Mountains spirit. Sax man Jay Collins arranged the horn section after the fact, as he was absent this night, out with his longtime primary employer, Gregg Allman. Collins was married to Amy Helm, the late Levon’s imminently gifted daughter who leads a hot band featuring Bergson drummer Tony Leone. That all should offer an indication as to the elements of rock, blues, soul, jazz, and R&B that make up what should be called Chris Bergson Exhilarating Experience.