The Organ Trio, Rackheath

DAVID WAKEFIELD The Rackheath club's four events in the East Coast Jazz Festival got off to a great start at the Green Man with this power-packed threesome.

DAVID WAKEFIELD

The Rackheath club's four events in the East Coast Jazz Festival got off to a great start at the Green Man with The Organ Trip, a power-packed threesome, comprising that fine Scots guitarist Jim Mullen, organist James Watson and drummer Matt Skelton. Mullen, a fluid and melodic operator, plays in the Wes Montgomery style by using his thumb instead of a plectrum, but certainly does not copy the great man's style slavishly, being sparing with those familiar melody lines played in octaves.

He was given excellent support by Watson, playing a Hammond soundalike Korg organ with no pedal board, and with bass lines played with the left hand; and Skelton's lively drumming providing the kind of platform against which any musicians worth their salt can shine.

The evening comprised mostly standards taken from the band's new album, and the tone for the evening was set with an up-tempo version of As Time Goes By. Mullen and Watson poured out chorus after chorus as they dismantled Herman Hupfeld's old standard, from the film Casablanca, and put it back together again.

From then on the pace never flagged, and a packed audience roared its approval.

Club organiser Barbara Capocci made the point that Mullen was overdue for a visit to Norwich. After this brilliant session I am sure it won't be long before he's back.

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