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Art Reiner Quartet Performs Jazz Bits

Posted on 02.20.2013

The Ruth Lilly Performance Hall was host to the Art Reiner Quartet the evening of Feb. 4.

Reiner, an adjunct faculty member and percussion teacher who also directs the African Drum Ensemble for the University of Indianapolis, performed alongside jazz guitarist Steve Weakley and guests performers Kevin Anker on piano and Jonathon Wood on the electric bass.

Professor of music and director of artistic advancement Richard Ratliff helped organize the event and talked about his relationship with Reiner.

“I’ve known Art Reiner for 20 years. He’s quite a perfectionist, with colleagues that are equally accomplished,” Ratliff said. “So I think tonight should be a treat for the audience.”

The concert opened by playing Bobby Hebb’s “Sunny,” which had a medium tempo and sounded like something one would hear in a nightclub or the theme song for Everybody Loves Raymond. The second piece, Leon Russel’s “This Masquerade, also had the “nightclub” feel to it. The third piece, Henry Mancini’s “Days of Wine and Roses” had a calming effect of the pieces the quartet played together.

Wood then left the stage to take a break while Anker, Reiner and Weakley performed two pieces, Antonio Carlos Jobim’s “Corcovado” and Weakley’s original composition “Steve’s B Flat Blues.”

After Wood came back on stage and switched out with Anker, Reiner introduced the next piece by Jobim, “Triste,” which he described in his introduction as “another wonderful Bosa Nova.” The piece that followed, Howard Roberts’ “Country Shuffle,” took on the sound of a background song one might hear in a Stetson commercial.

Weakley took a break during the next two songs, Herbie Hancock’s “Driftin’” and Marucs Miller’s “Maputo.” In between the other performers switching in and out, Reiner would often share the background stories behind the songs or make a humorous comment about himself or one of the members of the quartet.

The finale, which was performed by the quartet, was Bobby Womack’s “Breezin,’” a tune that has a calming, rocking-in-a-hammock-by-the-beach feeling to it.

Sophomore criminal justice major Logan Cooper said he was not much of a jazz listener, but he did like the performance.

“My favorite part was the electric guitar,” Cooper said. “I liked the sound, pretty much everything there. I saw nothing wrong with the performance and really enjoyed myself.”


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