After his death in the later part of 2009, The Iridium Jazz Club began to offer tribute nights to the legendary Les Paul. These nights would find his own Les Paul Trio doing familiar numbers for the fans and tourist visitors to the venue and every so often another guitarist of some note would sit in and play along with them. This evening, former Ozzy Osbourne guitarist Zakk Wylde would try his hand at this kind of thing and you can learn more about it by clicking his logo below. We first ask that you continue down the page to see some other highlights that we paid attention to to make the experience a whole lot more interesting. You’ll also see photos that are only presented here as well. Carry on.
Since this was my first time at The Iridium Jazz Club I had to say that I was rather intrigued about what the inside of the place looked like and if you go to a lot of shows like I am fortunate to do, the prospect of a new visual while enjoying music is intoxicating. The marquee was blazing and the venue sits comfortably between The Stardust Diner (which I used to love but have not been to in ages) and the Winter Garden Theatre (the former home of “Cats” and now “Mama Mia”). It was a great looking neon sign and once inside the main doors you headed downstairs to the club.
I have not seen one of these kind of signs in awhile, and loved how it called your attention to the evening’s festivities. Yes, the one and only Zakk Wylde would be sitting in with the Les Paul Trio tonight and offering up some tribute as only he can.
Wow so the legendary Allan Holdsworth, a Fusion & Progressive-Jazz Illuminati, is playing at the venue for four nights. That is surely bound to be cool but my Metal itinerary for the week will be a conflict in my attending any of these shows. Too bad, but perhaps sometime in the future I will get to finally see him in action.
Here’s the stage area of the Iridium Jazz Club. Seems spacious enough with the full piano up there and a reasonable sized drum kit to tool around on. As you might expect it is a seated venue and there are tables everywhere so you can chill out and enjoy some drinks, good eats and great Jazz. There is also a back bar but based on the crowd this evening I didn’t really explore around there with the camera.
Tom Doyle was actually our Soundman operator this evening and would indulge us with a few tunes as well. He began the fun by telling us a couple of stories about how he ended up meeting Les Paul and eventually began working with him. I guess he played about twenty minutes or so and among the tunes he treated us to were “Mr. Sandman” and “High Strung”. Doyle dedicated that final number to Lou Pallo who was coming out next. If you want to see more shots of his set you can do so by clicking HERE.
Lou Pallo was joined by two other musicians, the lovely Nicki Parrott on bass and vocals and the amazing John Colianni on piano. After the first song Lou informed those of us who might not have known that they were the Les Paul Trio,
Nicki has a beautiful voice and it added a sultry smoke to their rendition of “Making Whoopee” and she would even get a solo number called “I Love Big Instruments” which was a play on the gigantic bass she totes around with apparent ease. We have a number of other shots of the Les Paul Trio performing and you can enjoy them by clicking HERE.
After the trio had played a few numbers, Lou told us that we were in for an additional treat as the venue’s bartender Andy had a band of his own and would deliver a couple of songs for us.
Andy and his guys had a little bit of technical difficulty getting set up as their guitarist “Lefty” gave us a healthy dose of feedback. If the smooth Jazz had calmed us down, we were now fully back to Earth based on that ear shattering. They played two songs and it wasn’t really my thing, but I am very picky when it comes to my Hard Rock interests. I wish them well nonetheless and found it cool that the venue let them perform. Andy started off by saying “I made you all drinks” and that got a laugh. If you want to see more photos of Sonic Rebellion doing their thing you can click HERE. Now it was time to get down to business and bring out Zakk Wylde.
We snapped this shot of one of the folks in the crowd which we must admit was an interesting blend of Jazz fans and BLS fanatics. It was quite amusing to see the odd matching of suit and tie wearers amidst the black leather and bandana clad chapter members of Zakk Wylde’s “Doom Crew”. Casual fans should note that while this grouping of folks resemble a motorcycle crew, they are not one in real life even though the emblems bear a very Hell’s Angelish kind of view. This look seems to work out well for Zakk and his followers and if you go to a show that Black Label Society does you will be the odd person out if you don’t sport this kind of attire. Now it was time for the man himself to hit the stage.
Zakk arrived onstage and started us all off by telling a couple of funny Ozzy Osbourne stories and also asking what football team we were going to be supporting now that the NY Jets had ended their season. Wylde was joined by John DeServio from Black Label on the bass for this set of music which was a pleasant surprise. Zakk was sporting a whole lot of BLS stuff and if you like what you see and want it for yourself you can order as much as you deem necessary by hitting the merchandise section of his official site. Linked HERE for your convenience.
Zakk started the set off with a smoking rendition of T-Bone Walker’s “Stormy Monday” and we cover the rest of the full concert part of the story on the main website. Remember that you can click the man’s logo at the top of the page to be brought to that. You can also click HERE and if you are not much of a fan of the details and just want to enjoy the photos those can be found right HERE.