Your Intrepid Economist spent the last two evenings partaking of the musical plenitude of Chicago. Wednesday was a long-overdue evening at our almost-neighborhood hangout the Green Mill to hear Kurt Elling and “the band”, the Laurence Hobgood Trio. We try to go every Wednesday they’re in town, but my life is often too crazy to allow such luxury. This time we had what Kurt called the “Laurence Hobgood memorial seats”, right at his elbow, which is good because I like to watch him play.
But this week was double decadence, because Thursday evening we packed a picnic and went to Millennium Park to hear the same cast of characters with John Hendricks, Sheila Jordan, and Mark Murphy for an evening of jazz scat, vocalese and story-telling. The rain held off, the breeze off of the lake was lovely, and the music was great. Good acoustics too. Kurt even sang one of my favorite crazy old songs, “Home Cookin'”.
I can recommend the new CD Crazy World from the Laurence Hobgood Trio, which I bought from Laurence on Wednesday. If you like subtle, elegant, melodic, crisp jazz, this CD is for you. You should also note that if you’re an audiophile, like this style of jazz, and visiting Chicago, going to the ProMusica shop on Clark Street will make you very happy. And needless to say, if you are in Chicago you should visit the Green Mill. Especially on Wednesdays and Mondays (when Patricia Barber usually plays).