Several different live scenarios in the past week…..

…. have afforded me the opportunity to get my music out to old and new listeners.

It began on Saturday evening when I teamed up with vocalist JayKatz at the Paris Wine Bar, Philadelphia’s very best jazz lounge. I normally appear here with guitarist Tony Hughes but he wasn’t able to do this date, so Jay was a natural choice. She and I have worked together as a duo, just guitar and voice, for the past year. Our respective schedules have minimized our live dates in recent months so this was a welcome opportunity. I always enjoy performing with her and this night was no exception — we took chances and stretched some tunes and even performed others for the first time. I do look forward to more dates (and hopefully a recording) in 2015.

JayKatz & Matt Richards

Visit our duo page: http://www.reverbnation.com/jaykatzmattrichardsduo.

The very next day I performed a solo guitar concert at the East Brunswick Public Library in East Brunswick NJ. i had conducted a guitar workshop here about five years ago (which drew about 40 people), so this was a welcome return engagement. The library is a first-rate facility which also houses the local TV station EBTV. While I was concerned, at first, that the sound system was not going to accommodate my guitar, a few careful tweaks of my gear made the sound superb. I drew upon the overall energy and sense of adventure that Jay and I had on the previous night and dug into the music and opened up some new ideas in my usual repertoire. While I always enjoy performing in any format, I think I was more invigorated having two performances back-to-back. As an added bonus, EBTV filmed my entire show and will be sending a copy my way.

Solo - East Brunswick Public Library

Finally, this evening (Thursday, 12/11), I performed with my good friend Howard Miller and his group for our monthly feature of casual jazz at the Abington Presbyterian Church Parish Hall in Abington PA. This is a loose aggregation that’s been playing more than three years on a monthly basis. It’s a pleasure to get together and work with these players as it’s one of the few times I am a sideman. I play electric guitar and, on occasion, fretless glissentar. The group has developed an unique identity and includes instrumentation such as valve trombone, tenor & alto saxes, vibes, piano, bass and drums. We also feature guest vocalists such as JayKatz and Gerri Oliver. And we’ve earned a consistent, engaged following that makes each date a pleasure.

Three performances within a week that have allowed me to perform in three different aspects of my playing. The balance of the month is a bit quiet as far as public performances — this will enable to finish my CD project Balance and clear out the backlog of recorded tracks and compositional projects sitting on that hard drive in my desktop……

Until next time….

Matt

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