[acid-jazz] Concert Review: Micheal Henderson, Jean Carne, Marion Meadows @ Atlantic City/Tropicana/TSOP Club

From: Bob Davis (earthjuice_at_prodigy.net)
Date: 2004-12-12 23:27:32

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    Michael Henderson, Jean Carne, Marion Meadows
    Atlantic City/Tropicana/TSOP Club
    Occasionally I am at a loss for words. Doesn't happen very often. But sometimes it does and
    when it does, it always causes me to reflect.

    Now I am supposed to be writing a concert review of a show that I attended last night in
    Atlantic City. I took about 3 pages worth of written notes, took tons of pictures, conducted
    many interviews and gathered up a lotta "inside stuff" and a lotta "outside stuff". So I think
    that I did what I was supposed to do? Yet right now I am unable to truly organize and compose
    everything that I took in last night into something coherent to share with the rest of you...

    It was an evening so filled with joy and wonder that all I can do is list some words right now
    to give you an idea of what I experienced. In short I guess these words will simply have to
    serve as an outline, until I can get my act together to actually compose a review.

    Music, Culture, History, Artistry, Youth, Age, Family, Legacy, Mainstream, Out Of The Box,
    Jazz, Funk, Soul, Old Stuff, New Stuff, Vocaleese, Victory, Adversity, Miles Davis, Sly Stone,
    James Brown, Rick James, Jimi Hendrix, Chaka Khan, Gamble/Huff, Phylis Hyman, etc

    I suppose that if I were a "real reporter", I would just give you the facts & nothing else...

    Art Sherard Jr: Opened the show with a tribute to Earth, Wind and Fire

    Marion Meadows: Did a few "smooth jazz" cuts from his new album

    Jean Carne Did: "This Christmas", "Love Don't Love Nobody", "Don't Let It Go To Your Head",
    "Then Came You", "What You Won't Do For Love", "Sweet Thing", "Ain't No Stopping Us Now",
    "Closer Than Close".

    Michael Henderson Did: "At The Concert", "Be My Girl", "Valentine Love", "You Are My
    Starship", "Hot Dog", "Wide Receiver", "You and I", (along with a whole bunch of
    Miles/Jimi/Sly/Sun Ra/JB/P-Funk style "brotha from another planet type stuff")

    and that would be my review...

    However this show was a WHOLE LOT MORE THAN THAT
    It was actually a...


    You see, it would be really easy for me to describe this concert was as a "once in a lifetime"
    kinda thing. But it really wasn't, it was on many levels simply a manifestation of what OUR
    culture used to really be all about. On another level, it was a manifestation of what OUR
    culture can never be again.

    It was the past, present and future all rolled together at the same time.

    **To say that the music was unbelievable/mind blowing, would be an understatement

    **To say that the atmosphere was mind/mind blowing, would be an understatement

    **To say that the effect on me as a fan was mind/mind blowing, would be an understatement

    Just to make sure that I wasn't dreaming, I went back stage after the second show just for a
    reality check. All of the musicians were drenched in sweat, jumping up and down in exuberance.
    They knew that they had accomplished something of greatness together onstage.

    It was one of those rare moments in time when ALL of the elements of what we refer to as:

    "great black music from the ancient to the future"

    were on display, front and center, right in front of my eyes.

    A few weeks ago, Michael Henderson left me a voice mail saying that he was "coming my way" and
    bringing Jean Carne with him to do "the R&B thang" ...
    When we spoke later, he told me that the show would be Dec 10/11 in Atlantic City at the
    Tropicana and that I could attend the show as his guest. I said cool, that works out perfect
    for me, since it was just a few days after the birthday of "mrs. earthjuice" and therefore I
    would be a "hero" in this house for at least a few days...:)

    **You see, when you tell your spouse that you are gonna take her to see "Children On The
    Corner" at a small, cramped jazz club in NYC for her birthday, you get one type of reaction.

    **However when you tell your spouse that you are going to take her to see Michael Henderson
    and Jean Carne at the Tropicana in Atlantic City, you get a completely different type of

    During the timeframe between the concert and that first telephone conversation, Michael
    Henderson and I spoke on the phone many times. During those conversations, he told me the

    **Hey Bob, It's gonna be at a new club inside of the Tropicana, owned by Gamble/Huff and it's
    their opening night

    **Hey Bob, Jean Carne is gonna be tha bomb

    **Hey Bob, I'm putting together a STANK band

    **Hey Bob, I'm bringing Billy "Spaceman" Patterson with me (remember I just saw them with
    Children on The Corner)

    **Hey Bob, I'm bringing some young background singers from Maryland with me

    **Hey Bob, I just added Marion Meadows to the band and he's gonna do a "solo tip"

    **Hey Bob, ............

    So now I'm primed, right???

    Once I got there and went backstage I learned that...

    **Spaceman and Marion Meadows were roommates at the Berklee School of Music back in the 70's
    **Jean Carne discovered Phyllis Hyman
    **Art Sherard Jr has a new CD coming out soon
    **The two young background singers (Therron Rowler and Shaquan Eubanks) are from Baltimore and
    are 17 & 15 respectively

    Also while backstage, I handed Jean Carne a copy of the CD D-Erania - "Offerings Of Love". She
    said thanks, and I started telling her "The CD is from a young lady out of Chicago who plays
    sax and together with her husband...."

    Jean intterupted me and said...

    I said yes
    Jean said...
    "Thank you so much Bob"
    I said...
    "They are one of our current sponsors on Soul-Patrol and yes, to me both the sound of the
    album and their collaboration together remind me of a modern day version of what you and Doug
    Carn did back in the 1970's on the old Black Jazz label".
    (remember Jean Carne has been "lurking" on Soul-Patrol since 2001)

    During the course of the evening I also got to meet Chuck Gamble (yup brother of Kenny
    Gamble). For me that is of special note, coming on the heels of the review I recently wrote of
    the new book "A House Burning" - Philadelphia Soul. The TSOP club is owned by Kenny
    Gamble/Leon Huff. This club is one of the most luxurious nightclubs that I have ever seen that
    caters to Soul music (more on that later)

    The show itself was AWESOME.
    It unraveled itself before my eyes in a manner that reminded me of an old James Brown revue

    Each artist would come out and do their thing and then either stay on the stage and join the
    rest of the festivities or leave and then come back later onstage.

    While they were performing, Michael Henderson, Marion Meadows & Art Sherard Jr, roamed around
    the club with their instruments, playing/singing to folks.
    Jean Carne had her daughter sing for a bit. She also TORE UP the cover songs that she did,
    with a fury that damn near makes the originals "obsolete".

    Young Therron Rowler joined Michael Henderson as "co lead" on the song "Be My Girl". Michael
    introduced the song, by saying that it was in tribute to the Late Lenny Mayes of the
    Dramatics. He explained that he had written the song for the Dramatics when he was around the
    same age as Therron Rowler. Jean Carne had young Shaquan Eubanks from Baltimore assist as "co
    lead" on "Don't Let It Go To Your Head".

    These two young people were off the hook!

    Then to end the show EVERYBODY was onstage for "HOT DOG", "WIDE RECEIVER" and "YOU & I" (in
    tribute to Rick James) and for about 15 min we were treated to an exhibition of RAW FUNK
    (featuring a bass/guitar/sax duel between Michael Henderson, Marion Meadows & "Spaceman") that
    was truly of another world.

    Sure they did the songs, but they took off into "Miles/Jimi/Sly/Sun Ra/JB/P-Funk" style brotha
    from another planet territory and I just lost it. For a "funkateer" (like me) this was truly
    just like being in heaven! This was a performance that would certainly deserve consideration
    for the...


    So it was a historical event, it was a killer show, and right now I am probably too close to
    After all, it just happened less than 12 hours ago :)

    NP: "Gonna Make You Wet, Gonna Make You Sweat, Just To See How Funky You Can Get...."


    Bob Davis

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