Charles R. Hale & David Raleigh: Jazz in the City: The New York Connection

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Charles R. Hale and David Raleigh

Jazz in the City: The New York Connection

The Duplex, NYC, November 16, 2017

Reviewed by Chris Struck for Cabaret Scenes

Charles R. Hale (L) &
David Raleigh

Between Charles R. Hale’s hypnotic narration and David Raleigh’s smooth tunes, this musical tribute to New York City jazz put the mind at ease faster than a family holiday.

Jazz in the City echoed the prime of the New York jazz scene through the stories told by Hale, who remarked on old venues and his grandfather’s experience as a firefighter for over two decades in New York. Each snippet helped to introduce the refrains of Raleigh’s quartet, which brings plenty of soul to their music.

Hale, creator of the show, managed to fit a number of jazz standards into the set, focusing on songs written in New York.

He started off the night by reminiscing about the city and its illustrious history, choosing “Summertime” (George Gershwin/DuBose Heyward) as a thoughtful first number. However, my favorite snippet about old New York was about Hale’s grandfather’s first day as a firefighter when, back in the 1940s, he saved a man from falling off a ledge. Hale followed this with “Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?

” (E. Y. Harburg/Jay Gorney for the revue Americana).

A couple more of my favorites that Raleigh and his quartet performed exceptionally well were “Up on the Roof” (Gerry Goffin/Carole King) and “Autumn Leaves” (Joseph Kosma/Jacques Prévert/Johnny Mercer). Raleigh’s smoky voice and his entire quartet’s stunning vibratos made for an uplifting vibe. The quartet included Tony Carfora on sax, Daniel Glass on drums, and Evan Gregor on bass. Carfora’s multiple saxophone solos resonated well alongside Raleigh’s skillful piano.

Hale ended the night by leaving us at “I have a train to catch” which signaled the band to play “Take the ‘A’ Train” (Billy Strayhorn/Joya Sherrill‎).

They’ll be back at The Duplex on December 21 at 7 pm.

Chris Struck

Chris Struck's debut novel, Kennig and Gold, is due to be officially published in June 2019. He's written reviews for Cabaret Scenes since August of 2017. For more information about the writer, see