The Yellowjackets were out at Catalina’s in Hollywood, California, and being a fan of the group, I just had to go. I called in to make a reservation, jumped in the car and headed out to Hollywood to attend the 10:30 set and because I was early, I got to hear the last two songs or so of the first set as well.

This would be the second time I would see the Yellowjackets perform, and once again, they really impressed me. Not only is the individual musicianship outstanding, but they are one of my favorite groups to see perform because of the ways they interact musically and artistically. The four are all excellent players, but as a saxophone player, of course, I tended to watch and listen to Bob Mintzer the most. His technique is incredible, his fingers never move off the keys – something difficult saxophone teachers tell us to do all the time – and his solos are captivating.

All in all, the show was really great. The music was inspiring, the playing was amazing. I feel that the part of the reason Yellowjackets music sounds so good and so different from a lot of live performances is because of the interesting and complex arrangements they perform. I can’t wait to see them perform again.

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Published by Shannon Kennedy

Shannon Kennedy is a vocalist and saxophonist living in Southern California. She is author of "The Album Checklist" and the founder of Teen Jazz. She has been contributing articles to music magaizines and websites since 2004.