On harmonica, for a brief, yet memorable moment was Gregoire Maret. What I did not know was that you can really play the harmonica. We’re not talking about the technical element of the instrument (which he does brilliantly, I might add). We’re talking about what Little Richard did on the keys, what Chuck Berry did on the guitar. We’re talking about the difference between someone who was “singing” and someone who was “sangin,’” as they might say in the black church. With every other note, Maret dipped and swayed as his bended knees supported a man unbridled. To watch this seemingly mild-mannered individual take off his metaphorical cool was perhaps the most amusingly captivating moment of the night. It was showmanship at its finest and most unexpected.
Robert Glasper will be bringing together an all-star cast featuring the Robert Glasper Experiment (Derrick Hodge, Mark Colenburg and Casey Benjamin), Lalah Hathaway, Eric Roberson, Stokley (from Mint Condition), Questlove and others to produce a two-night tribute to the music of Stevie Wonder. The performances will include new arrangements of Stevie’s music and the premiere of new Harlem Stage commissioned compositions by Glasper, inspired by Stevie Wonder.