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Jazz at the gallery: "Beauty & the B” – Dr. Tony Genge


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Jazz at the gallery: "Beauty & the B” – Dr. Tony Genge

Sunday, March 25th – 2 p.m.

In March, Dr. Tony Genge explores the legacy and songs of the classic organ trios and quartets inspired by the invention of the Hammond B3 organ. When Laurens Hammond decided to test a secondary use for his synchronous clock motor, spinning serrated disks in front of an electro-magnet, the pipe organ world was forced into the 20th century. His unique tone generation method also created a new voice for jazz.

While jazz musicians such as Fats Waller had explored the use of pipe organs in jazz ensembles in the 1920’s and 1930’s, it was not until the late 1940’s that the organ moved into the night clubs. Musicians soon realized that the amplified Hammond B3 organ, especially when mated with a new rotating speaker made by Don Leslie, could emulate the power of an entire big Band.

The rich legacy of music from artists such as Jimmy McGriff, Will Bill Davis, and the grand master, Jimmy Smith defined the organ trio/quartet format. The organist could sustain fat chords and create wonderful tension or throw out extended melodic inventions while maintaining a driving rhythmic bass line and accompaniment. Add in a guitar with rhythmic comping, a drummer to push the bass lines and drive the pulse, and a throaty saxophone to add bluesy melodies and interchanges with organ, and magic was made.

Both hands and both feet will be employed Dr. Genge to recreate musical magic, ably assisted by an all-star trio featuring saxophonist Roy Styffe, the multi-talented Patrick Boyle on guitar and tumpet, and Kelby MacNayr on drums.


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