Jay T. Vonada, Trombone
Kirk Reese, Piano
Jazz trombonist Jay Vonada stood before the microphone and announced: “I need to share with you that I met my piano accompanist for this evening, Mr. Kirk Reese, for the first time about an hour and a half ago. We will do our best to entertain you.”
As Jay T. Vonada and Kirk Reese performed together for the first time over the next hour and a half, the audience was drawn into a woven tapestry of open and muted trombone voices, driving left hand tempos and flying fingers over treble piano keys producing subtle rhythm changes and intense mood swings from spring-like joy to bittersweet love.
Everyone knew that something special had happened when a last minute replacement of a piano accompanist caused two very talented performing musician/composers to “make it happen” live and in person for the first time.
Behind the lights and microphone these two gifted musicians found an unexpected connection of souls. A decision by Jay to play one piece with a Bossa Nova rhythm and a later choice to play “Blue Monk” by jazz great Thelonious Monk, showcased the gifts of pianist Kirk Reese.
The chemistry shared once again between Jay and Kirk can neither be taught nor rehearsed to a level where it can be poured out of a decanter at a moment’s whim. It just happens … or it does not, as usually is the case.
And once again the audience left their seats to give a standing ovation for the “Swing Nova” jazz duo composed of trombonist Jay T. Vonada and piano accompanist Kirk Reese as the performance came to its end.