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The John Stetch Trio at the West End Cultural Centre, Winnipeg

The John Stetch Trio.

The John Stetch Trio.

Review – John Stetch at the West End Cultural Centre, Winnipeg, June 29 2009

-review by Eugene Osudar

50 minutes
of mostly TV
show themes

ah, now which of these shows
did i watch growing up?

the set:

The Waltons
This Is It (Bugs Bunny)
The Mighty Hercules
Sanford and Son
Black Sea Suite (a John Stetch original, not a TV theme)
The Girl In the Hemp Shirt (another original)
Love Boat
The Price Is Right
Star Trek

well, looking at the list
all of them!
religiously too
Bugs Bunny
the sharply acidic witted Groucho Marxisms

The Waltons for, the girls?
i was really young.

The Mighty Hercules
me and cartoons

Sanford and Son
Redd Foxx was some kinda nasty
ever catch his stand up?

Love Boat
The Price Is Right
Star Trek,
all about the girls,girls,girls
those wild alien vixens!

this is another volume
of the Great American Songbook

TV Themes

Stetch’s TV Trio CD is brilliant
and last night’s show
more so

the songs aren’t played straight
they’re raggedly
and sharply de/constructed
think The Bad Plus
re/creating Smells Like Teen
think Sonic Youth
deconstructing Every one of their
and the wonder of the reconstructions

the motifs are there
you can hear
This Is It
the show of shows!
tonight’s the night!
Bugs Bunny

pieced and fragmented
taped and splintered
and then smoothly


the songbook.,

can be commercial jingles

can be movie songs

the endless possibilities



one of the prettiest,
The Mighty Hercules
lush and sexy
a love song!
did he conceive it?
incredible arrangement
and playing
(a canadian show)

Sanford and Son
you can hear
the boogie
and then the discords
plucking of tuning wires
smashing trashing junkyard
theme/ing streaming

i heard a guy
say, “that wasn’t jazz.”
after the RoaRing
applause had ended

oh, you’re so original, dude!
the got to be inDifferent dude

and let me assure
Dear Reader
(thank you)

after every song,
TV theme or original,
Stetch and his Trio
received massive gratitudes
open attitudes

oh, what it is to be a music snob,

to be closed hearted
and Old
and farted

go to pasture
Old Man

to be lost in, Jazz is only

Miles Davis
Kind Of Blue

Yes, that Is the Best of jazz

Bitches Brew?

The Bad Plus?

this is all Jazz
this is experimentation
and opening
the box
and letting go

letting your mind and heart and fingers
the colors of your mind’s countries

we live open and free
this is musical Democracy
in action

musical genius,
followed by a mind
so beautifully open
Miles Davis!

don’t snob
don’t grow old
be supple
be open

a nearly full house
400 jazz lovers
Miles Davis Lovers
who (mostly)
Loved John Stetch’s
of the TV Theme songbook

can you tell,
I Loved it too.

i’m open
are you?
buy the CD

Star Trek,
what a set ending.
that theme
on piano
and flying
in care/free
adventure spirit
of the show’s
Gene Roddenberry

and for Stetch
to open this songbook,
Pop Culture
is genius
right in front
of us
for our ears

Bill Murray
sang Star Wars
as the hack lounge singer
on Saturday Night Live
do you see how ideas
travel and unravel

The Bad Plus
are on their way
with Lithium
by Kobain
Thursday, July 2nd
Jazz Winnipeg Festival


take it or leave it

i choose it
accept it
love it
honor it
applaud and roar
for it
i dance for it
for genius
i’m more and more for it
it is

it is starkly at the (hard)core
of John Stetch’s TV Trio
CD and their performances.

June 29th.


About Eugene Osudar

“born, august 16, 1963. i’m 45, and yes, i’m getting too old for this. bring out the rocking chair. my first concert, november 1978, elvis costello and the attractions. i was 15. their blisteringly brilliant 65 minute set only served somebody to affirm my new direction in the musical parallel universes, new wave punk alternative, oh sanctity oh celebration (!Freedom!) college radio! i’m old, i’m used up and i’m free. i see 50something Full sets of music every month and dance most of them. and when i dance, i mean to say, I Dance and Celebrate, 2/3/4 hours a night. The Gaslight Anthem. The Boss. The Weber Brothers. The Wind Ups. i’ll dance with Los Campesinos. i’ll move to The Long Winters. The Replacements. Husker Du. The Pogues. oh elvis costello, oh Clash! i could go/go/go Gogol Bordello forever. L(eonard) Cohen. come, Dance With Me (Old 97s) wherever you may be, sincerely, eugene
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