May 21, 2008
BY JASON SONGE
This unveiling of Chaz's new Western Swing band was a huge success, evidenced by the bunch of people who surrounded the group and stayed after to thank him.
Thr group was rounded out by Dr. Jimbo Walsh on double bass, Matt Johnson on guitar, Neti Vaan on fiddle and vocals, and Matt Rhody on fiddle and mandolin.
I enjoyed how the music slipped in and out of styles so easily and without head-scratching. The up tempo songs could have been straight from a Jazz Vipers set, the middle tempo ones felt like waltzes, and the slower ballads really drew on the band's country influence.
Vaan really shone and added a delicate feminine side to the music on the two songs she sang, and it was strange but exciting to hear her play the melody of "Little Liza Jane" on fiddle during the group's great version.
The group consisted of nothing but pros, so no surprise the music sounded tight and crisp. Pretty, pretty stuff.