Sizzle and Spice with Ray Vega Latin Jazz Sextet

The joint was jumpin’ with two excellent shows Saturday evening and Sunday afternoon. Ray Vega has assembled a first-rate ensemble with some of Vermont’s finest jazz musicians: Brian McCarthy on alto saxophone, Mike Hartigan on piano, Giovanni Rovetto on bass, Caleb Bronz on drums, Scott Dean on congas and percussion, and Vega himself on trumpet, flugelhorn, and percussion. The program was combination of standards and originals by Vega and members of the band.  Vega is a master of engaging banter, too. One standout moment, particularly poignant, was his remembrance of trombonist Rick Davies, a beloved friend, colleague, and member of the greater jazz community who passed two years ago, followed by a performance of one of Rick’s tunes.  Snowy roads kept a lot of folks from venturing out to Saranac, but the intrepid faithful who showed up were wildly enthusiastic and vocal. And yes, there was dancing in the aisles!

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