"From the round man at the piano came songs that made us laugh at ourselves and reflect on the real, during a time in America when music was the driving force of change. He asked a question, "Why must I be so black and blue" when "the joint was jumpin'" for everybody else. For this we are going to "sit down and write a letter" of thank you and love to Fats Waller for swinging us into today. It's only right we stop and remember on whose back we as a great country are standing."
-- Ben Vereen
Get set for the riotous music of the funniest figure (and what a figure!) in all of American music, Fats Waller himself. Broadway entertainer, singer, and dancer Ben Vereen will serve as host for the event as well as perform. The spirit of the talented pianist and composer lives on through a talented cast of singers, pianists and other musicians, under the musical direction of Andy Farber, who will re-animate favorites like "Ain't Misbehavin'," "Alligator Crawl," and "Honeysuckle Rose." The rhythm section includes pianist Ehud Asherie, bassist Ben Wolfe, guitarist Doug Wamble, and drummer Alvester Garnett. Along with Andy Farber on saxophone, performers include clarinetist and saxophonist Dan Block, vocalist Carla Cook and and Allan Harris, and trumpeter Jon-Erik Kellso.
Pre-Concert Discussion, Nightly, 7:00pm:
Music Director Andy Farber joins Jazz at Lincoln Center's Ken Druker in an intimate discussion on the Fats Waller story and songbook, featuring insight into the evening's musical selections.
Visit the Hall of Fame: The Music of Fats Waller website: