Pat Martino’s current European and North-African tour took him to Copenhagen yesterday. His trio with Tony Monaco on Hammond B3 and Louis Tsamous on drums opened the show on 8.05 pm on the small stage of the Jazzhouse with a blasting rendition of Wes Montgomery’s “Four on Six.” The show was a one-set, appr. 100 mins. thing which also included “Round Midnight”, “Road Song” and other standards. It was a high-energy, ultra-virtuosic affair and a marvelous display of classic hardbop playing. The energetic Monaco was a perfect match for Martino, the latter playing with a(n even) harder and more direct attack than on his records.
Pat, playing his Gibson signature model through a huge Marshall amplifier, didn’t talk much, but recounted an anecdote of how he, at the age of around 18 had played a gig with Les Paul in New York, after which he taken Les Paul to Count Basie’s where Wes Montgomery was playing with Mel Rhyne and Jimmy Cobb. Martino left Paul, who was mesmerized by Montgomery’s playing, for another job, and upon returning found Montgomery still playing, but now joined by Grant Green, George Benson and Paul. After the playing they all went to a diner and “talked guitar for the rest of the night”. I sure would have liked to have been the proverbial fly on the wall that night.