“Man I love
It’s the unexpected that changes things. Earlier that evening, petite dancers Belinda Reid and April Green stretched while wearing cumbersome winter coats over their blue leotards. Vocalist Teresa Mora (visiting from Coney Island where the former Detroiter now lives) sipped on “anti-freeze” --
However, as the show got going, more and more men walked in carrying big black cases. The dancers performed slow and subtle movement around the room, and Mora alternately howled and whispered while these men shook hands, pulled out their horns and wet their reeds. Green began introducing guests, one after the other, who joined in a song at a time. Those guests included such talents as Washington, poet Aaron Ibn Pori Pitts, saxophonist/floutist Michael Carey, trombonist William Townley, and (the man who nearly stole the spotlight if the spotlight hadn’t been so big), saxophonist Adeboye Adegbenro, leader of Odu Afro Beat Orchestra.
The crowd never even bothered to wait for the end of a song to stand, to whistle or to groan, loud and low: “Skeeeeeeet!” and “BoyYAY!” and “Ibn!” During these moments, the performers onstage would turn their faces from the room, smile really big, and shake their heads. It was the best kind of reunion -- the kind that made strangers in the audience feel like family and led newcomers to understand the reason behind this insane music.
Saxophonist and Detroit lover Donald Washington
Photo by Andrea Canter
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