Pocket Watch 

TROMBONIST RAY ANDERSON, known for combining funky roots rhythms with over-the-top jazz improvisation, has good things stashed in his group Pocket Brass. A stripped-down New Orleans brass band, Pocket Brass combines left-of-center improvisation with a rhythmic drive, fusing New Orleans second line and the ground-breaking sounds of New York's downtown scene.

Considered an avatar of the avant garde, Anderson's approach to his instrument is an extension of the raucous "tailgate" style of trombone, born out of the improvisation of early New Orleans jazz. A band leader since the late '70s, Anderson has made dozens of recordings for the Hat Art, Enja, Gramavision and Soul Note labels. His musical projects include the Alligatory Band, Slickaphonics, BassDrumBone and the four-trombone ensemble, Slideride. "I think Anderson's mission in life is to exploit the most trombonistic elements of the instrument," says Steve Hahn, director of the Zeitgeist production company bringing Pocket Brass to the Mat Bevel Institute. Hahn and Zeitgeist have been behind some of Tucson's most adventurous jazz shows. "As much as anything, I'm doing this to prove that there is an audience for this type of music in Tucson," Hahn says.

Along with trumpeter Eddie "EJ" Allen and Jose Davila on tuba, Pocket Brass features New Orleans drummer extraordinaire Johnny Vidacovich, perhaps the greatest living exponent of the Crescent City style of drumming. His associations with New Orleans legends Dr. John, Professor Longhair, Johnny Adams, James Booker, as well as his long-time cooperative group Astral Project, have produced a recorded legacy of some of the best second line/jazz drumming available.

For fans of the funky New Orleans beat, Pocket Brass is a must see. Come to dance, or simply dig the groove.

Zeitgeist and the Tucson Jazz Society present Pocket Brass at 8 p.m. Wednesday, October 13, in the Mat Bevel Institute, 546 N. Stone Ave. Tickets are $10 in advance, available at CD Depot, Antigone Books and the Congress Street Store. They'll be $12 the day of the show.

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