If you caught the “Notes from the Road” from earlier this month, you would have seen that Chick was just kicking off a seven-week European tour with Christian McBride and Brian Blade. Not too long into March, news began trickling in about the Coronavirus and how, in the name of public safety, governments worldwide were beginning to advise against the gathering of large groups. As a matter of course, the tour was—unfortunately, albeit understandably—cut short. Chick had this to say about it, in a statement he released publicly:
Dear Music Fans,
Just to let you all know that Christian, Brian and myself are back home now from our tour of Europe. Unfortunately, we had to end the tour early and postpone the rest of the shows, due to safety restrictions in a number of the countries we planned to visit.
We love bringing the music to you and love to see you all enjoy what we bring. We come with Music as the “Antidote” 🙂 We’re working right now to reschedule these shows for the near future.
Meantime, stay squeaky clean and take all the precautions that you can.
With respect in Music and for Life and the Imagination,
And the “Antidote” they did, indeed, bring in what ended up being the final week of shows on the road. (And which, incidentally, Chick continues to bring from home, where he has been live-streaming a series of concerts on Facebook—the latest of which you can see here!)
March 3, 2020
In Metz, France the Trio took the stage to a full house at the Arsenal de Metz, where they started the night with a striking rendition of “Windows” and ended with some “Blue Monk” which roused all 1,500 attendees to their feet.
March 5, 2020
The group then found themselves in sunny Valencia, Spain where they performed at the space-age-looking Palau de Les Arts Reina Sofia to a characteristically enthusiastic Spanish audience, which Chick calls one of his favorite audiences to play for.
March 7, 2020
Shifting to a colder climate, the group traveled north to Oviedo, Spain for a gig at the Teatro Campoamor, an opera house constructed in 1892. At the beginning of the evening, Chick remarked, “Let’s dedicate tonight to McCoy,” as this performance took place less than 24 hours after news of McCoy Tyner’s passing. The spirit was most definitely felt in the full hall that night, with the Trio delivering one of their most heartfelt sets in honor of one of their late heroes.
March 8, 2020
The finale of the tour came at the Auditorio Nacional in Madrid, where eight bars into the first song of the night, one of Christian’s bass strings broke–and he proceeded to play the entire first set on only three strings! Chick remarked, “I couldn’t believe it when I looked over and saw him seamlessly using alternate fingerings.” Then for the final song of the night, Chick invited his longtime friends and Spanish Heart Band members, Jorge Pardo and Niño Josele to the stage for an epic 20-minute rendition of “Armando’s Rhumba”. In retrospect, though it certainly wasn’t intended to be the tour’s finale, this night had all the ingredients of a fitting send-off.
Rest assured there will be more and when we do hit the road again, you’ll hear of it right away. Until then, stay safe and “squeaky clean”, and enjoy Chick’s series of home concerts, which you can find on his Facebook!