02 The SenatorThe Senator – A Tribute to Tommy Banks
Hutchison Andrew Trio
Chronograph Records CR 100 (hatjazz.com)

Tommy Banks packed many accomplishments into his 81 years. He was a conductor, arranger, pianist, television personality and a member of the Canadian Senate from 2000 to 2011. The Senator is named after his political life but pays tribute to his music and how he inspired and influenced a younger generation of musicians. The members of the Hutchinson Andrew Trio (Chris Andrew, piano; Kodi Hutchinson, bass; Dave Laing, drums) all had a personal relationship to Banks, as did the “special guests” PJ Perry, Al Muirhead and Mallory Chipman, and these connections invigorate their performances. 

Highlights of the album include a bouncy version of Jig (a tune played and recorded by Banks) and Bank on It, written by Chris Andrew as a grooving bop tribute from one pianist to another. The Senator is a delightful undertaking that pays tribute to Banks› music legacy and reminds us of this important musician. It was recorded live over two nights at the Yardbird Suite in Edmonton, on what would have been Banks› 85th birthday, and that adds to the sense of celebration.

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