I have been a fan of the Respect Sextet since being introduced to their music by a friend from Rochester in 2003. Their album The Full Respect has never been far from my CD player. Their music is energetic, surprising, and often funny. Case in point:
As you may have guessed, this is the RS mashup of Bird’s “Moose the Mooche” and Bill Evans’ “Very Early”. These two tunes have been practiced ad nauseam by aspiring sax and piano players (piano great Kenny Werner says he once spent an entire summer shedding “Very Early”). Together they become a bebopper’s nightmare, contorting an already difficult melody over a chord progression that gets less and less predictable as the form goes on.
Still, the Respect Sextet seems to handle the task with ease, propelled in no small part by drummer Ted Poor, who I have heard backing Ben Monder, Chris Potter and Cuong Vu in recent years. Ted is also a member of self-described “lungcore” group Jerseyband, another personal favorite.