The Jazz Gallery (Broadway)

Promised “spooky surprises” from pianist Glenn Zaleski’s “Halloween” Trio, I went despite the knowledge that Glenn would not be wearing a pumpkin costume. Other than sporadic onomatopoeic sounds from drummer Ari Hoenig and a spooky arrangement of Monk’s “Rhythm-A-Ning,” the trio did not deliver on its promise; however, it did surprise with an inventive performance of “All The Things You Are,” a rare arrangement in that the audience did not emit a collective groan at the song being covered yet again.

Jazz Gallery outletBassist Matt Clohesy completed the trio, bringing his years of experience playing in rock bands for kids, having opened for the likes of the Jonas Brothers and possibly even Miley Cyrus in the nation’s capital. Hailing from Australia, he is one of the trailblazers of the string of fine bassists from down under on the New York scene today. And Glenn—he confided that he sometimes uses the women’s room at Smalls because it’s like heaven compared to the men’s room.

The bathroom at the new location of the Jazz Gallery on Broadway felt homely, in a bare bones kind of way that was epitomized by the outlet on the wall opposite with a strip of black over it and a handwritten sign that said, “SPARKS WERE COMING OUT OF THIS OUTLET. PLEASE INSPECT.” An extra roll of heart-shape embossed household toilet paper rested on the toilet below the shelf with packs of industrial paper towels. A separate closet housed the toilet so that a person could use the adjacent sink even if the throne is occupied and a greenish drape covered the storage area across from the water closet.  Though I read that there were two public restrooms, I only noticed the one.

Jazz Gallery bathroom entranceJazz Gallery bathroom

Jazz Gallery toiletJazz Gallery storage

Located in an old building in the Flatiron District, the space surprised a couple visitors with its fifth floor instead of basement level occupancy and boasted unusually high ceilings for a space that functions as a jazz club. A music student sat in the modest foyer of the building to direct people up the elevator, while practicing guitar surrounded by his MacBook, music stand and space heater. That doesn’t seem like a bad gig, considering the difficulty of finding a practice room in this city.

With the exorbitant rent in Manhattan, it makes economical sense for the Gallery to share the space with a church, incidentally called Gallery Church. There are a number of churches hosting jazz events from St. Peter’s Church to Neighborhood Church of Greenwich Village, but the concerts at the Jazz Gallery differ in that they are run independently of the church supplying the space. Glenn runs concerts in an alternative venue too, along with his girlfriend/violinist Tomoko and invisible cat Stella, presenting their peers and the most promising young jazz artists in the cozy setting of their Brooklyn apartment.

Jazz Gallery paper towelsJazz Gallery loves you.

Jenny from Thailand tells us how to say “Where’s the restroom?” in Thai. If you’re male, make sure to change the last word to say “Hong nam yoo nai krab?”

Hong nam yoo nai ka?