Mardi Gras came to the Danish capital during the Copenhagen Jazz Festival at a rousing concert at Pumpehuset, where a crowd burst free from its shackles to dance the night away in feverish adulation.
This was all about the crescendos, and taking centre stage were A Tribe Called Gumbolia in splendid costumes straight off the streets of Rio de Janeiro – with a splash of ‘Conan the Barbarian’ about them.
No questioning who the chief was
Chief Eric Burt Sr, the tribe leader, handled the crowd with consummate ease, teasing them into leaving their nodding jazz heads at the door and cutting loose, as the venue quickly transformed into a dancefloor.
Such was his omnipotence, he could have orchestrated those present to sing every line and rest his voice for the next show.
The interloper from New Orleans
But he hadn’t banked on Michael Watson, a trombonist extraordinaire from New Orleans, who stole the show every time he rose from kneeling contemplation to raise the tempo even further.
As accomplished as his musicianship was, it was the charisma he brought to his contemplative moments that really grabbed your attention. He connected with the audience in a way that very few performers can – look out for his name at future festivals (this was his fifth trip over since 2012); you won’t be disappointed.
Get me out of this costume!
Completing the tribe, the youngsters looked less at ease in costumes that at times look stifling. Did we imagine one of them urging his chief to help him out the moment they left the stage?
It was a shame as Watson looked eager to give those present an encore, and at that stage, such were their energy levels, they would have danced all night.