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Benjie Porecki: Servin’ It Up

Add another name to the roster of blues B-3 monsters-that of D.C.-area keyboard whiz Benjie Porecki-who serves up a very tasty entree of solid blues here with some superb side dishes of jazz. The two versions of the title track (“Breakfast”/”Dinner,” fast/slow) not only display his awesome B3 blues chops but his fidelity to such masters of the form as the two Jimmys: Smith and McGriff. Porecki easily moves from blues to jazz and B-3 to piano as both his graceful version of “Blue in Green” (which I’m sure its composer, Bill Evans, would have enjoyed) and his lilting rendition of Bobby Hebb’s “Sunny” ably demonstrate.

In company with guitarist Alex Schultz, bassist Steve Gomes and drummer Robb Stupka, Porecki serves up a tantalizing disc of music, whether interpreting material like “Beautiful Love,” Stevie Wonder’s “Boogie on, Reggae Woman,” Paul Simon’s “Bridge over Troubled Water” or mashing his B-3 into a blues pulp. Ex-Mighty Flyers Schultz gets the spotlight on his own blues, “Last Train to Aalter,” and doesn’t waste a note. As much as I love his B3 playing, Porecki’s piano on his “very” late night blues, “5 A.M. in the Night,” is the standout track.

Originally Published