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Pat Metheny Trio in Tampa

Pat Metheny made his recording debut 33 years ago leading a trio on Bright Size Life (ECM), with Jaco Pastorius and Bob Moses, and later helmed three-way musical explorations with rhythm tandems including Charlie Haden and Billy Higgins, Dave Holland and Roy Haynes, and Larry Grenadier and Bill Stewart. The format, a stripped-down setting in comparison with his more sonically spacious Pat Metheny Group, remains a viable vehicle for the prolific guitarist and composer, as he demonstrated during an enthusiastically received performance at Tampa Theatre, a ’20s-vintage movie palace occasionally doubling as a concert hall.

Metheny, young bass master Christian McBride and Group drummer Antonio Sanchez, who have worked together off and on since 2002, are touring in support of Day Trip (Nonesuch), their just-released debut CD, recorded in late 2005. But the show’s centerpiece was a long, dramatic performance of “Question & Answer,” from the 1989 CD of the same name with Holland and Haynes.

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