Tenor Madness at Jazz Artists of Charleston event

Tenor Madness

Credit: Tessa Blake


Tenor Madness brought jazz mania to Father Figaro Hall as part of  Jazz Artists of Charleston’s 6TH annual jazz series on Tuesday, June 4th.


The group, which features Mark Sternbank and Robert Lewis (both on tenor sax), played jazz standards and original compositions throughout the set.  Accompanied by Tommy Gill (piano), Kevin Hamilton (bass), and David Patterson (drums), the group opened with a snappy number and continued with an Austin Powersy piece entitled “Tom Thumb”.


From there, Sternbank introduced two of his original compositions, “DaySpring”and “70x7”.  “Dayspring” provided a jazzy take on a waltz—  a careful yet adventurous mid-tempo selection. “70 X 7”, which is a more modern work, highlighted a funky drum intro and a fun, sassy sax duet.


The next piece, Coltrane’s  pensive and melancholic “Soul Eyes” was played in memory of the late Ben Tucker, a bass player from Savannah, GA who recently passed.


Credit: Tessa Blake

Credit: Tessa Blake

From there, the tempo picked up with an original piece from Robert Lewis. “Clark”, based on a character from Dr. Seuss’ “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish” featured a anticipatory beat that progressed to a delightful ditty.


Tenor Madness finished off the set with Coltrane’s version of “Summertime”, an homage to

the South Carolinian ties of  the opera Porgy and Bess, and Dizzy Gillespie’s  quick and witty Eternal Triangle. Tenor Madness explored the strength of two tenors saxophones and lived up to its name.