Last night, JB and I went to the Green Mill to hear Patricia Barber. Barber plays there nearly every Monday night, when she isn’t on tour or working at her Michigan home. The Green Mill is Al Capone’s old hangout and looks much the same as it did back then including a sculpture of Ceres which many claim came from the World’s Colombian Exposition in Chicago in 1893. (We actually sat in Capone’s favorite booth where he could easily see both the entrance and the exit.) Barber loves playing there, saying it’s a place where it’s as easy to buy a drink as it is to listen to music. The Green Mill is a small place, an intimate venue, the way good jazz should be experienced.
Patricia Barber is an amazing artist (a friend shared with me today that she is absolutely adored in France) — a wonderfully creative, intelligent, extremely skilled, unique, boundary pushing jazz pianist, singer, and composer. Her quartet communicates musically with flexibility, imagination, and a deep, sonorous, psychic rhythm.
Patricia Barber is definitely one of the late night treasures Chicago offers nearly every Monday night at the Green Mill. Her most current album is posted below.