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LIVE: DAVID SANBORN – September 30, 2021

| 2 October 2021 | Reply

Venue: Sound Board Theater

City: Detroit, MI

Date: September 30, 2021

Review and Photographs by: Todd “Toddstar” Jolicoeur (

So many great shows were cancelled and many more were postponed, some more than once.  Jazz saxophonist David Sanborn’s show in Detroit was one of the latter and he was finally able to satisfy the want and need for great jazz on a Thursday night at the Sound Board Theater inside MotorCity Casino.  After a long wait for live shows, we were treated to one of David’s few performances in 2021 and it was phenomenal.  Opening the show with a great version of “Another Star” from Detroit’s own Stevie Wonder, we were off and running for a fun jazz-filled evening.  Sanborn’s jazz quintet was converted to a sextet for the opener as vocalist Alice Soyer joined the band on stage to accentuate the background vocals on the track, which went off perfectly even without a lead vocal allowing us more time to enjoy David’s sax.  As the song ended, Soyer saw her way off stage and we were left with a group of musicians that mightily handled the setlist and flow of music with bassist Andre Berry and drummer Billy Kilson anchoring the sound with a rhythm section that was locked in with each song, transition, and breakdown.  Next up was a personal favorite from Sanborn’s catalog when the quintet broke into 1986’s “Maputo.”  Covers aside, this track was my introduction to David and his sax and the song was as fun and powerful live as it ever was recorded… not going to lie, made it harder to photograph this part of the show as I was entranced by the music that washed across the venue.  The swirl of Dean Brown’s guitar work and George Whitty’s keyboards provided the perfect musical landscape for the melody that would support a flawless performance from Sanborn, not only on this track but as the show progressed.  Another favorite popped up in the set with “Chicago Song” rounding out the opening trio of songs that set the evening in motion.  The vibe in the venue was that of excitement for the musical selections being thrown at us from the stage, along with the banter from Sanborn who made light of everything, but drove it all home with mentions of being able to perform live and not doing “things” over Zoom, clothing choices, etc.  Once the formalities were out of the way and the dust had been knocked off by the band and crowd, David made mention of two birthdays he knew of that were being celebrated – an audience member Marcy and vocalist Soyer, whom he brought back out to play for while the crowd joined in and sang “Happy Birthday” before launching into the rest of the set.  WE need more nights like this with great music and being out (safely) with fellow music lovers to help us all shake what was in 2020 and get ready for 2022 and more tour dates from Sanborn.

Lineup: Dean Brown (guitar) – Andre Berry (bass) – Billy Kilson (drums) – George Whitty (keyboards) – Alice Soyer (vocals)








Category: Live Reviews, Photo Galleries

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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