Live Music Each Night – 6:30pm-9:15pm
Jazz Brunch – 11:30am-2:30pm
ABOUT MYRON COHEN:
As a baby sitting in a high chair, Myron Cohen astounded his mother by tapping out syncopated rhythms with his spoon. Progressing to a field drum by fourth grade, Cohen strapped on his drum daily and marched to school—even through the snowy Wisconsin winters. This self taught innate ‘enthusiasm’ led Cohen at fourteen years old to be hired as the drummer for The Mary Jay Trio, a very popular jazz group led by vocalist Mary Jaber who performed in clubs throughout Wisconsin in the 1950s and early 1960s. At fifteen, he spied an advertisement for the Slingerland Drum Co. sponsored Gene Krupa’s National Amateur Swing Drummers’ Contest and persuaded his high school buddy to ‘appropriate’ his aunt’s car to drive Cohen to Chicago so that he could enter the drum contest. Louie Bellson was the judge and Cohen ended up placing second out of about 300 drummers. What was most significant about this event—other than the consequences of taking the car —was the beginning of a lifelong friendship with Louie Bellson who recognized Cohen’s passion for the drums.
Moving on to his student years at University of Madison, Wisconsin, Cohen joined an R&B band, The Fabulous Imitations, featuring the renowned blues singer, Tracy Nelson. Nelson encouraged Cohen to move to San Francisco and from there he went on to play with such luminaries as Michael Bloomfield, John Lee Hooker, B.B. King, Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Otis Spann, Ron Stallings, Azar Lawrence, Ravi Coltrane, Donald ‘Rafael’ Garrett, Woody Shaw, Wayne Shorter—to name a few. Whether in sessions, live performances, recordings, or just informal jams, these musical experiences have given Cohen a huge vocabulary to share on the bandstand.
About The Billy Higgins Legacy Band
The BHLB was conceived by Cohen in response to his own experience of musical mentoring by master drummers Louie Bellson, Elvin Jones, Buddy Rich, John Rae, Dave Black, Sonny Freeman, Buddy Miles, Subash Chandran, Ed Thigpen, Billy Hart, George Brown, and most notably the late, great, Billy Higgins. In addition to playing music, Cohen also has a disarming talent as a raconteur and collector of jazz stories from his friendships in the jazz community. In the last few years of his life, drummer Billy Higgins gave a great deal to Cohen including some fascinating stories of his life and music. Billy understood Cohen’s commitment to mentoring young musicians—especially drummers—and arranged for Cohen to work with specific West Coast jazz musicians that would appreciate Cohen’s musicality.
It is in the spirit of Billy’s musical mentoring that The Billy Higgins Legacy Band (BHLB) was formed, and it continues to evolve with Cohen as the leader. Presenting a straight-up trio of piano, bass and drums, debuting tonight is a recent configuration of the BHLB featuring a special guest vocalist.