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Rumba Cafe Residency: Tony McClung

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by Andrew Patton on July 27, 2016

While the Dick’s Den residency program rolls on, another Olde North Columbus/North Campus area venue has gotten in on the act for August. Rumba Cafe, the longtime host of Sunday nights with Hoo Doo Soul Band and periodic weekly gigs for the Tony Monaco Trio, among other great entertainment, presents a Wednesday night residency program for August featuring drummer Tony McClung. McClung is a mainstay of the Columbus music scene in general and the Rumba stage in particular, as he holds down the drum set for Hoo Doo Soul and Monaco, in recent months, including Tuesdays in August. For his August Wednesdays, McClung has assembled new/rare lineups of collaborators old and new. The four-date residency (there will be no residency show on August 24th, as Rumba has another concert booked) includes two chances to see his trio Birdshack with special guests, a smaller version of his Miles Davis tribute act Sanctuary, and an organ trio with another of Columbus’ finest B3 players. Each Wednesday’s show runs from 9pm to midnight. Keep reading for thoughts on each week’s band (and life!) from McClung, and come out to Rumba on Wednesdays in August to see great jazz and beyond!

Wednesday, August 3rd: Organ Trio: McClung, Bobby Floyd, and Joshua Hill
Tony McClung: I actually played in Bobby’s band for 7 years. I developed a drug habit during the last year of that time and it cost me the gig. Losing that gig was an important wake up call. Bobby did me a HUGE favor by firing me. He is such a wonderful person that there’s no lingering weirdness there at all. We get along great and he played in Sanctuary last December.
This trio was actually the first band on Rumba’s stage when they opened. Hearing Josh and Bobby together is a REAL treat. They are both people who make everybody they play with sound better.

August 10th: Birdshack with Haley Heyman
Haley was in The Womack Family Band. She is one of the best singers I have ever heard. She sings jazz, folk, soul, you name it, all equally well. Great tone, great pitch, great delivery. She is a great songwriter too. I played with her for the first time recently and after, my wife and I spent a good chunk of the night swimming in a recording of hers. Lesley said “Hire that girl!” So here we are. We will be performing a mix of our stuff, her songs, and things from John Denver to Hendrix to Ellington.

August 17th: McClung, Joshua Hill, Adam DeAscentis, and Michael Cox – Playing the Music of Miles Davis from the 50s, 60s, and 70s
Adam went to school here, plays in The Huntertones and Sanctuary. He lives in New York.

August 31st: Birdshack with Jim Ed Cobbs and Haley Heyman
Jim Ed is one of the best musicians in Columbus though he doesn’t play clubs much. Brilliant pianist, percussionist, and beyond. One of the most musical people I’ve met. The chemistry I have with him when he’s playing percussion is effortless. We played a lot in our formative years and it’s so easy now, which is RARE. Sometimes we manage to sound like one guy with four arms.
Every gig with Jeff Ciampa and Josh Hill is unbelievably great. The same songs are never played the same way. We all trust each other and have gotten freer and more daring because of that trust. These guys are my church.

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