"Gene Bertoncini has become increasingly admired for the crystalline beauty of his solo work. He is known for his gentle nature and open heart; this could explain the remarkable purity of his playing."
—Judith Schlesinger, All About Jazz
Master guitarist Gene Bertoncini returns to the Pizzeria
with bassist Rick Petrone and drummer Joe Corsello, after their packed performance last December. Writer Gene Lees calls Mr Bertoncini "the Segovia of jazz" for his elegant blend of jazz and classical styles on his acoustic, nylon-stringed guitar. Called a "highly original guitarist" by The New Yorker, he is also an accomplished classical guitarist as well as an exquisite interpreter of Antonio Carlos Jobim, the great Brazilian bossa nova composer. Still a busy performer, teacher, and clinician,
Mr. Bertoncini has played in many styles and settings in his nearly six-decade career, and he swings in all of them. Born in New York in 1937, Gene Bertoncini has worked with an extraordinary range of jazz greats—Tony Bennett, Lena Horne, Wayne Shorter, Hubert Laws, Carmen McRae, Benny Goodman, Paul Desmond, Buddy Rich, Nancy Wilson, and Bill Charlap.
Gene is joined by his two longtime collaborators. Rick Petrone has played the bass with such luminaries as Mel Torme, Lena Horne, Thad Jones & Mel Lewis Orchestra, Houston Person and Etta Jones, Richie Cole, John Scofield, and Roy Hargrove. A longtime radio professional, he hosts "The Jazz Sound" on WPKN 89.5FM on Monday afternoons. Drummer Joe Corsello grew up in a musical family in Stamford, and has toured with such greats as Benny Goodman, Peggy Lee, Zoot Sims and Marian McPartland. Called a "swinging drummer" by the New York Times, he's heard on sax great Sonny Rollins's CD "Sonny Please," among many recordings.
Jazz at the Pizzeria is on vacation for the month of August
so we'll be closed Sundays in August.
Live jazz Sunday evenings from 6 to 8
Reservations Recommended, 203 792 1500
Find the schedule below right, or email us to get on our email distribution list for weekly notification with more information about the musicians and their music. firstname.lastname@example.org
Live jazz on menu each Sunday
Robert Miller, The Danbury News-Times
Published 11:17 p.m., Wednesday, March 14, 2012
In California, a legendary jazz club, The Bach Dancing and Dynamite Society, in Half Moon Bay, south of San Francisco, has been around since 1964.
"They have Sunday concerts,'' said Michael Lauretano, owner of Pizzeria Lauretano on Greenwood Avenue in Bethel. "The performers who played San Francisco on the weekends would go there to play Sundays.''
That is why, in part, Sundays at Pizzeria Lauretano are generally booked solid as its jazz concerts fill the room nearly every week.
"It's part of our identity,'' said Lauretano, who loves the music he brings to his restaurant. "It's part of our value.''
"It enriches the legacy of the music,'' said master vibraphonist Arthur Lipner, of Wilton, who ended a two-week European concert tour by jetting back to Connecticut and playing two enthralling sets Sunday at the pizzeria with his quartet. "And it enriches our community.''
Lauretano said saxophonist Michael Leventhal, of Redding, pushed him to start featuring live music four or five years ago. Leventhal came in to eat one day, heard the recorded jazz Lauretano was playing for customers and urged him to start having live concerts. The Sunday concert series was born.
"It started very organically,'' said Judith Joiner, who handles the restaurant's publicity. "At first, it was 3 to 5 p.m. on Sunday. It was an occasional concert, and it was free. Then we started having music every Sunday. We gradually added a cover charge. Now, you have to call ahead for reservations every week.''
Lauretano said Leventhal and other musicians have helped him book excellent jazz artists who live in the area. By now, he said, he has a regular rotation of repeat performers. "They all want to come back,'' he said.