Don Vappie at Snug Harbor


I have always admired the banjo work of Vappie.  With his Creole Jazz Serenaders he often reminds me of the late, great Danny Barker.  He doesn’t have the same wit and joie de vivre, but he plays many of the old classic jazz tunes that you don’t hear that often and he is a certifiable virtuoso on the instrument.  He also plays credibly on the guitar, just like Barker.  However, I had never heard him play anything but acoustic instruments until I stumbled upon him as a sideman at this year’s Jazz Fest.  I make it a point of always going to see saxophonist Roderick Paulin’s performances.  He was a key member of the Rebirth Brass Band during their most productive period in the 1990s and his solo act is always compelling.  So imagine my surprise when I realized it was Vappie ripping solos on the electric guitar in the Jazz Tent.  He really had it going on.  I doubt he will bust out the electric tonight at Snug Harbor, but that’s no reason not to check out this underrated player.

Save & Share

Comments are closed.