Thursday, Dec. 18, at 8 p.m.
Ferguson Hall at the Straz Center
Regularly priced tickets are $35.50-$45.50.
TAMPA, Fla. — The Straz Center for the Performing Arts presents Gregory Porter on Thursday, Dec. 18, at 8 p.m., in Ferguson Hall.
Gregory Porter, ever-dapper in his Kangol Summer Spitfire hat and suit jacket, says his acclaimed third album Liquid Spirit reflects the vitality, fun and passion, of the musical genres he has loved from boyhood—a blend of jazz, soul, country, gospel, blues, and rhythm and blues. Ever since Nat “King” Cole entered his heart as boy in Bakersfield, Calif., Porter has relished this rich mixture of music—although it can be confusing to jazz traditionalists. As the lyrics to his foot-stomping, high-clapping title track, “Liquid Spirit” have it: “Un-reroute the rivers, let the dammed water be, there’s some people down the way that’s thirsty, so let the liquid spirit free…’”
Porter released Liquid Spirit last autumn as part of a worldwide deal with Blue Note Records, and is again back in the UK mainstream charts and nearing the Top 10. As the 200,000 fans who’ve bought his albums in Germany will attest, or as the British listeners who have heard him light up the airwaves at 6 Music and BBC Radio 2 will agree, or as the lucky crowds who’ve seen him at Cheltenham Jazz Festival or playing with Gilles Peterson on his set just before Stevie Wonder at Calling Festival can testify: you can drink deep of Gregory Porter. And the best kind of intoxication will follow.
Porter learned his work ethic – dogged, patient, respectful – from his mother, a single parent to eight children, and a “storefront minister” who tended to all in need. “I laugh at the mix of people who show up at shows. I realize I have to give them all something – and something for all of them exists in me. There are songs that a 68-year-old grandma likes. And there are hard-hitting, more bass- and funk-infused things. That’s part of my vocabulary as well. And I don’t do them as a separate part of the show – they co-mingle and co-exist. Which is something I’ve done with everything – racially, politically. I’m trying to find that happy medium.”
Regularly priced tickets for the Thursday, Dec. 18, 8 p.m., performance by Gregory Porter are $35.50-45.50 and may be purchased by calling 813.229.STAR (7827) or 800.955.1045 outside Tampa Bay, in person at the Straz Center Ticket Sales Office or online at www.strazcenter.org. Handling fees will apply. For more information about the Straz Center for the Performing Arts and its upcoming events, please visit the Straz Center’s website at www.strazcenter.org.
For more information, visit www.GregoryPorter.com.