It was an intimate affair, replete with some of Akron’s better known personalities, all joining together to lend an ear to one of their own, Wesley Bright.
Wesley is one of Akron’s best known and most popular soul performers, and on a busy Saturday night in mid-January people were lining up outside newly opened Sweet Mary’s Bakery on Mill Street in the frigid cold for a chance to have a listen to him perform.
The few who had arrived an hour earlier, the aforementioned personalities, were indeed lucky. The musicians who accompanied him were excellent. They delivered flawless music, playing each note with the kind of precision we have come to expect from Akron’s first-class performers.
Wesley was on point as always, singing with gusto and emotion, walking us through both heartaches and triumphs while allowing us a few moments of introspection. This consummate performer wowed us with his signature dance moves, as well as his well-practiced showmanship. He worked the crowd perfectly, prompting them them to join their voices together as his back-up singers.
There was a lot of love in the room that Saturday night and all of it was dedicated to Wesley Bright and his band. This private show, scheduled for 9 p.m., was standing room only, and judging by the crowd waiting at the door by 9:30 p.m. that evening, the 10 p.m. show was just as packed.
The fact that it was held at a downtown bakery was pure genius. Everyone walked away happy, well fed and caffeinated, ready to take on Akron’s prolific nightlife.
You can catch Wesley Bright on Saturday, Feb. 13 at Blu Jazz’s very special event, “Love Wesley: Valentine’s Date Night W/ Wesley Bright” featuring Wesley Bright accompanied by Jimmy Parsons on guitar, Nathan Paul Davis on alto sax, Matt Garrett on trumpet, Max Brady on trombone, Matthew DeRubertis on bass and Dan Fernandez on drums.
Blu Jazz is located at 47 E. Market St. in downtown Akron. For info, visit blujazzakron.com.