The newest CD from the Concert Jazz Band - North Greenbush Blues is now available from CD Baby and at performances of the CJB. We are very proud of this recording! It's a great representation of what the band sounds like live.


 On Thursday April 20th the Concert Jazz Band moves to the Troy Kitchen in Troy N.Y. for what we hope is a once a month, long run; a "new home" perhaps. This is a great venue! Lots of room, big enough stage (if we put the saxes on the floor and we always do) lighting and sound. Join us there! 

Just In

Tom Pierce's review 8/12/2016


From the unforgettable opening of the CONCERT JAZZ BAND’s rousing version of "Killer Joe", the fun table of fellow passionate Big Band Lovers that I shared last night at the SAVOY TAPROOM with Rudy Lu, Leslie Hyland, Maggie MacDougall, Al Brooks, Susan Richardson & Mabel Leon was totally INTO IT.

In addition to the buoyantly swinging rhythm section (Michael Benedict, Wayne Hawkins & Dylan Perrillo) and excellent ensemble & solo work by the brass & reeds sections, two special highlights in the first set was the rare & captivating DUELING TWO VALVE TROMBONES of Phil Allen & Tyler Giroux; and Phil’s fine idea to select four tunes to feature in succession the stirring work of each of the 4 saxophones.

The latter included: on baritone, Scott Hall ("Old Folks"); on tenor, Nate Giroux ("Weaver of Dreams"); on alto, Dave Fisk ("For Strayhorn); and on tenor, Lee Russo ("I Thought About You"). Great ideas that could also be applied in some fashion to the 3 excellent trumpeters (Chris Pasin, Dylan Canterbury & Steve Lambert.

This band just gets better & better!





June 16, 2016 - The Concert Jazz Band is starting what we hope will be a very long run at The Savoy Taproom (formerly Justin's) 301 Lark Ave. in Albany NY. We did our first gig there on June 9th and it went very well. The room has a long history in Albany for great jazz. Great fun with a great, swingin' band! We will be appearing there the 2nd Thursday of each month with 2 - 1 hour sets starting at 7PM.


June 2016 - The Concert Jazz Band is starting what we hope will be a long run at the new Savoy Tap Room, 301 Lark Ave. in Albany NY. Many locals will remember this location as Justin's which has a long history of great jazz. The bar and dinning room have been recently renovated and feature a wide variety of cocktails as well as great food! The band is really looking forward to playing here. Here's to more great music from the CJB!


In October of 2014, Phil and jazz drummer, vibes player, Michael Benedict met on a gig with Skip Parsons. By the end of that gig plans had been made to get a rehearsal together to read through some of the charts that Phil had written for Thin Air Jazz. Mike brought together 10 of the finest musicians in the Capital Region to join he and Phil and the Phil Allen/Michael Benedict Concert Jazz Band was born. The band has its' first performance on Sunday, June 14, 2015 at the historic Lark Tavern in Albany NY. Performing some of the music from the CD "Sneakin' up on Spring" as well as music from Basie, Woody, Maynard and some new stuff. This looks to be the beginning of some great music and a great future.


LIVE: The Phil Allen/Michael Benedict Concert Jazz Band @ the Lark Tavern, 6/14/15


Review and photographs by Rudy Lu

The already rich Nippertowntown jazz scene was further enriched on June 14th with the debut of the Phil Allen/Michael Benedict Concert Jazz Band at Albany’s Lark Tavern. The standing-room-only crowd was treated to two sets of big band jazz drawing from such diverse sources as Count Basie, Bob Brookmeyer and Lee Morgan.

Phil Allen is a relative newcomer to the area, coming from Indianapolis via San Francisco and Colorado Springs. Allen brought his authoritative style of conducting and encyclopedic knowledge of big band arrangements to lead the band, as well as doubling up as a valve trombone player.

Of course, Michael Benedict needs no introduction to area jazz fans, as the leader/drummer of the popular combo Bopitude, as well as a leading vibes player.

The 12-member big band featured both young and old players from our fertile jazz scene, and during the band’s debut plenty of solo time was given to each of the players. This killer band includes Dave Fisk, Lee Russo, Nate Giroux and Rick Hambright on saxophones; Scott Thompson, Chris Pasin and Sam Ponder on trumpets; Ben O’Shea and Phil Allen on trombone; Wayne Hawkins on piano; Dylan Perrillo on bass; and Michael Benedict on drums.

Following the success of their debut performance, the Phil Allen/Michael Benedict Concert Jazz Band will now have a regular residency gig at the Lark Tavern on the second Sunday of each month. The next gig will be from 7-9:30pm on Sunday, July 12. Greater Nippertown is much richer with the addition of this new band.