After approximately two decades, the Seelbach Hotel has decided to end their weekend evenings of live jazz music, as led by vibraphonist Dick Sisto. The weekend was often chosen by LEO Weekly readers as “the best place to hear live jazz” in our readers’ choice poll.
Sisto, long accompanied by bassist Tyrone Wheeler and drummer Jason Tiemann, was notified about this decision by hotel management. Sisto said, “Their rational, illogical as it may sound, is to cut expenses and show greater profits.”
During his years as music director, Sisto welcomed many special guest performers. A partial list includes names like Pat Labarbera, David Liebman, Joe Morello, Joe Labarbera, Kevin Mahagony, Bobby Shew, Kenny Werner, Dave Samuels, Rich Perry, Andy Laverne, Don Braden, David Hazeltine, Walt Weiskoff, Scott Wendholt, Lynne Arrialle, Steve Davis and many others.
Friday, Jan. 27 and Saturday, Jan. 28 will be the last weekend for the free performances. Sisto, who also hosts Sunday jazz radio programs on
WFPK, 91.9 FM, notes, “There may be an occasional appearance in the future.”
Sisto also notes that 2011 was “one of the best years for business at the Seelbach.”
Drummer Tiemann said, “I believe that it is a heartbreaking tragedy to the arts scene in Louisville, as there are very few places to hear real live jazz in the entire region.”
Tiemann can still be seen Wednesday nights with Jacob Duncan and others at the Nachbar, free at 10 p.m.
photo by John Nation, c. Louisville Magazine 2011