UNCLE VITO | 02.06.02 | DC

One would think that there is no option for a musically conscientious college student, on a shoestring budget, on a Wednesday night. I set out with a mere $10 to my name determined to have a good time. My salvation came in the form of a local instrumental improvisational band Uncle Vito. Vito hails from Annapolis, Maryland, but has recently begun venturing out into the nation's capital on a regular basis. The band consists of front man and guitarist Rob Levit, bassist Bryan 'Jonesy' Jones, and drummer Rob Houck. Every tune is improvised, Levit informs listeners that they therefore do not have titles to accompany them. The band currently has two cds out, both of which are available at unclevito.com.

Every Wednesday night in February the band makes the hour commute from Maryland to Shelley's West End, in DC. Each musical excursion, dare I say tune, is built upon the foundation of Houck's drumming. Which has the ability to become the driving force around which the jam is focused. This is complemented by the skilled bassmanship of Bryan Jones. Jonesy utilizes a wide range of techniques while playing both the fretted and electric-upright basses, ranging from jazz to slap-funk. On top of this are Levit's adventuresome effects laden solos, which John McLaughlin would be proud of. The key element that allows the band to groove so tightly is excellent communication between the musicians. These men know what they are doing and play less as individuals and more like a tight unit.

Should you find yourself in the DC area on a mundane Wednesday night make your way to Shelly's and experience the creation of original exciting music by Uncle Vito. Did I mention that after 10 pm some drafts are a dollar?

Robert Mauro
JamBase | DC
Go See Live Music!


[Published on: 2/6/02]

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