Texarkana-born Ezra Charles’ new one-man show is selling out shows all over the State ofTexas, and he will be coming home on the weekend of March 19-20 to perform his show “The Story of Boogie Woogie” at the Silvermoon on Broad.
Ezra has been selling out venues around the State, and this will be his first time performing for a hometown audience and it would be great to have a large crowd welcome him home with a show full of music and fun. There will be two performances.
Texarkana-born Ezra Charles’ new one-man show is selling out shows all over Texas, and he will be coming home on the weekend of March 19-20.
Ezra Charles was born in St. Michael’s Hospital right across State Line Ave. and grew up in Wake Village, his father having worked at the Red River Armory during WW II. When he was five, his family relocated to Beaumont, where he met brothers Johnny and Edgar Winter in junior high school. The band they started together (“Johnny and the Jammers”) kindled an interest in rock & roll that never quit, even after he moved to Houston to go to college.
He started fronting one of Houston’s better-known bands (Ezra Charles and the Works) in the early Eighties, winning the annual Houston Press Readers’ Poll for Best Piano/Keyboards seven times, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the San Antonio Blues Society. The band’s most memorable trademarks were his fiery piano style and his all-girl horn section. The music they played consisted mainly of songs written by Ezra that fill the ten CD’s they released. After thirty years, and concerts all over the world, he decided it was time for something different.
With the end of that era at hand, Ezra decided to reveal where rock & roll really came from, and introduced a new solo presentation he calls “The Story of Boogie Woogie.” This show runs about two hours with an intermission, during which he not only performs many of the classic piano pieces that define that genre, he also explains in fascinating detail how it was created in East Texas lumber camps in the 1880’s and spread all over the world, with definite connections to Marshall TX and Texarkana.
“Nobody doesn’t like boogie woogie!” is Ezra Charles’ jumping-off point, as he weaves the history of this jumping, jiving piano format. Peppering the humorous dialogue with stories of his own interaction with the Masters, he performs many of the most famous standards of this genre as he explains the relationship between Blues, Jazz, Ragtime and what was originally called “Texas-Style Piano.” Accompanied on percussion by his son Jakob Helpinstill, a jazz graduate of Houston’s Performing Arts High School, they re-create the excitement of this favorite piano sound from a century ago.
After sold-out shows around Texas over the last year, the Texarkana debut now comes to the Silvermoon Theater on Broad. This will be a two performance event on Saturday, March 19, at 7:30 PM, followed by a matinee on Sunday at 2:30. Tickets are $20 per person, available through the website www.ezracharles.com/calendar, or by calling 713-202-1529. Tickets at the door will be $25.