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Top organists from Seattle and Portland join forces in Bellevue next week

Seattle's McTuff merges with Portland's Trio Subtonic at Bake's Place in Bellevue February 18.
Joe Doria/McTuff
Seattle's McTuff merges with Portland's Trio Subtonic at Bake's Place in Bellevue February 18.

Two of the Northwest's finest organ players are combining their talents in Bellevue next Friday night.

Joe Doria represents Seattle, with Galen Clark visiting from Portland for a night of grooves to remember at Bake's Place on Feb. 18. The co-led band includes members of their bands McTuff and Trio Subtonic: Andy Coe and Dan Balmer both on guitars with iconic Seattle drummer D'Vonne Lewis.

Both bands have opened for each other numerous times, but this special occasion brings the bands together like never before. Lewis, a member of the original ("O.G.") McTuff, has also filled the drum seat with Trio Subtonic, notably when they played a studio session at KNKX in 2019, and on the single "Elegy" the same year.

Guitarists Coe and Balmer are both fantastically skilled at playing rhythm guitar in support and lifting off into stratospheric solo explorations. They will pick their spots judiciously and make the most of them.

McTuff 'Stop To See Something' | Live Studio Session

Doria and Clark are both masters of Hammond organ, but equally talented on Fender Rhodes, Wurlitzer and other keyboards. To see and hear these two trade licks is a thrilling prospect. Both have distinctive styles of playing and writing songs, but they're sure to complement each other better than peanut butter and jelly.

Bake's Place in Bellevue is the sight of this "combined forces" exposition, and hopefully just the first of many keyboard collaborations from these two longtime colleagues, friends and now teammates. A slightly different performance, with Portland's Tyrone Hendrix drumming, hits Portland's Goodfoot on Feb. 19.

The New Cool airs Fridays at 9 p.m., hosted by Abe Beeson and produced by KNKX Public Radio in Seattle, Wash.

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Abe grew up in Western Washington, a third generation Seattle/Tacoma kid. It was as a student at Pacific Lutheran University that Abe landed his first job at KNKX, editing and producing audio for news stories. It was a Christmas Day shift no one else wanted that gave Abe his first on-air experience which led to overnights, then Saturday afternoons, and started hosting Evening Jazz in 1998.