The Eddie Morgan Trio Delights Crowd at Rhythm & Spirits

First Friday at Rhythm & Spirits in Atlantic City with Eddie Morgan could give you Jazz, Soul, Funk on popular music. Come out for the food and the experience.

The Eddie Morgan Trio Delights Crowd at Rhythm & Spirits
Eddie Morgan plays trumpet, Darryl Robinson plays keyboard and Jeff Burnside plays drums at Rhythm & Spirits First Fridays.

ATLANTIC CITY – A great night out for me is simply – good music and good food. On the "First Friday" event at Rhythm & Spirits some time ago, the wonderful musicianship and vocals of The Eddie Morgan Trio (Eddie T Morgan, Jr., Jeff Burnside, and Darryl Robinson) had patrons in the booths, the tables, and the bar dancing, laughing, and singing.

After the first set, Robinson, a keyboardist extraordinaire, celebrated his birthday. I, personally was eye hustling the gigantic meatballs (aka Mama’s Meatballs), seafood dishes, and signature pizza at the birthday boy’s table near the stage. This table included ladies who provided some wonderful impromptu background vocals and harmonies for the trio.

Rhythm & Spirits co-owner Lee Sanchez surprised Robinson with a scrumptious chocolate dessert. Sanchez was wearing many hats, so to speak, that night as he was also the sound and lighting technician.

I drank a mocktail consisting of several fruit juices and a slice of lime then attempted to eat their hearty prime rib cheesesteak. Sanchez’s father later remarked with a smile that he saw me struggling to handle this delicious menu item made with slow roasted prime rib, cooper sharp cheese, mozzarella, and melted onions. The sounds and scents at 129 S. Tennessee Avenue spilled out onto the streets along with the good vibes.

The trio’s second set included music by Terence Blanchard, The Temptations, Bill Withers, Teddy Pendergrass and Barry White (Jeff did the Barry White voice and the crowd loved it.). Their third set started out funky with The Commodores’ classic “Brick House” which I jokingly call my theme song.

Morgan, Burnside, and Robinson are music educators, band leaders, and polished musicians in their own right but to experience them in a live setting and watch the power of music take hold of the listener is quite a sight. It is apparent that their chemistry onstage is a combination of friendship, top notch musicianship, and respect. Each member had solos that showcased their skills. Morgan was smooth on the trumpet, Burnside pumped the percussion with his drum solos, and Robinson provided some jazzy keyboard acrobatics. It seemed that he was also trying to ‘take us to church’ on some of his solos.

I sang along, shouted, clapped, and danced by my table through the musical genres of Jazz, Soul, Funk, and Popular music. In fact, this writer had an Anita Baker moment and was ‘caught up in the rapture’ of this terrific trio. So, take a walk on the musical side — Tennessee Avenue (Beach Block) — and experience First Friday-Jazz with Eddie Morgan at Rhythm & Spirits.

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