Thursday, September 6, 2012

The Lead Sheet: Twin Cities Jazz, September 7-13

AQ owner Kenny Horst

© Andrea Canter

Enjoy these lovely late summer days – we know it won’t last. Still time to enjoy dining al fresco, late season flowers, and all-season jazz. And this week presents jazz for all seasons and all tastes, from a neighborhood jazz festival to an evening with master storyteller Ben Sidran to the funk of Marcus Miller.

Highlights This Weekend
Friday, September 7. Last minute change! Instead of the Tuesday Night Band, the Artists Quarter presents a volcanic quartet, with Phil Aaron, Dean Magraw, Billy Peterson and Kenny Horst. Four masters of their instruments and exceptional collaborators as well.

Brad Bellows
Over at the Black Dog, two renowned horn veterans collaborate with their quartet—valve trombonist Brad Bellows and saxophonist Donald Washington. The intimate performance space at the Black Dog serves as an incubator for some interesting inventions when these two artists join forces.

Friday-Saturday, September 7-8. For a night cap, the Icehouse hosts late (11 pm) sets this weekend with firebrand trio Happy Apple (Michael Lewis, Erik Fratzke, Dave King). For these guys, the night is quite young and who knows how late they will go as they explore the far corners of jazz and improvisation?

Looking for a more relaxed evening with sterling vocals? Celebrate the first week of school, the end of summer, the beginning of cooler weather…. Whatever with dinner, drinks, and song bird Maud Hixson on Friday, crooner Arne Fogel  on Saturday at The Lexington, one of the brightest additions to the area music scene with one or two nights of scat and swing every weekend.

Yolande Bruce and Pippi Ardennia
Saturday, September 8. The annual Selby Avenue Jazz Festival gets underway at noon and features the neighborhood event’s usual line up of mostly jazz with some R&B flavorings.  Hear Dick and Jane’s Brass Band, the Walker West Music Academy’s Legends of Jazz,  Brio Brass, the Jazz Heritage Showcase with Pippi Ardennia teaming with Yolande Bruce followed by Timotha Lanae, and the closing set with headliner guitarist Abdul Zuhri and vocalist Cheryl Pepsii Riley. Free admission, concessions, family fun at the intersection of Selby and Milton in St. Paul.

Debbie Duncan
Over at the Artists Quarter (and an easy ride after spending the day at the Selby Avenue festival), one of the great voices of any season takes the stage. Debbie Duncan puts aside any apprehension about the success of a vocalist at the Artists Quarter, packing the house every time and giving everyone her all as entertaining and singer, be it blues, ballads or classic standards.

Saturday marks the opening of a new season of jazz in the Lobby Bar of the St. Paul Hotel.  Pianist/vocalist Joann Funk returns to the lobby with bassist Jeff Brueske for their weekly sets of elegance and good humor. Joann premiered her Blossom Dearie show in August and we can expect some of those songs will find new audience this fall.

Trio Bossa Nova
Sunday, September 9. Put some Latin in your step and samba with Ticket to Brasil, Trio Bossa Nova, Talking Strings and Lee Engele at the Adieu Summer annual concert at Como Lakeside Pavilion.  TTB sponsors this event and will play the opening and closing sets, moving from their typical quintet format to a 10-piece band for the finale. There’s no finer Brazilian band in the region, and both Trio Bossa Nova and Talking Strings share TTB personnel. Outdoors, rain or shine.

It’s time again for the monthly PipJazz Sundays concert at Landmark, hosted by vocalist Pippi Ardennia. Special guest this month is the incomparable Dennis Spears, along with student guest, drummer Jonas Taghavi from Central  High School. These concerts encourage families with a 5 pm start time, and the student guests (as well as 17 year old Zosha Warpeha who plays violin with the house band) inspire their peers to reach as high as they can.

Ben Sidran
At the Dakota, popular pianist, composer and storyteller Ben Sidran returns, this time in support of his new project, “Jews, Music and the American Dream,” highlighting some of the greatest songwriters of all time, from Irving Berlin to George Gershwin and beyond.

Highlights, Week Nights
Monday, September 10. Young saxophonist Nelson Devereaux is turning up all over town as an inventive sideman, but tonight he gets star billing at Jazz Central. A student at the U of M, he has been seen lately with Jake Baldwin, Pat Moriarty, and Adam Meckler. At the Dakota, the dynamic Charmin (Michelle) and (Joel) Shapira expand their duo to a quintet for Charmin & Shapira and Friends, a swinging ensemble to make “Foodie Night” swing and sparkle.

Tuesday/Wednesday, September 11-12. Monster bassist/producer Marcus Miller has a list of Grammies, and now brings his funk-jazz excitement to the Dakota for two nights.

Jack Brass Band
Thursday, September 13. Jack Brass Band seems to be turning up everywhere, and now they have a Thursday night gig at the Icehouse, the hippest new joint in town and one presenting really serious music to some of the most serious listeners around—other musicians. Good timing, as for now they have completed a one-year residency at the Driftwood CharBar in south Minneapolis.

More Music, Every Night
You can find jazz—of every style—most any night of the week in the Twin Cities. Check the calendar on Jazz Police, announcements on KBEM and KFAI, your copy of TCJS CODA, even the Star Tribune or Pioneer Press. Send your gigs to
More suggestions:

Friday, September 7. Bryan Nichols and James Buckley at the Icehouse; Vicky Mountain and James Allen at the Wine Market; Ginger Commodore and Debbie Duncan at the Dakota

Saturday, September 8. Nachito Herrera at the Dakota; Roxy Cruz and Jeremy Walker at Ingredients Café; Lila Ammons Quintet at Honey; Body Omara at Café Maude; Arne Fogel at The Lexington

Sunday, September 9. Dakota Combo Auditions at MacPhail Center for Music (grades 9-12, Noon – 4 pm; auditions only); Zacc Harris Trio at Riverview Wine Bar; River Falls Cultural Project at Emma’s Bar (River Falls); Jerry O'Hagan Orchestra with Charmin Michelle at Cinema Ballroom

Monday, September 10. Charmin Michelle and Denny Malmberg at Fireside Pizza; Milo Fine Free Jazz Ensemble at Homewood Studios; JT’s Jazz Implosion at Icehouse

Tuesday, September 11. Cory Wong Quartet followed by the River Falls Cultural Project at the Artists Quarter; Frankhouse at Hell’s Kitchen; Cedar Avenue Big Band at Jazz Central

Wednesday, September 12. Steve Kenny and the Bastids followed by Lulu’s Playground at the Artists Quarter; Charmin Michelle and Denny Malmberg at Fireside Pizza; Joey Van Phillips and Brandon Wozniak at Café Maude

Thursday, September 13. Lee Engele and Reynold Philipsek at Centennial Lakes Farmers Market (4 pm); Arne Fogel at Hell’s Kitchen; Wolf Jabbr at the Black Dog; Black Heralds Quartet at the Artists Quarter

Coming Soon!
·         September 14-15, Chris Bates’ Red 5 CD Release at the Artists Quarter
·         September 15, Arne Fogel, Jazz @St. Barney’s (St. Barnabas Arts Center, Plymouth)
·         September 18, John Scofield Trio at the Dakota
·         September 19, Delfeayo Marsalis at the Dakota
·         September 21, Saxophone Day at McNally Smith College with Bob Sheppard
·         September 21-22, Bob Sheppard at the Artists Quarter
·         September 26-27, Chick Corea and Gary Burton at the Dakota
.         September 27-29, Horacio "El Negro" Hernandez, Anthony Cox & Brandon Ross at the Icehouse
·         September 28-29, Bryan Nichols Quintet at the Artists Quarter
·         September 30, Esperanza Spalding’s Radio Society at the State Theater
·         September 30, Men With Mics (Gregg Marquardt, Reeves Carey, Dan Ristrom) at the Artists Quarter (TCJS, Jazz From J to Z)
·         October 6, Wayne Bergeron with the JazzMN Orchestra at the Hopkins High School Performing Arts Center
·         October 12-13, Ari Honig Trio with Bill Carrothers at the Artists Quarter
·         October 13, Connie Evingson, Jazz @St. Barney’s (St. Barnabas Arts Center, Plymouth)
·         October 14-15, Cassandra Wilson at the Dakota
·         October 23, Kurt Elling at the Dakota
·         October 30-31, Maria Schneider Orchestra at the Dakota
·         November 4, Spiral Visions (Milne, Hagedorn, Aaron, Lewis, Hey) at Landmark Center (TCJS Jazz From J to Z)
·         November 9, Anat Cohen and Evan Christopher at Minneapolis Convention Center (MN Orchestra)
·         November 10, Anat Cohen and Klezmatics at Minneapolis Convention Center (MN Orchestra)
·         November 11, Duke Ellington Orchestra with Evan Christopher at Minneapolis Convention Center
·         November 11, PipJazz Sundays Youth Showcase at Landmark Center
·         November 12-13, Bettye LaVette at the Dakota
·         November 26-27, Karrin Allyson at the Dakota
·         December 7, Manhattan Transfer at the Dakota
·         December 12-13, John Pizzarelli at the Dakota
·         December 14-15, Reid Anderson, Jeff Ballard, SPCO, Liquid Music at SPCO Music Room
·         December 27-29, Bad Plus at the Dakota

Delfeayo Marsalis, coming to the Dakota September 19th 

(All photos by Andrea Canter)