Friday, September 12, 2014

The Lead Sheet: Twin Cities Live Jazz, September 12-18

John Raymond Returns to Studio Z with Gilad Hekselman and Colin Stranahann, Saturday

© Andrea Canter

Seems everything has cooled down but live music in the Twin Cities! All Originals Jazz Series first season has ended, but curator Steve Kenny will soon start up Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog; curator Zacc Harris hosts a special Jazz at Studio Z this weekend while gearing up for a fourth season starting later this fall. And the Dakota begins a whirlwind three weeks of top jazz artists. So enjoy the last of the harvest season and cooler days while the jazz fall season is just heating up!

Big Gigs This Week

Dean Granros
Friday, September 12.  Any chance we get to hear guitar hero Dean Granros is a must-do. Long associated with the area's most edgy improvisers, Dean plays less often in the Cities now. Tonight at Jazz Central he joins forces with Zacc Harris, Chris Bates and Jay Epstein for a volcanic double guitar quartet as this week's offering on the Bridge Series. Can't even imagine how good this will be!

If you live west of the Cities or want a bit of an adventure, check out music in Mankato, specifically "Pops at the Kato"-- a new jazz series at the Kato Ballroom, kicking off with Bruce Henry and the Adi Yeshaya Big Band. Bruce is a long-time metro area favorite, even after he moved to Chicago a few years ago; Adi is a terrific pianist, arranger and bandleader.

John Raymond
Saturday, September 13. A three-star homecoming tonight for John Raymond at Studio Z! The native Minnesotan and UW-Eau Claire alum moved out to New York about five years ago and is now considered one of the fast-rising trumpet stars on the Big Apple jazz scene. His new Roots Trio includes two other young New York monsters-- guitarist Gilad Hekselman and drummer Colin Stranahan, and together they are touring the Midwest and stopping in at Terrarium Studios in Minneapolis to make their first recording. On Saturday they will offer a master class (5:30 pm) followed by a Jazz at Studio Z concert (7 pm), both for one cover.

Danny Kusz
Earlier on Saturday you can enjoy about 8 hours of eclectic jazz at the annual Selby Avenue Jazz Festival, starting at 11 am and running til past dark with headliner and Fourplay drummer Harvey Mason. Other acts include Dick and Jane's Big Brass Band, Brio Brass, legends of Walker West, the Heritage Showcase with Jason Weisman and Maurice Jacox, and co-headliner Danny Kusz. It's all free and very family-friendly, taking place as always at the intersection of Milton and Selby Avenues in the heart of Saint Paul.

Debbie Duncan
Sunday, September 14. Remember The Girls? As a long-running quartet with Lori Dokken, Debbie Duncan, Erin Schwab and Judi Donaghy (Vinar), The Girls could keep you laughing while also making incredible music with their vibrant harmonies and soaring solo voices. Over the years there were some personnel changes, with Patty Peterson and Rachel Holder Hennig taking on roles at one time or another. So why not a reunion gig with all six? This afternoon at Unity Christ Church in Golden Valley, The Girls, all of them, take the stage. Last year the show sold out so check for tickets online (google Unity Christ Church).

Steve Keny
Monday, September 15. Trumpeter Steve Kenny has been so busy curating the summer All Originals series and gearing up for Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog that we might forget his prowess on his horn.  So it is fitting that tonight Kenny is in the spotlight as the Featured Artists at Jazz Central, playing with Ted Godbout, Mac Santiago and his long-time bassist Adam Tucker.

JT's Jazz Implosion at the Icehouse features Jacob Hanson on guitar with James Buckley and JT himself on the first set; the second set marks the return of "Real Bulls," the drum duo of JT Bates and Dave King. New York jazz at its finest, right here in south Minneapolis.

Meshell Ndgeocello
Tuesday, September 16. The unclassifiable vocalist/bassist Meshell Ndgeocello returns to the Dakota tonight. More often under the hip-hop and neo-soul umbrellas, the 10-time Grammy nominee does have some jazz bonafides, from an early-career collaboration with Herbie Hancock to more recent co-composing with Robert Glasper, recording the Nina Simone songbook and coproducing Jason Moran's new tribute to Fats Waller. Anyone's guess what directions she will go at the Dakota!

Over at Jazz Central it's Big Band night with the Explosion Big Band, directed by Doug Haining and Scott Agster, fresh off their gig at the Minnesota State Fair. If the idea of big band in a small room scares you, fear not. There's no amplification and the intimacy of the space can give you a totally new experience-- and new appreciation for--modern big band music.

Nellie McKay
Wednesday, September 17. And speaking of unclassifiable-- what about singer/songwriter/hipster Nellie McKay and the equally genre bending Turtle Island String Quartet? Each has appeared on the Dakota stage, but putting these musicians together seems like spontaneous combustion. The TISQ has taken on jazz icons like John Coltrane, and McKay has included nods to Doris Day and Ella in her shows. Their collaboration here will feature the music of Billie Holiday, Billy Strayhorn and the Weimar cabaret of the 1920s as well as original compositions from the musicians.
Turtle Island String Quartet

Thursday, September 18. The Jazz Central Vocal Jazz Showcase continues with one of the newer talents in the Twin Cities, Katia Cardenas. Katia's resume includes winning the Mac Idol competition at Macalester and leading her a cappella group, Late Night Menu, to the final rounds of auditions for NBC's Sing Off. She'll be showcasing her range of styles from jazz an R&B to pop and soul.

More Jazz Every Night

Keep up with the live jazz scene in the Twin Cities -- check out calendars at Jazz Police, KBEM, Rhythm and Grooves and All About Jazz, as well as here on the blog.  More jazz to tickle your ears:

Friday, September 12. Todd Harper, solo piano at the Black Dog; Irv Williams and Steve Blons, happy hour at the Dakota; Joann Funk Trio at Parma 8200; Twin Cities Jazz Imports with Charmin Michelle at House of Pizza (Sartell); Audiopithecus at the Hat Trick Lounge; Andrew Walesch at the Black Dog

Saturday, September 13. Maurice Jacox at Hell's Kitchen; Benny Weinbeck at Parma 8200; Joann Funk Trio at the Lobby Bar (Saint Paul Hotel); Jay Young and the Lyric Factory at the Dakota
Joann Funk

Sunday, September 14. Jerry O'Hagan's Orchestra with Charmin Michelle at Lakeside Ballroom (Glenwood)

Monday, September 15. Charmin Michelle and Denny Malmberg at Fireside Pizza; Fantastic Merlins at the Black Dog

Tuesday, September 16. Patty and the Buttons at Cafe Maude; River City Jazz Orchestra at Minnesota Music Cafe

Wednesday, September 17. Charmin Michelle and Denny Malmberg at Fireside Pizza; Graydon Peterson Presents (TBA) at Jazz Central; Zacc Harris Trio at Cafe Maude; Bossa Jazz Quartet at The Tangiers

Thursday, September 18. Beasley's Big Band at Wabasha Street Caves; Red Baraat at the Dakota; the Drexel Project at the Icehouse (Chicago and Twin Cities musicians)

Coming Soon!

. September 19, Monk in Motian at Jazz Central

. September 20, Steven Hobert CD Release at Friends Meeting, St Paul

. September 20, Mary Louise Knutson Trio, Jazz @ St Barneys, St. Barnabas Lutheran Church

. September 20, Joel Harrison Trio at Jazz Central

. September 21, Ticket to Brasil, Adieu Summer Concert at Como Park

 .September 22, Horst/Peterson/Schimke/Whitman at the Icehouse (Jazz Implosion)

. September 24, Chick Corea and Vigil at the Dakota

. September 25, The Cookers at the Dakota

. September 25, Joan Griffith at Khyber Pass

. September 26, Pablo Ziegler Tango Project at the Dakota

. September 26, Adam Meckler Orchestra at MacPhail (Antonello Hall)

. September 26, Dave Karr Quartet at Jazz Central

. September 27, Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog begins with How Birds Work

. September 27, Youth Showcase at Jazz Central

. September 28, French 75 with Maud Hixson, Schneider Theater, Bloomington Center for the Arts (2 pm)

. September 29, Framework with Pete Whitman at the Icehouse (Jazz Implosion)

. September 30-October 1, Larry Coryell/Victor Bailey/Lenny White at the Dakota

. October 3, 
. October 6, Ken Thomson Slow-Fast/Seru-Lewis-Fratzke at Icehouse

. October 11, JazzMN Orchestra with Dave Weckl at Hopkins High School Auditorium

. October 12, Laura Caviani and JazzAX at Carleton College (3 pm)

. October 13-14, Roy Hargrove Quintet at the Dakota

. October 17, Dean Magraw/Eric Gravatt CD Release at Landmark Center

. October 18, Chris Lomheim Trio CD release at Studio Z

. October 18-20, Herb Alpert and Lani Hall at the Dakota

. November 5-6, Hiromi Trio Project at the Dakota

. November 6, Terri Lynne Carrington's Mosaic Project (with Rachel Z and Lizz Wright) at O'Shaughnessy
. November 10, Tony Malaby and Anthony Cox at the Icehouse

. December 1, Joey DeFrancesco at the Dakota

. December 2, Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis and Cecile McLorin Salvant at Orchestra Hall

. December 21-22, Karrin Allyson Holiday Show at the Dakota

. December 25-28, The Bad Plus at the Dakota

. March 12, 2015, Jack DeJohnette at Walker Art Center, McGuire Theater

. March 25-26, Delfeayo Marsalis (Southern Gentleman) at the Dakota

. May 2, 2015, Jason Moran and Robert Glasper at Walker Art Center, McGuire Theater

Chick Corea brings Vigil to the Dakota on September 24