Friday, November 28, 2014

The Lead Sheet: Twin Cities Live Jazz, November 28-December 4



Cecile McLorin Salvant with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, December 2 at Orchestra Hal

© Andrea Canter

Star-bright visitors help usher in a month of holiday delights this week, while some local heavyweights kick off the weekend. Don't let Black Friday chaos keep you from enjoying some outstanding music!



Big Gigs This Week

Graydon peterson
Friday, November 28. Off the map for a while this fall, the Graydon Peterson Quartet roars back at Jazz Central tonight. Trumpeter Adam Meckler is back from his European tour with Youngblood Brass, adding his horn to the leader's basslines and dynamic contributions from guitarist Vinnie Rose and drummer Adrian Suarez. Original fare keeps your ears on edge.



At the Black Dog, Saturday Night Jazz takes a break and instead we have a jazz feast tonight with three creative "chefs"-- Steve Kenny, Chris Bates and Davu Seru. Pretty much anything can happen.



Dave King at the Icehouse
A multi-night "Dave King Take-Over" at the Icehouse has its jazziest set tonight with the Dave King Trucking Company filling any late-night gaps in entertainment. Brandon Wozniak, Erik Fratzke and Adam Linz play original compositions, with Dave's more punk-flavored Gang Font (with Fratzke, Bryan Nichols and Greg Norton) playing an even later set.  (Rock and roots bands Loves Cars and Red Daughters close out the Take Over tomorrow.)



Patty and the Buttons (press photo)
Saturday, November 29. It's hard to imagine more family fun at a jazz gig than the CD Release Party for Patty and the Buttons' latest, The Mercury Blues. The early afternoon celebration takes place at the historic Heights Theater, complete with the Wurlitzer organ, silent film clips, and a special appearance by Davina ("and the Vagabonds") Sowers and Zack Lozier. The new recording features a raft of originals and appealing vocals from accordion master Patrick Harison, along with a handful of early 20th century blues and swing covers.



Emerson Hunton
Perhaps as opposite as you can get in one day, drummer Emerson Hunton takes a brief break from studies at Oberlin to bring a band to Jazz Central, part of the bimonthly Jazz Police Young Artists Showcase. It's a band that truly merges Emerson's past local exploits and his current influences at Oberlin-- he's featuring two Oberlin pals, Noah Gershwin (guitar) and Nathan Rice (saxophones), along with young rising star trumpeter Jake Baldwin and former mentor, bassist Adam Linz. The set list includes original music from the musicians as well as some newly arranged covers.  Definitely from the 21st century.



Miguel Hurtado
Late Night at the Dakota will present the current version of what was originally Courageous Endeavors. But with the "Courageous" moniker outdated with Brian Courage's move to New York last fall, the remaining "Endeavors" (Miguel Hurtado, Nelson Devereaux and Joe Strachan) are updating -- so expect some surprises.



Sunday, November 30. Former Twin Cities resident now based in Omaha, Luke Polopnik is in town for a bit and will mix it up in a free improv trio at the Black Dog early this evening with the always inventive saxman George Cartwright and percussion/electronics wizard Tim Glenn.



Joey D
Monday, December 1. With his first holiday album released last month, B-3 prodigy-turned-legend Joey DeFrancesco returns to the Dakota for a night of seasonal gems, with guitarist Jeff Parker and drummer George Fludas filling out the trio. Likely Joey will pull out the trumpet for a couple tunes too.



Check out up-and-coming talents when the Minnesota Youth Jazz Band holds its fall show at Famous Dave's in Uptown, with a special appearance from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Jazz I ensemble opening for the high school stars. A number of UW-EC musicians got their start with MYJB. Bandleader/educator Dave Mitchell has helped launch many careers!



Corey Healy
At the Icehouse, Luke Polopnik celebrates a CD release as the duo Type Type with drummer Cory Healey and introduces local audiences to his Omaha-based organ trio with Mitch Town (B-3) and Dana Murray (drums); rounding out a triple-set "Jazz Implosion" is the quartet Mancrush (Lars-Erik Larsen, Zacc Harris, Brandon Woziak and Bryan Nichols).


Tuesday, December 2. It's First Tuesday which usually means it's Dean Magraw and Davu Seru at the Black Dog. Dean's on the road, so tonight Davu pairs up with flautist Faye Washington for what should prove to be a very interesting evening of flute/percussion adventures.



Wynton Marsalis
The holiday season gets a big boost as Orchestra Hall presents Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with special guest vocalist, Cecile McLorin Salvant. Wynton and JACLO are no strangers to Orchestra Hall, and each visit typically is a season highlight. But add to the mix the most celebrated vocalist of the past two years, one who captured Best Vocalist, Best Album and Best New Artist Awards from various critics' polls in 2013 and 2014, as well as winning the 2010 Thelonious Monk Vocal Competition at age 20. Salvant has incredible range both vocally and conceptually, enticing audiences with songs from Bessie Smith through Ella and her own originals that seem to spring out of a Betty Carter/Abbey Lincoln songbook. 
Jeremy Walker
Following this show, stick around for the inaugural Jazz in the Target Atrium event, curated by Jeremy Walker and tonight featuring several horns of JACLO (Ted Nash, Marcus Printup and Vincent Gardner) with Walker's "Bootet" (Anthony Cox, JT Bates).



Wednesday, December 3. It's beginning to be a monthly event on a Foodie Night: The Travis Anderson Trio swings again, hard, with bassist Steve Pikal and drummer Nathan Norman supporting a young master of swing and stride piano. Travis and friends will swing you into oblivion and have a lot of fun along the way. No cover -- it's Foodie Night!



Phil Mattson Singers
Thursday, December 4. The Phil Mattson Singers return to vocal night at Jazz Central, with a change or two in personnel but no change in their spot-on harmonies that recall the great vocal ensembles and feature a book of familiar and less familiar tunes. Phil himself lends orchestral accompaniment from a single piano.



At Khyber Pass, Thursday night music continues with the spotlight on percussionist Davu Seru. This is one of the most intimate settings for jazz in the Twin Cities -- and where else can you order Afghani chutneys and tea with your avant garde jazz?



More Jazz This Week!

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, November 28. Todd Harper at the Black Dog; Irv Williams and Steve Blons, happy hour at the Dakota; Tony London Trio at Parma 8200, Luke Polopnik and James Buckley, dinner sets at the Icehouse



Saturday, November 29. Maurice Jacox, brunch at Hell's Kitchen; Frankhouse at Hell's Kitchen; JoAnn Funk and Jeff Brueske at the Lobby Bar (Saint Paul Hotel); Benny Weinbeck Trio at Parma 8200; Nachito Herrera at the Dakota



Sunday, November 30. Patty and the Buttons, brunch at the Aster Cafe; Zacc Harris Trio at Riverview Wine Bar



Monday, December 1. Charmin Michelle and Denny Malmberg at Fireside Pizza; Zack Lozier at Jazz Central
Denny Malmberg



Tuesday, December 2. Bill Simenson Orchestra at Jazz Central; Beasley's Big Band at O'Gara's



Wednesday, December 3. Charmin Michelle and Denny Malmberg at Fireside Pizza; Parisota Hot Club at The Tangiers; Connie Evingson with Adi Yeshaya and Gordy Johnson, Jazz in the Lounge at the Minneapolis Woman's Club; Three Loud Trio at Cafe Maude



Thursday, December 4. Moonlight Serenaders with Lee Engele at Wabasha Street Caves; Patrick Harison at Cafe Maude; Gypsy Mania at Hell's Kitchen; Katia Cardenas with Dave Martin at the Driftwood CharBar



Coming Soon!

. December 5-8, White Christmas with Maude Hixson and Rick Carlson at the Heights Theater

. December 5, Larry McDonald Holiday Show at The Nicollet

. December 6, Atlantis Quartet at the Black Dog

. December 6, Babatunde Lea Quintet, Jazz at Studio Z

. December 6, Dan Newton's Cafe Accordion, Jazz @ St Barney's at St Barnabas Lutheran Church

. December 6, Katia Cardenas Quartet, Late Night at the Dakota

. December 7, Century Jazz Ensemble Holiday Show at Century College

. December 8, Thomas Strommen at Jazz Central

. December 9, Maryann Sullivan and Corner Jazz at The Nicollet

. December 11, Charles Lazarus "Merry and Bright" at Wayzata Community Church

. December 12, Connie Evingson with Rick Carlson at Parma 8200

. December 13, PipJazz Holiday Concert at Maplewood Community Center Theater

. December 13, Red 5 at the Black Dog

. December 14, Maudi Hixson, Wolverines, Bob DeFlores films, "Let It Snow" at the Capri Theater

. December 14, Medeski, Scofield, Martin and Wood at First Avenue

. December 15, Larry McDonough Holiday Show at the Icehouse

. December 15-16, Roberta Gambarini at the Dakota

. December 16, Adam Meckler Orchestra at Jazz Central

. December 18, Mike Lewis solo at Khyber Pass

. December 19, Barbara Meyer and Phil Mattson at the 318 Cafe

. December 19 & 21, Doc Severinsen with the Minnesota Orchestra at Orchestra Hall

. December 20, Twin Cities Jazz Sampler at Jazz Central

. December 20, Peterson Family "Jam Before Christmas" at the Dakota

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

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

. December 27, Big Band Christmas, Jazz @ St Barneys at St Barnabas Lutheran Church

. December 27, Fat Kid Wednesdays at the Black Dog

. December 27, Aaron Hedenstrom, Jazz at Studio Z

. December 27, Laura Caviani and Bob Bowman at Jazz Central

. December 31, Jazz Awards Night at Jazz Central

. January 9, Joel Shapira/Dean Granros CD Release at the Black Dog

. January 10, Bill Carrothers Trio, Jazz at Studio Z

. January 17, Joan Griffith and Reuben Ristrom at Hosmer Library

. January 20-21, Jose James at the Dakota

. January 22, David Berkman at Orchestra Hall (Target Atrium)

. January 25, Leigh Kamman Memorial Tribute at the Saint Paul Hotel (Ballroom)

. January 25, Chris Potter Quartet at the Dakota

. January 27-28, Dianne Reeves at the Dakota

. February 13, The Assad Brothers with Romero Lubambo at the Dakota

. March 9, David Sanchez Quartet at the Dakota

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

. March 15, Jazz Mn Orchestra with Pete Christlieb at Hopkins High School Auditorium

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

. March 29, Tierney Sutton and Mark Summer at the Dakota

. April 16, Anthony Cox and Jeremy Walker, "Rage of Achilles" at Orchestra Hall (Target Atrium)

. April 25, JazzMN Orchestra with Bob Mintzer at Hopkins High School Auditorium

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

. May 8, Ron Miles at Orchestra Hall, Target Atrium




Babatunde Lea brings his quartet to Jazz at Studio Z on December 6









Friday, November 21, 2014

The Lead Sheet: Twin Cities Live Jazz, November 21-27


JazzMN Orchestra, coming November 22
© Andrea Canter

Thanksgiving isn't here til late next week yet just the options on Saturday night alone give jazz fans a lot to be thankful for. Or frustrated by. How many of these tempting events can one hit in one night? Think of this weekend as one big jazz buffet! And stick around for the desserts that follow into our holiday week.



Peter Vircks
Big Gigs This Week

Friday, November 21. Making his Jazz Central debut on the weekly "Bridge Series," saxophonist Peter Vircks brings in a stellar ensemble tonight, with Brian Ziemniak on keys, Ron Evaniuk on bass and Kevin Washington on drums. Expect some originals and inventive covers from hard bop and beyond.



Davu Seru
At the Black Dog, the new exhibit of artist Ann Elias is celebrated with intriguing music from a group of the Twin Cities'  most compelling improvisers -- George Cartwright, Michelle Kinney and Davu Seru. They will be followed by the always-worth-finding-parking Donald Washington Quartet with Brian Roessler, Erik Jacobson and son Kevin Washington... who might be late coming from Jazz Central?



More sublime, it's Arne Fogel night at Parma 8200. Enjoy Crosby, Sinatra and more with a steaming bowl of pasta.



Friday & Sunday, November 21 & 23. Led by master educator and vibraphonist Dave Hagedorn, the award-winning jazz ensembles of St. Olaf College present their fall concerts this weekend at the Pause in Buntrock Center on campus. Friday night, Jazz I joins up with visiting percussion duo Brad Dutz and Chris Wabich; on Sunday, Jazz II and III perform (4:30 pm).



Pippi Ardennia
Saturday, November 22. Hot gigs from St. Paul to St. Barneys! Moving east to west, start out in Maplewood (Maplewood Community Center) for the annual PipJazz Youth All-Stars concert featuring bluesy soulful singer Pippi Ardennia, a house band with Brian Christianson, Jay Young and Glenn Swanson, and spotlight on young performers Levi Schwartzberg, Ebonee Rainwater, Maggie Kjeer and Jo Schad.



Chris Lomheim
At the Black Dog, enjoy new compositions and music from a new recording from the Chris Lomheim Trio. Lomheim recently teamed up with long-time pals Gordy Johnson and Jay Epstein to produce Timeline, and tonight Andrew Bergmann fills in for Gordy as the trio revisits the October CD release as well as some newer tunes. Opening for this Saturday Night Jazz gig will be virtuoso Joel Shapira on solo guitar.



At Hopkins High School, the JazzMN Orchestra continues its season with a salute to the music of "Little Big Bands" featuring a scaled-down JazzMN performing works written for ensembles of 8-14 musicians. Featured will be vocalist Charmin Michelle debuting two pieces written for her by Adi Yeshaya, and saxophonist Pete Whitman with an original work composed for his X-Tet.



Phil Mattson Singers
Over in Plymouth, the Jazz @St. Barney's concert tonight features the Phil Mattson Singers, returning to the St. Barnabas Center for the Arts with a raft of songs from the Great American Songbook and beyond, tightly arranged by Phil Mattson to show off the group's impeccable harmonies.



Brian Ziemniak
Monday, November 24. The Jazz Central "Featured Artist" is keyboard specialist Brian Ziemniak, who brings in a quintet testing out some new compositions for Brian's upcoming recording. And speaking of new recordings, you can be part of the live audience as the Atlantis Quartet records at the Icehouse for a release later in 2015.  More sublime and just as late, vocalist Rhonda Laurie returns to Barbette, a perfect accompaniment for coffee and carrot cake on the late night menu.



Romero Lubambo
Tuesday, November 25.  Last February, guitarist Sharon Isbin headed led "Guitar Passions" at the Dakota with Stanley Jordan and Romero Lubambo. Tonight she's back in duo with Brazilian magician Lubambo, and you can count on an evening of simply gorgeous guitar.



Wednesday, November 26. We don't hear enough from the Enormous Quartet. With Chris Thomson (saxes), Park Evans (guitar), Chris Bates (bass) and Joey Van Phillips (drums), these creative collaborators enliven the pre-holiday ambience at Cafe Maude. You can make the pie in the morning.



More Jazz This Week! More Jazz!

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, November 21. Irv Williams and Steve Blons, happy hour at the Dakota; Todd Harper, solo piano at the Black Dog; Augsberg College Jazz Ensemble in Hoversten Chapel; Hamline University Jazz Ensembles in the Anne Smiley Theater (Hamline); Vic Volare at Hell's Kitchen; Bryan Nichols and James Buckley, dinner sets at the Icehouse



Reynold Philipsek and Matt Senjem
Saturday, November 22. Joann Funk and Jeff Brueske in the Lobby Bar (Saint Paul Hotel); Reynold Philipsek, Matt Senjem and Michael Bissonnette at the 318 Café; Benny Weinbeck Trio at Parma 8200; Kronick Quintet at NOLA Bistro (Osseo); Patrick Harison and James Buckley, dinner sets at the Icehouse; BDP (Kinghorn/Baldwin) at Jazz Central



Sunday, November 23. Gustavas Adolphus College Jazz Lab and Jazz Ensemble at Bjorling Recital Hall (St. Peter, MN); John Paulson Big Band at the Wellington Pub (Winona, MN); Zacc Harris Trio at Riverview Wine Bar



Monday, November 24. Charmin Michelle and Denny Malmberg at Fireside Pizza


Tuesday, November 25. Century College Jazz Ensemble at Minnesota Music Cafe; Minnesota State University Mankato Jazz Big Bands at Hailing Recital Hall (Mankato, MN); Twin Cities Latin Jazz Orchestra at Jazz Central; Cafe Accordion at Loring Pasta Bar; Jake Hanson and James Buckley at Cafe Maude


Wednesday, November 26. Charmin Michelle and Denny Malmberg at Fireside Pizza; Lila Ammons Trio at The Tangiers


Thursday, November 27. Connie and Herb at The Bean; Swingbeat Big Band at Wabasha Street Caves



Coming Soon!

. November 28, Seru/Bates/Kenny at the Black Dog

. November 28, Dave King Trucking Company at the Icehouse
. November 29,  Emerson Hunton Quintet (Jazz Police Young Artists Showcase) at Jazz Central
. November 29, Endeavors at the Dakota (Late Night)
. December 1, Joey DeFrancesco Trio at the Dakota
. December 1, Zack Lozier at Jazz Central
. December 2, Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis and Cecile McLorin Salvant at Orchestra Hall, followed by opening of Jazz in Target Atrium series, with Jeremy Walker's Bootet and members of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra
. December 4, Phil Mattson Singers at Jazz Central
. December 6, Atlantis Quartet at the Black Dog
. December 6, Babatunde Lea Quintet, Jazz at Studio Z
. December 8, Thomas Strommen at Jazz Central
. December 9, Maryann Sullivan and Corner Jazz at The Nicollet
. December 13, PipJazz Holiday Concert at Maplewood Community Center Theater
. December 13, Red 5 at the Black Dog
. December 14, Maudi Hixson, Wolverines, Bob DeFlores films, "Let It Snow" at the Capri Theater
. December 14, Medeski, Scofield, Martin and Wood at First Avenue
. December 15-16, Roberta Gambarini at the Dakota
. December 16, Adam Meckler Orchestra at Jazz Central
. December 18, Mike Lewis solo at Khyber Pass
. December 19, Barbara Meyer and Phil Mattson at the 318 Cafe
. December 20, Twin Cities Jazz Sampler at Jazz Central
. December 21-22, Karrin Allyson Holiday Show at the Dakota
. December 25-28, The Bad Plus at the Dakota
. December 27, Fat Kid Wednesdays at the Black Dog
. December 27, Aaron Hedenstrom, Jazz at Studio Z
. December 27, Laura Caviani and Bob Bowman at Jazz Central
. December 31, Jazz Awards Night at Jazz Central
. January 9, Joel Shapira/Dean Granros CD Release at the Black Dog
. January 10, Bill Carrothers Trio, Jazz at Studio Z
. January 20-21, Jose James at the Dakota
. January 22, David Berkman at Orchestra Hall (Target Atrium)
. January 25, Leigh Kamman Memorial Tribute at the Saint Paul Hotel (Ballroom)
. March 12, 2015, Jack DeJohnette at Walker Art Center, McGuire Theater
. March 15, Jazz Mn Orchestra with Pete Christlieb at Hopkins High School Auditorium
. March 25-26, Delfeayo Marsalis (Southern Gentleman) at the Dakota
. March 29, Tierney Sutton and Mark Summer at the Dakota
. April 16, Anthony Cox and Jeremy Walker, "Rage of Achilles" at Orchestra Hall (Target Atrium)
. April 25, JazzMN Orchestra with Bob Mintzer at Hopkins High School Auditorium
. May 2, 2015, Jason Moran and Robert Glasper at Walker Art Center, McGuire Theater
. May 8, Ron Miles at Orchestra Hall, Target Atrium



Joey D - Coming to the Dakota on December 1



















Thursday, November 13, 2014

The Lead Sheet: Twin Cities Live Jazz, November 14-20




Dean Granros -- quartet at Studio Z on November 15th
© Andrea Canter

We really don't need the drastic plunge in temperatures to remind us that the holidays are coming. Thanks to the ever-impatient media, we have daily (hourly?) hints of the sounds, sights and tastes of the season. On the plus side, it seems more and more special music events are filling the rest of the 2014 calendar, including some jazz CD release celebrations, the launch of the new MacPhail "Spotlight" season, a "spotlight" on a young up-and-comer, and more.

Big Gigs This Week

Friday, November 14. Vocalist Barbara Meyer is known among cabaret and theater fans, maybe less so among local jazzers. Her new album with pianist Phil Mattson, Down and Up With Love: The Truth From Harold Arlen, should clarify her talents. Like the great music storytellers, Meyer adds heart and drama to lyric, and Harold Arlen wrote some doozies. Barbara and Phil cover some of the best known including That Old Black Magic, but they also introduce many of us to the less familiar of Arlen's love (or anti-love) songs, including a sarcastic, over-the-top delight, "I Don't Think I'll End It All Today." The CD release will be celebrated at The Nicollet. There will be enough swing for the dance community to turn out but don't let yourself be distracted from the words or the interpretations that Barbara delivers.



The lyrics and stories are also essentials to every performance from Maud Hixson, who tonight joins Rick Carlson and Gordy Johnson at Parma 8200.  No matter what the context, you can count on Maud to introduce you to a new tune, a new songwriter, or simply a new reading.



Saturday, November 15. Jazz at Studio Z continues its season of Saturday night jazz with a double guitar quartet headed by the dean of guitar, Dean Granros. Dean's partners tonight include fellow guitarist (and series curator) Zacc Harris, bassist Chris Bates and drummer Jay Epstein, and the concert follows a free, public master class with Dean teaching us about blues concepts in improvisation. 



Nachito Herrera
In Minneapolis, the MacPhail Center for Music launches a new season of "Spotlight" concerts, headed by artistic director/conductor Mischa Santoro. Tonight it's "Reflection," original works performed by Cuban jazz master Nachito Herrera, gospel singer, producer and educator J.D. Steele, and high-end accompanist, cellist Jacquelin Ultan. Minneapolis' Riverview Wine Bar also hosts a too-rare solo evening with another of the area's guitar wizards, Dean Magraw. Alone with 2 or 3 guitars, Dean is as likely to channel Coltrane as a rock or folk tale.



Sunday, November 16. Laura Caviani has long been a favorite performer and composer on the Twin Cities Jazz Scene, but this afternoon, she dons a new hat--conductor and director of jazz ensembles at Carleton College in Northfield, presenting the many talents of the student jazz band.



Bethlehem Lutheran  Church will host the fall installment of Framework's collaboration with the Bach Society. The jazz trio (Chris Olson, Chris Bates and Jay Epstein) have joined forces with the classical ensemble for the past three years, and tonight add in the extra musical attraction of recorder specialist Clea Galhano. To quote Chris Bates, "Fun stuff!"



Charlie Lincoln
Monday, November 17. Usually the "Featured Artist" series at Jazz Central brings attention to a veteran artist, or on occasion to a young up-and-coming talent. But a high school senior? Tonight's featured artist is 17-year-old bassist Charlie Lincoln, pride of South High, member of the Dakota Combo, and recently on several area stages with the great Eric Kamau Gravatt and Source Code.  Tonight Charlie reprises a new band that debuted at the recent Zeitgeist New Music Cabaret, with Levi Schwartzberg, Peter Goggin, Benjamin Beyene, Gavin Brehn and Sam Stroup. Says Charlie, "Original compositions and arrangements by yours truly played by some master musicians... Nonjazzers fear now-- there will be something for everybody at this show!"



Jake Baldwin
A relative veteran in comparison, 20-something Jake Baldwin and Cameron Kinghorn bring their new BDP Quintet back to the Dakota after their auspicious premiere on the Late Night calendar little over a week ago. But tonight it's prime time. Kinghorn, who also plays trumpet, has a voice touched with Chet Baker, perfect for the band's broad repertoire of jazz, R&B and touches of pop. Baldwin, trumpet and sometimes trombone, leads the very musical combinations with Ted Godbout on keys, Andrew Foreman on bass and Andres Crovetti on drums.

Jay Epstein (Framework, Firebell)
Later in the evening, Firebell (Jay Epstein, Graydon Peterson and Park Evans) celebrates its new recording at the Icehouse. Impossible Vacation promises to be filled with intrigue and unique compositions, like this mighty threesome.



Tuesday, November 18. It's Big Band night at Jazz Central, tonight with the Explosion Big Band led by Doug Haining and Scott Agster, and featuring an all-star cast blazing through modern charts. Sit close-- it's not electrically charged! Enjoy big band music as it was intended to be heard! And if one big band is not enough, take in another as the Jack Brass Band holds their monthly gig at The Amsterdam in St Paul. Between the two gigs, there might not be too many big band specialists on the loose tonight!



Thursday, November 19. The Charlie Christenson Standards Trio is the latest project from the nationally renowned jazz vocalist, composer and arranger. And it's a bit beyond the usual for Jazz Vocal Night at Jazz Central, with Graydon Peterson on bass and Matt Edlund on drums. “We’ve left the piano, the guitar behind,” Christenson says, “but that doesn’t mean we’ve forsaken harmony. Our three unique and singular voices play together in ways that can feel exposed – mostly in a good way."



More Jazz!
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, November 14. Irv Williams and Steve Blons, happy hour at the Dakota; Todd Harper, solo piano followed by Chris Hagedorn Trio at the Black Dog; Charmin and Shapira at Andrew Riverside Presbyterian Church; Dutz/Wabisch Duo followed by Jazz Crew at Jazz Central

Saturday, November 15. JoAnn Funk and Jeff Brueske at the Lobby Bar, Saint Paul Hotel; Mary Louise Knutson and Gary Raynor at Bethlehem Lutheran Church (Minnetonka); Benny Weinbeck Trio, Parma 8200; Parisota Hot Club at Loring Pasta Bar; Sophia Shorai at Hell's Kitchen; Travis Anderson Trio at Normandy Kitchen



Sunday, November 16. Robert Everest, brunch at Maria's; Zacc Harris Trio at Riverview Wine Bar; Jerry O'Hagan Orchestra with Charmin Michelle at Cinema Ballroom; "Lady Be Good: Women Instrumentalists in Jazz" (film), Sound Unseen at the Trylon Microcinema



Monday, November 17. Judi Vinar and Denny Malmberg at Fireside Pizza; Charmin Michelle and MN Jazz All-Stars tribute to Cliff Brunzell at the Minneapolis Woman's Club



Tuesday, November 18. Patty and the Buttons at Cafe Maude; River City Jazz Orchestra at Minnesota Music Cafe; Cafe Accordion at Loring Pasta Bar



Zacc Harris
Wednesday, November 19. Charmin Michelle and Denny Malmberg at Fireside Pizza; McNally Smith X-Tet at Jazz Central Studios; Zacc Harris Trio at Cafe Maude; Byron Johnson Blanchard Quartet at the Black Dog; Parisota Hot Club at The Tangiers



Thursday, November 20. John Devine and Friends at Loring Pasta Bar; Charmin Michelle and Sam Miltich at MacRostie Art Center Fundraiser (Grand Rapids, MN)


Coming Soon!
. November 21, Peter Vircks Quartet at Jazz Central
. November 22, Chris Lomheim Trio at the Black Dog
. November 22, PipJazz Youth All-Stars at the Maplewood Community Center theater
. November 22, JazzMN Orchestra "Music of Little Big Bands" featuring Charmin Michelle at Hopkins High School Auditorium
. Novembe 22, Kinghorn/Baldwin Inc. at Jazz Central
. November 22, Phil Mattson Singers, Jazz @ St Barneys (St Barnabas Lutheran Church)
. November 25, Guitar Passions with Sharon Isbin and Romero Lubambo at the Dakota
. November 29, Jazz Police Young Artists Showcase at Jazz Central (Emerson Hunton and Friends)
. November 29, Endeavors at the Dakota (Late Night)
. December 1, Joey DeFrancesco Trio at the Dakota
. December 2, Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis and Cecile McLorin Salvant at Orchestra Hall, followed by opening of Jazz in Target Atrium series, with Jeremy Walker's Bootet and members of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra
. December 4, Pete Snell Trio, Benefit for Free Arts Minnesota at Shinola Detroit
. December 6, Atlantis Quartet at the Black Dog
. December 6, Babatunde Lea Quintet, Jazz at Studio Z
. December 13, PipJazz Holiday Concert at Maplewood Community Center theater
. December 14, Maudi Hixson, Wolverines, Bob DeFlores films, "Let It Snow" at the Capri Theater
. December 14, Medeski, Scofield, Martin and Wood at First Avenue
. December 21-22, Karrin Allyson Holiday Show at the Dakota
. December 25-28, The Bad Plus at the Dakota
. December 27, Fat Kid Wednesdays at the Black Dog
. December 27, Aaron Hedenstrom (CD release), Jazz at Studio Z
. January 9, Joel Shapira/Dean Granros CD Release at the Black Dog
. January 10, Bill Carrothers Trio, Jazz at Studio Z
. January 20-21, Jose James at the Dakota
. January 22, David Berkman at Orchestra Hall (Target Atrium)
. January 25, Leigh Kamman Memorial Tribute at the Saint Paul Hotel (Ballroom)
. March 12, 2015, Jack DeJohnette at Walker Art Center, McGuire Theater
. March 15, Jazz Mn Orchestra with Pete Christlieb at Hopkins High School Auditorium
. March 25-26, Delfeayo Marsalis (Southern Gentleman) at the Dakota
. April 16, Anthony Cox and Jeremy Walker, "Rage of Achilles" at Orchestra Hall (Target Atrium)
. April 25, JazzMN Orchestra with Bob Mintzer at Hopkins High School Auditorium
. May 2, 2015, Jason Moran and Robert Glasper at Walker Art Center, McGuire Theater
. May 8, Ron Miles, Target Atrium


Sharon Isbin -- performing with Romero Lubambo at the Dakota, November 25

Friday, November 7, 2014

The Lead Sheet: Twin Cities Live Jazz, November 7-13



Tony Malaby comes to the Icehouse with Anthony Cox and JT Bates

© Andrea Canter

As we settle into standard time, shorter days, cooler nights, and the beginning of the holiday media blast, it's comforting to have our favorite jazz venues running at full tilt. This weekend includes the final three nights of the Zeitgeist New Music Cabaret at Studio Z, a favorite voice of jazz in a rare vocal night at the Black Dog, a return engagement at St Barneys with one of the most swinging instrumental duos in any town, and the third and allegedly final installment of the Ella Songbooks with one of our favorite vocal/piano duos at the Jungle Theater. Heading into the week, catch Jon Weber doing a solo "Joplin to Jarrett" show at the Dakota, New York saxphonist Tony Malaby with Anthony Cox at the Icehouse, and the debut of a new ensemble, Percheron, at Khyber Pass. And a lot more for every jazz taste.



Big Gigs This Week

Maryann Sullivan
Friday, November 7. We knew Maryann Sullivan's voice long before we knew she could sing! After years hosting jazz programming on KBEM and MPR, Maryann took her voice to a new level, releasing a CD of swinging covers and starting to perform around the metro, often in the company of a guitar, and sometimes expanding the instrumentation to tackle old-time swing with vocalist Rhonda Laurie as Swing Sister. Tonight Maryann brings her Corner Jazz ensemble to the Black Dog, a rare scheduling of vocal jazz at the little wine bar in Lowertown that is fast becoming one of the area's primo jazz venues (as well as a long-standing spot for all sorts of music).



Steve Kenny
Night two of the Zeitgeist New Music Cabaret at Studio Z features Young Performers (high school students from Perpich Center for Arts Education and the Saint Paul Conservatory for Performing Artists); Struck Percussion -- a quartet covering genres as they inspire new appreciation for percussion instruments; the host Zeitgeist ensemble in a collaboration with classical Indian musicians Nirmala Rajasekar and Thanjavur Muruga Boopathi; and the Steve Kenny Quartet (Brandon Wozniak, Chris Bates and Babatunde Lea), performing excerpts from Kenny's "Ghost Suite" as well as a new quartet from Lea and Bates, some free improv, and the promise of at least one Monk cover.



At Jazz Central, it's an unusual scheduling of ECM recording artists Dans Les Arbres, presented by the Crow with No Mouth concert series. The European artists include Xavier Charles (clarinet, harmonica), Ivar Grydeland (guitar, prepared banjo, sruti box),Christian Wallumrød (prepared piano, harmonium), and Ingar Zach (bass drum, percussion).



Jake Baldwin
If all of the above has not worn you out completely, consider dropping in for Late Night at the Dakota. Trumpeter Jake Baldwin and trumpeter/vocalist Cameron Kinghorn have put together a new ensemble, with Kinghorn focusing on vocals. Dubbed "BDP", the rest of the band includes Ted Godbout on keys, Andrew Foreman on bass, and Andres Crovetti on drums.



Nirmala Rajasekar and Zeitgeist
Saturday, November 8. Night three of the New Music Cabaret starts off with a "Young Performers Showcase" ensemble headed by high school senior bassist Charlie Lincoln and a handful of equally precocious colleagues; the classically bent but never confied sax group, the ANCIA Quartet; a repeat of the Zeitgeist/Nirmala Rajasekar performance of "Summer Rain;" and a finale set from Eric Gravatt and Source Code (with Dave Graf, Solomon Parham, Zacc Harris and Ron Evaniuk).



Rick Carlson and Steve Pikal
If your tastes run more toward the "oldies but goodies" realm, head out to Plymouth for the more than monthly installment of Jazz @ St. Barneys (at St Barnabas Lutheran Church) and a reprise of last spring's dazzling duo, Rick Carlson and Steve Pikal.  Pianist and bassist are long-time collaborators (together and as part of the Wolverines Big Band) and it shows. And a special treat tonight, Rick notes that "This time we're going to give folks a peek behind the curtain by making arrangements on the fly for songs the audience requests (pen and paper will be on the tables)."



Charles Lazarus
Sunday, November 9.  Head downtown (Minneapolis) to Orchestra Hall this afternoon for "American Riffs," another show featuring trumpeter Charles Lazarus and his jazz ensemble (Tommy Barbarella, piano and keyboards; Jeff Bailey, bass; David Schmalenberger, drums; Tonia Hughes, vocals) as they cover Gershwin to Bernstein, some original compositions and a couple arrangements from Dean Sorenson.
 
Connie Evingson
There's two opportunities today to hear vocalist Connie Evingson and pianist Jon Weber, with pal Gordy Johnson on pass, in the third (and they say final) edition of the Ella Songbooks at the Jungle Theater. They sold out the first two editions in early and late summer, each time finding Ella favorites that quickly became crowd favorites. It might be the last of the Songbooks but surly not the last collaboration between Connie and Jon!



Yohannes Tona
Night four of the New Music Cabaret kicks off with the mixed chamber ensemble Skeleton Crew performing works from Philip Glass, David Lang, Marc Mellits, and Missy Mazzoli, followed by the final performance of "Summer Rain" from Zeitgeist and Nirmala Rajasekar; and the closing set from local jazz bassist Yohannes Tona and his ensemble.



Jon Weber
Monday, November 10. As long as he is in town, Jon Weber makes the trip even more worthwhile with a solo night at the Dakota. "From Joplin to Jarrett" will be a romp through the history of jazz piano as only Jon can do, complete with his amazing store of jazz trivia that is only matched by his command of the keyboard in every style from every era.



Tony Malaby
New York-based saxophonist Tony Malaby makes a rare Twin Cities appearance on the Jazz Implosion calendar at the Icehouse tonight, in the fine company of Anthony Cox and JT Bates. A noted improviser and composer, Malaby was named by Downbeat (July 2014) as one of the "80 Coolest Things in Jazz." And he tours and records in fast company, such as his Tamarindo ensemble with William Parker and Nasheet Waits. With Cox and Bates, Tony will also do a public clinic at McNally Smith at 5 pm.



Tuesday, November 11. Every second Tuesday, guitarist Chris Olson brings a pal or two to the Black Dog for A Chris Olson Project. Tonight, double the strings as guitarist Kevin Daley joins Olson.



Cory Healey
Wednesday, November 12. One of the most exciting additions to the local jazz scene in the past year has been drummer Cory Healey. In addition to adding his punctuations to other ensembles, Healey has assembled his Beautiful Happy Sunshine Death Squad Experience, performing tonight at Jazz Central. How can you pass up a band with that name?



Thursday, November 13.  At Jazz Central, veteran singer Joyce Lyons tackles the music of Carmen McRae with a stellar band-- Phil Aaron, Graydon Peterson and Jay Epstein. This crew has performed together regularly out in Delano at Three Crows.  Over in St Paul at Khyber Pass, the Thursday jazz series gets a boost with the debut of Le Percheron, led by bassist Adam Linz and featuring Brandon Wozniak on sax, teen vibes master Levi Schwartzberg, and Cory Healey on drums.



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, November 7. Irv Williams and Steve Blons, happy hour at the Dakota; Todd Harper solo piano at the Black Dog; Andrew Walesch at Parma 8200;



Saturday, November 8. Charmin & Shapira, 12:30 pm at Midtown Global Market; JoAnn Funk and Jeff Brueske in the Lobby Bar, Saint Paul Hotel; Ticket to Brasil at Loring Pasta Bar; Benny Weinbeck Trio at Parma 8200; Tim Sparks and James Buckley, dinner sets at the Icehouse; Talking Strings at Loring Pasta Bar



Sunday, November 9. Zacc Harris Trio at Riverview Wine Bar; Jerry O'Hagan Orchestra with Charmin Michelle at Cinema Ballroom



Monday, November 10. Charmin Michelle and Denny Malmberg at Fireside Pizza; Doug Haining at Jazz Central; Twin Cities Hot Club at Famous Dave's (Uptown)



Rachel Holder Hennig
Tuesday, November 11. Maryann Sullivan and Corner Jazz at The Nicollet; Cafe Accordion at Loring Pasta Bar; Cedar Avenue Big Band at Jazz Central; Rachel Holder Hennig at McNally Smith College of Music; Nova Jazz Orchestra at Minnesota Music Cafe



Wednesday, November 12. Charmin Shapira and Denny Malmberg at Fireside Pizza; Wolverines Trio at Hell's Kitchen



Thursday, November 13. Jack Brass Band at The Amsterdam



Coming Soon!

. November 14, Barbara Meyer and Phil Mattson, CD release at The Nicollet

. November 15, Dean Granros Quartet, Jazz at Studio Z

. November 15, "Reflections" -- new music from Nachito Herrera, JD Steele and Mischa Santora at Antonello Hall, MacPhail Center for Music

. November 16, Carleton College Jazz Ensemble Concert (directed by Laura Caviani), Carleton Concert Hall (Northfield)

. November 17, Charlie Lincoln at Jazz Central

. November 17, Firebell CD release at the Icehouse

. November 18, Jack Brass Band at the Amsterdam

. November 20, Charlie Christenson Standards Trio at Jazz Central

. November 21, Peter Vircks Quartet at Jazz Central

. November 22, Chris Lomheim Trio at the Black Dog

. November 22, PipJazz Youth All-Stars at the Maplewood Community Center theater

. November 22, JazzMN Orchestra "Music of Little Big Bands" featuring Charmin Michelle at Hopkins High School Auditorium

. Novembe 22, Kinghorn/Baldwin Inc. at Jazz Central

. November 22, Phil Mattson Singers, Jazz @ St Barneys (St Barnabas Lutheran Church)

. November 25, Guitar Passions with Sharon Isbin and Romero Lubambo at the Dakota

. November 29, Jazz Police Young Artists Showcase at Jazz Central (Emerson Hunton and Friends)

. November 29, Endeavors at the Dakota (Late Night)

. December 1, Joey DeFrancesco Trio at the Dakota

. December 2, Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis and Cecile McLorin Salvant at Orchestra Hall, followed by opening of Jazz in Target Atrium series, with Jeremy Walker's Bootet and members of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra

. December 6, Atlantis Quartet at the Black Dog

. December 6, Babatunde Lea Quintet, Jazz at Studio Z

. December 13, PipJazz Holiday Concert at Maplewood Community Center theater

. December 14, Maudi Hixson, Wolverines, Bob DeFlores films, "Let It Snow" at the Capri Theater

. December 14, Medeski, Scofield, Martin and Wood at First Avenue

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

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

. December 27, Fat Kid Wednesdays at the Black Dog

. December 27, Aaron Hedenstrom, Jazz at Studio Z

. January 9, Joel Shapira/Dean Granros CD Release at the Black Dog

. January 10, Bill Carrothers Trio, Jazz at Studio Z

. January 20-21, Jose James at the Dakota

. January 22, David Berkman at Orchestra Hall (Target Atrium)

. January 25, Leigh Kamman Memorial Tribute at the Saint Paul Hotel (Ballroom)

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

. March 15, Jazz Mn Orchestra with Pete Christlieb at Hopkins High School Auditorium

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

. April 16, Anthony Cox and Jeremy Walker, "Rage of Achilles" at Orchestra Hall (Target Atrium)

. April 25, JazzMN Orchestra with Bob Mintzer at Hopkins High School Auditorium

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

. May 8, Ron Miles at Orchestra Hall, Target Atrium

Charlie Lincoln - Featured Artist at Jazz Central, November 17