Wednesday, August 26, 2015

The Lead Sheet: Twin Cities Live Jazz, August 28-September 3

Tanner Taylor, coming to Crooners Lounge on September 1

 © Andrea Canter
Summer might be waning but the jazz calendars are anything but. Outdoor music and festivals are winding down, but tickets are on sale for the new Eight O'Clock Jump Series at Walker West (starting September 6) and Crooners Lounge is jump-starting its new Tuesday Night series on September 1 with a long-overdue visit from Tanner Taylor. The coming weekend and week also feature a CD release at the Black Dog from trombonist and master educator Dean Sorenson, a series debut for No Room for Squares at The Nicollet, back to back nights at the Dakota with Tootie Heath and Terence Blanchard, Maud Hixson back at Parma 8200, music of all sorts on various stages at the Stage Fair..... and the beat goes on.

Big Gigs This Week
Friday, August 28. Heading out to the Fair? The swinging Parisota Hot Club (Robb Henry, Matt Senjem, Jay Epstein and Erin Livingstone) are on the stage at the Ramberg Senior Center for three sets starting at 10:30 am.

Maud Hixson
The patio might be nice this evening but come inside to the bar/lounge at Parma 8200 for songbird Maud Hixson and her intrepid trio with husband Rick Carlson on keys and one of his favorite partners, bassist Steve Pikal. Count on Maud to throw in a few curveballs -- forgotten songs or forgotten songwriters. Clever lyrics are always in her set list.

Bill Stieger
A favorite among local jazz hounds at the 2015 Twin Cities Jazz Festival, No Room for Squares is as old fashioned as it sounds-- this is good ol' bebop at its best, presented by a veteran crew who swing through the best of the era: Drummer Bill Stieger in the driver's seat, Jon Pemberton on trumpet, Jimmie Wallace on sax, Mikkel Romstad on piano and Adam Tucker on bass. They make their debut on the Friday Night Jazz at The Nicollet series.

Jeremy Walker
Start up north in Fridley at Crooners with Katia Cardenas singing her way through happy hour (and again tomorrow night), then head south to St. Paul for the double-header at Vieux Carré. The night kicks off in sublime mode with the Jeremy Walker/Jeff Brueske duo, then turns around and swings the night away with Patty and the Buttons. Come early and chill out, just long enough to energize your ears for some old time swing.

Javi Santiago
A little bit different tonight at Jazz Central: Hard core jazzers Javi Santiago (piano) and Miguel Hurtado (drums) join up with the funky soulful vocalist Taylor Johnson (aka Proper-T) for a new project, dubbed Murkury. The ensemble is described as "an experimental, jazz and electro-soul band."

Sam Miltich
Vocalist Charmin Michelle and guitarist Sam Miltich sound like a heavenly pairing, and tonight they bring their magic to "Take Love Easy," the music of Ella Fitzgerald and Joe Pass, at the Third Place Gallery in south Minneapolis. Normally this is not a music venue but a gallery run by photographer Wing Young Huie, but it will surely be an artful setting for these two musical treasures.

Dean Sorenson
Saturday, August 29.  Dean Sorenson has been long associated with the jazz program at the U of Minnesota, which he has directed for 15+ years, yielding some of the top young jazzers on the Twin Cities scene (aka, Joe Strachan, Nelson Devereaux, Adam Meckler). But Sorenson is also a well respected arranger, composer and trombonist, skills on full display in his Dean Sorenson Sextet. A band of Twin Cities heavyweights (David Milne, Steve Kenny, Chris Lomheim, Tom Lewis, Phil Hey), the sextet will celebrate its first recording (Colors of the Soul) on the Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog series tonight. The music soars with the colors and energy of a big band, yet still retains the intimate collaboration of a chamber ensemble. The opening act, appropriately, features a trio of Dean's past students -- Ryan Christianson (trombone), Matt McIntyre (bass) and Andres Crovetti (drums).

Patty Peterson
At the Dakota, Patty Peterson and Friends returns for a night of soulful jazz and R&B, with Paul Peterson, Billy Franze, Bobby Vandell, Sean Turner and Ronny Loew.

Sunday, August 30. Singer/songwriter and a great jazz interpreter, Barbara Meyer joins Imaginary Numbers ("cool jazz") for an afternoon of music at the Alexis Bailly Vineyard in Hastings, the closing act on the summer's jazz series.

Tonight the Dakota presents a real treat for jazz fans, with a trio led by the great drummer, Albert "Tootie" Heath, in the red hot company of Bad Plus pianist Ethan Iverson and bassist Ben Street. One of the famed Heath Brothers, Tootie's resume covers six decades and includes stints with the likes of John Coltrane. With his much younger cohorts Iverson and Street, Heath recently released Philadelphia Beat, a celebration of his home town.

Chris Thomson Quartet
Over at the Icehouse, there's an early evening show for singer-songwriter Paul Spring's vinyl release, with the Chris Thomson Quartet as the opening act. Saxophonist Thomson always engages a creative group, with his most recent quartet featuring accordionist Patrick Harison, bassist James Buckley and drummer, Dosh.

Explosion Big Band
Monday, August 31. If this is your night at the Fair, check out the AFL/CIO Pavilion at 5 pm for a free gig from the Doug Haining/Scott Agster Explosion Big Band (to be repeated tomorrow night). Another accomplished big band, the Acme Jazz Company, fills their monthly slot at Crooners Lounge.

Terence Blanchard
A major force in jazz trumpet and composition, Terence Blanchard returns to the Dakota with a new "plugged in" project, E-Collective, described as the intersection of jazz, R& B, funk, and fusion. The ensemble features outstanding young pianist Fabian Almazon who has been with Blanchard since 2007. The rest of the band includes guitarist Charles Altura (Chick Corea's Vigil), bassist Donald Ramsey (Dr. John, Irma Thomas), and drummer Oscar Seaton (Ramsey Lewis, Lee Ritenour).

James Buckley
Tonight's Jazz Implosion at the Icehouse is essentially the James Buckley Trio + 1, with guitar wizard Jacob Hanson joining bassist Buckley, pianist Bryan Nichols and drummer/host, JT Bates. Their debut at Studio Z on the All Originals series last month was too good to be an isolated gig.

Tuesday, September 1. It's been about a year since piano monster Tanner Taylor pulled up his Minnesota stakes and returned to his native central Iowa. It's a brief return but a welcome one, and a perfect way to launch the new Tuesday Night instrumental series at Crooners Lounge. Joining Tanner will be Graydon Peterson and Jay Epstein, making it a triple play.

Maryann Sullivan
Making her Vieux Carré debut, vocalist Maryann Sullivan brings her Corner Jazz band to downtown St. Paul for an evening of old-fashioned swing and standards. Her band is a bit different from its usual tonight-- with Doug Haining at the State Fair, the sub on horn is son/trumpeter Preston Haining, visiting from southern California; Javi Santiago takes over the piano bench, with Steve Pikal on bass and older son Trevor Haining on drums.

It's First Tuesdays at the Black Dog, and tonight guitarist Joseph Damman sits in for Dean Magraw with Davu Seru handling percussion.

Robert Everest
Wednesday, September 2. Brazilian-style guitarist Robert Everest and his Expedition play today and tomorrow at the International Bazaar at the State Fair (3 sets starting at 10:45 am). 

Jon Weber
A very special Jazz in the Lounge at the Minneapolis Woman's Club tonight -- host vocalist Connie Evingson welcomes pianist Jon Weber along with frequent guest, saxophonist Dave Karr. (Jon is in town for his Sunday gig with Connie at the Jungle Theater.)

Rhonda Laurie
Thursday, September 3. Vocal Jazz night continues at Jazz Central, now curated by Sarah Greer. Tonight she hosts Vicky Mountain "and Friends"....and her friends are always fabulous-- Phil Aaron on piano and Jim Chenoweth on bass. And vocal jazz rules the evening at Crooners with the Rhonda Laurie Quartet.

Coming Soon!
. September 4, Joel Shapira Trio at Parma 8200
. September 4, Katia Cardenas at Vieux Carré
. September 4, Jon Weber at the Dakota
. September 4, Phil Aaron/Zacc Harris Quartet at The Nicollet
. September 5, Adam Booker Sextet CD Release at Vieux Carré
. September 5, Jana Nyberg Group at Crooners Lounge
. September 5, What Would Monk Do at the Black Dog
. September 6, Nichole Mitchell at Walker West Music Academy
. September 6, Connie Evingson with Jon Weber, Music of David Frishberg at the Jungle Theater
. September 7, Convergence Trio (Michael O'Brien, Joel Shapira, Eric Gravatt) at the Black Dog
. September 7, Dave King Trucking Company at the Icehouse
. September 7-8, Victor Wooten at the Dakota
. September 8, Dave Karr Quartet at Crooners Lounge
. September 9, Dean Magraw solo guitar, American Swedish Institute Ballroom Series
. September 10, Kamasi Washington at the Icehouse
. September 11, Christian Scott and Stretch Music at the Dakota
. September 11, Ron Carter and Golden Striker Trio at Walker West Music Academy
. September 11, Michael O'Brien Trio at The Nicollet
. September 12, Selby Avenue Jazz Festival (Walter Chancellor, Salsa del Soul, Source Code)
. September 12, Peterson Family Tribute to Jeanne Arland Peterson at Vieux Carré
. September 12, Jon Pemberton's Tribute to Lee Morgan at the Black Dog
. September 13-14, Bill Carrothers Trio at Crooners Lounge
. September 15, Butch Thompson and Dean Magraw at Vieux Carré
. September 15, Tommy O'Donnell Trio at Crooners Lounge
. September 17, Patricia Barber at the Dakota
. September 18, Bryan Nichols (Chicago) Quartet at Vieux Carré
. September 18, Seru/Bates/Wozniak at The Nicollet
. September 19, Freedom Jazz Festival at Minnehaha Falls Park
. September 19, Laura Caviani and Dave Milne, Jazz at St Barneys
. September 19, Jay Young and Lyric Factory at the Dakota
. September 19, Paul Harper's Show and Tell at the Black Dog
. September 20, Clarice Assad at the Dakota
. September 22, Chris Lomheim Trio at Crooners Lounge
. September 22-23, Lizz Wright at the Dakota
. September 24, Adam Meckler Orchestra at Vieux Carré
. September 25, Javi Santiago Sextet at Vieux Carré
. September 25, Lucia Sarmiento Quartet at The Nicollet
. September 26, Patty Peterson and Friends with Steve Cole at the Dakota
. September 26, John Penny Trio followed by CD Release "Night Together" at the Black Dog
. September 29, Dave Graf Quartet at Crooners Lounge
. September 29, Red Planet at Vieux Carré
. October 4, Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra at the Dakota
. October 8, Jazz in the Target Atrium (Orchestra Hall), Atrium Jazz Ensemble with Wessell Anderson
. October 13, Phil Hey Quartet at Crooners
. October 16, JT Bates Organ Trio at Vieux Carré
. October 16, Yolande Bruce Group at Walker West Music Academy
. October 20, Laura Caviani Trio with Bob Bowman and Todd Straight at Crooners
. October 25, Benny Green Trio at the Dakota
. November 13, Eric Gravatt and Source Code at Walker West Music Academy
. November 16, Regina Carter's Southern Comfort at the Dakota
. November 19, Jazz in the Target Atrium (Orchestra Hall), Atrium Jazz Ensemble
. November 22-23, Karrin Allyson at the Dakota
. December 2, Diane Schuur at the Dakota
. December 14-15, New York Voices Holiday show at the Dakota

The Dave King Trucking Company, at the Icehouse on September 7

*All photos by Andrea Canter except Tootie Heath Trio (courtesy Chicago Jazz Festival)