Thursday, January 21, 2016

The Lead Sheet: Twin Cities Live Jazz, January 22-28

© Andrea Canter
This week: John Raymond CD release at Vieux Carre'; Dave Karr Quartet in the Dunsmore Room
 A favorite son returns to celebrate what is arguably his best recording yet; another hometown hero celebrates a pretty big birthday with family and friends; a high-profile trio and a should-be high profile trio both play rare home gigs; one of our star composers brings a major work to Orchestra Hall; and three hot shows in a row fill the Dunsmore Room. Just a normal jazzy weekend in the Twin Cities!

Big Gigs This Week
Happy Apple
Friday, January 22. It's a too-rare event these days when Happy Apple performs in home territory. Back from multiple appearances at the New York Winter Jazz Fest, Dave King and pals Mike Lewis and Erik Fratzke take the late night stage at the Icehouse; Tim Sparks and James Buckley offer a more sublime view of the music world earlier in the evening during the dinner hours.

Nick Symans
Younger talents prevail elsewhere tonight: Trombonist Nick Symans brings a quartet of like-minded spirits to the "Masters" sets at Jazz Central --with Ted Godbout on piano, Ted Olsen on bass and Pete James Johnson on drums. The "Young Masters" late set features guitarist Julian Manzara heading a quartet with Levi Schwartzberg on vibes, Drew Stinson on bass and Blake Huebl on drums. 

Will Schmid
At Reverie--the rebranded Nicollet, Friday Night Jazz (at Reverie) opens with the JazzINK Youth Showcase, tonight presenting dazzling teen guitar duo of Will Schmid and Adam Astrup, followed by the latest iteration of President Flow-- Joe Mayo (sax), Josh Granowski (bass) and Rick Nair (drums), along with "surprise guests."

There's more guitar, with Ben Abrahamson and bass cohort Andrew Foreman on the early sets at Vieux Carré, followed by the NOLA-infused sounds of the Southside Aces. Crooners Lounge hosts the always-cool and often-sassy Debbie Duncan and her quartet, performing a tribute to the late Natalie Cole, while Headspace, the former Monday night staple at the old Artists Quarter, takes the stage at the SW Crafthouse (formerly Senor Wong's).
Debbie Duncan

Friday and Saturday, January 22-23. Pianist/vocalist JoAnn Funk, usually with Jeff Brueske on bass, continues the winter edition of Jazz in the Lobby Bar at the Saint Paul Hotel.

Saturday, January 23. Surrounded by one of the best arrays of ethnic treats in the metro, Charmin Michelle and Joel Shapira give us a midday respite (voice and guitar, standards and samba) at Midtown Global Market. And it's the annual Winter Jazz Blast at McNally Smith College, lots of action for student musicians and an evening public concert featuring the JazzMN Orchestra and guest clinician Kenni Holmen, along with the McNally Smith Fusion Ensemble and Serbian Ensemble in the History Theater.

Dave Hagedorn
Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog features students of St. Olaf jazz professor Dave Hagedorn in the opening set, followed by the Good Vibes Trio, led by Chris Bates (bass) with Hagedorn on vibes and Phil Hey on drums. GVT doesn't hit the stage very often these days, but what a treat to the ears when they do -- a chordless "Modern Jazz Quartet" with emphasis on "modern" yet always accessible.  

John Raymond
In the heart of downtown St. Paul, Vieux Carré hosts the local CD release party for Twin Cities native, John Raymond, and his Real Feels trio. Dubbed the Roots Trio when they first toured and recorded the album at Terrarium Studios in Minneapolis, the band includes rising stars on the national scene, Gilad Hekselman on guitar and Colin Stranahan on drums, and of course leader John Raymond exclusively on flugelhorn. The Real Feels album is a magical set of arrangements of music that covers Americana, pop, bebop and more.

Jeremy Walker
Another debut tonight: Jeremy Walker brings his 7 Psalms project to Orchestra Hall. Having performed this full-length work for jazz ensemble and choir twice at Bethel College (including the CD release), Jeremy collaborates with the new American Public Media Radio Choir, conducted by Tesfa Wondemagegnehu, and featuring vocal soloist Jason Harms; Walker appears on piano with jazzers Brandon Wozniak, Jeff Brueske and Tim Zhorne.

Doug Little
In the category of great bands that seldom play these days, saxophonist/flautist Doug Little brings his Seven Steps to Havana to the Dakota tonight, highlighting the rhythms of Cuba with an ensemble of globally-charged musicians--natives of the U.S., Cuba, Mexico, Brazil and Ethiopia.

Billy Peterson
At the Icehouse, Tim Sparks and James Buckley again provide the dinner sets, while later, popular bassist Billy Peterson is back in town, just in time to celebrate his 65th birthday with family and friends, and introducing Minnesota to the charms and talents of Iceland's vocalist Anna Mjöll.

Solomon Parham

Sunday, January 24. 
If you missed John Raymond's CD release last night, you can get a feel for Real Feels as well as learn something at his open Master Class at MacPhail Center for Music this afternoon! At the Bedlam, the now-weekly Solomon's Sessions brings trumpeter Solomon Parham to the stage to lead an open jam/improv session, often with a crew of students from McNally Smith.

Patty Peterson
On the first of three consecutive nights of music in the Dunsmore Room at Crooners, it's another installment of the Birthday Club, led by pianist Dan Chouinard, and tonight featuring vocalist nonpareil Patty Peterson, singing songs from singers and composers with January birthdays! So often heard in larger ensembles, this is a rare opportunity to hear Patty in such an intimate setting where both piano and voice will shine.

Jerry O'Hagen has retired, but his dance band carries on, now under the leadership of Charmin Michelle and Mike Haynes, still most Sundays at Cinema Ballroom. Some room for spectators but this venue is one big dance floor and orchestra stage! The swing era comes to life - bring your dancing shoes.

Rachel Holder
Monday, January 25. "In the Crook" is a new monthly series in the Dunsmore Room at Crooners, putting one of our talented local singers "in the crook" of the Bösendorfer with such talented pianists as Rick Carlson. Tonight Rick supports Rachel Holder, one of the area's accomplished and most versatile vocalists. Rachel has performed with The Girls, The Wolverines, The George Maurer Group, Vital Organ, Reception Jazz, The Modd Squad, and Bruce Henry Band, and teaches at McNally Smith.

Thomas Strommen
In the spotlight at Jazz Central, yet another of the area's Young Lions -- saxophonist Thomas Strommen. Still engaged in college studies (at the U of M), Thomas is a veteran performer, playing with the Dakota Combo during his senior year of high school, leading the quartet Dark Blue for several years, and on the front line with Steve Kenny's Group 47 since its inception.

Thomas Nordlund
At the Icehouse, a double-header for JT's Jazz Implosion starts with a heady trio of JT (drums), Anthony Cox (bass) and Paul Metzger (guitar and banjos), followed by the CD release for baritone guitarist Thomas Nordlund, and his young lions' ensemble (Ben Abrahamson on guitars, Jake Baldwin on trumpet, Kevin Gastonguay on keys, Andrew Foreman on bass and Lars-Erik Larson on drums. They will be playing the new album, Divide Avenue, front to back.

Dave Karr
Tuesday, January 26. And the third consecutive night in the Dunsmore Room, the Tuesday Instrumental Jazz series presents beloved octogenarian reed man Dave Karr and his quartet--Phil Aaron on piano, Gordy Johnson on bass and Phil Hey on drums. Karr seldom takes the spotlight, but anytime he is on stage, the spotlight just naturally falls on Dave, one of the primo purveyors of bebop (and beyond) in the metro.

At Jazz Central, it's big band night, with the Twin Cities Latin Jazz Orchestra taking their turn on the fourth Tuesday, under the batons of leaders Geoff Senn and Mac Santiago.

Vieux Carré brings back two favorites, Chris Lomheim on solo piano for the early sets, followed by vocalist Connie Evingson's "Hot Jazz" sets.

Dean Magraw
Wednesday, January 27. One of the most distinctive pairs in metro jazz, as well as one of the most eclectic, pianist Butch Thompson and guitarist Dean Magraw will fill the room at Vieux Carré. And in their own salute to New Orleans, drummer JT Bates and pals Joel Schaan (guitar and vocals), Jim Anton (bass) and Kevin Gastonguay (organ) rock the stage at the Icehouse. The promo suggests we might hear JT sing a few as well!

Jake Baldwin
It's Wednesday so that means "new music" night at Jazz Central, which tonight features a new trio headed by trumpet king Jake Baldwin, with Ted Olsen on bass and Matt Buckner on drums.

Wednesday-Thursday, January 27-28. A special Winter Carnival edition of Jazz in the Lobby Bar brings JoAnn Funk and Jeff Brueske to the Saint Paul Hotel for some midweek hipness.

Joel Shapira
Thursday, January 28. The masterful Joel Shapira plays solo guitar for the early evening sets at Vieux Carré, while talented young singer Katia Cardenas takes the stage for Jazz Vocal Night at Jazz Central, and pianist Benny Weinbeck serenades in the lounge at Parma 8200.

More Jazz!
Keep up with the live jazz scene in the Twin Cities. The most comprehensive jazz calendars can be found at Jazz Police and KBEM, with more listings at Rhythm and Grooves and Jazz Near You. KBEM and KFAI radio host jazz programs regularly and provide daily notices of jazz gigs and concerts. The live edition of The Lead Sheet can be heard at 4:40 pm on Thursdays on KBEM, rebroadcast at 7:20 am on Fridays, and recent broadcasts archived at KBEM on Demand. Special guest on January 28 will be Steve Heckler, Executive Director of the Twin Cities Jazz Festival, who will join me to talk about the highlights of the Winter Jazz Festival, coming to the Saint Paul Hotel on January 31. Venues and artists are reminded to send information to online and print calendars (e.g.

Coming Soon!
Cyrus Chestnut headlines Winter Jazz Fest, January 31

. January 29, Maud Hixson at Parma 8200
. January 29, Peter Kogan's Monsterful Wonderband at Vieux Carré
. January 29, da-ke-broo-da, Friday Night Jazz at Reverie (aka The Nicollet)
. January 30, Jana Nyberg Group at Vieux Carré
. January 30, Nextet/Dave Karr Group, Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog
. January 30-31, Century College Jazz Festival featuring Randy Brecker
. January 31, Winter Jazz Festival at the Saint Paul Hotel, featuring the Cyrus Chestnut Trio
. January 31, Maud Hixson and Rick Carlson, Halling Recital Hall, Mankato State University
. January 31, Dan Chouinard's Birthday Club with Debbie Duncan, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. January 31, Ginger Commodore Tribute to Natalie Cole at the Dakota
. January 31, Bryan Nichols Trio, Winter Jazz Fest celebration at Vieux Carré
. February 1, Acme Jazz Company at Crooners Lounge
. February 2, Charles Lloyd Trio with Bill Frisell at the Dakota
. February 3, Thomas Bruce at Crooners Lounge
. February 3, JoAnn Funk Trio at the Dakota
. February 4, Pete Snell Trio at Bonde Bistro (Delano)
. February 5, Steven Hobert-Yohannes Tona Quartet, Friday Night Jazz at Reverie (aka The Nicollet)
. February 5-6, Keys Please! (Carei Thomas, Todd Harper, Paul Cantrell with Heather Barringer) at Studio Z
. February 6, Dean Sorenson Sextet, Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog
. February 7, Dan Chouinard's Birthday Club with Diane Stauffer, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. February 7, New Ruckus Composers Night at Studio Z
. February 8-9, John Scofield and Joe Lovano at the Dakota
. February 8-9, Mardi Gras Party with the Dirty Dozen Brass Band at Vieux Carré
. February 11, Mack Avenue Super Band at the Dakota
. February 11, Adam Meckler Orchestra at Vieux Carré
. February 12, Judi Vinar and the Wolverines at Crooners Lounge
. February 12, No Room for Squares, Friday Night Jazz at Reverie
. February 12-14, Night of Wonder: Tribute to Stevie Wonder, Ginger Commodore and friends at Chanhassen Dinner Theater
. February 13, Debbie Duncan and Dennis Spears at the Dakota
. February 13-14, Arne Fogel and Maud Hixson, "Crosby-Clooney Story" at the Capri Theater
. February 14, Charles Lazarus at Orchestra Hall
. February 14, Badi Assad, Valentine's Day Dinner/Cocktail shows at the Dakota
. February 14, Andrew Walesch and Debbie Duncan, Valentine's Day show in the Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge, followed by Debbie in the Lounge
. February 14, Jazz at the Jungle, Connie Evingson with Jon Weber, Gordy Johnson and Dave Karr at the Jungle Theater (2 shows)
. February 15, Doug Haining's Twin Cities 7 with Maryann Sullivan at Crooners Lounge
. February 16, Bill Carrothers, solo piano in the Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. February 16-17, Davell Crawford Tribute to Allen Toussaint (Encore) at the Dakota
. February 19, Bruce Henry at Crooners Lounge
. February 19, JazzINK Youth Showcase, Paul Harper's Bardo Quartet, Friday Night Jazz at Reverie
. February 20, Retro Swing Sister (Maryann Sullivan and Rhonda Laurie) at Jazz @ St Barneys
. February 20, Bill Frisell "When You Wish Upon a Star" ensemble at the Dakota
. February 21, Dan Chouinard's Birthday Club with Gwen Matthews, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. February 22, Ches Smith Trio with Craig Taborn at the Icehouse
. February 23, Dean Magraw and Steven Hobert, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. February 23, Connie Evingson at Vieux Carré
. February 24, Arne Fogel at Crooners Lounge
. February 25, Rez Abassi with Vijay Iyer and Rudresh Mahanthappa at Walker Art Center
. February 25, Rebirth Brass Band at the Dakota
. February 25, Jazz in the Target Atrium, Atrium Jazz Ensemble with Bryan Nichols at Orchestra Hall
. February 26, Patty Peterson and Friends at Crooners Lounge
. February 26, Davu Seru Group, Friday Night Jazz at Reverie
. February 27, Shifting Paradigm's Winter Jazz Fest at Studio Z
. February 28, Dan Chouinard's Birthday Club with Judi Vinar, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. February 29, "In the Crook," Rick Carlson with Dennis Spears, Dunsmore Room at Crooner's Lounge
. March 2-3, Brian Blade Fellowship at the Dakota
. March 5, Pete Whitman X-Tet at Hopkins Center for the Arts
. March 13, JazzMN Orchestra with Tierney Sutton at the Hopkins High School Auditorium
. March 19, Zakir Hussain at Pantages Theater
. March 23, Geoffrey Keezer with Gillian Margo, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 3-4, SF Jazz Collective at the Dakota
. April 10-11, David Sanborn at the Dakota
. April 18, Chick Core and Bela Fleck at the Guthrie Theater
. April 19, Lizz Wright at the Dakota
. April 23, JazzMN Orchestra with Bob McChesney and Andy Martin at Hopkins High School Auditorium
. April 28, Jazz in the Target Atrium at Orchestra Hall
. May 6, Tony Bennett at the State Theater
. May 7, Steve Lehman Octet at the Walker Art Center
. June 23-25, Twin Cities Jazz Festival, Mears Park
. July 1-3, Iowa City Jazz Festival

The Lead Sheet Live -- KBEM 88.5 FM, Thursdays at 4:40 pm