Thursday, March 31, 2016

The Lead Sheet: Twin Cities Live Jazz, April 1-7





SFJazz Collective at the Dakota, April 3-4
© Andrea Canter
 
I know spring is here because the calendar says so. Trees are trying to bud, my rhubarb is up a few inches, robins are flitting around the yard. It will warm up. Until the thermometer catches up with the calendar, we can take comfort in some sizzling hot music over the coming week, from internationally renowned local heroes to internationally revered visitors to a popular former resident reuniting with his band and a favorite songbird saluting a film and stage icon, while another local hero brings his tribute to a tragic jazz figure to a key listening room.

Big Gigs This Week

Paul Harper
Friday, April 1. The hot club swing of Gypsy Mania prevails tonight in Hell's Kitchen, while starting their one-month exile, Friday Night Jazz at Reverie moves for one night only to Public Kitchen, with Paul Harper's Chordless Quartet, featuring Harper on saxes, Steve Kenny on FLUMPET™, Tom Lewis on bass and Matt Buckner on drums. The series will move around the Twin Cities the rest of April (Studio Z, Jazz Central), returning to Reverie in May as Thursday Nigh Jazz.

Eric Gravatt
At Jazz Central, it's what seems to be a monthly opportunity to hear Eric Kamau Gravatt and his group Source Code, with Solomon Parham on trumpet, young Lucia Sarmiento on sax, Dean Magraw on guitar, and Ron Evaniuk on bass.

Dave King
Friday-Saturday, April 1-2. The Dave King Trio reassembles in St Paul for their debut at Vieux Carré. Bad Plus drummer Dave put this group together a few years ago for a recording session with Bill Carrothers on piano and Billy Peterson on bass (yielding the very fine I've Been Ringing You on Sunnyside), and since then they've headlined at the Village Vanguard and venues in Europe. They were the opening act for the Dunsmore Room in December and now bring their pithy originals and magical rearrangements of standards to Vieux Carre'.

Brian Courage
Saturday, April 2. Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog brings another chance to hear bassist Brian Courage before he heads back home to New York, this time with the original Courageous Endeavors quartet. Joining Brian are Nelson Devereaux on sax, Joe Strachan on keys, and Miguel Hurtado on drums. Since Brian's move they have performed as Endeavors, but Saturday they will again be Courageous.

More young lions on the prowl at the Icehouse tonight, a late double bill with the McNasty Brass Band and New Sound Underground, the funkier side of jazz and brass.

Maud Hixson
Another special night, in Bloomington at the Schneider Theater, features a new production from songbird Maud Hixson, "What Would Doris Do?" This tribute to one of Maud's favorites, Doris Day, digs into the Doris songbook as well as looking beyond the sunny character presented in film and on records, and reveals her courage in facing darker personal struggles. Joining Maud will be the swinging Wolverines Trio of Rick Carlson, Keith Boyles and Jendeen Forberg.

Dennis Spears
Sunday, April 3. It's the monthly afternoon of Latin magic with Doug Little's Charanga Tropical at the Icehouse. And it should be a fun evening as Dan Chouinard's Birthday Club in the Dunsmore Room welcomes guest vocalist Dennis Spears; they'll include songs from singers and songwriters with April birthdays, and Dennis may have a few April Fools surprises of his own.

Robin Eubanks, Avishai Cohen and David Sanchez, SFJazz

Sunday-Monday, April 3-4. One of the world's premiere jazz ensembles is in town for two nights (four sets) at the Dakota. Every year, The SFJazz Collective brings together eight all-stars for a San Francisco-based residency and tour, honoring one composer's work each season -- and this year it's Michael Jackson. The current touring band includes alto saxophonist Miguel Zenon, tenor saxophonist David Sanchez, trumpeter Avishai Cohen, trombonist Robin Eubanks, pianist Edward Simon, vibraphonist Warren Wolfe, bassist Matt Penman, and drummer Obed Calvaire.

Acme Jazz Company
Monday, April 4. The Acme Jazz Company is back in the lounge at Crooners, with Arne Fogel handling the vocals. In the spotlight at Jazz Central, young trumpeter Riley Helgeson (McNasty Brass Band) leads the evening, with the weekly jam session to follow.

Mike Lewis
At the Icehouse , Jazz Implosion starts off with Noodhammer - "the slow/fuzzy brainchild of Jeremy Ylvisaker & Michael Lewis," followed by Mamiffer, on tour supporting their new recording, The World Unseen, using piano, voice, guitar, wurlitzer organ, bass synthesizer, tape machines, and effects pedals. Well, anything can happen on Mondays at the Icehouse.

Larry McDonough
Tuesday, April 5. If you have not yet heard Larry McDonough Quintet tribute to Chet Baker, here's another chance, as Larry will be sitting at the Bosendorfer in the Dunsmore Room, reprising Chet's vocal talents with Steve Kenny taking the trumpet role. And it's First Tuesday, which brings Dean Magraw and Davu Seru to the Black Dog with special guest Chris Olson, and the Bill Simenson Orchestra to Jazz Central.

Jendeen Forberg
Wednesday, April 6. The ever-popular Wolverines Trio swings hard in Hell's Kitchen--Rick Carlson, Steve Pikal or Keith Boyles, and Jendeen Forberg, one of the region's longest-running ensembles. Over at the Marsh, Maud Hixson sings the night away with Phil Aaron on keys. Similar activity at the Minneapolis Woman's Club, for First Wednesday it's Connie Evingson in the lounge with Mary Louise Knutson and Dave Karr.

Lila Ammons
Thursday, April 7. Savvy vocalist Lila Ammons brings her Quad (Phil Aaron, Tom Lewis and Jay Epstein) to Jazz Central, while the edgy Fall of the House of Usher turns up the improv heat at the Black Dog. And there's lots of trumpet at Vieux Carré tonight, with a double-header featuring the Gerard Ahlgren Group and Hayden Fihn Quartet.

More Jazz!
See the full Lead Sheet at jazzink.com. Live jazz calendar is posted on the KBEM website, and you can see more about jazz events at jazzpolice.com.  Tune into the live edition of The Lead Sheet on KBEM, Jazz 88.5, every Thursday at 4:40 pm, rebroadcast on Fridays at 8:20 am. Next week, my guest will be vocalist and educator Pippi Ardennia who heads the PipJazz Foundation, talking about her educational efforts and upcoming show at the Bedlam (April 8). Artists, get your gig on the KBEM live jazz calendar -- send your information to Kevin Barnes at kbar264@aol.com

Coming Soon!
. April 8, Dave Graf at Jazz Central
. April 8, Kronick Quintet at Golden's Deli
. April 8, Dakota Combo/NuSkein Ensemble, "Friday Night Jazz" at Studio Z
. April 8, PipJazz and the VIP Sound Collective  (Pippi Ardennia, Jo Schad) at The Bedlam
. April 8, Ginger Commodore Quartet at Vieux Carre'
. April 8-10, Arne Fogel and Jennifer Eckes, "Days of Wine and Roses", Bloomington Black Box Theater
. April 10-11, David Sanborn at the Dakota
. April 10, Joyce Lyons Sings Carmen McRae, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 12, Andres Prado with Mississippi, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 12, Dean Magraw and Butch Thompson at Vieux Carre'
. April 15, Atlantis Quartet at Walker West Music Academy
. April 15, Ancia Quartet/Rare Medium at Jazz Central
. April 18, Chick Corea and Bela Fleck at the Guthrie Theater
. April 19, Lizz Wright at the Dakota
. April 20, Peter Bernstein/Larry Goldings/Bill Stewart Organ Trio at the Dakota
. April 23, JazzMN Orchestra with Bob McChesney and Andy Martin at Hopkins High School Auditorium
. April 23, Jay Young and Lyric Factory, "Superstitious Thriller"--Tribute to Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson at the Capri Theater 
. April 23, Adam Meckler Quintet CD Release at Vieux Carre'
. April 24, Minnesota Jazz Legends, hosted by Patty Peterson, at the Minnesota Historical Society
. April 24, Lucia Newell and Phil Aaron, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 24, Soul Cafe' at Hennepin Avenue Methodist Church
. April 25, Nancy Harms with Jeremy Siskind, CD Release, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 26, John Raymond Quartet, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 28, Jazz in the Target Atrium at Orchestra Hall (Atrium Jazz Ensemble)
. April 29, Guitar Night with Julian Lage Trio at the Dakota
. April 30, International Jazz Day Festival with Brian Lynch at Jazz Central
. May 2, Sam Miltich and Tim Kliphuis at the Dakota (note date change!)
. May 3, Mary Louise Knutson Trio, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. May 4, Abdullah Ibrahim at the Dakota
. May 5, Golden Circle Trio, Thursday Night Jazz at Reverie
. May 6, Tony Bennett at the State Theater
. May 7, Steve Lehman Octet at the Walker Art Center
. May 11, Bill Charlap Trio at the Dakota (note date change!)
. May 24-25, Bobby Lyle with Billy Peterson, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. June 5, Poncho Sanchez at the Dakota
. June 17, David Binney Quartet at Walker West
. June 17, Tord Gustavsen Trio at Mindekirken (Norwegian Lutheran Church)
. June 20, JazzMN Orchestra at Chanhassen Dinner Theater
. June 21, David Hazeltine and Eric Alexander, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. June 22, David Hazeltine/Eric Alexander Quartet, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. June 23-25, Twin Cities Jazz Festival, Mears Park (Delfeayo Marsalis, Ellis Marsalis, Joey Alexander, Russell Malone, John Pizzarelli, Michael Franti & Spearhead)
. July 1-3, Iowa City Jazz Festival (Vijay Iyer Trio, Miguel Zenon, Poncho Sanchez, Allison Miller, David Berkman, Marquis Hill, Edmer Casteneda, Akiko Tsuruga, Phil Hey Quartet)

Andres Prado and Mississippi, coming to the Dunsmore Room on April 12

Thursday, March 24, 2016

The Lead Sheet: Twin Cities Live Jazz, March 25-31



Marcus Wise and Dean Magraw, at Jazz Central March 25


© Andrea Canter

Lots of jazz in store for this holiday weekend, some "homecoming" gigs from a favorite former resident, a favorite pairing returns to action at Jazz Central, while a heady quartet returns to action at Vieux Carré; and there's lots of action in the Dunsmore Room. 

Big Gigs This Week!

Friday, March 25. We haven't heard from the duo of guitarist Dean Magraw and tabla player Marcus Wise in a while, so their gig tonight at Jazz Central is a welcome treat. They're each capable of playing just about anything with anyone, but together is a magical pairing.

King Fletcher Woods
Friday Night Jazz at Reverie finishes its run as such, moving to Thursdays in May and "in exile" at other venues in April. The Friday finale tonight features the venue debut of King Fletcher Woods, which is not a member of royalty but the trio of Jeff King (saxes), Charles Fletcher (bass) and Eron Woods (drums) -- and that is a royal powerhouse.

Jeremy Walker
Vieux Carré brings back Jeremy Walker's ultra-cool quartet, Boot Camp, sporting the talents of Walker on piano, Brandon Wozniak on sax, Chris Bates on bass and Miguel Hurtado on drums. Jon Pemberton opens the night on solo piano. At Parma 8200, a break in Friday vocal jazz with the Joel Shapira Trio offering their sublime instrumental alternative.

Patty Peterson and Jason DeLaire
The stage is still smoldering in the Dunsmore Room after Patty Peterson's salute to her mom a few days ago, but she is just as likely to sear the floor (or ceiling) in the lounge at Crooners tonight, singing with her "Friends" -- nephew Jason Peterson DeLaire and pals Billy Franze and Bobby Vandell.

Brian Courage
For a few years, the Twin Cities was blessed with the talents of young bassist Brian Courage, a New York transplant via the jazz program at Lawrence Conservatory. Brian quickly became a first-call sideman, and ultimately bandleader with projects like Courageous Endeavors and Mountain King. He's returned to New York now but fortunately manages to return at least once a year. This weekend he's got a couple gigs, starting tonight at Public Kitchen with Park Evans and Greg Schutte.

And if you are in the vicinity of Northfield, check out the Contented Cow, where vocalist Paula Lammers and guitarist David Martin will be on the "bandstand."

Saturday, March 26. A second chance this weekend to hear Brian Courage, tonight leading a quartet exploring the music Ornette Coleman, Paul Motian and beyond on the Jazz at Studio Z concert series. With Bryan Nichols on piano, Brandon Wozniak on sax and Matt Buckner on drums, the quartet will also host a master class an hour before the concert, discussing the nature and influence of Coleman on his own and future generations of improvisers and composers.

Steve Kenny
Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog kicks off with John Devine and Bill Lang in a double sax, free jazz duel, followed by Steve Kenny's "young lions" quartet with Levi Schwartzberg on vibes, Ted Olsen on bass, and Rodney Ruckus on drums.

Jazz Central is more often staying open Saturday nights, and tonight the Ted Godbout Trio is the reason, with the expert pianist mixing it up with bassist Matt Peterson and drummer Zach Schmidt.

And a new music venue of sorts, Boom Brewing on Boom Island is hosting jazz (Boom Jazz, of course) on the last Saturday of the month, kicking off tonight with valve trombone master Brad Bellows.

Dan Chouinard
Sunday, March 27. Special Sunday Brunch at the Dakota brings in the swinging Crescent City sounds of the Southside Aces. In the Dunsmore Room at Crooners, Dan Chouinard's Birthday Club starts a four-night run at the venue. Dan's guest tonight is the sophisticated vocalist Maria Jette.

Charmin  & Shapira
Monday, March 28. Saxophonist Evan Benidt shines in the spotlight at Jazz Central, while the always swinging Charmin and Shapira and Friends (Charmin Michelle, Joel Shapira, Paul Harper, Tom Lewis and Nathan Norman) return to the Dakota.

In the Dunsmore Room, the monthly "In the Crook" features pianist Jay Fuchs at the Bosendorfer with sweet and sassy singer Erin Schwab in the crook.

JT's Jazz Implosion presents a rare double set from one band-- in this case the young guns of Pile Driver -- Jake Baldwin on trumpet, Ted Olsen on bass, and Matt Buckner on drums.

Billy Peterson
Tuesday, March 29. You might consider a nearby motel room to make it easier to catch this week's shows in the Dunsmore Room! Tonight, bassist Billy Peterson, hot off a gig with Dave King in Switzerland, is back on standard time and sharing the stage with multi-instrumentalist nephew Jason Peterson DeLaire. Jason is most likely to be on the piano bench, but his saxophone will surely be at hand and his vocals likely will be accompanied by Billy's bass-- but don't be surprised if Billy ends up at the Bosendorfer himself, having demonstrated his keyboard talents last week in the tribute to mom Jeanne Arland Peterson.

Joan Griffith (Swing Sisterhood BB)
One of the most unusual projects to hit the Jazz Central stage for Big Band Night, the Swing Sisterhood Big Band makes their major venue debut under the leadership of St. Thomas faculty Sarah Schmalenberger. Sarah notes that the band evolved from a group of "educators, freelancers, composers, and college students who began meeting one Sunday a month to read down charts. Their sessions have a clearly vibrant sound of enthusiasm for making music with other women, specifically those with a passion for jazz.  These musicians cheer the drummer, whoop for soloists, and high-five their section mates!" Section mates include Joan Griffith on bass and Jendeen Forberg on drums. Also unusual for Tuesday Big Band Night, there's an opening set from the Emergence Brass Band, which will play originals, fusion and classical works.

At Vieux Carré, Chris Lomheim opens on solo piano, followed by guitarist Paul Renz and his quartet.

Tanner Taylor
Wednesday, March 30. It's a very special night in the Dunsmore Room with songbird Connie Evingson, former Minnesotan Tanner Taylor, and longtime sax favorite Dave Karr. Pianist Tanner has played a few gigs here and there in the Twin Cities since relocating to Iowa about a year ago, and he's had plenty of good history with both Connie and Dave.  



Gary Schulte
At Jazz Central, new music night brings together three musicians who probably seem miles apart-- keyboard and percussion master Steve Kimmel, swinging violinist Gary Schulte, and genre-deyfing cellist Greg Byers. For sure, this will be a night of new music!



Thursday, March 31. Dubbed "electrified funkified jazz," the trombone-wielding Potash Twins return to the Dakota. Adeev and Ezra Potash were labeled by NPR as the "Twin Horns of Joy" for there prodigious talent as well entertaining performances.



Rachel Holder-Hennig, McNally Smith
Vocal Jazz Night at Jazz Central features the McNally Smith College of Music Vocal Jazz Showcase. Hosted by Jennifer Parker, Charlie Christenson, Rachel Holder Hennig and Shon Parker, with bassist Graydon Peterson and drummer Matt Edlund, the spotlight is turned onto the best and brightest vocal talents at MSCM.

More Jazz!

Keep up with the live jazz scene in the Twin Cities. The most comprehensive live jazz calendar can be found at KBEM, with more listings at Rhythm and Grooves and Jazz Near You, and of course, here on the Lead Sheet. KBEM and KFAI radio host jazz programs regularly and provide daily notices of jazz gigs and concerts; you can find promos of area jazz on the Jazz Police website and Facebook page. The live edition of The Lead Sheet can be heard at 4:40 pm on Thursdays on KBEM, rebroadcast at 8:20 am on Fridays (note later time), and recent broadcasts archived at KBEM on Demand. Special guest on March 31 will be vocalist Maud Hixson, who stars in a new salute to Doris Day in the Schneider Theater in Bloomington on April 2. Venues and artists are reminded to send gig information to KBEM (kbar264@aol.com) and print media calendars.

 

Coming Soon!

. April 1, Paul Harper Chordless Quartet, Friday Night Jazz at Public Kitchen

. April 1, Eric Kamau Gravatt and Source Code at Jazz Central

. April 1-2, Dave King Trio with Bill Carrothers and Billy Peterson at Vieux Carré
. April 2, Maud Hixson, salute to Doris Day, Bloomington Schneider Theater
. April 2, Courageous Endeavors, Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog
. April 3, Dan Chouinard and Dennis Spears, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 3-4, SF Jazz Collective at the Dakota
. April 5, Larry McDonough Quintet, Tribute to Chet Baker in the Dunsmore Room, Crooners Lounge
. April 5, Bill Simenson Orchestra at Jazz Central
. April 5, Dean Magraw and Davu Seru at the Black Dog
. April 6, Wolverines Trio at Hell's Kitchen
. April 7, Lila Ammons and Quad at Jazz Central
. April 8, Dave Graf at Jazz Central
. April 8, Dakota Combo/NuSkein Ensemble, "Friday Night Jazz" at Studio Z
. April 8, PipJazz  (Pippi Ardennia, Jo Schad) at The Bedlam
. Apri 8, Ginger Commodore Quartet at Vieux Carre'
. April 10-11, David Sanborn at the Dakota
. April 10, Joyce Lyons Sings Carmen McRae, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 12, Andres Prado with Mississippi, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 12, Dean Magraw and Butch Thompson at Vieux Carre'
. April 15, Atlantis Quartet at Walker West Music Academy
. April 15, Ancia Quartet/Rare Medium at Jazz Central
. April 18, Chick Corea and Bela Fleck at the Guthrie Theater
. April 19, Lizz Wright at the Dakota
. April 20, Peter Bernstein/Larry Goldings/Bill Stewart Organ Trio at the Dakota
. April 23, JazzMN Orchestra with Bob McChesney and Andy Martin at Hopkins High School Auditorium
. April 23, Jay Young and Lyric Factory, Tribute to Stevie Wonder at the Capri Theater 
. April 23, Adam Meckler Quintet CD Release at Vieux Carre'
. April 24, Lucia Newell and Phil Aaron, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 24, Soul Cafe' at Hennepin Avenue Methodist Church
. April 25, Nancy Harms with Jeremy Siskind, CD Release, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 26, John Raymond Quartet, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 28, Jazz in the Target Atrium at Orchestra Hall (Atrium Jazz Ensemble)
. April 29, Guitar Night with Julian Lage Trio at the Dakota
. April 30, International Jazz Day Festival with Brian Lynch at Jazz Central
. May 2, Bill Charlap Trio at the Dakota
. May 3, Mary Louise Knutson Trio, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. May 4, Tim Kliphuis and Sam Miltich at the Dakota
. May 6, Tony Bennett at the State Theater
. May 7, Steve Lehman Octet at the Walker Art Center
. May 24-25, Bobby Lyle with Billy Peterson, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. June 5, Poncho Sanchez at the Dakota
. June 17, David Binney Quartet at Walker West
. June 17, Tord Gustavsen Trio at Mindekirken (Norwegian Lutheran Church)
. June 20, JazzMN Orchestra at Chanhassen Dinner Theater
. June 21, David Hazeltine and Eric Alexander, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. June 22, David Hazeltine/Eric Alexander Quartet, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. June 23-25, Twin Cities Jazz Festival, Mears Park (Delfeayo Marsalis, Ellis Marsalis, Joey Alexander, Russell Malone, John Pizzarelli, Michael Franti & Spearhead)
. July 1-3, Iowa City Jazz Festival (Vijay Iyer Trio, Miguel Zenon, Poncho Sanchez, Allison Miller, David Berkman, Marquis Hill, Edmer Casteneda, Akiko Tsuruga, Phil Hey Quartet)

Courageous Endeavors Reunion - The Black Dog, April 2

Thursday, March 17, 2016

The Lead Sheet: Twin Cities Live Jazz, March 18-14




Ellen Lease and Pat Moriarty, Quartet at the Black Dog on March 19

© Andrea Canter
High School tournament season, blustery March weather, and any remnants of St. Patrick's Day can't compare to the hours of live jazz available in the Twin Cities this week. There's a tribute to one of the area's jazz icons, Jeanne Arland Peterson, the first recordings from two of the area's hot "young lions" ensembles, the screening of a groundbreaking film about the women of jazz, and a welcome homecoming of one of the region's most lauded native sons.

Big Gigs This Week
Irv Williams
Friday, March 18. Friday always brings some great music to start the weekend -- like Irv Williams and Steve Blons for Happy Hour at the Dakota, the solo accordion of Patrick Harison tonight at the Icehouse, or Piano Fridays with Todd Harper (in a Mystery Duet!) at the Black Dog. Hang around at the Black Dog as it's the monthly performance of the Donald Washington Group, this week a trio with bassist Dick Studer and Donald's son, drummer Kevin Washington.


Clay Pufahl and Joe Mayo, Really Big Shoe
One of the last Friday gigs before moving to Thursdays (in May), Friday Night Jazz at Reverie presents Really Big Shoe, a new double saxophone quartet led by Joe Mayo and Clay Pufahl, along with bassist Matt Peterson and drummer Joey Van Phillips. Given the breadth of their chops (Joe and Clay primarily in jazz/R&B projects, Matt in jazz and hot club ensembles, Joey most recently supporting hip hop artist Dessa as well as more experimental improvising bands), the original tunes should cover the universe of sound.

Chris Bates
At Jazz Central, it's a reprise of the Inventions and Dimensions Trio led by Chris Bates, with young guns Joe Strachan (piano) and Matt Buckner (drums). The trio worked out new material over three successive monthly gigs on Jazz Central's
"new music" Wednesdays, and come back to Jazz Central to pull it all together.

One of a group of recordings to be released in coming months on the local Shifting Paradigms label, Authentic Midwestern is the first CD for drummer Lars-Erik Larson's quartet, Mancrush, with Zacc Harris, Brandon Wozniak and Bryan Nichols, celebrated tonight at Vieux Carré. The album is filled with Larson's folk-inspired originals and an arrangement of Bartok. Come early for the (free) opening sets from pianist/composer Jeremy Walker.

The March edition of Eight O'Clock Jump, the very successful concert series at Walker West, features the great drummer/vocalist, Mint Condition's Stokely Williams; this one is sold out but you might get lucky if there's a no-show.

Pat Moriarty and Ellen Lease
Saturday, March 19. Over the past two decades-plus, the collaboration of pianist Ellen Lease and saxophonist Pat Moriarty has helped define the local avant garde. Their much acclaimed quintet, quartets (Insurgent, Resurrection) and trios have been frequently presented at Studio Z as well as at the Black Dog where they return tonight with Chris Bates and Davu Seru on the headline sets of the Saturday Night Jazz series. And keeping it "in the family," the opening set features the award-winning Roseville Area High School Jazz Combo I, directed by Pat.

Pavel Jany, Talking Strings
Start your evening with some sophisticated swing from the Talking Strings (Pavel Jany on guitar, Dan Weston on bass, Gary Schulte on violin) playing in their weekly slot at the Loring Pasta Bar, or another weekly stalwart, Benny Weinbeck and his trio making the most of piano jazz in the lounge at Parma 8200. You can also enjoy a night of nothing but guitar at the annual Minnesota Guitar Society Board concert in the Sound Bite Cafe at McNally Smith College of Music.

Peter Kogan
At Vieux Carré, former Minnesota Orchestra timpanist Peter Kogan brings his jazz quartet back with arrangements of standards and original compositions. His usual cohorts include saxophonist Pete Whitman, pianist Peter Schimke and bassist Anthony Cox-- the definition of an all-star ensemble. Another definition of "all-star" -- tabla ace Zakir Hussein, performing tonight at the Pantages Theater.

Prudence Johnson
Sunday, March 20. Nearly three months into his run, Dan Chouinard offers another installment of The Birthday Club in the Dunsmore Room at Crooners, bringing back his first guest, Prudence Johnson, for another round of songs celebrating March birthdays and more. This is not only an inspired series of music, but a very entertaining way to spend a Sunday evening.

Jeanne Arland Peterson (2011)
Monday, March 21. It's a big week in the Dunsmore Room, with a special presentation tonight with Patty Peterson hosting a tribute to her late mom, pianist, vocalist, composer Jeanne Arland Peterson, accompanied by more Petersons-- brother Paul on bass and vocals, and nephew Jason DeLaire on keys, vocals and perhaps saxophone. And likely more Petersons will be waiting in the wings.


Pat O'Keefe, Cherry Spoon Collective
The monthly gig with the Cherry Spoon Collective is on the schedule at the Black Dog. This collaboration among some of the most inventive music collectives in the area-- Zeitgeist, Jelloslave, Orange Mighty Trio and more, presents original music in varying configurations every month, led by project leaders Michelle Kinney (cello), Nick Gaudette (bass), and Pat O’Keefe (sax).

Dean Granros, '58 Belvedere
JT's Jazz Implosion presents a double-header at the Icehouse: Up first, a solo set from Chicagoland drummer/percussionist Paul Grill, followed by '58 Belvedere, a trio with guitar monster Dean Granros, Pat Keuhn and Dave Power.

Tuesday, March 22. About five years ago, attendees at the Minneapolis-St Paul Film Festival were able to screen a new film celebrating the history and progress of women in jazz, The Girls in the Band. The film went on to win numerous awards, returned to the Twin Cities briefly in 2012, and now will be broadcast on March 25 by TPT. Ahead of the broadcast, TPT is hosting a special screening in its studios in Lowertown St Paul, with the added attraction of a small all-women's ensemble directed by Pippi Ardennia, The Women of Jazz, featuring ace bassist/guitarist Joan Griffith. Tickets are limited, check the TPT website for tickets and information. And see the broadcast schedule.

Pete Whitman X-Tet
At the Dakota it's a special night as the Jazz 88 Restaurant Tour comes into the club for its monthly fundraising dinner and music party. But anyone can come into the club tonight to hear some great music from the Pete Whitman X-Tet. Hot off their performance at the Hopkins Center for the Arts, this ensemble of ten of the area's most respected jazz musicians has a bunch of new charts from band members Pete, Laura Caviani and David Milne, new arrangements of some of Laura's "From Bach to Bop" classical works, and old favorites. (Check the KBEM website for availability of the Restaurant Tour.)

Twin Cities 7
Big Band night at Jazz Central features the Twin Cities Latin Jazz Orchestra, a unique ensemble in the area that includes top metro jazz musicians led by trumpeter Geoff Senn and drummer Mac Santiago. And a littler but mighty ensemble, the Twin Cities 7 led by Doug Haining, plays a rare Tuesday night in the lounge at Crooners, and features vocalist Maryann Sullivan.

Mary Louise Knutson
Two of our own Women in Jazz, Mary Louise Knutson on solo piano, Connie Evingson singing "hot jazz" with her band, appear back to back at Vieux Carré. And some jazz fun at Bradstreet Crafthouse with Katz and Dogs--Steve Katz on vocals and bass (and compositions), Park Evans on guitar and Ken Goldman on drums. Looks like they have Tuesday nights nailed down indefinitely.


Geoffrey Keezer
Wednesday, March 23. He grew up in Eau Claire, played often at the Dakota in his teens and throughout his early career, and was the last pianist for Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers at a mere 18. Geoffrey Keezer has only returned recently in a supporting role, with Dianne Reeves at the 2014 Twin Cities Jazz Festival and frequently with Chris Botti's winter tours. Now he's back with a solo/duet show in the Dunsmore Room, teaming up with rising star vocalist Gillian Margot. Geoffrey will play some of the music from his latest release, The Heart of the Piano; he and Gillian will perform some re-arrangements of these tunes for piano/voice duo as well as some of the music from Gillian's very recent release, Black Butterfly. Limited tickets remain!

Nathan Hanson
New Music night at Jazz Central presents saxophonist Nathan Hanson with pals Steven Hobert (piano) and Pratik Singh on tablas, while at Vieux Carré, things take a very different (and always fun) turn with New Shoes (formerly Guy's All-Star Shoe Band from Prairie Home Companion), featuring the Americana and beyond sounds of Richard Kriehn (fiddle and mandolin), Gary Raynor (bass), Joe Savage (pedal steel guitar) and Peter Johnson (drums). 

Thursday, March 24. Another CD release from Shifting Paradigm Records at Vieux Carré features Cory Healey's Beautiful Sunshine Band -- that's Jake Baldwin on trumpet, Brandon Wozniak on sax, Erik Fratzke on bass and Healey on drums; and of course the CD is called Beautiful Sunshine. Guitar giant Joel Shapira opens the evening solo. 

Martha Alkins
Vocal Jazz Night at Jazz Central presents up-and-coming singer Martha Alkins. Performing standards from the 20s-90s (aka most of the 20th century), Martha's band includes pianist Ian Carlton, bassist Evan Corcoran and drummer C Harris.

More Jazz!

Keep up with the live jazz scene in the Twin Cities. The most comprehensive live jazz calendar can be found at KBEM, with more listings at Rhythm and Grooves and Jazz Near You, and of course, here on the Lead Sheet. KBEM and KFAI radio host jazz programs regularly and provide daily notices of jazz gigs and concerts; you can find promos of area jazz on the Jazz Police website and Facebook page. The live edition of The Lead Sheet can be heard at 4:40 pm on Thursdays on KBEM, rebroadcast at 8:20 am on Fridays (note later time), and recent broadcasts archived at KBEM on Demand. Special guest on March 24 will be Sarah Schmalenberger, leader of the Swing Sisterhood Big Band. Venues and artists are reminded to send gig information to KBEM (kbar264@aol.com) and print media calendars.


Coming Soon!
. March 25, Jeremy Walker's Boot Camp at Vieux Carré
. March 25, King/Fletcher/Woods, Friday Night Jazz at Reverie
. March 26, Steve Kenny Quartet, Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog
. March 26, Brian Courage Quartet, Jazz at Studio Z
. March 27, Dan Chouinard's Birthday Club with Maria Jette, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. March 28, "In the Crook" with Erin Schwab and Jay Fuchs, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. March 29, Billy Peterson and Jason Peterson DeLaire, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. March 29, Swing Sisterhood Big Band at Jazz Central
. March 30, Connie Evingson with Tanner Taylor and Dave Karr, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. March 31, McNally Smith Vocal Jazz Showcase
. April 1-2, Dave King Trio with Bill Carrothers and Billy Peterson at Vieux Carré
. April 2, Maud Hixson, salute to Doris Day, Bloomington Schneider Theater
. April 2, Courageous Endeavors, Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog
. April 3-4, SF Jazz Collective at the Dakota
. April 5, Larry McDonough Quintet, Tribute to Chet Baker in the Dunsmore Room, Crooners Lounge
. April 8, Dakota Combo/NuSkein Ensemble, "Friday Night Jazz" at Studio Z
. April 8, PipJazz  (Pippi Ardennia, Jo Schad) at The Bedlam
. April 10-11, David Sanborn at the Dakota
. April 10, Joyce Lyons Sings Carmen McRae, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 12, Andres Prado with Mississippi, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 15, Atlantis Quartet at Walker West Music Academy
. April 18, Chick Corea and Bela Fleck at the Guthrie Theater
. April 19, Lizz Wright at the Dakota
. April 20, Peter Bernstein/Larry Goldings/Bill Stewart Organ Trio at the Dakota
. April 23, JazzMN Orchestra with Bob McChesney and Andy Martin at Hopkins High School Auditorium
. April 23, Jay Young and Lyric Factory, Tribute to Stevie Wonder at the Capri Theater 
. April 24, Lucia Newell and Phil Aaron, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 24, Soul Cafe' at Hennepin Avenue Methodist Church
. April 25, Nancy Harms with Jeremy Siskind, CD Release, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 26, John Raymond Quartet, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. April 28, Jazz in the Target Atrium at Orchestra Hall (Atrium Jazz Ensemble)
. April 29, Guitar Night with Julian Lage Trio at the Dakota
. April 30, International Jazz Day Festival with Brian Lynch at Jazz Central
. May 2, Bill Charlap Trio at the Dakota
. May 3, Mary Louise Knutson Trio, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. May 4, Tim Kliphuis and Sam Miltich at the Dakota
. May 6, Tony Bennett at the State Theater
. May 7, Steve Lehman Octet at the Walker Art Center
. May 24-25, Bobby Lyle with Billy Peterson, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. June 5, Poncho Sanchez at the Dakota
. June 17, David Binney Quartet at Walker West
. June 17, Tord Gustavsen Trio at Mindekirken (Norwegian Lutheran Church)
. June 20, JazzMN Orchestra at Chanhassen Dinner Theater
. June 21, David Hazeltine and Eric Alexander, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. June 22, David Hazeltine/Eric Alexander Quartet, Dunsmore Room at Crooners Lounge
. June 23-25, Twin Cities Jazz Festival, Mears Park
. July 1-3, Iowa City Jazz Festival

Bassist Brian Courage returns for a visit-- Quartet on March 26, Courageous Endeavors on April 2