Art and Music: 4.22 – 4.28

April 22, 2015

blog-post-art-and-musicWell it’s Art Crawl Weekend in Saint Paul and Lowertown especially will be crawling with hipsters, would-be hipsters, folks looking for that perfect piece of art to match a sofa, and more. Music lovers will be hopping between the Black Dog, Studio Z, The Bedlam, PUBLIC, and The Hat Trick. There may even be a few more. That’s not to say that you won’t find plenty of music on the west side of the Mississippi, as you can tell from the ideas I’ve put forth below. Have a good week. Music lifts your spirits.

Jazz

Wednesday, April 22

Danilo Perez @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm($30), 9pm ($20) Perez is one of the premier pianists of his generation, earning accolades from the likes of Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock, anymore. He’s the founder and artistic director of the Panama jazz Festival in his own country,m and tours with the wonderful rhythm section of Ben Street on bass and Adam Cruz on drums. His 2014 release, Panama 500, celebrates the five hundredth anniversary of the first permanent European settlement in Panama, yet incorporates jazz and classical music, as well as folk music from throughout Latin America.

Lila & Axel

Lila & Axel

Butch Thompson, Axel Zwingenberger & Lila Ammons @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. 8pm ($10 – $20) It’s an evening of early jazz, classic boogie boogie, and the blues, featuring our own pianist/clarinetist Butch Thompson, boogie boogie pianist Zwingenberger, and internationally acclaimed blues singer Lila Ammons, who is no slouch when it comes to jazz either. Zwingenberger and Ammons have toured Europe extensively for the last eight year.

Thursday, April 23

Fireside Five & Friends @ The Underground Music Cafe, Saint Paul. 7:30pm (Tip Jar) Five amazing musicians who you would expect to hear in a jumping’ nightclub rather than a wood-paneled coffeehouse (though beer and wine is served). Tom Ashworth, euphonium; Brian Grivna, sax; Phil Aaron, piano; Gordy Johnson, bass; and Phil Hey, drums. Plus, they bring in some very talented friends.

Rhonda Laurie & Phil Mattson @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) The always-swingin’ smoky-voiced Ms Laurie on vocals and pianoman/arranger Mr. Mattson will be exploring standards and more this evening. Here’s Rhonda with a bit different accompaniment.

Cartwright-Kinney-Lewis-Evans @ Khyber Pass Cafe, Saint Paul. 9pm ($5) Michelle Kinney, cello; Michael Lewis, sax; George Cartwright, sax; Elaine Evans, pocket Trumpet. Adventurous improvised music from a quartet of musicians whose resumes run from Lou Reed, Alex Chilton, and Andrew Bird to Ornette Coleman and Happy Apple.

Friday, April 24

Endeavors @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7pm ($10 Suggested Donation) A quintet with some great young players, including: Miguel Hurtado, drums; Nelson Devereaux, sax; Jake Baldwin, trumpet; Joe Strachan, Piano; and Ryan Hays, bass. They have coalesced into a tight, passionate unit.

James Wallace Quartet @ Nicollet Cafe, Minneapolis. 9pm (Tip Jar) Wallace has been playing sax in the area for a long, long time. In fact when the folks at Secret Stash Records were putting together a revue to celebrate the funk music of 40 years ago, they recruited Wallace as one of the players of the time. He’s joined by a group of slightly younger veterans: Steve Kenny, trumpet; Ron Evanuik, bass; and Alden Akeda on drums.

The Dakota Combo -  Image by Andrea Canter

The Dakota Combo – Image by Andrea Canter

Dakota Combo Spring Concert @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) This octet of high school players is strong in talent, technique, and execution. A couple of them even write. Despite their age, this is no novelty act, but rather a group of young musicians whose ability transcends their age. There will be some treats afterwards.

Saturday, April 25

Katia Cardenas & Joe Strachan @ PUBLIC Kitchen & Bar, Saint Paul.7pm – 9pm (No Cover) This is part of a new effort by the folks at PUBLIC to feature weekend music in their downstairs bar & lounge. Cardenas is a vocalist who is equally at home in jazz, R&B, and pop. Strachan is a pianist who is equally at home in jazz, Afro-Cuban music, and funk. Should be a fun pairing.

Bob Mintzer w/JazzMN Orchestra @ Hopkins High School, 2400 Lindberg Drive, Minnetonka. 7:30pm ($32 – $34. Discounts for Students) As a saxophonist, MIntzer is a pretty versatile guy. He’s a composer, arranger, big band leader and a member of the storied fusion band, The Yellowjackets. His current project is an R&B big band featuring the music opt Sly Stone, the Isleys, James Brown and more. You’ll be hearing some of those tunes tonight, as well as some music from vocalist Patty Peterson.

Mancrush, with Jon Wood and Iron Chops @ Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7:00pm ($5 – $20 Suggested Donation) Wood is a guitarist celebrating a CD release at 7pm. He’ll be joined by Dave Brattain, sax; Javi Santiago, keys; Graydon Peterison, bass; and Dave Schmalenberger, drums. At 8:30 Mancrush, takes the stage, featuring Lars Erik-Larson on drums; Zacc Harris, guitar; Bryan Nichols, keys; Brandon Wozniak, sax.

Saturday, Sunday, April 25, 26

Legend Series with Irv Williams and Debbie Duncan @ The Capri Theater, Minneapolis. 7pm Saturday, 3pm Sunday ($25) Williams is 95 and still deserving of his nationally known nickname, Mr. Smooth. The sass and swing of vocalist Ms Duncan will be complemented by the romantic sound os Williams’ saxophone.

Sunday, April 26

Jazz Noir @ Vieux Carre, Saint Paul. 5pm, 8pm ($25) Kevin Barnes at KBEM is once again bringing live radio drama to the airwaves, this time at the old Artists’ Quarter in Saint Paul, which is slowly being transformed in anticipation of a late June opening. This is the third in a series of commissioned plays about jazz in the Twin Cities. With an original music score composed and performed by Chris Bates, bass; Steven Hobert, piano; and Solomon Parham, trumpet, tonight’s play is an original called Morning Follows Night, and follows a decorated WWII hero who is an ex-con trying to find out who double-crossed him. It takes place over a ten-year period in the jazz clubs of the Near North Side. The 8pm show will be broadcast live on KBEM (88.5FM).

Monday, April 27

Doug Haining @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Haining may well be the most swinging sax/clarinet player in town. He’s played with the Wolverine, Echoes of Ellington, JazzMN Orchestra, Charmin Michelle, and his own swinging septet the TC Seven, as well as being a co-leader of the Explosion Big Band

Tuesday, April 28

Paul Renz Quartet @ Crooners Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. 5pm (No Cover) though it’s only been open as Crooners for five months, the folks there are digging right into the local jazz scene to feature artists from the area. Tonight it’s the great guitarist Paul Renz and his group. Renz may not be a familiar name, but rest assured, he’s well known on the East Coast, where he regularly tours, and is well-respected by his many students.

For a comprehensive listing of Jazz go to the Twin Cities Live Jazz Calendar  For further commentary on Twin Cities jazz, check out the blogs, Jazz PoliceJazz Ink, and Bebopified.

 

Blues, Roots, Other…

Wednesday, April 22

A Night at the Opera @ The Museum of Russian Art, 5500 Stevens Avenue, Minneapolis. 7pm – 8:30pm ($30) If you have any inclinations toward classical compositions and opera, this will be a treat, as Russian baritone Vladislav Sulimsky will be joined by pianist Denis Evsthin to perform popular operatic arias and art songs by Verdi, Puccini, Tchaikovsky, and Rachmaninoff. The museum itself is a lovely place with good acoustics, not to mention extraordinary art. Go to the museum’s website to register.Malamanya,

Malamanya @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 10pm ($10) Every time I see these proponents of Afro-Cuban and Latin rhythms, they get stronger and hotter. The chairs and tables will be cast aside at the Icehouse, so dancers can twirl and do their sexy thing.

 

Thursday, April 23

Mother Banjo @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm (No cover) The Minnesota Music Coalition is a sponsor of Foodie Nights at the Dakota and tonight is featuring Ellen Stanley and her band for an evening of indie folk/gospel music. Stanley has received accolades for her original lyrics and haunting vocals.

 

Friday, April 24

Schubert Club Mix @ Bedlam Theater, Saint Paul. 7:30pm – 9:30pm ($30) Tonight the Schubert Club presents pianist Stephen Prutsman in a program of Bach. Prutsman was an Artistic Partner of the SPCO in the mid-2000s, served as Artistic Director of the Cartegena International Festival of Music from 2009 – 2012, and has collaborated with the Kronos Quartet, creating over 40 arrangements and compositions for the Grammy winning chamber ensemble.

Hipshaker Dance Party @ The Kitty Cat Klub, Minneapolis. 9pm ($5) Rare 45s with the kind of beat that makes it easy to dance. Just ask the mostly young crowd that fills every edition of this dance night.

Hold Tight Dance Party @ Bedlam Theater, Lowertown. 10pm (No Cover) Bedlam employees will be scurrying to remove the piano from the Schubert Club program (see above) while things get set up for Hold Tight deejays Booka, Sam, and Del, who are bringing in another Deejay Crew, the guys from Wants vs Needs, for a dance night rooted in funk but likely to go anywhere.

Carnage Record Release Party @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 11:30pm ($8) Warm, personable hip-hop artist Carnage has been called “The best drummer in town” because his vocal beat box skills are so right on. He’s celebrating the release of a new CD, “Up Close and Personal.”

Saturday, April 25

James McMurty and Max Gomez @ The Fine Line Music Cafe, Minneapolis. 9pm ($20) McMurty is an Austin, TX songwriter/singer who mines Americana and occasional folk-rock to help him tell his stories of hard characters facing life’s myriad challenges. Village Voice critic Robert Cristgau called his 2005 protest song, “We Can’t Make It Here” the best song of the 2000s. His recently released album “Complicated Game” continues his streak of well received releases. Opening set by promising young singer/songwriter Max Gomez, of Taos.

UnknownCasablanca Orchestra @ Minnesota Music Cafe, Saint Paul. 9pm ($10?) Whether performing 80s new wave, old-school funk, classic Motown, or new music like Uptown Funk or All About that bass, his ten-piece show band will have dancers out on the commodious dance floor at MMC.

PaviElle and Nooky Jones @ The Ichouse, Minneapolis. 10:30pm ($10) It’s an evening of 21st Century Soul. PaviElle French has quickly caught the ears and hearts of Twin Citizens since returning to the stage about a year ago. She sings with a bit of flavor of Sly Stone and even Bill Withers, with a band that can jam out a-la Parliament Funkadelic when the feeling arises. Nooky Jones features a fine vocalist in Cameron Kinghorn, backed by Adam Meckler, trumpet; Ryan Christianson, trombone; Kevin Gastonguay, dyes; Andrew Foreman, bass; and Reid Kennedy, drums. They are all first rate jazz musicians who create a smooth, jazz flavored danceable R&B behind Kinghorn.

Sunday, April 26

Road to Memphis Band Challenge @ Wilebski’s, Saint Paul. 1pm ($10 Suggested Donation) It’s another event sponsored by the Minnesota Blues society to pick a band that will represent us in the International Blues Challenge in Memphis next January. Contestants include: Bludog, Sweet Tea, RAMM Band, Squishy Mud, Fattenin’ Frogs, Jimmi & the Band of Souls

Nellie McKay @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($35), 9pm ($25) The quirkily delightful Ms McKay will once again bring her quit wit and often insightful satirical lyrics to the Dakota. She can skewer war and feminism with equal aplomb, and turn around and deliver a Dinah Shore ballad.

Monday, April 27

Hot Club of Cowtown @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($25 – $30) This trio plays Western Swing with original compositions that reflect both Django Rheinhardt and early jazz, as well as Bob Wills. Much fun.

Tuesday, April 28

Labaja @ The Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($22) This Nigerian Afrobeat artist differentiates himself by using  traditional Yoruba drums to establish a dance floor rhythm, creating a light, though still insinuating groove. Singing in Yoruba, English, and a blend of the two, he wears a mask as an icon of man’s facelessness.

For a more comprehensive listing of blues (and some roots) events, see the MN Blues Society calendar. For a comprehensive listing of Cajun and Zydeco events, see the Krewe de Walleye calendar. Dancers might want to check out the calendar for U Wanna Dance.


Jazz, Blues, Country, Folk. Music: 5.28 – 6.3

May 28, 2014
A little humor from the Zits comic strip

A little humor from the Zits comic strip

We don’t have many visiting artists this week, but the few that are visiting are outstanding, from jazz pianist Bill Charlap to music insider Peter Asher. A passing glance at the resident artists appearing around town will show that we have more than enough high quality talent of our own. However, we have to remember to support our resident artists by attending their shows. As we encounter life’s challenges, we all need to refresh, and music certainly lifts the spirit. Have a good week.

Jazz

Wednesday, May 28

Wolverines Trio w/Maud Hixson @ Hell’s Kitchen, Minneapolis. 6pm – 9pm The ever-tasteful Wolverines, together with Ms Hixson’s clear voice and impeccable diction will win out over the Kitchen’s sometimes noisy environment. It always helps to sit close to the stage.

Dean Magraw & Praire Rhythm Section@ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($7)  With Gary Raynor, bass; and Peter Johnson, drums. Dean Magraw is arguably the most versatile guitarist in town, able to go from psychedelia to John Coltrane to Irish jigs and Indian ragas all in the course of a couple of songs. No wonder he’s been a favorite of Mr. Keillor. Tonight he has a couple of other Prairie Home regulars backing him up.

Graydon Peterson Quartet @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Peterson is a first-call bassist in town, and has been a sideman in a variety of configurations, from trios to big bands. He’s recently been writing his own music, and has gathered Adam Mecler, trumpet; Vinnie Rose, guitar; and Adrian Suarez on drums to give voice to his melodies.

Thursday, May 29

Bill Charlap Trio @ the Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($25, $30), 9pm ($20, $25) W/Peter Washington, bass; Kenny Washington, drums. Pianist Charlap is known for his interpretations of The Great American Songbook, and though he’s imaginative, he also gets to the essence of a song. His trio with the non-related Washington’s is rock solid.

 

Rhonda Laurie @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7:30pm – 9:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Thursday Night is Vocal Night at Jazz Central, and Ms Laurie is a prime example of the wealth of vocal talent in town. She can swing gypsy jazz, straight ahead, and modern material with equal ease.

Friday, May 30

Eric Kamau Gravatt @ Jazz Central, MInneapolis. 7:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) If you’ve been paying attention to Twin Cities Jazz for a few years, you probably know of Gravatt’s stints with Weather Report and McCoy Tyner, among others. Tonight he’s joined by Brandon Wozniak, sax; Charles Lincoln, bass; and Zacc Harris, guitar.

Davu Seru and Song Click @ The Black Dog Coffee and Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 8pm (Tip Jar) w/Donald Washington, sax; Nathan Hanson, sax; Brian Courage, bass; Marc Anderson, percussion. A great gathering of musicians who are master improvisers, whether they’re working with variations on written pieces or freely improvising.

Saturday, May 31

Benny Weinbeck Trio @ Parma 8200, Bloomington. 7:30pm – 10:30pm (No Cover) Weinbeck, piano; Gordy Johnson, bass; and Phil Hey, drums, have been delivering weekly doses of high quality music for the d’Amico Brothers for years, first at the Chambers Hotel, and now at this Italian restaurant in the SW quadrant of 494 & 100. They appear in the restaurant’s cocktail lounge, where you are still free to order dinner or one of the smaller plates from the bar menu.

Sunday, June 1

Zacc Harris Trio @ The Riverview Wine Bar, Minneapolis. 7:30pm – 9pm (Tip Jar) Zacc, Matt Peterson, and Peter Hennig have been playing Sunday Nights at the Riverview for quite a while now. All three are such great players that they continually surprise, and have yet to fall into a rut.

Monday, June 2

Tom Rainey & Ingrid Laubrock @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($10) Germany-born Ingrid Laubrock now lives in Brooklyn, where she composes and plays soprano and tenor sax. She and drummer Tom Rainey have recorded an album  of ten improvisations entitled And Other Desert Towns. They’ve played together in various bands since 2009, when Laubrock arrived in Brooklyn, yet this is their first duo record. Expect closely communicated, freely improvised music. Here they are in a trio format:

 

Tuesday, June 3

Dean Magraw & Eric Kamau Gravatt @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7pm (Tip Jar) Well, if you missed Dean at the Dakota and Eric at Jazz Central, you now have a chance to see them both playing off each other, and having a good time.

For a comprehensive listing of Jazz, go to the Twin Cities Live Jazz Calendar. For further commentary on Twin Cities jazz, check out the blogs Jazz PoliceBebopified, and Jazz Ink.

 

Blues, Roots, Other…

Wednesday, May 28

Unknown-1Jimmi & the Band of Souls @ Famous Dave’s, Minneapolis. 6pm – 9pm ($5?) Jimmi & the band are an energetic quartet that plays blues that stick in your head. They’re going to the 2015 International Blues Challenge in Memphis, representing Minnesota. This evening they’re celebrating the release of a new album, Live From the Park Theater, by bringing in a couple of special guests for this early evening show.

Thursday, May 29

New Riverside Ramblers @ The Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($5?) Here in Minnesota you’d be hard pressed to find a Cajun group with a history as long as the Ramblers. They’ve been together for twenty years or so, and have studied or performed with many of the genre’s veterans. So get out your dancing shoes and twirl, spin, and dip to your heart’s content.

Friday, May 30

Falderals CD Release @ The Aster Cafe, Minnepolis. 9pm ($10) This husband and wife team of Andrew and Rebecca Andestic met in Armenia, where they were both serving in the Peace Corps. Since then they’ve busked on the streets of Chicago, and have performed regularly around the Twin Cities. They write deeply felt, melodic folk songs (with a touch of folk-rock) that resonate with all ages. The CD is called Witness, and includes Shane Akers, dobro; Jim McGuinn, lapsteel & keys; and Derek McCullum on ukelele; all of whom will be special guests tonight.

Pistol Whippin’ Party Penguins CD Release @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 11pm ($8) A five piece string band that updates that traditional sound with original songs as well as creative arrangements of traditional bluegrass tunes, and untraditional tunes from folk, rock, and blues. They’re celebrating the release of their third studio album, Way Back Home.  Opening is The Last Revel, a passionate trio using three-part folk harmonies supported by an attitude that borrows freely from rock n’ roll rebels.

Saturday, May 31

Moe’s Folk & Blues Festival @ Moe’s, 2400 Highway 10, Moundsview. 3pm – Midnight (No Cover) Okay, you’ve got Paul Mayasich, Randy Webb & Dave Baab, Gene LaFond, Spider John Koerner, Paul Metsa & Sonny Earl, and inside, The Scottie Miller Trio to round out the evening. Who knew the West Bank has moved up to Mounds View?

Hurricane Harold’s All Star Blues Revue @ Neumann’s, North Saint Paul. 9pm (Tip Jar) Well the All Stars vary according to whoever is in town, but don’t worry, Harold’s been at this so long he can always find simpatico players.

Sunday, June 1

Sherwin Linton @ Famous Dave’s, MInneapolis. 10am – 2pm (No cover) How ‘bout some country music to go with those biscuits, gravy, waffles and rib tips? Linton has been performing for some 58 years now, bringing an unmatched authenticity to classic country and rockabilly. Check out his version of Tennessee Stud:

Samantha Harlow @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul., 4pm – 6pm (Tip Jar) This Saint Paul native spent a decade pouring drinks in a Nashville honky tonk, and countless nights touring and singing as a solo act. All that work has helped Harlow  learn how to write classic country tunes.

Jimages-2oe Ely @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($27, $35) Rockin’ honky tonk from Texas, by a guy who has played with Springsteen, Uncle Tupelo, The Chieftains, Lyle Lovett, and John Hiatt. Early on, he and his band toured with The Clash, and he even supplied background vocals on Should I Stay or Should I Go. Plus, he wrote the music for The Horse Whisperer. He and guitar slinger Jeff Plankenhorn will be performing mostly acoustic versions of Ely’s songs.

Tuesday, Wednesday, June 3,4

Peter has every reason to smile.

Peter has every reason to smile.

Peter Asher @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($45) Asher is the ultimate music industry insider, from the days his sister was dating Paul McCartney, to his own singing career with Peter & Gordon, to producing records for a wide variety of artists (two Grammys), as well as musicals, PBS features, and various award shows. He’ll share his story, sing a few songs, and generally be one of the most entertaining dinner guests you’ll ever run across.

 

For a more comprehensive listing of blues (and some roots) events, see the Minnesota Blues Society calendar. For a comprehensive listing of Cajun and Zydeco events, see the Krewe de Walleye calendar.

 

 


Blues Rhythm Jazz. Music: 3.19 – 3.25

March 19, 2014

images

The Twin Cities continues to jump with music, and just like the ol’ Moondog, the pioneering Alan Freed, we’ve got Blues, Rhythm, and Jazz. We also have a visiting honky tonk inventor, a charming singer/songwriter, a gig with a trio of funky sounds and even a noontime classical concert. Get out and enjoy yourself. Music has the power to lift your spirits.

Jazz…

Wednesday, March 19

Ms Oatts

Ms Oatts

Sue Oatts with the Woverines Trio @ Hell’s Kitchen, Minneapolis. 6pm – 9pm (No Cover) Sue has a winning way with lyrics, and the ever-steady, and always ready Wolverines are masters of accompaniment, and pretty mean players by themselves.

Zacc Harris Trio @ Café Maude, Minneapollis. 7pm (No Cover) Guitarist Zacc & his mates (Matt Peterson on bass and Pete Hennig on drums) travel a bit westward to play at this popular restaurant. Ask for a table near the band or sit at the bar.

Byron Johnson-Blanchard Quartet @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7:30pm (tip Jar) Byron is a young drummer who plays with High & Mighty and other groups and is beginning to regularly gig around town with his quartet featuring David Hirsch, sax; Thomas Nordlund, guitar, and Andrew Foreman, bass.

Jazz Finest Big Band w/Special Guest Lila Ammons @ the Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 9pm – 11pm ($12) This is a project of tenor sax man James “Jimmyapolis” Wallace and his wife Pennie, and features Jim TenBensel directing the band. I’ve written about Ammons before, a singer of classic blues and boogie woogie as well as jazz. There’ll be dance lessons from 8-9pm.

Thursday, March 20

Jazz @ Christos w/Alicia Renee & Chris Lomheim, Union Depot, Saint Paul. 6:00pm – 8:00pm  Stick around downtown after work to enjoy the vocals of the talented Ms Renee, and the piano artistry of Chris Lomheim.

Barbara Meyer & Liz Lupien @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7pm – 9pm ($10 suggested donation) Vocalist Meyer and pianist Lupien shares songs about travel from the Great American Songbook in a cabaret show entitled, “Let’s Get Away!”

Friday, March 21

The Bridge Series @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7pm – 9pm ($10 – Suggested Donation) This series is designed to “bridge” the absence of the Artists’ Quarter. This week features the Adam Meckler Quintet, with Adam Meckler, trumpet; Kevin Gastonguay, piano; Zacc Harris, guitar; Graydon Peterson, bass; and Greg Schutte, drums. I expect the musicianship will be high and the creativity overflowing.

Unknown-2Rhonda Laurie Trio @ Parma 8200, Bloomington. 7:30pm (No Cover)  Sophisticated vocals from Laurie in a sophisticated, yet comfortable setting, accompanied by the wonderful pianist Mary Louise Knutson, just off a tour with Doc Severinson, and Steve Pikal, the happiest bassist around, who is just off a tour with the Barbary Coast Show Band.

Courageous Endeavors @ Dakota Late Night, Minneapolis. 11:30 ($5) New original music from a quartet of young musicians who are creating jazz for the 21st Century. Nelson Devereaux, sax; Brian Courage, bass; Joe Strachan, piano; and Miguel Hurtado, drums. Here they are performing Herbie Hancock’s Maiden Voyage:

Sunday, March 23

Butch Thompson & Pat Donahue @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($20) A couple of Minnesota Treasures. Thompson is a marvelous piano player as well as clarinet player, whose command of early styles is legendary. Grammy winning guitarist Donahue is a master finger-picker, which was proven when he won the National Championship some year back. Their recent album, Vicksburg Blues, is a delight.

Monday, March 2

Chris Olson @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm (Donation) Guitarist Olson teaches at both McNally Smith and MacPhail, and his facile fretwork is well displayed in the trio Framework and the quartet Meantime. Tonight he’ll be joined by Tanner Taylor, piano; Graydon Peterson, bass; and Adrian Suarez, drums. Here is Chris with Framework:

Joel Shapira & Dean Magraw @ Barbette, Minneapolis. 10pm (Free) Cool guitar music for this late night happy hour spot. Shapira is a master of the nylon string, while Magraw is always full of musical ideas, whether he’s playing Celtic music, worldbeats, jazz fusion, or straight ahead swing.

Tuesday, March 25

Adam Meckler Orchestra @ The Amsterdam, Saint Paul. 9pm ($10) Trumpeter Meckler writes interesting arrangements as well as interesting compositions, and he’s managed to snag 18 talented musicians to play them.  These guys are close to raising their Kickstarter goal to record an album. You can get a preview by attending tonight.

For a comprehensive listing of Jazz, go to the Twin Cities Live Jazz Calendar and the KBEM Calendar, which also features some blues and roots listings. For further commentary of Twin Cities Jazz, go to Jazz Police, Bebopified, and JazzInk.

Blues, Roots, and Other…

Wednesday, March 19

Junior Brown @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($35, $40) Brown’s standing as one of the best guitarists in country music has been long established. The inventor of the guit-steel, a double-neck hybrid combining a steel and six-string guitar is more honky-tonk and rock n’ roll than countrypolitan, which may be why he’s been lauded by rock critics as well as older country fans.

PaviElle & Band

PaviElle & Band

PaviElle @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($5) PaviElle is a young soul singer who uses modern rhythms to support her old school singing. She’s got a crack band that provides fine support, whether she’s recasting a Fleetwood Mac song in soulful terms, singing an original, or jamming a la Funkadelic.

Thursday, March 20

The Schubert Club Courtroom Concert @ Room 317, Landmark Center, Saint Paul. Noon (Free) Two Duos. Baritone Steve Marking and pianist Donald Livingston perform songs by both Charles Ives and Lee Hoiby, while Kairos – Preston Duncan on saxophone and Ann DuHamel on piano – perform Sonata by William Albright and Klonos by Piet Swerts

Charlie Lawson & Mikkel Beckman @ the Dubliner, University & Vandalia, Saint Paul. 5pm – 7pm (No Cover) Lawson is a bluesman with a ferocious attack as a vocalist and guitarist. Beckman, who hosts a weekly show here,  plays the rub board, small percussion, and any other down-home utensil he can find, including a refrigerator door, which I’m told will be on hand tonight. Whether it’s a full-size refrigerator, or a dorm-sized one, we’ll have to wait and see.

Ashleigh & Michael, of Fathom Lane

Ashleigh & Michael, of Fathom Lane

Fathom Lane, Communist Daughter, and Taj Raj @ The Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($12) A concert sure to appeal to music lovers with wide tastes. Communist Daughter, the indie rock band that’s garnered national attention and just returned from South by Southwest is headlining. Fathom Lane, with their chamber-folk meets Gram Parsons music is second, while the rootsy Taj Raj uses elements of 70’s, from pop. to country, to folk-rock.

Friday, March 21

imagesBeverly McClellan @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 8pm ($35) Last time in town, McClellan charmed the audience with her forthright personality, raspy voice, and direct lyrics. She was one of the final four on tv’s The Voice, and is deserving of wider recognition. There is no doubt she’ll get it.

Nick Moss Band @ Wilebski’s, Saint Paul. 6pm ($10?) Moss plays a blend of classic Chicago blues and jam-oriented blues rock, using his firery guitar playing to win over jam-band lovers to the blues, and blues fans to the jam-band esthetic. Wilebeski’s early shows allows those of us of a certain age to get some sleep, while younger listeners can catch more music.

Saturday, March 22

Banjo Songwriter Night with Mother Banjo & Anthony Ihrig @ the 318 Café, Excelsior. 8pm ($7) Who knew the banjo could be used to create original songs? Mother Banjo & Anthony Ihrig, for two. Anthony will be accompanied by Dan Christensen-Cowan on the upright acoustic bass, while Mother Banjo will be joined by Dan Gaarder on guitar as each duo demonstrates the use of this much maligned instrument as a songwriter’s tool. The 318 is an intimate space with limited seating, so reservations are recommended at 952-401-7902.

New Sound Underground, Black Market Brass, & Pho @ The Triple Rock, Minneapolis. 9pm ($8) New Sound Underground is an six piece instrumental funk band whose members have played in jazz, reggae, funk, and salsa bands. Black Market Brass is a 10 piece that performs Afrobeat, that irresistible combination of funk and African rhythms, while Pho is a nine piece that mines jazzy funk, neo-soul, and underground hip-hop. Here’s a video of New Sound Underground.

Barely Bros Records Grand Opening Party, 763 Raynmond Avenue, Saint Paul. 10am – 9pm.  Vinyl aficionados are rejoicing over another store devoted to both new and old LPs and 45s. To celebrate, owners Mike Elias and Spencer Brooks are bringing in the following bands:

The way teens used to buy records

The way teens used to buy records

Matt Arthur & the Bratlanders at 12:00, Jon Rodine at 2:00, Brian Drake & the April Fools at 3:00, CP Lawson at 4:00, Nikki & the Ruemates at 5:00, M.O.R.T (The Mystic Order of Reverb and Twang) at 6:00, and Eleganza at 7:00

Monday, March 24

Millie & the Mill City Cajun Heavyweights @ The Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($5) Well it’s been a couple of weeks since the Mardis Gras celebrations, and some folks are itching to do some Cajun Two-steps, Waltzes, and twirls. Millie and the boys will help you do just that.

Tuesday, March 25

L.P. Music @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 10pm ($8 Advance/$10 door) It’s a Minnesota All-Star group playing improvised funk: Erik Leeds, sax, flute, vocals; Paul Peterson, bass, guitar; Peter Schimke, keys; and Stokely Williams, drums, percussion, & vocals.

Beijing Punk and Indie Rock on Film @ The Bryant Lake Bowl, Minneapolis. 7pm ($8advance/$10door) Two Beijing groups will be performing in Mpls in a couple of days, so this is a chance to get some background on the punk and indie rock subculture of China. There will be a 2010 feature documentary entitled “Beijing Punk” as well as an award winning 2013 short, and short films, as well as a Q&A with Danny Sigelman, local DJ and writer who deejayed in Bejing.

For a more comprehensive listing of blues (and some roots), see the Minnesota Blues Society Calendar. For a comprehensive listing of Cajun, Zydeco, and Swamp Pop events, see the Krewe de Walleye Calendar.


Celebrations, Anniversaries, & Festivals, oh my. Music 8.8 – 8.13

August 8, 2013
An outdoor concert, waaay back in the day

An outdoor concert, waaay back in the day

It’s a week of celebrations, anniversaries, and outdoor festivals, ranging from the Bayfront Blues Festival in Duluth, to the Minnesota Bluegrass and Old Time Music Festival in Richmond, to the Irish Fair on Harriet Island in Saint Paul. There are more, including music in the parks, but you’ll have to search newspapers or the internet to find them. Have a great week.

 

Jazz 

Thursday, August 8
Retro Sister Swing @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8pm – 10pm. (Donation) Vocalists Rhonda Laurie and Maryann Sullivan have tweaked the name of their aggregation, but the sound remains the same – well done, swinging standards. 
 
Southside Aces 10th Anniversary Party @ The Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 8pm Traditional New Orleans jazz. As if that couldn’t be enough of a party, the Aces are celebrating their tenth anniversary.
 
Friday, Saturday, August 9, 10
UnknownIllicit Sextet CD Release Party @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($12) This six-piece aggregation plays nothing but original tunes, which tend to be inspired by hard bop, bebop, and mainstream jazz. They’re a tight outfit, and their new CD “Chapter Eleven,” deserves to be played on every jazz station in the nation. 
 
Chris Speed Trio @ Dakota Late Night, Minneapolis. 11:30pm ($5) This Brooklyn via Seattle reed player has been in the forefront of adventurous music for a couple of decades now. His groups cover a wide range of music, from Balkan inspired jazz, to chamber and ambient music. Lately, he’s been playing with the Dave King Trucking Company. King will be playing drums with Speed for this engagement, along with Chris Tordini on bass. 
 
Sunday, August 11
Barbara LeShoure

Barbara LeShoure

PipJazz @ The Landmark Center, Saint Paul. 4pm ($10) Blues singer Barbara LeShoure is Pippi Ardennia’s guest today. Graduating members of the PipJazz Youth Orchestra will also be celebrated. 

 
For a more comprehensive listing of Jazz, go to the Twin Cities Live Jazz Calendar.  For further commentary on Twin Cities jazz, check out the blogs Jazz PoliceBebopified, and Jazz Ink.

Blues, Roots, Other

Thursday, August 8
Tom Rush @ the Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($30,$40) Rush started performing at the blossoming of the folk music boom in 1960, when he was a student at Harvard. He went on to be among the first to record and perform songs by Joni Mitchell, Jackson Browne, and James Taylor, and had his 1968 composition, “No Regret” recorded by the Walker Brothers and Emmylou Harris. More recently, a video of his performance of “The Remember Song” has gone viral, gaining over 6 million views.  Here it is.
Friday, August 9
Mauilotus: the Marilyn Allsum Group @ Barton School, 4237 Colfax So, Mpls. 7:30pm ($15 suggested donation) This sounds like a very interesting evening. Marily Allsum, vocals, flute; David Wolfe, Santoor Persian Harp; Mike Hurley, drums, percussion; and Charles Fletcher, bass; bring together both Eastern and Western instruments and styles to create a unique sound. In addition to the aforementioned instruments, they play piano, Chinese Harp, Indian Tablas, Tibetan Singing Bowls, African Udu (drums) and other instruments to create unique acoustic music.
 
The mysterious Mr. Lawson

The mysterious Mr. Lawson

Charlie Lawson’s Mystery Combo @ Palmer’s Bar, Minneapolis.  9pm. (No Cover) Mr. Lawson brings together a number of his blues-playing pals, including Curtis Blake on harp, for an evening of various kinds of blues, from shuffles to rockers.

 
Saturday, August 10
Lowertown Guitar Festival @ Mears Park, Saint Paul. Noon – 10pm (Free) Here’s a new twist on a festival – Ten guitarists in ten different styles, ranging from the fingerpicking of Pat Donahue, to the Brazilian stylings of Joan Griffith, and the cross-genre inventiveness of Dean Magraw, to national artists like Marc Ribot and Scott Henderson. Complete schedule and information here.
 
Marcia Ball @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($35), 9pm ($30) As a pianist, Ms Ball calls on the spirits of Professor Longhair and numerous boogie woogie players. Together with her singing, “Long Tall Marcia Ball” can turn even a joint as classy as the Dakota into a roadhouse. 
 
Unknown-2Jerermy Ylvisaker and Hot Rod @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 8pm, 10pm (tip jar) This show is part of an art opening for an exhibit entitled “This Is Not Your Father’s Radio,” by Robin Rife’. Ylvisaker is one of a group of musicians who have worked with each other in various, always interesting, groups such as Andrew Bird, Dosh, and Alpha Consumer. As a guitarist and songwriter, he favors clean lines and memorable melodies. He’ll play solo at 8ish and be joined by Michael Lewis on bass (yes, the saxophonist from Fat Kid Wednesdays), and Adrian Suarez on drums at 10pm. 
 
Sunday, August 11
Lakestock @ Lions Park, White Bear Lake. 1pm – 6pm. Here’s a chance to see a number of bands and help support efforts to restore White Bear Lake to its normal levels. Besides a speaker or two, and food and beverages, there will be five bands playing next to Admiral Ds: The Sydney Moore Band, Creedence Clearwater Survival (guess what they play); Billy McLaughlin, The 617 Band, and the newly reunited Free & Easy, the 70s funk band that was inducted into the MN Music Hall of Fame in 2008. Attendees are encouraged to wear 70’s attire. More info here. Get down, get funky, and get informed about water issues. 
 
Golden State Lone Star Revue @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($25)  Some Texas and California musicians get together to play the blues and have a good time, including Anson Funderburgh (Anson & the Rockets) and Little Charlie Baty (Little Charlie and the Nightcaps) on guitars, Mark Hummel, harp; RW Grigsby, bass; and Wes Starr, drums. Gonna be some hootin’ and hollerin’ tonight. Here’s Hummel on harp.
 
For a more comprehensive listing of blues (and some roots) events, see the Minnesota Blues Society calendar. For a comprehensive listing of Cajun and Zydeco events, see the Krewe de Walleye calendar
 

Music: 4.24 – 4.30

April 24, 2013
What is that in the sky?

What is that in the sky?

A couple of renowned hometown heros – jazz pianist Craig Taborn and alt-country artists Gary Louris – are gracing our stages this week. We’ve also got the first real promise of 70 degree weather for the weekend, so you can celebrate by going out and about. The Saint Paul Art Crawl is also this weekend, so you can immerse yourself in both visual and performing arts. Have a good week.

Jazz

Wednesday, April 24

Firebell @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30 (donation) Park Evans, guitar, Graydon Peterson, bass,a nd Jay Epstein, drums, create swinging, 21st Century jazz.

Miguel Hurtado & Friends @ the Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($5) Hurtado is a talented young drummer who’s been playing around town since he was a teen, and more recently, since graduating from the Manhattan School of Music. He’s played with Jeremy Walker in Boot Camp, and has appeared with Davina & the Vagabonds, John Raymond, and other verteran and up and coming artists. Tonight he leads his own ensemble in jazz standards and more.

Thursday, April 25

Improvestra @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 8pm (Tip Jar) Large ensemble improvisation from a group that includes some Black Dog regulars, as well as MacNally Smith students, facult, alumni, and a few exceptional high school students.

Rhonda Laurie & Robert Bell @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8pm (Donation) One voice. One guitar. Bell’s guitar playing is a perfect match for the softly swinging Ms Laurie.

Friday, April 26

The African Jazz Trio, featuring the Akou Brothers @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($12) Guitarst Lobe Akou and bassist Serge Akou bring together African rhythms and jazz sensibility. Lobe’s highly melodic guitar playing is pushed along by the polyrhythms of Serge’s bass and Kevin Washington’s drums, for an exciting fusion of sounds.

Craig Taborn @ the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis. 8pm ($25) This is a show that has the jazz community abuzz. After growing up in Golden Valley, where he was quickly recognized for his skill and imagination at the piano, Taborn has been garnering much well-deserved attention and high profile gigs in New York. He’ll be doing a solo turn with music from his 2011 album Avenging Angel, and will also perform with his trio – Gerald Clever, drums; Thomas Morgan, bass. Junk Magic – another of Dave King’s groups – will also perform. Here’s a video of his incredible solo playing.

Saturday, April 27

Eric Marienthal

Eric Marienthal

JazzMN Orchestra with Eric Marienthal @ Hopkins HS Center for Performing Arts, 2400 Lindberg Dr, Minnetonka. 7:30pm ($29, $33, $10 – student rush) Grammy winner Marienthal has 13 albums as a leader, and countless others as a sideman, including a number with Chick Corea’s Elektric Band, and work supporting Ramsey Lewis, BB King, Barbra Streisand, Stevie Wonder, and others. The JazzMN Orchestra is always a delight.

Insurgent @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. 8pm ($10) Extended improvisations from Pat Moriarty, alto sax; Ellen Lease, piano; and Phil Hey, drums. These three musicians have been plying the high-wire act of free improvisation for many, many years. Their resulting ability to anticipate and respond to each other is as equally responsible for the brilliance of their music as their talents. Here’s a video from their performance at Studio Z a few years back.

Sunday, April 28

imagesJazz Noir: Charles & Avon @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 5pm and 8pm. The 8pm performance will be broadcast and streamed on KBEM. This is a radio drama that takes place during the 20s in the Rondo neighborhood. Music is written by George Maurer, and will be played by Maurer, piano; Soloman Parham, trumpet; Chris Bates, bass; and Pete Hennig, percussion and banjo. More information and tickets are available here.

More listings for Twin Cities jazz can be found at KBEM and at Jazz Police. Jazz Police also features jazz commentary as well, as do Bebopified, and Jazz Ink.

Blues, Roots, Other…

Friday, April 26

Lamont Cranston @ Wilebski’s, Saint Paul. 6pm ($?) Here’s a way to get an early start on your weekend blues. Pay Hayes and the guys have been around for oh, so long, inspiring the Blues Brothers, opening for Bonnie Raitt, etc., etc., and put out a new CD last fall. Boogie Woogie, Chicago Blues, it’s all music that will make you move.

The Henchmen @ The Hat Trick Lounge, Saint Paul. 9pm Mike Goldberg (Captain Mike & Other bands) has come up with another power pop group. If you love ringing guitars, clever wordsmithing, and three part harmonies, you will want to check out this group.

Charles Lawson’s Group @ Palmers, Minneapolis. 9pm. ($? – maybe a Tip Jar) Charles Lawson serves as guitarist/ringleader of this collection of ace blues artists from the Twin Cities. John Franken and Dan Schwalbe, guitars; Loren Dwyer, bass; Curtis Blake, harp; Max Ray, sax; Greg Chuck, drums.

Saturday, April 27

Galactic Cowboys

Galactic Cowboys

Sol Bock Revival @ Harriet Brewing, Minneapolis. 2pm – 9pm. With the weekend forecast calling for the 70s, the warehouse/stage door  of Harriet Brewing will be opening, allowing people to taste a new brew while listening to music. Things get started at 2pm with singer/songwriter Dan Israel. Frogleg, a improvisation rock band, hits the stage at 3:30. Ace guitarist and country singer Erik Koskinen follows at 5:30, with the Galactic Cowboy Orchestra closing things off at 8pm.

Ray Bonneville @ The Aster Cafe, Minneapolis. 9pm ($10) Bonneville had the most played song among folk deejays in 2009 (I Am the Big Easy), and won the solo turn at the 2012 International Blues Challenge. With a smoky voice, haunting harp, and greasy guitar, the Red House Records artist pulls you into his songs. The under appreciated Jon Rodine opens. Here’s a video.

Mega Release Party @ The Turf Club, Saint Paul. 9pm The joint will be rockin’ with the sounds of vixen rockabillys L’Assasins, glam-punk Pink Mink, the snarling guitars of the Sex Rays, and the rockin’ Pinsch as they all celebrate releases of either singles, an ep, or a vinyl album. Extra added attraction: Lady Heat deejays will keep things rockin’ between sets.

Sunday, April 28

Road to Memphis Challenge @ O’Gara’s, Saint Paul. 12:30pm ($10 Donation) It’s time to choose Minnesota representatives to the 2014 International Blues Challenge in Memphis. The Minnesota Blues Society has gathered 10 bands and 5 solo/duo acts to play on two stages. A panel of judges will choose the winners to represent Minnesota. More information and a list of participating performers can be found here.

Monday, April 29

Roots Night @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 6:30pm. (Tip Jar) Actually most nights at the 331 feature roots music, but this evening has 3 extraordinary groups. Doug Otto & the Getaways start things off at 6:30, followed by the Roe Family Singers at 9pm and Hillfolk Noir, with Charlie Parr at 10:30.

Monday, Tuesday, April 29, 30

Gary Louris @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($30) This is a last-minute booking. Louris is a home-grown star of alt-country, known for his work with the seminal Jayhawks. He’s got a worldwide audience, but for two nights he’s playing in his home town. You may want to act fast to make reservations.

For a more comprehensive listing of blues (and some roots) events, see the Minnesota Blues Society calendar. For a comprehensive listing of Cajun and Zydeco events, see the Krewe de Walleye calendar.


Springtime Music: 3.27 – 4.2

March 27, 2013
Just might be time to get the NiceRide bicycles out.

Just might be time to get the NiceRide bicycles out.

Maybe, just maybe, Spring is here in the Twin Cities. I’m still remembering an April 17 about 25 years ago when we got 17 inches of snow. I’m hoping climate change will at least prevent that from happening again. At any rate, it’s definitely much easier to get out and about and support live music (as well as the occasional dejay, cough cough). I’ve highlighted mostly home grown talent, but then we have many talented artists in our community who are worth supporting. Have a good week.

Jazz

Thursday, March 28

Rhonda Laurie & Phil Mattson @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm (Donation) Phil Mattson is a busy guy these days, what with the Phil Mattson Singers, recently at the AQ with Richie Cole, his CD with Dorothy Doring, which got a nice write-up on Amazon, and his seeming ability to pop up and accompany vocalists. Tonight he’s playing while Rhonda Laurie, the chanteuse with a slightly smoky voice and swinging sense of rhythm will sing.

Channeling Django

Channeling Django

Parisota Hot Club @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7:30 – 9:30pm (Tip Jar) The Parisota Hot Club (Robb Henry, guitar; Jim Chenoweth, bass; and Gary Schulte, violin) brings a taste of Paris and Django Rheinhardt to the Black Dog. Gypsy jazz, as applied to standards old and new.

Friday, March 29

Maude Hixson Trio @ Parma 8200, Bloomington. 7:30pm (No Cover) Maude recently went to the Big Apple to work on a new CD. Perhaps she’ll preview some songs tonight in the lounge of this Italian restaurant. Subtle, nuanced, and ever-so-lovely singing.

DownloadedFile-1Lindsay Pedalty Trio @ The Third Floor, 579 Selby, Saint Paul. 8pm – 10pm (No cover) Pedalty’s voice has just a bit of an edge, which she often uses to give a slyly sardonic reading to standards. She’ll be accompanied on piano by her dad Bruce, a veteran of the Senders, Mojo Buford, and several area big bands, as well as Gary Miller on bass.

Kronick Quartet @ The Hat Trick Lounge, Minneapolis. 9pm ($5?) Swing, bebop, and some funky jazz from Richard Kronick, bass;  Dennis Landeen, sax; Scott Ives, guitar; and Dehl Gallagher, drums. They’ve been around, play in various cookin’ bands, and should swing the Trick tonight.

Friday, Saturday, March 29, 30

Dave King Trucking Company @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($15) Drummer Dave King brings one of his many groups  – Brandon Wozniak, saz; Adam Linz, bass; and Erik Fratzke, guitar to Saint Paul’s basement club once again.  The New York Times, in reviewing their recent CD “Good Old Light,” said, “Dave King’s dirty, aggressive, disciplined joy in playing drums conjoins many degrees between swing rhythm and more rigid backbeats.” With a stellar line-up of friends as his band-mates, there is bound to be many exciting moments, as well as King’s offbeat asides.

Saturday, March 30

images-2Brunch w/Sophia Shorai @ Hell’s Kitchen, Minneapolis. 10AM – 1AM. (Free) What a lovely way to spend a Saturday morning, with Sophia Shorai’s voice floating over you while you chow down on pancakes, waffles, or other tasty dishes. She’s been called “honey-voiced,” which is apt, but her voice is also sweet, aching, and even slightly sensuous.

More listings for Twin Cities jazz can be found at KBEM and at Jazz Police. Jazz Police also features jazz commentary as well, as do Bebopified, and Jazz Ink.

Roots, Blues, Other..

Wednesday, March 27

Jay Lang on KFAI and @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (KFAI – 90.3 & 106.7FM) 7pm (331 Club – Tip Jar) Tune in to hear some hill country blues from this Mississippi singer and guitarist, then head over to the 331 Club to catch him in person.

Thursday, March 28

Jenny Dalton @ The Amsterdam Bar & Hall, Saint Paul. 9pm (Tip Jar) Twin Citizen Dalton is a singer/songwriter who has been working the national circuit with some success. Her piano-based music can be ethereal, haunting, sometimes danceable, and always beautiful. If you like Tori Amos, Kate Bush, or Florence and the Machine, you will want to hear Jenny.  Here’s a video.

Jacob Hanson, Jeremy Hanson, and Frankie Lee @ the Red Stag, Minneapolis. 10pm. (no cover) Lee is an Americana/roots musician who’s been making a name for himself, and attracting folks like JT Bates and Erik Koskinen to play with him. If you didn’t make it to the crowded Icehouse for Lee’s recent CD release party of Middle West, you can catch him tonight in a less crowded, and more low key event with the talented Hanson brothers.

Friday, March 29

Havana Hi-Fi @ The 318 Club, Excelsior. 8pm ($10) Here’s a chance for those of you living in the West Metro to get a shot of Latin rhythms. The Afro-Cuban rhythms of this quintet will set the cozy 318 Club jumpin’. I wouldn’t be surprised if some folks try to squeeze some dancing in between the tables. Plus, the 318 has an imaginative selection of food and beverages.

imagesBeverly McLellan @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 8pm ($30) This vocal powerhouse will fill the Dakota with her voice and her personality. A finalist on the Voice, McLellan recorded her fifth album with local Grammy winner David Z as producer. Expect songs that range from modern country and folk to soul classics, all done in a personal style. As an added bonus, Mary Cutrufello opens.

Saturday, March 30

The Eddies @ The Hat Trick Lounge, Saint Paul. 8pm – 11pm. ($7) An evening of almost-acapella music featuring the occasional singalong, though you’ll likely not be adding your voice to the classic songs of death and hard life on the seas that this quintet serves up.

Badinovs @ The Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 9pm ($5) Mike Niles and Pat Olberding used to have an alt-rock band called Smart Alex, which was smart enough to be noticed by many fans of good ol’ rock n’ roll. Now they’ve got the Badinovs, a band that evokes the British Invasion. Dwight Hobbes, of Twin Cities Daily Planet, said of their recent CD “Fess Up,” “…there’s no denying their respect for and ability at—even with modern-day production values—good old fashioned, raw-edged rock ‘n’ roll topped off by just the right touch of polish.” If you’re curious, you can check out their music on Reverbnation.

Tuesday, April 2

Halloween, Alaska @ Hopkins Center for the Arts, Hopkins. 7pm ($24) James Diers, guitar & keys; Jake Hanson, guitar; Bill Shaw, bass; and the ubiquitous Dave King on drums, combine electronics with an indie/alt/pop songwriting ascetic.

For a more comprehensive listing of blues (and some roots) events, see the Minnesota Blues Society calendar. For a comprehensive listing of Cajun and Zydeco events, see the Krewe de Walleye calendar.


Music for an Icy Spring: 3.20 – 3.26

March 20, 2013

images-2It’s been a busy day and a busy week, and like many of you I’m gobsmacked by having single digit weather on the first day of Spring. But… Hope is eternal, and Spring will arrive eventually, though not soon enough for most of us. Nevertheless, put on those heavy coats and get out to hear some great music this week.

Jazz

Wednesday, March 20

Pete Whitman @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm  (Donation) Master saxophonist Whitman is combining forces with Chris Olson, guitar; Bruce Heine, bass, and Dave Schmalenberger, drums to perform original compositions by Whitman and Olson.

You don't have to dance like Fred & Ginger, just enjoy yourself.

You don’t have to dance like Fred & Ginger, just enjoy yourself.

Sister Swing @ The Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 8pm – 10pm ($7/$5 students & seniors)  Maryann Sullivan and Rhonda Laurie are two singers about town who have an affinity for swing music, so they’re combining forces and performing at the Eagles, a place with a dance floor just perfect for any kind of dancing you want to do. Even if you don’t dance, it’s still a great place to visit with friends old and new while listening to some sweet harmonies and solo pieces. Backing them are Kent Saunders, guitar; Matt Peterson, bass; Doug Haining, sax.

Brian Courage Quartet @ the Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($5) Brian is a relatively new bassist in town, and has already managed to corral Park Evans, guitar; Bryan Nichols, pianol; and Jay Epstein, drums into playing music by Thelonious Monk and Paul Motian. Sounds like a very interesting evening.

Thursday, March 21

Phil Mattson Singers with Richie Cole @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 8pm ($15) This should be quite the musical experience. Cole, the bebop alto player, could headline all by himself. This pairing, in which Cole is a guest playing with the Singers, makes sense in that Cole often played with Eddie Jefferson, one of the progenitors of vocalese, as well as with the Manhattan Transfer. Then there’s the fact that Cole and Mattson have worked together over the years since 1979.

Jon Pemberton Trio @ Barbette, Minneapolis. 10pm (Free) The Barbette’s late night happy hour is a good reason to visit. A great reason to visit is pianist/trumpeter/composer Jon Pemberton, who creates some mighty fine music, whether composing or improvising. This video gives you a taste of his talent, even though he’ll be using a keyboard at Barbette.

Friday, Saturday, March 22, 23

images-4Atlantis Quartet @ Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($10) Their last album, Lines in the Sand, was recorded at the AQ, so it’s always a bit of a homecoming when the Atlantis Quartet perform there. Zacc Harris, guitar; Brandon Wozniak, sax; Chris Bates, bass; and Pete Hennig, drums, are all talented improvisers and completely in communication with each other, which makes for thrilling playing, and accounts for their growing fan base.

Sunday, March 24

Nova Jazz Orchestra @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. 7pm. ($10) The 19 piece big band will be premiering WA Matheiu’s six-movement suite, Concerto for Big Band. Matheiu wrote and arranged for Stan Kenton, Duke Ellington, Maynard Ferguson, and others. Mathieu previously collaborated with Nova on the CD “Double Feature,” featuring 14 previously unrecorded orginals by Matheiu.

Tuesday, March 26

Adam Meckler Orchestra @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm (Donation) Meckler is turning into a terrific composer as well as trumpet player. He’s assembled seventeen musicians to play his creations. Check them out.

More listings for Twin Cities jazz can be found at KBEM and at Jazz Police. Jazz Police also features jazz commentary as well, as do Bebopified, and Jazz Ink.

Blues, Roots, Other…

Wednesday, March 20

Paul Geremia on KFAI and @ the 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (90.3 & 106.7FM) and 7pm (331 – tip jar) If you didn’t get to see him at the Bayport BBQ this past week, you still have a chance to both hear and see him today.

Thursday, March 21

DownloadedFile-2Ronnie Baker Brooks @ Minnesota Music Cafe, Saint Paul. 9pm. Brooks is the son of Lonnie Brooks, and like his dad in the past, brings a contemporary Chicago Blues. After playing with his dad for twelve years, RBB, as he’s known, struck out on his own with the award-winning “Golddigger” in 1998. Whether adding some funky beats to a song, or a blistering solo on a blues-rock number, RBB will excite a crowd.

Friday, March 22

Blues Harmonica Blowout @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 8pm ($20) Wouldn’t be surprised to see a number of the area’s harp men turning out to see Mark Hummel, Corky Siegel, and Billy Boy Arnold play in this harp extravaganza. West coaster Hummel started up this series in 1991 and has drawn a who’s who of the mouth organ to play each year. Corky Siegel earned a fierce reputation as a member of the Siegel-Schwall Blues Band in the 70s. Billy Boy Arnold got his start helping Bo Diddley define his signature sound by playing on “I’m A Man.” Arnold had his own good sized hit with “I Wish You Would.”

Saturday, March 23

Big George Jackson @ Holihan’s, White Bear Lake. 7pm. Jackson has the deepest blues voice in town, and he knows how to use it, whether he’s giving an extra kick to a John Lee Hooker-like boogie or getting low down. Always has sterling players with him as well.

The Duchess of the blues

The Duchess of the blues

Dee Miller Band w/Jimi Prime Time Smith @ Shaw’s, NE Minneapolis. 9pm (tip jar) The cozy, boozy space at Shaw’s will reverberate to the sound of Dee Miller’s vocals accompanied by  Prime Time Smith’s guitar playing. Dee follows in a long tradition of take-no-bull women who sing, growl, and have their way with the blues.

Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, March 26, 27, 28

Nanci Griffith @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($60/$50) Grammy-winning Texan native Griffith is a literate folk/country singer who can tell a satisfying story within a three or four minute song. Whether they are stories about families, loves, or economic conditions, her insightfulness rings true. Here she is singing one of her classic tales of lifelong love.

For a more comprehensive listing of blues (and some roots) events, see the Minnesota Blues Society calendar. For a comprehensive listing of Cajun and Zydeco events, see the Krewe de Walleye calendar.


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