Basses, Young Lions, World Music, and the Blues. Music: 8.14 – 8.20
Well, we’ve quite a week of music here in the Twin Cities. Tonight, jazz fans have the difficult job of choosing between two bass-centric gigs. We also have some young jazz musicians popping up on the scene, as well as some veteran blues musicians, gigs that will attract free-style and learned dancers, and world music, especially if you’re up for a drive towards Taylor Falls.
Wednesday, August 14
Back in the Day at the Emporium
Butch Thompson’s History of Jazz in Mendota, Mendota VFW, 1323 Sibley Memorial Highway, Mendota. 7pm (Free – limited space). This is a show that was rescheduled when its outdoor performance was weather-cancelled. Butch will talk about jazz in Mendota, including the heyday of the Emporium of Jazz, performing music from the time with the help of Charlie DeVore, trumpet; Steve Pikal, bass; and Lee Engele on vocals.
The basics of a bass
Chris Bates & Anthony Cox Bass Duo @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 9:30pm (Donation – $5 – $10) Jess Stacken, solo piano, at 8:30pm. A rather exciting evening, as NYC-via-Hopkins pianist Jesse Stacken does a solo performance of originals, improvisations, and a standard or two, followed by the two-bass duel between Bates and Cox.
Mountain King @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($5) Jeremy Boettcher, Graydon Peterson, Brian Courage. Over in Saint Paul, we’ve another bass showcase with this three-bass line-up. They’ll be performing new arrangements of some standards, original compositions, and tunes from the SuperBass songbook.
Thursday, August 15
Ted Olsen Quartet @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($5) Ted Olson, bass; Quentin Tschofen, piano; Jake Baldwin, trumpet, Emerson Hunton, drums. Young Lions seem to be gathering all over the Twin Cities this summer. This is but one group of many who are forming in various combinations. Tschofen, Baldwin, and Hunton are all alumni of the Dakota Combo, essentially a high-school all-star group, and already making the circuit, even if they aren’t done with college-level studies. Olson is a bit older, but only by a couple of years. They’ll be chomping at their instruments and spitting out their own arrangements of jazz standards and originals.
Friday, Saturday, August 16, 17
Chris Bates’ Red Five @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($12) It’s been a while since this group played out, which is too bad, since each member of the group is so talented. Then again, that talent is the reason they are all in demand and playing in numerous other groups. Chris just came back from a tour in France with pianist Tony Hymas and brother JT Bates. Besides Chris on bass, there’s Zack Lozier, trumpet, Chris Thomson, tenor and soprano, (replaced by Nelson Deveroux on Friday); Brandon Wozniak, tenor and alto; and brother JT on drums.
Saturday, August 17
Dean Brewington with Lila
Lila Ammons Quintet @ Honey, Minneapolis. 7pm – 9pm ($8) Lila will be releasing a new CD in September. It’s a honey, with subtle interpretations of standards. With Tom West, keys; Dean Brewington, sax; Ron Evaniuk, bass; Mac Santiago, drums.
Twin Cities Cabaret @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8pm – 10pm ($10 Donation) Les Block, Katia Cardenas, Nichole Carey, Connie Dussl, Jennifer Eckes, Barbara Meyer, Janet Skidmore, Heidi Ziman, and Sheridan Zuther. Steven Hobert and Phil Mattson on piano! Storytelling, jazz, and more from nine vocalists.
Monday, August 19
Jake Baldwin Quintet @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. (No Cover) Baldwin, a trumpeter who was in the Dakota Combo before going off to the New England Conservatory, is back in town and beginning to appear in various venues. He recently graduated, and tonight he’s joined by Nelson Devereau, sax; Brian Courage, bass; Jo Strachan (another Dakota Combo alum) on piano; and Miguel Hurtado on drums.
Tuesday, August 20
Explosion Big Band @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm (donation) This 18 piece big band is the brainchild of Doug Haining, sax; and Scott Agster, trombone, who have brought together many of the area’s talented musicians for this band. They’ve been appearing at Jazz Central on a monthly basis and will be playing a State Fair Showcase. However, the State Fair gig doesn’t quite cover the costs, so this is billed as a fundraiser for the Showcase. It’s intimate. It’s explosive. It’s fun.
Brittain, Kjeer, Courage, and Horst @ The Artists’ Quarter. 9pm ($5) Here’s four different generations of musicians, from 16 year old Will Kjeer on piano, to 70 year old Kenny Horst on drums. In between we have twenty-something Brian Courage on bass, and Dave Brittain, who has played sax with the Cedar Avenue Big Band for twenty years, among other projects. I suspect the music will be seamless, straight ahead jazz.
Charlie Musselwhite @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($35), 9pm ($25) This harpmaster is versatile enough to play Cuban, Americana, a bit of jazz and Brazilian Chorros along with the blues. His latest recording Get Up!, with Ben Harper, is a stripped down affair that showcases Musselwhites powerful harp playing. Here’s a clip of him singing and playing
Fareed Haque’s MathGames w/Todd Clouser’s A Love Electric @ Whiskey Junction, Minneapolis. 9pm ($12) Guitar lovers and jam band fans rejoice. Fareed Haque is considered one of the best guitarists in the world. His former band, Garag Mahal, has many Twin Cities fans. His current band is funkified, jazzified, electronified, and psychedelizied, blending genres as easily as a baker combing eggs, flour, and milk. Clouser is another guitarist who has figured out how to blend jazz, rock, and a bit of funk, thrilling audiences in Mexico, Europe, and throughout the US. Clouser opens at 9:30.
Friday, Augutst 16
Eisner’s Klezmorin @ The Coffeegrounds, 1579 Hamilne Ave, Saint Paul. 8pm (tip jar?) This String Band – violins, mandolin, double bass, creates the sound of Klezmer music before clarinets and brass were added to the mix.
Paul Cebar Tomorrow Sound @ Lee’s Liquor Lounge, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($10) Most likely, long time fans (and they are legion) already know that Paul is bringing his rhythmic joyousness to town. Anyone who loves to dance and appreciates good songwriting inspired by old R&B and calypso (among other genres) should get to Lee’s and check him out. And don’t forget dancing shoes. Here’s an example of their music.
Saturday, August 17
World Music Festival @ Franconia Sculpture Park, 29836 St. Croix Trail, Franconia. Noon – 9pm (Free – $5 parking) Here’s a great way to spend a summer afternoon. Bring a picnic, or buy some food from vendors on site while you enjoy the Brazilian/jazz sounds of the duo Xibaba, the masterful drumming of Mu Daiko, and the danceable Cuban sounds of Viviana Pintando & Q-Band. The energy ramps up at 6pm with the punkabilly all-female, L’Assasins, and the all-female hip-hop crew The Chalice. All amongst the large outdoor sculptures of Franconia Sculpture Park, located about 3 miles west of Taylor Falls. Here’s an example of what you can expect from Mu Daiko.
Lil’ Ed & the Blues Imperials @ Famous Daves, Minneapolis. 9pm ($5) Raucous blues from slide master Lil’ Ed, who learned his craft from his uncle, JB Hutto. It’s high octane, high energy, house rockin,’ butt shakin’ music.
Sunday, August 18
Mary Cutrufello @ Washington Square, White Bear Lake. 6pm (Free) Mary’s original country tunes are as soulful as you can get. Tonight is a duo gig, just right for the cozy Washington Square Bar & Grill. There are twenty taps so you have plenty to choose from if you want to cry in your beer.
Tuesday, August 20
Orkestar Bez Ime @ Minnesota History Center, Saint Paul. 7pm (Free) Orkestar Bez Ime will be playing Balkan party music outside on the plaza of the MN History Center overlooking downtown Saint Paul. Bring a picnic, if you wish, or partake of the food and beverage offerings on site. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself trippin’ over your picnic in a mad rush to dance without abandon. Here’s an example of what you might expect.
Patty & The Buttons @ Cafe Maude, Minneapolis. 7pm. (No Cover) Pat plays button accordion, and the Buttons back him up on swing numbers and more. As usual, when making reservations for dinner, request a table near the band, so you don’t end up in the back room. If you just want a drink and appetizers, you may be able to score a seat at the bar.
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.