Another week, another seven days of juggling schedules to see, hear, and dance to the fine musicians of our area. We also have a few notable visitors, including members of the Rolling Stones’ tour, due in town next week. Get out and catch some live music: it lifts the spirit.
Wednesday, May 27
Lila Ammons Trio @ Tangiers, Minneapolis. 8pm (No Cover) The Tangiers has a luxe/decadent atmosphere, what with leather couches and banquettes with red walls. Just the place to hear the jazzy and jazzy blues of vocalist Ammons and her trio.
Pat Kuehn @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Bassist Kuehn is an Eau Claire native who attended the New England Conservatory of Music with trumpeter Jake Baldwin. The versatile bassist has chosen to make the Twin Cities home, and is making his Jazz Central debut, accompanied by a trio of equally versatile young musicians: Nelson Devereaux, sax; Noah Ophoven Baldwin, trumpet; and Lars Erik Larson, drums. Here’s Kuehn with a trio.
Wednesday, Thursday, May 27, 28
Rachelle Farrell @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($40-$50), 9pm ($30-$40) With a range of more than six octaves, Farrell can certainly impress. More importantly, she puts her own individual stamp on both R&B and jazz tunes. Though her use of odd accents can be idiosyncratic at times, Farrell connects with both R&B and Jazz fans – anyone who bought Luther Vandross, Anita Baker, or other proponents of “Quiet Storm” R&B.
Friday May 29
Cannonball Collective @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7:00pm ($10 Suggested Donation) this tribute to Cannonball Adderley features Mac Santiago, drums; Zack Lozier, trumpet; Joe Strachan, piano; Keith Boyles, bass; and Doug Haining, sax. Cool music from a multi-generational bunch of cool musicians.
Maud Hixson Trio @ Parma 8200, Bloomington. 7:30pm (No Cover) First class singing and playing from Ms Hixson and her trio, in a small lounge with a fine bar menu. Worth a trip.
Heart of the Fall of the House of Usher & Physical Memory Dump @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 8pm ($5 – $20 Suggested Donation) Chris Cunningham, guitar; Chris Bates, bass; and Greg Schutte, drums; with guests Michelle Kinney, cello; Nathan Hanson, sax; Ivan S. Cunningham, sax. Followed at 9pm by the “power-jazz hoodlums” of Physical Memory Dump: Charlie Lincoln, bass; Peter Goggin, alto; and Joey Hays, drums.
Bottomless Pit @ The Nicollet Cafe, Minneapolis. 9pm (Tip Jar) Guitarist Joel Shapira has put together a new group, with Pete Whitman, sax; Tom Lewis, bass; and Eric Kamau Gravatt, drums. They’ll draw on a post-bop, including compositions by Coltrane and Coleman, as well as originals.
Saturday, May 30
Saturday Night Jazz @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7pm David Martin Trio. 8:30pm the Atlantis Quartet ($5 – $20 Suggested Donation) The Saints are playing an away game, so there’s no need to worry quite so much about getting around Lowertown and finding a parking spot. At any rate, tonight’s bill is worth the effort. Martin is a talented guitarist who’ll be accompanied by Chris Bates on bass and Pete Hennig on drums. Bates and Hennig return as part of the Atlantis Quartet with Zacc Harris, guitar; and Brandon Wozniak on sax. The Quartet is regularly lauded as the best modern jazz group in town, a point well taken. Here they are at Studio Z.
Parisota Hot Club @ Crooners Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. 7:30pm – 10:30pm (No Cover) The folks at Crooners are surely finding their way in presenting jazz and R&B at what used to be the Shorewood. Tonight they’re presenting the Parisota Hot Club: Robb Henry, guitars; Graydon Peterson, bass; and Jay Epstein, drums. Erin Livingston sits in on vocals. As might be expected from their name, they play many of the standards associated with Django Rheinhardt. What may come as a bit of a surprise, is the way they can adapt the music of the Beatles (and other rock n’ rollers) to that style as well.
Monday, June 1
Capri Big Band @ Como Dockside, Saint Paul. 7 – 8:30pm (Free) Sit lakeside at the Como Park Pavillion and listen to the sounds of a true community band, albeit an intergenerational band with a number of working professional musicians.
Tall Tales CD Release @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($8) Tall Tales is a new aggregation of familiar faces in the Twin Cities Jazz Community: Dean Granros and Zacc Harris on guitars; Chris Bates on bass; and Jay Epstein on drums. Their self-titiled CD is filled with jangly, sometimes discordant grooves.
Tuesday, June 2
Bill Evans New Orleans Jazz Band @ Bennett’s Rail & Chophouse, Saint Paul. 7pm (No Cover) Traditional jazz from the early days of New Orleans, with a faithful group of fans, occasionally inspiring a mini second line in the confines of this West 7th restaurant.
Band 2 Featuring Tim Ries & Bernard Fowler @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($45) Tim Ries is a go-to sax player in NYC. In addition to leading his own band, he has performed with Maria Schneider, Donald Byrd, Maynard Ferguson, and other high-profile jazzers. He toured with the Stones in 1999, and while recording his second album, realized that many of the Stones’ songs had some jazz potential. the Rolling Stones Project Volumes 1 & 2, resulted, being released in 2005. Bernard Fowler, another member of the Stones’ current tour, is a busy vocalist, whose credits include work with Bootsy Collins Herbie Hancock, Philip Glass, and hundreds of others.
For a comprehensive listing of Jazz go to the Twin Cities Live Jazz Calendar. KBEM provides a calendar of jazz and roots music. For further commentary on Twin Cities jazz, check out the blogs, Jazz Police, Jazz Ink, and Bebopified.
Blues, Roots, Other…
Wednesday, May 27
Papa John Kolstad @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 7pm (Tip Jar) The House Party is pre-empted on KFAI today, but Harold is still presenting music at the 331 Club: This time featuring Papa John, who will, hopefully, be doing some blues as well as the acoustic swing at which he excels.
Thursday, May 28
Cafe Accordion Orchestra @ Orchestra Hall, Minneapolis. 9am – 10:45am (Free) Even if you don’t have tickets to the morning performance of the Orchestra, you can stop by and catch some swinging musettes, a bit of bossa, and more as the CAO do a morning performance in the lobby of Orchestra Hall.
MIkkel Beckmen & Charlie Lawson @ The Dubliner, Saint Paul. 5pm – 7pm (Tip Jar) Guitarist Lawson is resurfacing as a performer around town, and this gig kicks off his “Back from the Dead” tour (which includes a few more gigs)
Rockin’ Pinecones @ The Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 7:30 – 10pm ($5) It’s two gigs in one day for Dan “Daddy Squeeze” Newton, as he switches from French musettes in the morning to rockin’ Cajun, Zydeco, and Swamp Pop tunes in the evening. The Dance floor at the Eagles is just about perfect for two steps, twirls, and other assorted moves.
Friday, May 29
Jillian Rae @ Harriet Brewing Tap Room, Minneapolis. 9pm ($5) The multitalented violinist, vocalist, and music teacher is a favorite among the roots loving community, yet her hook-filled songs also catch the ear of fans of other genres (see, for instance, her 2014 release, Heartbeat). She plays originals, as well as the occasional folk and rock cover. Besides leading her own band, Rae plays with Corpse Reviver, Steve Kaul & the Brass Kings, The Brian Just Band, and the Blackberry Brandy Boys. Rachel Sara Roberts opens at 7pm. Here she is with her band doing a Led Zeppelin song.
Fifth Annual Heiruspecs Scholarship Fund Concert @ The Bedlam Theater, Saint Paul. 8pm ($12) This live hip-hop band came out of Saint Paul’s Central HS, and after experiencing some great success joined with the Saint paul Central High School Foundation to create a scholarship fund, giving out over $15K in scholarships since 2010. Tonight they’ll be joined by guests including trumpeter Solomon Parham, and E-Turn, a female MC from Orlando. 100% of the ticket sales go to the foundation.
Saturday, May 30
Dave Babb & Randall Webb @ Bayport BBQ, Bayport, 8pm ($5) The mainstays of the Liquor Pigs play guitars and sing for your BBQ pleasure.
Dee Miller Band w/Jimi “Prime Time” Smith @ Shaw’s, Minneapolis. 9pm (Tip Jar) Dee and the band just won a multi-week Battle of the Bands to appear at the Lowertown Blues Festival later this summer. See the energy and sass that won the day in the cozy confines of Shaw’s.
M.O.R.T. @ Schooner Tavern, Minneapolis. 9pm (No Cover) The Mystic Order of Reverb & Twang mines reverb-heavy tunes, careening from Country & Western tunes to Surf ditties at the turn of a knob. Lotsa dance-oriented tunes will get regulars and newcomers onto the small dance floor.
Turkuaz @ The Cabooze, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($12) This nine-piece funk army began in Boston but is now based out of Brooklyn. It’s obvious that members have records by James Brown, Sly Stone, and Parliament, among others in their collections, not to forget Motown or late era Talking Heads. With two female vocalists and two male vocalist/instrumentalists, not to mention three horns, they will help you get up, get down, and turn around while you dig their sound. According to The New Yorker magazine, they deliver “just about any genre that gets people dancing.”
Sunday, May 31
Scottie Miller @ Washington Square, White Bear Lake. 6-8pm (No Cover) Pianist/vocalist Miller will be performing boogie-woogie, soul, funk, and blues on the patio of this small boîte in the center of town. Here’s the quieter side of Miller.
Sunday, Monday, May 31, June 1
Lisa Fischer & Grand Baton @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($50 – $70) This marks the third time in about a year that Fischer has appeared at the Dakota. The star of Twenty Feet From Stardom is a terrific interpreter of song, whether singing standards or recasting classics from the Rolling Stones. She’s in town as a backup singer for the boys from Britain, a role she’s had for twenty years or so. I don’t know who is in her backup band, but I imagine they’ll be quite good, though I wouldn’t take a bet on Mick or Keef showing up.
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.