A Cornucopia of Music: 11.1 – 11.7

November 1, 2017

As we finally get into Fall, with Daylight Savings Time ending on Sunday, we have a number of special shows from both visiting and resident artists. We’ve got great jazz, blues, and roots musicians performing in various venues, along with a couple of special events. Music lifts your spirit!


Wednesday, Nov 1

Joyce Lyons: The Music of Carmen McCrae @ Crooners’ Dunsmore Room, Fridley. 7:30pm  ($12)  Vocalist Lyons has worked with the late Joe Beck, as well as Bucky Pizzarelli, Jay Leonhart, and Lou Marini among others, appeared at jazz clubs and festivals around the nation. She can swing, and she can be sultry, which fits right in with the music of McCrae.

Thursday, Nov 2

Joel Shapira/Larry McDonough’s Saint Paul CD Release @ Vieux Carré,  Saint Paul. 8:00pm  ($10) Guitarist Shapira plays jazz and the occasional classical piece for the dinner hour. Then McDonough and his group take the stage for the East Metro CD release party for Alice in Stonehenge, a 2 CD album with one CD electric, and the second acoustic. The opening track on the second CD is a mashup of Spinal Tap’s Stonehenge and Bill Evan’s Alice in Wonderland, and gives the CD its title. Tonight he has his usual group: Richard Terrill, tenor & soprano sax; Greg Stinson, acoustic an electric bass; and Dean White, drums, with special guest Steve Kenny on Flumpet.

Friday, Nov 3

Django Festival All-Stars Featuring Dorado Schmitt @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($40, $45), 9pm ($35, $40) Guitarist/Violinist Dorado Schmitt seems to visit the Twin Cities every few years since what I believe was his first appearance at the Minnesota Sur Seine Festival in the aught. The outstanding French guitarist/violinist was born to gypsy parents and grew up surrounded by Roma music and Gypsy jazz. Schmitt and the All-Stars will celebrate the music of Django Rheinhardt, and play some of their own compositions in that style.

Dean Granros ’58 Belvedere @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8pm ($10, $5w/Student ID) virtuosic guitarist Dean Granros leads this trio that includes Patrick Kuehn, bass; and Dave Power, drums.

Also: Cory Healy’s Beautiful Sunshine Band @ Crooner’s Dunsmore Room, Fridley. 9pm

Saturday, Nov 4

Saturday Night Jazz @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 7pm (Tip Jar) 7pm: Julian Manzara Quartet: Manzara, guitar; Drew Stinson, bass; Levi Schwartzberg, piano; Tarek Abdelqader, drums. 8:30pm Steve Kenny Quartet CD Preview. Steve Kenny, Flumpet; Levi Schwartzberg, vibes; Ted Olsen, bass, Miguel Hurtado, drums. Here are three members of the quartet.

Sunday, Nov 5

Lizz Wright @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($40, $50, $60) Vocalist Wright has just released a new album, Grace, produce buh Joe Henry, who has done fine work with Allen Toussaint and Mavis Staples, among others. A Southern preacher’s kid, Wright’s warm voice gives depth to spare, lovely tunes with touches of gospel and R&B, including Stars Fell on Alabama and Southern Nights.

Phil Markowitz & Zach Brock: Brockowitz @ Crooner’s Dunsmore Room, Fridley. 6:30 ($20) Pianist Phil Markowitz, whose resume includes stints with of Chet Baker and Toots Thiememans and Zach Brock, who has woken with Snarkey Puppy and Stanley Clarke, have teamed up to create a new repertoire for violin and piano. They draw on various jazz traditions. Markowitz’s roots in Eastern Europe and Brock in Appalachia influence their repertoire, which includes various jazz traditions and contemporary classical music

Also: Milo Fine Trio @ Studio Toile d’Angles (Season Finale), 910 Morgan Avenue North, Minneapolis

Rio Nido @ The Aster Cafe River Room, Minneapolis. 6pm ($30 Advance/$35 Door)

Tuesday, Nov 7

Sam Miltich & Dave Karr @ Crooner’s Dunsmore Room, Fridley. 7:30pm ($12) Ace guitarist Mitiich and veteran saxophonist Karr explore the music of Lester Young. Just right for a listening room.

Phil Aaron Trio Featuring Joyce Lyons @ Vieux Carré, Saint Paul. 8pm ($7) Pianist Phil Aaron composers film scores by day and plays jazz at night, as a vocal accompanist to some of the area’s best vocalist, as a sideman in various groups, and leading his own trio with Gary Raynor, bass; and Jay Epstein, drums. Tonight he bring along special guest Joyce Lyons (See listing for Nov 1, above) for some vocals. Here’s Phil with a trio from a few years back. Don’t know who will be with him tonight.

Also: Dean Magraw & Eric Kamau Gravatt @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 7pm (tip Jar)

For more listings, KBEM provides a calendar of jazz and roots music.   For further commentary on Twin Cities jazz, check out the blogs, Jazz Ink, and Bebopified.


Blues, Roots, Other…

Wednesday, Nov 1

Bernie King & the Guilty Pleasures on KFAI and @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (90.3 & 106.7FM), 7pm (331 Club – Tip Jar) Guitarist/vocalist King and his band – John Kurtis, lead guitar mandolin, vocals; Julie King, washboard and Percussion; and Bradley Smith, string bass – perform original blues and Americana as composed by King. Tune in Harold’s House Party to hear them, and once you’ve decided you need more, head to the 331 Club

Memphis R&B Revue @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($60, $80, $90) It’s an evening of Soul and R&B nirvana as the legendary  Hi Rhythm Section, together with a group of all-star Memphis musicians take the stage to back a trio of legendary performers. William Bell wrote and performed a number of his for Stax Records, and won a Grammy for his 2016 release, This Is Where I Live. Harmonica master Charlie Musselwhite has been inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame, and has won a number of Blues Music Awards, in addition to a Grammy for his album with Ben Harper in 2012. The ageless Bobby Rush is always full of vim and vinegar, delivering the blues with a sly wink. There will be a few collaborations with a young Memphis performers, bringing the evening full circle.

Also: Paul Metsa @ The Green Lantern, Saint Paul. 8 – 10:30pm (Tip Jar)

Curtiss A & Dark Click @ The Schooner Tavern, Minneapolis. 7:30pm (Tip Jar

Thursday, Nov 2

Kenny Latimore @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($40, $45, $50), 9pm ($35, $40, $45) Singer/Songwriter Latimore has been called a “modern soul man” by no less than the New York Times. His sweet harmonies and memorable melodies helped his song For You become an instant top ten hit. His mid-90s solo debut went gold and had two top ten hits, including the aforementioned For You. He’s also lent his vocals to recordings for artists such as Brian Culbertson, Nancy Wilson, Musiq Soulchild and Rachelle Ferrel. Additionally, Kanye West sampled Latimore’s Lately for a track. Here’s the video for For You.

Debbie Duncan & Margaret Cox @ Crooners’ Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. 7:30pm (No Cover, but $10 will get you a guaranteed seat at a table in front of the stage) When vocalists Duncan and Cox played the Dunsmore Room some months back the results were delightful. Cox sings with Mambo’s Combo, for about 30 years now, and before that was known as Ta Mara, in an 80s funk/pop band under the direction of Prince. She was also a backup singer for Doug Maynard. Duncan, of course, is known to many Twin Citizens for her ability to blend jazz & R&B.

Also: Harrison Street Band @ Famous Dave’s, Minneapolis. 7pm – 10pm (No Cover)

Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Nov 2, 3, 4

Crocus Hill Ghost Story @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. 7:30pm($15, $10 Students & Seniors) This is the second weekend of shows, where the folks at Studio Z have turned the space into a Victorian mansion for this collaboration between Zeigeist, composer/flutist Julie Johnson, writer Cheri Johnson, and filmmaker/actor DJ Mendel. Their presentation is described as a macabre tale of a house possessed. Note that it has adult themes and language, and may not be suitable for children under 14. Members of he Twin Cities Paranormal Society will talk about their work after the Saturday performance.

Friday, Saturday, Nov 3, 4

Luther Vandross Tribute @ Bunker’s, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($12) A passel of Twin Cities artists celebrate the music of Luther Vandross. Performers include: Fred Steele, James “Jay Bee” Brown, Kennedy Barber, Erica West, Yohannes Tona, and Brian Kendrick plus Brian Ziemniak, Troy Norton, and many special guests

Saturday, Nov 4

Festival de Las Calaveras @ The Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis. 6:30pm ($12 Advance/$15 Door, $8 Children 3-12) This multi-media show starts off with Aztec Dancers and life size puppets on stilts at the Cedar’s Plaza. There will also be performances by headliner Maria Issa, as well as Lady Midnight, Javier Trejo, See More Perspective, and Twin Cities newcomer Ahmed Anzaldua with Cardenche Community Sing. Food trucks will be on hand to offer Mexican and Argentinean favorites.

The Hillbenders play Tommy: A Bluegrass Opry @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($30, $35, $40) 9pm ($25, $30, $35) Now this is an interesting gig. The Who’s rock opera Tommy sold 20 million copies, is listed at number 96 on its list of the 500 greatest albums of all time, and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Now, the Hillbenders perform the album with banjo, dobro, mandolin, bass, and guitar. You’ll get rock vocals with virtuosic playing, for a new perspective on this rock opera.

Also: Willie Murphy & The Angel-Headed Hipsters @ Crooner’s Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. 8pm No cover, but $10 for a guaranteed seat in front of the stage.

Tuesday, Nov 7

New Primitives @ Shaw’s Bar & Grill, NE Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($6) Get your reggae and jam band jones fulfilled with this quintet.

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.

May 8, 2013

imagesWe’ve got Mother’s Day coming up this weekend, and two celebrations of women in music – the rockin’ Girls Got Rhythm Fest, and Women in Jazz. Whether your Mom is a rocker, a balladeer, an improviser, or  all of those things at once, honor her. Lots of other good music as well. Have a good week!


Wednesday, May 8

Todd Clouser & Park Evans @ Cafe Maude, Minnepolis. 7pm (no cover) Two exciting guitarists get together. Expect some single note runs and imaginative solos with Hendrix-ian asides.

Good Vibes Trio @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30 pm (donation) Wednesday night at Jazz Central often features searching, experimental groups. Bassist Chris Bates, drummer Phil Hey, and vibist Dave Hagedorn are the Good Vibes Trio. They’ve been preparing a recording for release. You can expect original tunes as well as re-imagined standards.  Here they are doing Jump Monk.

Thursday, May 9

Raynor, Aaron, & Epstein @ The Icehouse, Minnapolis. 6pm – 9pm (No cover) Veterans all, Gary Raynor, bass; Phil Aaron, piano; and Jay Epstein, drums; each have a predilection for getting inside a melody, as well as taste and chops.

Friday May 10

Vicky Mountain @ Parma 8200, Bloomington. 7:30pm – 10:30pm (No cover)  Vicky will be joined by Chris Lomheim, piano and Brian Courage, bass. Classic jazz singing in a relaxed atmosphere.

Friday Saturday, May 10,11

Robyn's singing is even more wonderful than her hats.

Robyn’s singing is even more wonderful than her hats.

Robb Henry Trio w/Robyn Pluer @ Shanghai Bistro, Stillwater (Friday) and Loring Pasta Bar (6-9pm Saturday)  Guitarist Robb Henry no longer plays rock n’ roll, but hasn’t forgotten the Beatles and other melodic rockers of the 60s and 70s. These days he plays jazz standards, Django Rheinhardt songs, Mancini, and more. He’ll be joined by vocalist Robyn Pluer, the thrush who sang with the R&B Cadets and Paul Cebar’s Milwaukeeans so many years ago.

Jerry Weldon Quartet @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($20) Saxophinist Weldon toured the world with the Lionel Hampton Orchestra, then toured and recorded with Jack McDuff and his Heatin’ System, before joining Harry Connick Jr.’s big band. He swings and then some.  Here’s a video of him with an organ trio.


Saturday, May 11

Zacc Harris Group Tribute to Wes Montgomery @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. 7pm ($10) Guitarist Harris will present a free workshop on Wes Montgomery at 5pm, followed by a performance at 7pm with Bryan Nichols, piano; Brandon Wozniak, sax; Jeremy Boettcher, bazz; and JT Bates, drums. Those who attend the workshop get a discount for the performance.

Nathan Hanson’s Birthday Jam @ The Blackdog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7:30 – 10:30.  It’s a big one for the saxophonist, and he’s throwing a party with all the delights of the ‘Dog has to offer. He’s got some awesome friends coming by to help celebrate, including Brian Roessler, bass; Pete Hennig, drums, banjo; Erik Fratzke, guitar, bass; Peter Leggett, drums; Marc Anderson and Davu Seru; percussion; and George Cartwright, sax. As an added attraction there will be an art performance by Ta-Coumba Aiken and Lara Hanson.

DownloadedFile-1Laura Caviani: From Bach to Bop @ Hopkins Center for the Arts, Hopkins. 8pm ($24)  Before she became a stellar jazz pianist Laura Caviani was classically trained. She has taken a number of classical pieces and arranged them for a jazz ensemble that includes Dave Hagedorn, vibes; Adam Meckler, trumpet & fluegelhorn; Dave Milne, sax; Chris Bates, bass; and Phil Hey, drums. Included are works by Schumann, Chopin, Bach, Stravinsky and a couple of others. Should be a rewarding evening, full of surprises.

Sunday, May 12

WIJ-pipjazz-sundaysPipJazz Celebrates Women in Jazz @ The Landmark Center, Saint Paul. 4pm.  ($20, $5/Students) This kind of celebration is a natural for Pippi Ardennia, the warm, inviting singer who produces a monthly show at the Landmark. Today, she is bringing some of the finest female artists in the Twin Cities to the stage, including Patty Peterson, Debbie Duncan, and 13-year old Emily Albert-Stauning on vocals, Mary Louise Knutson, piano; Joan Griffith, bass; Sheila Earley, drums; Kari Musi, sax; and Zosha Warpeha, the high school senior who has been a regular part of the PipJazz band for the last year, on violin. Sounds like a wonderful way to celebrate Mother’s Day.

Sunday, Monday, May 12, 13

Fourplay @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($45), 9pm ($35) Billed as a supergroup when they first got together in 1990, Bob James, keys; Nathan East, bass; vocals; Harvey Mason, drums; and Lee Ritenour guitar, went platinum with their first album and gold with the next two. They continue to churn out head bobbin’ pop jazz albums with regularity, and with Chuck Loeb now in the guitarists’ seat, show no signs of letting up.

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, May 8

Jimmi & the Band of Souls @ the 331 Club, Minneapolis. 7pm – 9pm. (Tip jar) Tune in to KFAI (90.3 & 106.7) at 5pm to hear Jimmi & the guys live, then head over to the 331 Club to hear their blues, soul, and R&B.

Thursday, May 9

Bernie King & the Guilty Pleasures @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 8pm (tip jar) Americana, that is rootsy country, blues, and rock n’ roll from a band that includes Bernie King, guitar & vocals; John Kurtis, lead guitar, mandolin, & vocals; Julie King, washboard & percussion and Matt Smith, bass.

Friday, May 10

Paul Cebar @ Wilebski’s, Saint Paul. 6pm ($10) Paul’s been at the New Orleans Jazz Festival, no doubt getting more inspiration for songs. In actuality, he’s been able to write memorable, danceable songs for years now, with the result that he often brings out hundreds of followers. The commodious dance floor at Wilebski’s is just right for an early evening of shakin’ it to Paul and his cohorts.

Funk Night @ Harriet Brewing Tap Room, Minneapolis. 7:30pm (No cover) A couple of newer bands that delve into funky stuff. Nature of Waves is a quartet of Twin Citizen veteran musicians from backgrounds as diverse as Johnny Holm and Cloud Cult. The Premiums continue at 9:30. The quartet moved to the Twin Cities from Wisconsin in 2011 and have been delivering deep funk, with spacey, dub-inflected echoes.

Cherie Currie. Chainsaw-wielding women can surely rock.

Cherie Currie. Women with chainsaws rock!

Friday, Saturday, May 10, 11

Girls Got Rhythm Fest @ The Amsterdam Bar & Hall, Saint Paul. 8pm doors Friday, 7pm doors Saturday. ($20/day or $35 weekend pass) Downtown Saint Paul will be rockin’ with the sounds of female-driven raucous rock n’ roll, be it power pop, punk, or beyond a label. Headliners are The Avengers on Friday, and Cherrie Currie, an original member of the famed Runaways, on Saturday.

Saturday, May 11

Al Haug Memorial @ Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 2pm. (Free) Haug was a well-loved West Bank community activist, former KFAI Radio Host, musician, and jug band aficionado who also booked the Coffeehouse Extempore and the New Riverside Cafe for over 20 years. His dry sense of humor, and lifetime of building community on the West Band will be celebrated by a plethora of musicians and friends, including Pop Wagner, Cooker John, Phil Heywood, Willie Murphy, Dakota Dave Hull, the Awkward Sorrows, Spider John Koerner, and Al’s band – the Fat Chance Jug Band. Bring some tissues as stories are told and songs are sung.

Taylor Robert CD Release Party @ Hell’s Kitchen, Minneapolis. 7pm. (No Cover) Taylor Robert has changed his stage name from Tayor Baggott. He’s also changed his approach a bit, returning to the highly soulful, positive, and somewhat funky music that brought him attention. He’s got a new EP with memorable melodies and a danceable, yet soulful “single” called The Sound of Your Voice.  Speaking of which, listen to it.


The Pines @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 8pm ($25) With highly positive reviews from the likes of Rolling Stone, AllMusic, CBS, and Vintage Guitar magazine, the Pines are rising stars in the folk/country/blues/roots firmament.

483605_156421571191117_527281961_nMonday, May 13

Ana & The Beltones @ Sea Salt Eatery, Minneapolis. 5pm – 8pm (Free) Here’s a way to ease the shock of starting a work week. After work, weather permitting, head over to Minnehaha Falls Park, order some food & drink, and take an outside table to hear the sprightly Cajun music of Ana on accordion and the rest of her group.

Tuesday, May 14

Still mischievous after all these years.

Still mischievous after all these years.

David Lindley @ The Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis. 7:20pm ($20 advance/$25 at door) Even in an industry that often celebrates eccentrics, the word zany keeps popping up in discussions of Lindley, along with string wizardry and various ways of saying global music explorer. He’s been making music for decades, and first came to the public’s attention as a sideman on Jackson Browne’s For Everyman album, and since has recorded with scores of artists, including Warren Zevon, Ry Cooder, and Bob Dylan. Tom Feldmann will play country blues and gospel to open. The Cedar has videos here.

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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