Greetings to one and all;
What a week coming up. It starts with the Bob Dylan/Mavis Staples concert at the X, and ends with Halloween. In between there are a number of Halloween-themed events, from a musical about a haunted house, to a Masquerade Ball, and a classical music take on dark legends. There are also plenty of other great music events to attend, including a couple of Grammy-winning jazz artists, a Memphis R&B Revue with legendary soul artists, and a celebration of Frank Sinatra’s album September of My Years. And of course, we have plenty of resident artists ready and willing to entertain us and spread the power of music to unite and heal us. Music Lifts the Spirit.
Wednesday, Oct 25
Zacc Harris/ Butch Thompson & Dean Magraw @ Vieux Carré, Saint Paul. 6pm (Harris, no cover), 8pm (Thompson & Magraw, $5) Start the evening with the clean guitar sounds of Zacc Harris, and continue with the delightful duo of pianist/clarinetist Butch Thompson and guitarist Dean Magraw.
Thursday, Oct 26
Selby Avenue Brass Band @ Vieux Carré, Saint Paul. 8pm ($7) Tonight you not only can get a taste of New Orleans cuisine from the Vieux’s kitchen, but you get the New Orleans-inspired Selby Avenue Brass Band, a quintet that lays the second line down with spirit and élan.
Roessler, Hanson, & Kassup @ Khyber Pass Cafe, Saint Paul. 9pm ($5) As described by scribes at the Star Tribune, Khyber Pass is an unlikely place for forward thinking improvisational jazz, but thanks to owns Emel Sherzad, who hosts The International Jazz Conspiracy on KFAI, you (and a few other people) can hear French Clarinetist Sylvain Kassap playing with our bassist Doan Roessler and his long time musical foil, saxophonist Nathan Hanson. Here’s Kassap with a different trio.
Thursday, Friday, Oct 26, 27
Ramsey Lewis @ The Dakota, Minnapolis. 7pm ($40, $5, $50), 9pm ($30, $35, $40) Not much I can say about this three-time Grammy winning pianist that isn’t already known. He’s the rare jazz musician who has been able to achieve commercial success, having earned seven Gold Records and being named a Jazz Master by the National Endowment for the Arts.
Friday, Oct 27
Illicit Sextet @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:00pm ($10, $5 w/valid Student ID) This six-piece band is a vehicle for members to create, arrange, and produce their own tunes.
Zacc Harris Group @ Crooners’ Dunsmore Room, Fridley, 9pm ($15) The Dunsmore Listening Room at Crooners is now hosting jazz on Friday evenings. Guitarist Zacc Harris is bringing one of the many aggregations that he plays in to the room tonight. He’ll be joined by Bryan Nichols, piano; Chris Bates, bass; and JT Bates, drums.
Also: Jeremy Walker/Southside Aces @ Vieux Carré, Saint Paul. 6pm (Walker, No Cover), 9pm (Aces
Saturday, Oct 28
Saturday Night Jazz @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 7pm (Tip Jar) Nathan Hansen Trio at 7:30pm: Hanson, saxophones; Sylvain Kassap, bass clarinet; Marc Anderson, percussion. At 8:30 its the Pat Moriarty/Ellen Lease Quintet: Moriarty, saxophones; Lease, piano; Chris Bates, bass; Davu Seru, drums.
Joe Mayo Quartet featuring Clay Puhfal @ Boom Island Brewing, Minneapolis. 7pm (Tip Jar) Saxophonists Joe Mayo and Clay Pufahl, along with bassist Matt Peterson and drummer Joey VanPhillips perform a repertoire of “original jazz and neat arrangements of potentially familiar tunes.”
Arne Fogel: September of My Years @ Crooners’ Dunsmore Room, Fridley. 6:30pm ($15) Arne Fogel is one of the few male jazz vocalists in our area. Today he presents the music of the Grammy-winning Frank Sinatra album. For this event, Fogel has Rick Carlson, piano & music director, Gary Schulte on violin, and Gordon Johnson on bass.
Saturday, Sunday, Oct 28, 29
David Sanborn @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($50, $60, $70), 9pm ($40, $50, $60) This saxophonist has won six Grammys, and has had eight gold album,s and one Platinum album. He was the host of the very hip TV show Night Music, played with the Butterfield Blues Band, toured with Stevie Wonder and David Bowie, and has collaborated with Jack DeJohnette, Bill Frisell, Charlie Hayden, Christian McBride, James Brown, The Rolling Stones, and Eric Clapton. No wonder he’s a favorite of jazz and R&B fans alike.
Monday, Oct 30
Red Planet @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 7pm – 9pm (Tip Jar) Dean Magraw, guitar; Chris Bates, bass; and Jay Epstein, drums, perform jazz/rock fusion with taste, and importantly, without the bombast associated with much of that genre.
Blues, Roots, Other…
Wednesday, Oct 25
No Tent on KFAI and @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (90.3 & 106.7FM), 7pm (331 Club – Tip Jar) Folk/Blues musician Reina del Cid has a bluegrass band as a side project. It features the extraordinary guitarist Toni Lindgren, del Cid’s compadre in music, as well as a rotating cast of are players performing old time traditional songs, as well as bluegrass-ified covers and some originals.
Bumper Jacksons @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($35, $40) This brassy seven-piece band (with pedal steel) from the DC area takes the sounds from old 78s and creates their own playful style, while paying homage to tradition. Think Hot Jazz meets Western Swing. They’ve received multiple awards as the Mid-Atlantic’s “Artist of the Year” and “Best Traditional Band” at the Washington DC Area Music Awards.
Also: Stevie V and the Knockouts @ Crooners Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. 7:30pm (No Cover) Harmonica Blues!
Thursday, Oct 26
Rockin’ Pinecones @ Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($5) After thirty years of delivering Swamp Pop, New Orleans R&B, Cajun, and Zydeco for delighted dancers, the Pinecones are calling it quits. This is the first of three remaining gigs at the Eagles Club, so if you like dancing to the music of Louisiana, make it to the Eagles Club tonight.
The Skruffians @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 8pm (Tip Jar) This seven-piece band has been inspired by the the Skatalites and other Jamaican artists of the 60s and 70s. They perform a mix of ska, reggae, soul, and jazz, with the kind of energy that makes you move in your seat or on the dance floor. This is what they sound like.
Friday, Oct 27
Dylan Hicks Album Release @ The Hook & Ladder, Minneapolis. 9pm ($12 Advance/$15 Door) Hicks is a literate singer/songwriter who achieved some success in the Twin Cities back in the 90s, after which he concentrated on writing, with his articles appearing in The Village Voice, The Guardian, The New England Review and The NY Times, among other publications. He’s also written two well-received novels. His last album, Dylan Hicks Sings Bolling Green, was released in 2012 as a companion piece to his debut novel, Boarded Windows. The album received an A Minus from Robert Christgau. His new album Ad Out, is filled with sharp observations and wry commentary on life in the 21st Century. It was produced by John Munson, of Semisonic and the New Standards and employs such stalwart musicians as Adam Levy, Doug Little, Ken Chastain, Dean Magraw, and Joe Savage. As an added bonus, Molly Maher & Her Disbelievers open. Here’s a cut from the new album.
Also: Boogie Wonderland @ The Minnesota Music Cafe, Saint Paul. 9pm ($?) Relive (or discover) the funky disco years
Saturday, Oct 28
All Hallow’s Eve at the Opera @ The Museum of Russian Art, Minneapolis. 7pm ($30, $25 TMORA Members) The museum has been upping its game lately, presenting some outstanding small classical concerts. Tonight they’re celebrating All Hallow’s Eve with music inspired by dark legends from Tchaikovsky, Mussorgsky, Shostakovich, Wagner, Verdi, and more. Featuring Russian soprano Mlada Khudoley, who the New York Times has praised for her “lush, sizable, and luminous voice. She’ll be accompanied by pianist Denis Evstuhin.
Krewe of Dad’s Masquerade Ball XXXII, Featuring John Papa Gros @ The Hook & Ladder, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($25) For something completely different you can try this Masquerade Ball. John Papa Gros is one of the funky new generation (post 70s) of New Orleans that are not only keeping the flame of New Orleans R&B, but keeping it real for the 21st Century. The evening also features the Gentlemen’s Anti-Temperance League, and the People Brothers Band from Madison.
Also: Nikki Roux & Rich Rue/Erica West Band @ Vieux Carré, Saint Paul. 6:30pm (Nikki & rich), 9pm (Erica West $10)
The Good, The Bad, The Funky @ Famous Daves, Minneapolis. 9pm ($10)
Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Oct 27, 28, 29
Crocus Hill Ghost Story @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. 7:30pm (Fri, Sat), 2pm (Sunday) ($15, $10 Students & Seniors) The folks at Studio Z are turning the space into a Victorian mansion for this show, which is a 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.
Tuesday, Oct 31
The Butanes Halloween @ Crooners Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. 7:30pm (No Cover, but $10 will guarantee a seat in the stage area) I don’t know if the Butanes know any Halloween blues songs, but nevertheless, this will be a fun event, which will likely bring out many blues lovers. They bill themselves as a band with “35 years of making bad decisions with good friends.”
Hula Peppers & Myra & The Moonshiners @ Vieux Carré, Saint Paul. ($10) This double bill allows you to Immerse yourself in vintage Hot Jazz from the Moonshiners, as well as swing, blues and Hawaiian music of the 20s and 30s from the Hula Peppers.
Also: Rebirth Brass Band @ The Turf Club, Saint Paul.8pm ($25 Advance) Straight from New Orleans, With Brian “Hipshaker” Engel deejaying.
Tuesday, Wednesday, Oct 31, Nov 1
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 Bluses 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 also be a few collaborations with young Memphis performers, bringing the evening full circle.