Talent Abounds: 7.25 – 7.31

July 25, 2018

Alma Andina, appearing at the Cedar

This week’s music offerings once again include jazz from emerging talents on summer vacation from college, as well as some intriguing presentations from jazz veterans. We also have some visiting artists presenting world music, a couple of rockers, and two veteran soul men to touch our emotions and shake our hips. Music lifts the Spirit.


Wednesday, July 5

Will Kjeer Trio @ Vieux Carre, Saint Paul 8pm ($6) Pianist Will Kjeer is making the most of his summer vacation, playing around town in various groups including Hoaxer, which he co-founded, and Group 47, as well as leading his own trio, as he does tonight, with Charlie Lincoln, bass; and Ben Erlich, drums.

Maud Hixson & Rick Carlson: Skyscaper Wits @ Crooners’ Dunsmore Room, Fridley. 7:30pm ($15) The warm, intimate vocals of Ms Hixson  and the ever-tasteful piano stylings of Rick Carlson combine to bring us the wittiest writers of the Great American Songbook: Lorenz Hart; Dorothy Fields; Noel Coward; Betty Comden and Adolph Green; Cole Porter; and others. They’ve performed this program in London, Manhattan, and Portland, OR, and now we get to hear it.

Thursday, July 26

Fred Steele: Baritone 201@ Crooner’s Dunsmore Room, Fridley. &;30pm ($25, $30) Actor/singer/producer Fred Steele will give us a bit of baritone history by singing songs made famous by baritones from Broadway to Las Vegas, including material from Harry Belafonte, Harry Connick Jr, Nat King Cole, Tony Bennett, & others.

Chrisette Bany @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis.8pm ($10) Back when Crooners had open jam sessions, vocalist Bany’s appearance at the mic caused Larry Dunsmore, the late co-founder of the club to declare, “Discovering your talent is rather akin to seeing a new comet for the first time.”

Riverdog @ Khyber Pass Cafe, Saint Paul. 9pm ($5-$10)  Leo Remke-Rochard, electronics; Jack Dzig, drums. Remke-Rochard  was surrounded by music growing up, especially free improvisation, so his appearance at this boundary bending venue seems only natural.

Friday, July 27

Django Festival All-Stars @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($30, $35, $40), 9pm ($25, $30, $35) High energy “hot jazz” from some of Europe’s most talented oerformers of the genre, including guitarist/violinist Dorado Schmitt and his sons Samson and Amati.

Peter Goggin’s Glass Bead Games @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30 ($10) Here we have some college-age talented musicians playing with a resident master on the drums: Goggin, alto; Jordan Anderson, piano; Sam Worthington, bass; Phil Hey, drums

Saturday, July 28

Saturday Night Jazz @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul, MN. (Tip Jar) Opening at 7pm: The Joan Hutton Trio with Matt Peterson on bass.  Hutton plays sax and clarinet, and is a member of the Ancia Quartetas well as an educator and composer. At 8:30, The Aaron Hedenstrom Big Band, 16 pieces strong, featuring a strong generational cross-section of resident musicians.

Monday, July 30

Depths, George Marich Trio @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($10) JT Bates is the curator of the Monday Night’s Jazz Implosion at the Icehouse, presenting forward looking groups such as tonight.  1st Set is from Depths: Cole Pulice, sax; Noah Ophoven-Baldwin cornet; Adam Zahler, electric guitar. 2nd Set by the George Marich Trio: George Marich, drums; Ted Godbout, piano; Josh Granowski, bass.

Tuesday, July 31

Katia Cardenas Video Release @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 7pm – 8:30pm ($8 Advance/$10 Door) Vocalist Katia Cardenas grew up in a musical family and learned to integrate both jazz and R&B in her performances. Tonight she’s celebrating the release of her music video for There Will Never Be Another You, the Harry Warrner song that’s a staple of her repertoire. Besides showing the video, she’ll be performing with her finely tuned, stellar band: Ted Godbout, piano; Graydon Peterson, bass; and Beth Varela, drums, as well as backing vocalists Sheridan Zuther and Andrina Brogden.

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

Blues, Roots, Other…

Wednesday, July 25

Kashimana @ The Landmark Center, Saint Paul. Noon – 1pm (Free) Singer/songwriter Kashimana was born in Nigeria and moved to Kenya with her family when she was 8, where she lived until coming to the Twin Cities to go to college. She has a warm presence and sings catchy, simple songs in a soulful voice.

Medicinal Purposes on the House Party (KFAI, 90,3FM) and @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (KFAI), 7pm (331 Club, Tip Jar) This Iowa Duo knows that music heals. Cowgirl Pearl Breitbach and Scott Kerry Guthrie have each been in many other groups, but now they create originals as well as original arrangements. Of course, you can listen to them before deciding whether to attend their performance at the 331 Club.

Thursday, July 26

Lee Fields & The Expressions @ The Amsterdam Bar & Hall, Saint Paul. 7pm Doors. ($20 Advance/$25 Door) This is the Under-The-Radar gig of the week, since original soul man Fields has received minimal airplay here in town. Fields has been plying his craft since 1969, touring with folks like Kool & the Gang, OV Wright, and Darrell Banks, as well as releasing dozens of singles, and most recently, a quartet of albums that have taken him and The Expressions to sold-out shows around the world. Between Fields’s sandpapery-yet tender voice, and the Expressions tight musicianship, you get a sound that encompasses the music of Sax, Fame, Motown, and Atlantic Records, yet copies none of them.

Friday, July 27

Johnny Rey & The Reaction CD Release @ The Hook& Ladder, Minneapolis.7:30pm ($8 Advance/$12 Door) As a founding member of Flamingo, which became the Flamin’ Oh’s, Rey has been a fixture of the Twin Cities rock scene for four decades. He’s got a new CD, “Modern Age,” and is celebrating its release tonight, with guests Little Man, and The Carnegies. 

Alma Andina Album Release @ The Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis. 8pm ($13 Advance, $15 Door) As ten-year veterans of the area’s music scene, Alma Andina’s members come from throughout Latin America. They play a variety of Latin dance music, as well as modern Andean music using pan flutes and other traditional instruments. They’re releasing a new album tonight, and will be joined by Los Rolling Ruanasof Bogota, Columbia, whose intriguing goal is to put rural back in rock n’ roll.

Saturday, July 28

Rich Mattson & the Northstars @ The Hook & Ladder, Minneapolis. 8pm ($8 Advance, $10 Door) Singer, songwriter, and guitarist Rich Mattson is known for his work with the Glenrustles, Ol’ Yeller, and The Tisdales, though nowadays the “human jukebox,” as he’s known, is leading the Northstars. Also on the bill is Superior Siren, an all-female outfit whose eerie folk melodies might tempt sailors on Lake Superior, and Dirty Frames, a three-guitar, rockin’ quintet.

Boom Boom Stevie V & The Knockouts @ The Basement Bar, Minneapolis. 8:30pm – 11pm (No Cover) Master harp slinger Steve Vonderharr and the Knockouts bring the blues to the bar in the basement of NOLO in the North Loop.

Monday, July 30

DakhaBrakha @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($35, $40, $45) This Ukrainian quartet plays world music with many influences, though they might also be characterized as a circus of oddness.

Tuesday, July 31

Femi Kuti & Positive Force @ The Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($50 Advance/$55 Door) Sweat-inducing, modern Afrobeat from a son of Fela, the guy who invented the genre.

Willie West @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($15) West has performed with the late-era Meters, and has recorded with Allen Toussaint. Now, he lives here in Minnesota, and we get to hear his sweet, soulful voice.

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.


Jazz, Afrobeat, Roots, & More. Music: 6.26 – 7.2

June 26, 2013
The crowd in Mears Park at the Twin Cities Jazz Festival

The crowd in Mears Park at the Twin Cities Jazz Festival


While the Twin Cities Jazz Festival may be big news this week, there’s plenty of music for others as well, including a Honky Tonk Fest, and two African artists at the Cedar, a contemporary Brazilian group, and more. Remember, live music can lift your spirits.


Wednesday, June 26

Phil Hey Quartet @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($5) This is as tight a unit as you will find in the Twin Cities. Phil Hey, drums; Tom Lewis, bass; Phil Aaron, piano; and Dave Hagedorn, vibes. A great way to get over hump day.

Thursday, June 27

Charmin & Shapira & Friends @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm (No Cover) Charmin Michelle, vocals; and Joel Shapira, guitar; have a natural affinity for playing together. They’ll be joined by Paul Harper, sax; Tom Lewis, bass; and Nathan Norman, on drums. You can expect tasteful, swinging playing from all involved.

Maryann Sullivan and Tanner Taylor @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm (Donation) Go through the doors at 407 Central, NE, down the hall and down some steps to the rec-room like confines of Jazz Central to hear Sullivan, a swinging vocalist, and Taylor, a pianist who is in demand, whether as a leader, sideman, or accompanist to the area’s vocalists.

Thursday, June 27 – Saturday, June 29

Twin Cities Jazz Festival @ Various Saint Paul Locations. (Free) Most action will take place at Mears Park, but if you’re looking for some interesting gigs outside of Mears Park check out some of these acts.  Friday: At the Artists’ Quarter – 7:30pm – Will Kjeer’s Blue Haven. At the Hat Trick – 8pm Johannes Tona; 9:30 JazZen. At The Amsterdam: 6pm – 12:30am – The Cannonball Collective w/Doug Haining, sax; Zack Lozier, trumpet; Tanner Taylor, piano; Matt Peterson, bass; and Trevor Haining, drums. Saturday: At Black Bear Crossings, Como Lakeside Pavillion – 7pm – Larry McDonough Quartet. At Golden’s Deli – 9:30pm Tony London. At the Amsterdam – 10:30pm Javier Santiago Quartet. And don’t forget to check out the incredible music of young performers at the Youth Stage, outside of the Black Dog all day Saturday, featuring the Dakota Combo at 6:30. Check out the complete schedule here.

Friday, June 28

Lee Engele & Reynold Philipsek @ Kip’s Irish Pub, St. Louis Park. 9pm – 11pm. (No cover) If you’re looking for some enticing vocals (Engele), and tasty guitar playing (Phillipsek) to go with your Irish whiskey, look no further.

Saturday, June 29

Doug Little Trio @ Porter & Frye, Minneapolis. 9pm (No Cover) A cozy lounge under Porter & Frye serves as a new venue for jazz. Doug Little is a master of sax and flute, and has an affinity for Cuban and Latin rhythms. I expect, however, that tonight he’ll be venturing into standards territory as well. And there is some room for dancing, whether it’s the Businessman’s Bounce, a Rhumba, or Salsa.

Sunday, June 30

Regina Marie Williams @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($10) Williams is an actor known for her role as Dinah Washington in Penumbra’s Dinah Was, and for acting at the Guthrie, Mixed Blood and theaters throughout the country. Her theater resume is extensive. She was so good as Dinah because she’s an exceptional singer, as evidenced by her 2011 CD, Regina Marie Williams. She’s particularly effective on ballads like “I Wonder Where Our Love Has Gone” and “Something to Live For.” Williams can mine the pathos of “The Other Woman,” celebrate in “What a Little Moonlight Can Do,” and speak her mind in “Rough and Ready Man.”

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, June 26

Bloody Ol’ Mule on KFAI and @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (90.3 & 106.7FM), 7pm – 9pm (331 Club – Tip Jar) If you didn’t get out to the Deep Blues Festival last weekend, you can hear one of the headliners today on KFAI and at the 331 Club. Bloody Ol’Mule is a one-man band who draws inspiration from Hank Williams, John Lee Hooker, and the modal blues of the Mississippi Hill Country. It’s often raw, and always emotion packed music.

Femi Kuti @ Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis. 8pm ($45) Kuti’s appearance at the Cedar last summer was a rousing, dance-fueled Afrobeat event. Blazing horns and exotic drums combine to create ferocious rhythms underlying Kuti’s singing decrying poverty and government corruption. You may find yourself dancing to protest, escape reality, transcend differences, or simply to celebrate the joy of being alive. Our friends from Worldwide Diskotek will be spinning vinyl to open.

Thursday, June 27

Acoustic Blues Night, featuring Papa John Kolstad & Cal Hand @ Merlin’s Rest, East Lake St, Minneapolis. 8pm – 11pm (Tip Jar) What with the recent re-release of Mill City Blues, and these regular acoustic blues nights, Papa John has been visiting his blues roots with success. Tonight he has the talented Cal Hand on dobro to liven things up even more than usual. Papa John is also playing at the Black Dog on Saturday at 7:30 as part of the Twin Cities Jazz Festival.

Friday, June 28

UnknownAmadou & Mariam @ the Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis. 8pm ($45) Wow. Two African music events in one week! GRammy nominated Malian stars Amadou & Miriam sold out the Cedar last year with a joyous show. Their vocals charm and sparkle. Amadou’s guitar work is supple, yet highly rhythmic. It’s a celebration of Africa, but more importantly, a celebration of life. Once again, Dan McAllister and Brian Engel of Worldwide Diskotek will be spinning vinyl to open.

Biscuit Miller @ Wilebski’s, Saint Paul. 5:30pm ($?) Miller played bass for Lonnie Brooks for ten years. He also recorded an award-winning single with Sonny Rogers, and spent some time playing with Mojo Buford. He and his band, The Mix, mix it up with a bit of funk, R&B, and of course, the blues – all designed to get you dancing. Lady J Griot opens at 5:30, and Miller will hit the stage at 7pm.

Saturday, June 29

Honky Tonk Fest @ Grumpy’s NE, Minneapolis. 2pm – 9pm (Suggested donation – $5) Honky Tonk music is a two-beat, easy-to-dance-to style that combines elements of Western Swing, traditional country, and a hint of rock n’ roll. It’s a dancer’s delight, with folks twirling, dipping, and, for the slower numbers, gliding across the floor. Today’s line-up features some of the best practitioners in the metro area: Jennifer Markey & the Hungry Truckers, The Cactus Blossoms, the Dreadlock Cowboys, Jillian Rae (a wonder on the fiddle, BTW), Leo Rondea, and Trailer Trash. Some food will be available, with all proceeds from this event going to benefit the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of MN.

Nikki, Rich, & Jon

Nikki, Rich, & Jon

Nikki & the Rue-Mates @ Hell’s Kitchen, Minneapolis. 6pm – 9pm (No Cover) Sure the place is often noisy, and you might find a bachelorette party or two to be distracting, but if you sit down front, or even at the nearest end of the bar, you’ll be able to appreciate Nikki’s crystaline vocals, and Rich Rue’s playing on the resonator guitar.

Paul Mayasich & the RAMM Band @ Shaws, NE Minneapolis. 9pm (No cover) Blues, rock, and other Real American Music from this tight trio.

Monday, July 1

Chasing Lovely @ The Coffee Shop NE, Minneapolis. 7:00pm. With lovely sisterly harmonies, this Minneapolis-raised, Nashville-based duo sings hook-laden original country songs with a pop bent. They’ve an EP with accompaniment from a number of Nashville’s best, but really don’t need backing to impress. Here’s a video.

Tinsley Ellis @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($20) Yes, the Power Blues guitarist will be playing the tony Dakota. The Atlanta guitarist put out his first solo album on Alligator in 1988, and he’s been tearing up stages ever since. Don’t be surprised if he peels some of the paint off the walls with his fleet-fingered, well crafted solos.

Tuesday, July 2

Choro Borealis and DIBIGODE @ The Fine Line, Minneapolis. 7:30 ($10 advance, $12 door) It’s billed as 150 Years of Brazilian music, and no wonder as these two bands will play music from the late 1800s to the present. DIBIGODE is from southeast Brazil. Their music music eschews bossas and sambas for a more contemporary sound that mixes electronica, jazz, and Tropicalia into a pleasing whole. You can hear them on their MySpace pageChoro Borealis is one of guitarist Robert Everest’s groups. Choro (pronounced Show-doo) is a Brazilian music that mixes European and African influences, and was popular from the late 1800s until the 1930s. Folks have been rediscovering this music. Charlie Musselwhite has even recorded a couple of tunes that are influenced by Choro. Joining Everest in Choro Borealis are Bob O’Keefe on reeds and percussion, and Tim O’Keefe on mandolin, percussion and cavaquinho. Here’s a video of DIBIGODE.

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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