All Hallows Music and More: 10.25 – 10.31

October 25, 2017

Greetings to one and all;

The Original Adams Family, by Charles Addams

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.

Jazz

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.

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, 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.

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.

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Post-Election Music: 11.5 – 11.11

November 5, 2014

Unknown-3Well, the election is over and we don’t have to go out just to avoid obnoxious political advertising. Whether you want to celebrate or drown your sorrows, there are plenty of opportunities to hear music while you do so. Choose from a number of outstanding visiting artists, as well as intriguing sets from resident artists for your entertainment pleasure. Have a good week. Music lifts the spirit.

Jazz

Wednesday, November 5
The PBR Street Gang @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Anthony Cox has put together another intriguing group for his monthly gig at JC. This time the bassist brings along Dave King, drums; Brandon Wozniak, sax; and Dean Granros, guitar to liven things up.

Wednesday, Thursday, November 5,6
Hiromi @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($45), 9pm ($35) Hiromi is a highly gifted and virtuostic pianist who has such a good time she almost floats above her bench. In 2010 she played the Dakota four times in a 12 month period with four different ensembles, including two of her own and a duo and trio appearance with Stanley Clarke. Tonight she’s appearing with Anthony Jackson on Contrabass guitar, and Steve Smith on drums. You might want to take advantage of the free earplugs available as you enter.

Thursday, November 6
Nina Simone Tribute @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Sarah M. Greer will be singing the songs of Nina Simone, with help from BLU-7: John Iden, bass; Jim Ouska, guitar; Doug Rohde, and Dean White, drums.

Cartwright, Kinney, Seru, & Evans @ The Khyber Pass Cafe, Saint Paul. 9pm ($5) Given the caliber of this line-up of George Cartwright, sax; Michelle Kinney, cello; Davu Seru, drums & percussion; and Elaine Evans, trumpet, I’d venture that there will be some extraordinary, adventurous music being played tonight.

Friday, November 7
Maryann Sullivan and Corner Jazz @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 8pm – 11pm (Donation – $5 – $20 suggested) When it comes to singing, Ms Sullivan can do sophistication and turn around and deliver some sly humor. Backing her will be David Martin, guitar; Trevor Haining, drums; Tom Pieper, bass, and Doug Haining, sax.

Steve Kenny Quartet @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. 9:30pm ($10) Steve and his crew take the stage at 9:30, but it will be worth your while to get there early. There’s a young performers showcase at 6f:30, followed by Struck Percussion at 7:30, Zeitgeist with Nimala Rajasekar at 8:30. It’s all part of the Zeitgeist Cabaret Series, once of the best opportunities you’ll have to see a variety of interesting music.

Saturday, November 8
Source Code @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. ($10) 9:30pm Drummer extraordinaire Eric Kamau Gravatt and his crew take the stage at 9:30pm, preceded by Zeitgeist at 8:30, the ANCIA Saxophone Quartet @ 7:30, and the Young Performer Showcase at 6:30. The young performer showcase features bassist Charlie Lincoln, a student of Gravatt’s, with his group consisting of Levi Schwartzberg, vibes, Peter Goggin, sax, and Joey Hays, Alex Browne, and Sam Stroup filling out the rhythm section. I know three of these performers and they are very talented. You’ll be happy you stopped by to see them.

Sunday, November 9
Charles Lazarus Quartet w/guest Tonia Hughes and the MN Orchestra @ Orchestra Hall, Minneapolis. 2pm ($25 – $65) Minnesota Orchestra trumpeter Lazarus has been stepping out into the jazz world quite a bit over the last year or so, to very positive reception. Here’s a chance to hear him in the acoustic confines of Orchestra hall, with the backing of the full orchestra.

Yohannes Tona @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. 9pm ($10) Tonight, the Zeitgeist Cabaret brings in this talented bass player and his group, preceded by Zeitgeist at 8pm, and Skeleton Crew at 7pm.

Monday, November 10
Jon Weber @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($15) Weber is a virtuoso pianist with what must be a photographic memory, and an encyclopedic knowledge of music, its history, and the slightest facts about performers. He also throws in facts about history and the world at large. Oh yeah, he plays anything from ragtime to 21st Century jazz.

Doug Haining @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) The swingin’ sax player returns to Jazz Central as a featured artist, rather than with a big band or ensemble. The Monday night featured artists always play outside their usual “box” so who knows what you will hear. No doubt, however, that it will be enjoyable.

Tony Malaby @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($15) Saxophonist/Composer Malaby was recently named by Downbeat as One of the “80 Coolest Things in Jazz.” Since arriving in New York in the early 90s, he’s led many of his own projects and has revealed his talent in bands like the Paul Motian Electric Be-Bop Band, Charlie Haden’s Liberation Music Orchestra, Chris Lightcap’s Bigmouth, and similarly adventurous groups. For tonight’s show he’ll be playing wiith Anthony Cox, bass; and JT Bates, drums.

For a comprehensive listing of Jazz, go to the Twin Cities Live Jazz Calendar. For further commentary on Twin Cities jazz, check out the blogs Jazz Police, Bebopified, and Jazz Ink.

Blues, Roots, Other…

Wednesday, November 5
San Souci on KFAI and @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (90.3 & 106.7FM) and 7pm (331 club – Tip Jar) The acoustic roots revolution has been in full swing for a number of years now, fueled by Midwest groups such as San Souci, a quintet that uses traditional instruments in an untraditional manner to create a progress blend of bluegrass and folk rock. They released their third full-length album, On the Line, earlier this year. Tune in to hear them perform live in the studio and then head over to the 331 Club to hear them in person.

Thursday, November 6
Suzzy Roche & Lucy Wainwright @ the Gingko Coffeehouse, Saint Paul. 7:30pm ($25) Suzzy Roche is a singer/songwriter and founding member of the Roches. She’s recorded over 15 albums and has written a children’s book and a novel. Lucy Wainwright Roche is the daughter of Suzzy and Loudon Wainwright III, and has recorded four albums. Mother and daughter have just released a new recording, Fairytale and Myth, which has just been nominated for Best Folk/Singer/Songwriter Album of the Year by the Independent Music Awards.

Friday, November 7
Garland Jeffreys @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($35) This classic rocker and Brooklyn native burst into the public’s consciousness with his single Wild in the Streets back in 1973. Jeffreys proceeded to release a string of albums to critical acclaim and some commercial success, though he never became huge star. Mining rock, reggae, blues, and soul to create his own sound, he hadn’t released a record in a dozen years when he came out with The King of In Between in 2011 and Truth Serum in 2013 to raves about the “second wave” of his career. Martin Devaney – the musical mayor of Saint Paul – opens.

Jack Potts & the Astronauts of Rhythm & Souls @ Harriet Brewing Tap Room, Minneapolis. 7pm. ($5) Well yeah, the name is a bit of a tongue twister, but the members of this band are well known to fans of Americana and roots rock n’ roll. Consider the membership: Paul Bergen (Hillbilly Voodoo Dolls), Erik Koskonen (Molly Maher, his own band), Ray Barnard (Copperheads, now solo), and David Huckfelt and Michael Rossetto (The Pines). Bergen will be opening at 7pm, along with some friends, and the Astronauts will take the stage at 9pm. They are also promising surprise guests.

Charlie Parr @ The Turf Club, Saint Paul. 8pm ($15) Though Parr is originally from Austin, MN, the country bluesman started his career in Duluth, singing his own songs as influenced by such stellar musicians as Charlie Patton, Bukka White, and Reverend Gary Davis. His plaintive, emotional singing, combined with his prowess on resonator guitar, banjo, and 12-String, have earned him a huge legion of fans. Opening are The Wild Hands and Matt Ray.

Saturday, November 8
Bebel Gilberto @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($30 – $60), 9pm ($30 – $50) For the longest time, Gilberto, a daughter of bossa nova royalty, brought contemporary sounds, including jazz and pop influences, to Brazilian music. A couple of her albums have even been remixed. On her latest, Tudo, Gilberto takes a more nuanced approach to music, and includes a surprising version of Neil Young’s Harvest Moon.

DJ Brian Engel @ Dakota Late Night, Minneapolis. 11:30pm (No cover) Brian is a DJ about town, appearing at Hipshaker, Hot Pants, and Worldwide Discoteque. After an evening of Brazilian music join Brian as he spins world music and who knows what else for late night.

Sunday, November 9
Capital Cities @ First Avenue, Minneapolis. 7pm. ($25) 21+ This Los Angeles electro pop duo hit with an upbeat melodic tune called Safe and Sound, which launched them on a tour of South America in 2011. After Capitol Records signed them in 2013 and released A Tidal Wave of Mystery in June of that year, the song reached number 8 on the Billboard Hot 100. See the delightful official video here I’ve a vinyl 12-inch EP with that song and others that is in fairly steady rotation on my spinning gigs. They’ve now played on four continents, at Coachella and Bonnaroo, and toured with Kate Perry. Opening are Cherub and The Night Terrors of 1927.

Tuesday November 11
Quintron & Miss Pussycat @ The Turf Club, Saint Paul. 8pm ($12) though New Orleans has long been known as the birthplace of jazz and a hotbed of R&B, it has also been an incubator of rock n’ roll and a number of genre-bending bands. Case in point is Quintron & Miss Pussycat, whose act can be described as Swamp-Noise-Tech with puppets. Quintron is an organist who plays a distorted B-3 and a number of electronic inventions. He was even nominated for songwriting for Chatterbox, which he recorded as a guest with Steve Riley & the Mamou Playboys. Miss Pussycat is a singer/puppeteer who plays maracas and creates puppet shows that are appropriate to late night dancing in bars. Their latest is Spellcaster II – Death in Space. With Babes, a New Orleans punkish group that seems to have spent time in the swamps, and the Twin Cities own Honeystick, a keyboard/synth driven band with a predilection for 70s soul and a touch of British invasion harmonies.

Julie Johnson: This Middle Place @ Antonello Hall, MacPhail Center for Music, Minneapolis. 7:30pm (Pay as Able – $10 Suggested) This is an original multimedia show that includes the work of four Minnesota visual artists and writers—Patrick Kemal Pryor, David Sollie, Cheri Johnson, and Sean Hill. Flautist Julie Johnson has written pieces exclusively for the show. She’ll be using amplified flute, bass flute, stompbox, and live looping pedals as part of the performance, which will feature both recorded and live performances by some of the artists.

Tuesday, Wednesday, November 11, 12
Loudon Wainwright III @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($35) Wainwright is a singer/songwriter/actor with twenty albums to his credit including the Grammy-winning High Wide & Handsome from 2009. Three of his children are singer/songwriters, including daughter Lucy, who appeared at the Gingko with her mother this Thursday (see Suzzy Roche and Lucy Wainwright, above). He was a character on MASH for three years, and more recently, composed music for the movie Knocked Up, in which he also appeared in a supporting role, and has appeared on the TV shows Parks and Recreation and Person Of Interest. It is, however, his witty, often self-mocking songs that provide the reason for seeing him.

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 U Wanna Dance Calendar.


Friday Night’s All Right for Dancing…2.29 – 3.6

February 29, 2012

Elton John sang “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting” but he didn’t mention Friday night and he didn’t mention dancing. This week Friday offers a number of musical choices, whether you want to dance or listen to jazz. Of course, the other nights of the week offer some great music as well.

Jazz

Wednesday, Feb 29

Modern Time @ Cafe Maude, Minneapolis. 7pm (No Cover) Vinnie Rose, guitar; Graydon Peterson, bass; and Adrian Suarez, drums; are Modern Time. Cafe Maude is a neighborhood bistro at 54th & Penn that serves imaginative cocktails and very good food. On music nights, they feature a Prix Fixe menu for $20. Reservations recommended. Mention that you want to hear the music.

Anton, Gravatt, & Little @ The Nomad, Minneapolis. 9pm (No Cover) Jim Anton, bass; Eric Kamau Gravatt, drums; and Doug Little, reeds. A  good beer selection and amazing musicians.

Maude Hixson and Rick Carlson at The Lex. Photo by Andrea Canter

Thursday, March 1, Saturday, March 3

Maude Hixson @ The Lexington, Saint Paul. 6:30 – 10:30pm. (No Cover) With a warm voice, wonderful enunciation, and great pitch, Hixson is perfect for the venerable Lexington’s Williamburg Room. A dining spot that’s old school clubby, what with its paneled walls and such. She has just released a CD single of Cottontail, a romp through Jon Hendrick’s vocalese lyrics to the Ellington standard.

Thursday, Friday, March 1,2

Vijay Iyer Mini-Festival @ The Walker Art Center. 8pm ($25/night or $22/night for both nights). The Jazz Hounds will be out as the Walker presents this Mini-Festival. Iyer is the young pianist that’s attracting much deserved attention (i.e., recent cover of Jazz Times). He will be performing solo as well as in small group contexts with a number of different guest musicians.

Friday, March 2

Nathan Hanson & Brian Roessler LP Release @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 8pm. (tip jar) Regulars know the power and talent of the bassist (Roessler) and saxophone player (Hanson), both of whom have a deep well of imagination when it comes to improvisation. They are celebrating the release of a new LP. That’s right LP. Vinyl’s coming back.

Friday, Saturday, March 2,3

Phil Hey Quartet @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm. ($10) A rare weekend outing for this outstanding quartet. That drummer Hey and his cohorts, Dave Hagedorn, vibes; Tom Lewis, bass; and Phil Aaron, piano; live in the Twin Cities rather than the New York area is no reflection of their talent. Each has been recognized for their playing with numerous “national” artists, both here and on the road. Together they play tunes by Coltrane, Mingus, Coleman and others whose compositions demand the very best musicianship. And they deliver.

Saturday, March 3

Vicky Mountain & James Allen @ First Course Bistro (56th & Chicago), Minneapolis. 7pm – 9pm. Vicky’s vocals mesh so very well with Allen’s guitar playing, whether they’re performing standards, a Fats Waller tune, or something by the Clovers. The result is music that will have you putting down your fork in order to listen. It’s a small place with good food, so you may want to call for a reservation. 612-825-6900.

Sunday, March 4

Nathan Hanson’s Saxophone Choir @ Roseville Area High School, 1240 County Rd B2 West, Roseville. 7pm ($10) Fantastic Merlins’ Brian Roessler (bass) and Pete Hennig (drums) will support an eight-piece horn section, which will include Hanson, George Cartwright, Pat Moriarty, Donald Washington, Daryl Narum, Joe Smith, Scott Fultz and Brandon Wozniak. Hanson is doing the arrangements for songs composed by Jacques Thollot, Milton Nascimento, Jamaaladeen Tacuma, Josef Zawinul and Nathan Hanson.

Monday, March 5

The Jack Brass Band and Beasly’s Big Band on Saint Paul Live!, KBEM, 88.5FM. The Beasly Band was recorded on November 1, and includes two songs sung by the late Christine Rosholt (see my remembrance). Jack Brass are their usual fun-loving selves at the Hat Trick Lounge. They hold down Tuesday nights at the Driftwood Char Bar.,

For a comprehensive listing of Jazz, go to the Twin Cities Live Jazz Calendar.  For further commentary on Twin Cities jazz, check out the blogs Jazz PoliceBebopified, and Jazz Ink.

Blues, Roots, Other

Wednesday, Feb 29

RAMM on KFAI and @ The 331 Club, NE Minneapolis. 5pm (KFAI), 7pm (331 – Tip jar) RAMM is Paul Mayasich, guitar; John Iden, bass; and Donald “Hy” Pockets, drums. Paul is a monster guitar slinger, especially on slide. Together the three create jumpin’ music that draws from a variety of sources, notably the blues. Find out for yourself by tuning in to KFAI (90.3 and 106.7FM) during the 5 o’clock hour.

Thursday, March 1

Womenfolk Live @ The Amsterdam Bar & Hall, Saint Paul. 9pm (No cover) Ellen Stanley, host of KFAI’s Womenfolk show on Tuesday afternoons, has been curating monthly roots shows at the Amsterdam. Tonight she’s presenting acts that are fronted by, including Black Audience, Reina del Cid, Mother Banjo (Stanley’s alter ego), and more. Tune in to KFAI between 2 and 4pm to hear Jayanthi Kyle of Black Audience performing live.

Friday, March 2

Julie Johnson & Rena Kraut w/special guests The No-Accounts @ Hotel 340, 4th & Cedar, Saint Paul. 5pm (Free) Johnson on flute, and Kraut on clarinet will interpret Minnesota folk songs with the help of Johnson’s group, The No-Accounts. The two will also play an original compositions. The community council for Saint Paul’s downtown will be holding its First Friday Community Happy Hour at the same time.

Crankshaft & The Gear Daddies and Lamont Cranston @ The Minnesota Music Cafe, Saint Paul. 8pm ($?) Crankshaft is a new generation blues guitarist, whose sound is as raw, wild, and ready to unleash your primal instincts. Lamont Cranston has been shaking dance floors with jump blues and more for what, 35 years or so.

Randy Weeks @ The 331 Club, NE Minneapolis. 10pm (tip jar) Weeks is the Texas Troubador who comes town a few times a year and packs the 331 with his rockin’ alt-country. Check out this video to get a sense of his sound.

Socaholix @ Bunkers, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($7) If you don’t want to rock to blues or alt-country, but still want to dance, check out the Caribbean sounds of this group, made up of former members of Shangoya. If this music doesn’t get you moving, I’d check to see if you have a pulse.

Afro Funk Vinyl LP Re-Release Party @ Club Jager, Minneapolis. 10pm – 2am. (Free)  And just in case you want to stay up late dancing, the fine folks at Secret Stash Records are once again releasing a long-lost gem and having a party to celebrate. This time ’round it’s Afro Funk, a group of mostly West African expatriates living in London in the 70s, when a vibrant African music scene was causing all kinds of excitement. Tonight there will be Deejays a plenty spinning African dance grooves.

Saturday, March 3

Big George Jackson @ Hollihans, White Bear Lake. 6pm (No cover). It’s a small place, but it gets rockin. I haven’t noticed Jackson playing out too much lately, so here’s a chance to hear that great booming voice of his, and down a few adult beverages at the same time.

Dave Alvin @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($20)  Since forming The Blasters oh, so many years ago, Alvin hasn’t been afraid to explore all sorts of byways in the world of roots music. He creates “loud folk music” and sings about folks like Big Joe Turner and Johnny Ace. Here he is singing a song about 4th of July.

For a complete list of blues (and some roots) events, see the Minnesota Blues Society calendar.


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