In spite of the high temps today (Wednesday), a change is coming, as mother nature is pointing out with the change in foliage. There will undoubtedly be more indoor events, thought there’s at least one more outdoor festival to check out. With a couple of CD release parties, visits from well-known touring artists, a few Latin shows, and a Fall Festival that gives you an extra reason to travel to Stillwater, this week is shaping up quite nicely.
On a personal note, thanks to those of you who became listener-members at KFAI, especially those who pledged during my show this past Saturday. There is still time to pledge at http://www.kfai.org You can even specify my show (Rhythm and Grooves) as one of the reasons you joined.
Thursday, October 4
Medicinal Jazz Band @ the Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7pm – 9pm (tip jar) The duo of Noah Strom on accordion, concertina, or piano and Sam Ryan on guitar and vocals explore jazz, klezmer, and Dixieland music, along with some Americana from the turn of the last century.
Larry McDonough & Richard Terrill CD Release @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($5) Pianist McDonough and saxophone player Terrill are releasing a charming, inventive CD, filled with surprises. McDonough convincingly takes on vocal chores on a couple of numbers. Terrill recites poetry. McDonough composed one number using melody fragments written by children with disabilities. Though this is their first effort as a duet, the two have worked together in various ensembles since 2001, and their easy communication shows. Here’s mcDonough doing one of the songs on the new CD with a quartet.
Friday, October 5
Hollywood Jazz: the JazzMN Orchestra with Wayne Bergeron and Connie Evingson @ Hopkins HS Performing Arts Center. 7:30pm ($29/$33) The JazzMN Orchestra are starting their season with a bang. Bergeron landed the lead trumpet chair in Maynard Ferguson’s band at 18, and has worked with an outstanding list of performers, from Ray Charles and Lou Rawls to Tito Puente, Barry Manilow, and the Pussy Cat Dolls. Extra added attraction: Connie Evingson on guest vocals. He’s played in the big bands of Quincy Jones and Arturo Sandoval, and got a Grammy nomination for his own big band. BTW, he’s also featured on over 300 TV and film soundtracks.
Babatunde Lea Quartet @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($15) with Richard Johnson, piano; Zacc Harris, guitar, Chris Bates, bass. Drummer/Percussionist Babatunde Lea and Richard Johnson are well-known on the national jazz scene, and have recently settled in the area. In fact, Johnson has been touring with Delfeayo Marsalis. Zacc Harris and Chris Bates are easily up to the task of playing with both. Expect some fire from this group, as well as the occasional moment of sublime beauty.
Firebell @ Aster Cafe, Minneapolis. 9pm ($5) Park Evans, guitar, Graydon Peterson, bass, and Jay Epstein, drums. All three of these musicians play in (and sometimes lead) numerous bands. Each is also capable of playing a myriad of styles. Tasty, yet invigorating jazz in a small room with a view of downtown Minneapolis. Sounds pretty sweet.
Saturday, October 6
Lucia Newell, Laura Caviani, and Jeff Bailey @ Parma 8200, Bloomington. 7:30 – 10:30pm (No cover) Located in the rabbit warren of office buildings, hotels, and parking ramps immediately Southeast of the 100/494 intersection, Parma 8200 is having jazz on Saturday nights, featuring a singer and small backup. Tonight, enjoy the great vocals of Newell, the tasty piano of Caviani, and Bailey’s steady bass as you drink cocktails and have appetizers in the bar. It can get noisy, so you may want to sit close.
Monday, October 8
Steve Hobert Trio @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis 8:30pm (Donation) I know I’ve written about Hobert, a talented pianist, recently, but hey, this time he’s at Jazz Central, which is about a good a “hang” as you can find for jazz musicians and fans. Cozy couches, chairs and tables, and a BYO atmosphere make for a relaxed evening. If you’ve not been there, look for the glass doors at 407 E. Central, directly across from the Aveda school. Walk down the hall, turn left and go down some stairs, and left at the bottom of the stairs. Tell them Larry sent you – just kidding, but that’s what it feels like.
John Devine @ Barbette, Minneapolis. 10pm (Free) Devine is an imaginative saxophonist, often surrounded with equally talented friends. Don’t know who will be with him this evening, but even if he’s alone, you can be sure he’ll transport you into moments of sheer happiness, especially if you’re enjoying the happy hour offerings at Barbette.
Blues, Roots, Other…
Wednesday, Thursday, October 3, 4
Junior Brown @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($35-$40) Rockin’ honky-tonk from guit-steel player Brown. The guit-steel is a double-necked instrument combining guitar and lap steel guitar. Brown uses it well as he plays originals, classic country, and surprising covers of surf songs. It’s country for folks who don’t like country. Here’s a video of him in action.
Charanga Tropical @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 10:30pm ($6) The folks at this hot new spot will be moving tables and chairs to create room to Get your Latin Dancing on. With violins and a flute in their arsenal, Charanga Tropical will have the Salsa Dancers out en masse.
Thursday, October 4
Jake Manders Trio @ Cause Spirits & Sound Bar, Minneapolis. 9:30pm 9No cover) An evening of roots music as Jillian Rae and Caitlin Robinson open. Manders writes original music that’s informed by country and folk styles of the past, and sings them with voice that sounds like he’s hobo-ed around the country.
Thursday, Friday, Saturday, October 4,5,6
Zeitgeist’s New Music Harvest @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. 7:30pm ($3.50 Thurs, $10, Fri, Sat) It’s the 35th season of playing new chamber music for Zeitgeist, and to celebrate, they’re only charging $3.50 for Thursday’s opener of the season. They’ll have guest artists Kyle Hutchins on soprano sax, and Kirsten Whitson on cello.
Friday, October 5
Willie Murphy Solo @ The Black Dog Coffee and Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 8pm – 11pm (Donation – $5 suggested) The sometimes irascible, but often romantic Murphy sits in front of a piano and sings songs of love and politics in his slightly jazzy, always R&B-ish way.
House of Mercy Showcase @ Gingko Coffeehouse, Saint Paul. 7pm – 9pm (no cover) Jon Rodine, Brett Larson, and the Wilkinson/James Duo present original music. Rodine is a West Bank favorite with a terrific voice. Larson is an often funny songwriter, and Wilkinson James are known to evoke June Carter and Townes Van Zandt.
Paul Cebar @ Minnesota Music Cafe, Saint Paul. 9pm ($?) Actually, this show will begin at 7:30 with the swamp boogie of the Swamp Kings, a trio that’s been known to get folks dancing themselves. Cebar, of course, has been getting folks to twist, spin, and generally wear out their dancing shoes for a couple of decades now. This is a Sponsor Appreciation Party, put on by the Minnesota Blues Society.
Saturday, October 6
RAMM Band & 617 Band @ the Stillwater Fine Art & Music Festival, Lowell Park, Stillwater. Noon – 5pm (Free) From Noon to 2pm you can catch Paul Mayasich & the RAMM band playing a mix of rock n’ roll, blues, and R&B. From 3pm to 5pm the well-seasoned and entertaining 617 Band will take the stage with it’s jazzy blues, rock, and originals, all designed to put some bump in your rump.
Michael Johnson CD Release @ Hopkins Center for the Arts, Hopkins. 8pm ($24) Johnson recently moved back to the Metro area after years of living in Nashville. The singer/songwriter know for Bluer Than Blue, Give Me Wings, and This Night Won’t last forever is releasing his first CD in 15 years – Moonlit Deja Vu. Backing musicians include Marc Anderson on percussion, Gordy Johnson on bass, and Maude Hixson on vocals, along with a few others.
Septeto Nacional de Ignacio Pineiro @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($25) This Son group originated in Cuba in 1927, and was instrumental in popularizing the Son song form. A quick listen to recent albums reveals the latest incarnation of this group to be in fine form. If the Dakota doesn’t make some room to dance, I expect that some swaying hips may be moving tables out of the way.
Tuesday, Wednesday, October 9, 10
Maria Muldaur & Her Bluesiana Band @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($30) 9pm ($25) Though known for Midnight at the Oasis from the 70s, Muldaur can convincingly sing in a number of styles, from big bands to jug bands, from Peggy Lee to Bessie Smith. Tonight, she’s exploring the blues as she tours behind a new album, First Came Memphis Minnie.