Dancing in the Streets: 5.16 – 5.22

May 16, 2018

Baseball season is in full swing, trees have sprouted leaves, and lilacs are beginning to bloom. Welcome to a great season in the Twin Cities. Warm sunny weather is ideal for outdoor festivals and street dancing, and we have Art-A-Whirl in Minneapolis this weekend to help us enjoy music outdoors. See more information below. We’re also beginning to see young musicians return from college for the summer, and of course, some great visiting musicians to complement our own resident musicians. Get out and hear some music – it lifts the spirit!

Jazz

Wednesday, May 16

Terrence Blanchard & The E-Collective @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($40), 9pm ($25) The last time trumpeter Blanchard & the E Collective was in town, they were recording songs in cities where conflicts have arisen over police shootings of African Americans. They chose the Twin Cities after the death of Philando Castille. Now they’re touring on the April release of Live!, which features seven powerful songs from that tour. They stress that the project condemns all gun violence, whether against profiled persons of color or law enforcement.

Pete Whitman Presents: New Boundaries @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10, $5 w/Valid Student ID) Wednesdays at Jazz Central are a laboratory for new groups and new compositions. Tonight, saxophonist Pete Whitman brings a new group to the basement club, with: Omid Huttar, guitars; Javi Santiago, keys; Yonsathan Bekure, bass; and LA Buckner, drums.

Thursday, May 17

Katia Cardenas @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:00pm ($10, $5 w/Valid Student ID) Vocalist Cardenas is doing  video tonight to capture her emotive voice singing There Will Never Be Another You, from her debut CD I’ll Be Seeing You. Here she is with an Etta James nugget.

Tyler Wagner Group @ The Underground Cafe, Saint Paul 7pm (Tip Jar) This is a group of talented, college-age musicians, featuring Tyler Wagner, bass; Will Schmid, guitar; Peter Goggin, alto; and Ed Caitlin, drums.

Friday, May 18

Triocracy @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:00pm ($10, $5 w/Valid Student ID) Horn lovers will enjoy this show which features JC Sanford, trombone; along with Brandon Wozniak and Bruce Thornton on saxophones. Here is Sanford leading an Orchestra.

Saturday, May 19

Saturday Night Jazz @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 7pm (Tip Jar) Things start off at 7pm with The Constellation Band: Ross Nixon, sax; Kelly Blau, guitar; Sid Gasner, bass; and Derrin Pinto, drums. At 8:30 it’s Davu Seru’s No Territory Band: Seru on drums; Levi Schwartzberg, vibes; JC Sanford, trombone; Nathan Hanson, saxes; Pat O’Keefe, Bass Clarinet; and Scott Fultz, baritone sax. This is a CD Release Party for the No Territory Band, so they’re bound to be more energized than usual, if that’s possible.

Saturday, Sunday, May 19, 20

Freddy Cole @ Crooners’ Dunsmore Room, Fridley. 5pm Sat, 7:30pm Sun ($45, $65) We’re talking jazz royalty here, as Cole is the younger brother of Nat King Cole, and though you may hear some similarities in the timbre of Cole’s voice, his style as a singer and pianist is all his own.

Sunday, May 20

Get Jazzed! @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 4pm-7pm ($50) This fundraiser for The Dakota Foundation for Jazz Education will feature music from five young bands. They include three DFJE-sponsored combos of young people who are learning how to communicate and work together in musical groups, as well as the Dakota Combo, featuring some of the best young players n the area, and a group from the high School of Recording Arts. DFJE is raising money to send jazz artists into eight Saint Paul schools, where the artists will spend four sessions with school bands, introducing them to jazz and helping them improve their skills.

 

 

Jazz at Indeed Brewing, 711 15th Ave NE, Minneapolis. 1pm – 6pm (Free) The Chris Bates/Bryan Nichols Trio starts things off at 1pm at this Art-A-Whirl gig, while the adventurous Gang Font is on at 4pm and Happy Apple at 5pm. Dosh and Porcupine will also be performing during the afternoon. Here’s the Gang Font.

Monday, May 21

Wall Smashers Organ Trio @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:00pm ($10, $5 w/Valid Student ID) Steven Hobert’s organ trio in its 2nd show, with Hobert on organ, LA Buckner on drums, and Jax Ravel on bass.

Red Planet @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 7pm (Tip Jar) Jazz rock without the bombast from /dean Magraw, guitar; Chris Bates, bass; and Jay Epstein, drums.

Tuesday, May 22

Maud Hixson: What Would Doris Do? @ Crooners’ Dunsmore Room, Fridley. 7:30pm ($15) The music of Doris Day, presented by Maud Hixson and Rick Carlson on piano.

Midnight Love @ Como Pavillion, Saint Paul. 7pm (Free) Wow! Some cool jazz at the Pavilion, featuring the music of Lou Donaldson and various and sundry hard bop and R&B tunes with: Greg Schutte, drums; Peter Vircks, sax; Brian Ziemniak, keys; Matt Darling, trombones; and Patrick Nelson, bass.

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, May 16

Rich Lewis Band on KFAI and @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (90.3 & 106.7FM), 7pm (331 Club – Tip Jar) Members of the Rich Lewis Band have been inspiring folks to dance for over four decades in bands like the Explodo Boys, Dave Ray bands, and GB Leighton, among others. They’ve an affinity for New Orleans music, as well as classic soul, Van Morrison, and others, which comes out in their originals as well as their choice off songs by other artists.

Big George Jackson @ The Hook & Ladder, Minneapolis. 6pm (Free) Basso profound blues and boogie from the big man and his band.

Thursday, May 17

The Butanes @ Shaw’s, NE Minneapolis. 8:30pm (Tip Jar) Curt Obeda is a fine composer and interpreter off the blues, as well as an outstanding guitarist. The rest of th Butanes are equally talented, which is why they’re so often named the Best Blues Band in the Twin Cities. These Thursday night affairs are often filled with guests who drop into the club fro time to time. as

Thursday, Friday, May 17, 18

Marvin Gaye Tribute @ Crooners Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. 7:30pm ($29, $39) Vocalist Julius Collins is well-regarded in the Twin Cities music community forms work with Black Julius, Greasy Meal, and in a number of musicals. For this show, he’ll be joined by members of the New Power Generation to perform many of the songs that the late Marvin Gaye brought to us.

Friday, May 18

Ranky Tanky @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($30, $37, $42) This quintet is based out of South Carolina, and performs the music of the Gullah culture of the Southeastern Sea Island region of the US. It’s not a straight recreation of the music, but rather includes elements of jazz, gospel, and R&B, while still repeating the music’s tradition. Pamela Espeland had a nice article about the band in Tuesday’s Star Tribune  Read it to learn how the band managed to reach #1 on then jazz charts within few months of its debut release.

Friday, Saturday, Sunday, May 18, 19, 20

Art-A-Whirl @ Various Sites throughout NE Minneapolis. Various times (Free) It’s the annual art studio open house, where you’ll have hundreds of opportunities to buy art from the creative types with studios in old warehouses and other buildings throughout Minneapolis. You’ll hear some music in some of the studios, butAnchor Fish & Chips, Bauhaus Brew Labs, Grumpy’s Northeast, Indeed Brewing, and Pscho Suzie’s. Check out individual websites for schedules.

Sunday, May 20

Stevie Ray Vaughn Tribute @ The Caboose, Minneapolis. 5pm ($15, $20) Here’s A whole host of players are gathering for this tribute, including Pau Mayasich, Brian Naughton, Renee Austin, Craig Clark, Ken Valdez, and many more.

An Evening of Songwriters @ The Aster Cafe, Minneapolis. 8pm ($10) If you’re looking for something a bit more quiet than Stevie Ray Vaughn tribute, you can check out this evening of terrific songwriters, including the literate Dylan Hicks, and the Americana soulfulness of Molly Maher, as well as the prolific Mary Bue and the well-traveled-among-alt-rock groups Todd Beeson, aka Marvelty.

Jaedyn James & The Hunger @ Shaw’s, NE Minneapolis.8:30pm (Tip Jar) Funk n’ Roll, Rhythm & Soul from the always energizing 8-piece band. It takes about a minute on this video for music to start.

Monday, May 21

Steve Clarke & the Working Stiffs @ Famous Dave’s, Minneapolis. 7pm (No Cover) Arrive early for a lesson in the fundamentals os swing dancing, then use your new-sound skills to dance to the rip-roaring sounds of taxman Clarke and his aggregation.

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.


A Rich Tapestry of Music: 5.9 – 5.15

May 9, 2018

Well, maybe Spring is upon us for a few days, giving us an opportunity to get out without bulky clothes.  This week we have three visiting jazz artists (as well as Tony Bennett at the State on Thursday) and six visiting artists in blues and roots. Of course we also have resident artists such as the Atlantis Quartet and Wee Willie Walker, who are known throughout our nation, as well as in some parts of the world, and others who could be, with the right promotion. All of which makes for a rich tapestry of music for the coming week.   Music Lifts the Spirit!

Jazz

Wednesday, May 9

Peter Hennig Trio @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10, $5 w/Valid Student ID) Hennig, drummer for the Atlantis Quartet and other groups in town, will have Brian Ziemniak on keys, and Cody McKinney on bass.

Thursday, May 10

Laura Caviani & David Milne @ Crooners’ Dunsmore Room, Fridley. 7:30pm ($12-$15) Pianist Laura Caviani is busy these days, having released two Cds with her trio, taking on more responsibility teaching at St. Olaf, and appearing in other projects, such as this collaboration with saxophonist David Milne. Milne is a Professor of Music and director of Jazz Ensembles at the U of WI-River Falls. Here’s Laura with the title song from her latest CD.

Friday, May 11

Nathan Hanson’s Five Times Golden @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8pm ($10, $5 w/Valid Student ID) Saxophonist Hanson is an adventurous musician who has played in far-flung places from Pittsburg to Slovenia, in addition to playing in numerous Twin Cities venues. He’ll be accompanied by long-time collaborator Doan Roessler on bass, as well as Devon Gray on piano, and Kismat Shrestha, drums. Her;’s Nathan with Dean Roessler.

Saturday, May 12

Saturday Night Jazz @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 7pm (Tip Jar) Paul Harper’s Chordless Quartet starts things off at 7pm with; Harper, sax; Ted Olsen, bass; Steve Kenny, trumpet; and Pete Hennig, drums. Hennig returns to the stage at 8:30 with The Atlantis Quartet, whose other members include: Chris Bates, bass; Zacc Harris, guitar; and Brandon Wozniak, sax.

The Music of Bill Evans @ Boom Island Brewing, Minneapolis. (Tip Jar) The MN Hard Bop Collective is reduced to a trio tonight as Graydon Peterson, bass; and Jesse Simon drums, join with the sensitive, yet swinging pianist Phil Aaron to perform the exquisite compositions of Bill Evans. Here’s Aaron with another classic.

Kate Lynch & Her Most Excellent Fellows @ The Aster Cafe, Minneapolis. 9pm ($10) This is the last event of a nine-month monthly residency for Ms Lynch and her Fellows. It’s vintage vocal jazz, with a few old pop tuns thrown in for good measure, delivered in front of a window facing the Minneapolis skyline. Though there is no dance floor as such, a few brave couples will occasionally respond to the groups; swingin’ tunes.

Monday, May 14

Arturo Sandoval @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($40, $45, $50), 9pm ($30, $35, $40) Trumpeter Sandoval was a one-time protege of Dizzy Gillespie and a founding member of the explosive, Grammy winning Cuban group Irakere. He left the group in the early 80s, and moved to Miami in the early 90s. Since then he’s earned 4 Grammys, 6 Billboard Awards, and an Emmy. His brilliance is evident whether performing Latin, Jazz, or Classical music.

World Jazz Collegium @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10, $5 w/Valid Student ID) Guitarist pavel Jany heads up this quartet, which includes John Croarkin, Dan Weston, and Beth Varela, along with special guest, pianist Steven Hobert. They meld elements of different world musics with jazz and classical music.

Tuesday, May 15

Lynne Arriale Trio @ Crooners’ Dunsmore Room, Fridley. 7:30pm ($25) Pianist Arriale has a new CD to, her 14th as a leader, and she’ll be celebrating its release with resident musicians Chris Bates on bass and Cory Healy on drums. The CD, “Give Us These Days,”was recorded in the Netherlands with a couple of Dutch musicians, and includes six originals and three arrangements, all of which reflect her sense of wonder and showcase her rich imagination and peerless playing.

Tuesday, Wednesday, May 15, 16

Terrance Blanchard & The E-Collective @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($40), 9pm ($25) The last time trumpeter Blanchard & the E Collective was in town, they were recording songs in cities where conflicts have arisen over police shootings of African Americans. They chose the Twin Cities after the death of Philando Castille. Now they’re touring on the April release of Live!, which features seven powerful songs from that tour. They stress that the project condemns all gun violence, whether against profiled persons of color or law enforcement.

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, May 9

Gentlemen’s Anti-Temperance League on KFAI and @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (90.3 & 106.7FM), 7pm (331 Club – Tip Jar) The onset of Prohibition in 1920 coincided with with the rise of jazz. The GATL celebrates the music of the time with enthusiasm and virtuosity.

Suzanne Vega @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($45, $50, $60) Vocalist Vega  is often credited with starting the folk revival of the 80s. Tonight she’ll be performing both her 1987 album Solitude Standing and her 1992 album 99.9F in full.

Thursday, May 10

The Banjo Hour w/Captain Gravitone & the String Theory Orchestra @ The Hook & Ladder, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($12 Advance/$15 Door) Eli Hoehn, of Captain Gravitone, will host this two-hour music variety show. Its loosely based on a talk show format, and will include Mother Banjo, banjoists Phil Nusbaum and Tom Nechville, an announcer, several features, and music by the house band.

Friday, May 11

Big Sandy & The Fly-Rite Boys @ Lee’s Liquor Lounge, Minneapolis. 9pm ($12, $15) The Los Angeles – based rockabilly/roots singer and guitarist returns to his favorite Twin Cities venue, where he’ll likely mix in some Western Swing and L.A. doo-wop into his repertoire. The roomy dancefloor will undoubtedly be filled.

Saturday, May 12

New Orleans Suspects, Honey Island Swamp Band @ The Hook & Ladder, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($25 Advance/$30 Door) If you didn’t make it to the New Orleans Jazz Festival, you can still enjoy the music of that town, with these two groups of outstanding musicians, and special guest Camille Baudoin, formerly of the Radiators. Arrive early, and with a bit more cash, and you can take part in a Crawfish Boil (6-8pm, $45 Advance/$50 Door, includes concert)

The Greatest Generation @ The Ordway, Saint Paul. 7:30pm ($28, $38, $48) The Oratorio Society of Minnesota presents the premier of The Greatest Generation: An American Oratorio. This ground-breaking work combines the great popular tunes of the Second World War era with new original compositions and arrangements to craft and pay homage to the American family at war. Songs will include: As Time Goes By, Embraceable You, Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy, and In The Mood

California Honeydrops @ The Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis. 8pm ($17 Advance/$20 Door) The CA Honeydrops are celebrating ten years together with the release of their 7th album, the double disc Call It Home: Vol 1&2. The album showcases their deep love and understanding of classic R&B, New Orleans rhythms, Memphis Soul, and the blues. Tad Selzer and I will be doing a phone interview with founder Lech Wierzynski at about 3pm Wednesday, May 8 on The Rockhouse. Tune in live or listen to it on the archives.

Commander Cody @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm, 9:30pm ($25) Back in the early 70s, Cody and his Lost Planet Airmen had a hit with a revival of Hot Rod Lincoln. Using a mix of boogie woogie, rock n’ roll, and country music they revived old barn-burners and sang hippie anthems as well as send ups of familiar themes: Mama Hated Diesels, the Kentucky Hills of Tennessee, and Seeds and Stems (Again). Cody and his current band continue to play foot-stomping, good-time music.

Sunday, May 13

Charanga Tropical @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 5pm ($5) A late afternoon’s worth of Cuban Dance music, so you can dance off you Sunday dinner.

Wee Willie Walker @ The Minnesota Music Cafe, Saint Paul. 5pm ($?) If you aren’t aware of Walker, see the article  in this past Monday’s Star Tribune.

Monday, May 14

JJ’s Zydeco Paydirt @ The Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($5?, $8?) Get out those dancin’ shoes and enjoy the insistent, “its got a good beat” music from Southern Louisiana. It’s an early start, just right for a “school night.”

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.

 

 


A Full Week: 9.28 – 10.4

September 28, 2016

imagesIt’s another jam-packed week of music, including shows that I haven’t listed because they’re sold out. Whether you’re looking for straight ahead jazz, something more adventurous, the blues, roots, or even theatrical dance, there’s something in the Twin Cities for you this week. Don’t get too excited about Eric Burdon or John Mayall, however, since those shows at the Dakota are sold out. Music lifts the spirit

Jazz

Wednesday, September 28

Linda Peterson @ Vieux Carré, Saint Paul. 6pm (No Cover) Linda Peterson is a vocalist and pianist; a daughter of the Peterson clan who spent much of a lifetime successfully singing her way into the hearts of Southern Californians. She’s been back in town for a few years now, performing with her siblings and doing the occasional solo show. Listen for some of her clever songwriting.

Arne Fogel @ Crooners Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. 7pm (No Cover) It’s a given that Fogel  the pre-eminent crooner of the Twin Cities, appears at Crooners. He’s there monthly with the Acme Jazz Company, but tonight, the spotlight is his, with some help from the swinging Rick Carlson on piano; Keith Thomas Boyles on bass; and Jendeen Forberg on drums.

Peter Hennig @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm  ($10, $5 w/Student ID) The talented and in-demand drummer Pete Hennig will lead a quartet consisting of: Brandon Wozniak- Saxophone; Cody Mckinney-Bass; and Brian Ziemniak, piano.

Thursday, September 29

Thursday Night Jazz: Rodney Ruckus @ The Reverie, Minneapolis. 9pm (Tip Jar) Drummer Rodney Ruckus is once again bringing in a guest artist to play with him for a few gigs. Tonight it’s Lito Hernandez, an internationally known saxophonist who is currently from Santa Barbara CA. Also joining Ruckus will be Abebi Stafford, piano; and Ron Evanuik, bass. If you can’t make it to the Reverie, the group will be at the Black Dog on Saturday.

Nicole Carey w/Doug Rohde @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7pm  ($10, $5 w/Student ID) Vocalist Carey is a cabaret artist and actor known for her smooth delivery. She and pianist Doug Rohde will be performing a variety of songs from folks ranging from Cole Porter and Carole King to Billy Joel and Eva Cassidy.

The Tiptons Quartet @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 10pm ($10 Advance, $12 Door)  The Tiptons  re an internationally renowned all-female saxophone quartet with drums co-founded by Amy Denio in 1988, and have played many festivals worldwide including as North Sea Jazz Festival and TAKTLOS, in Zurich, Switzerland.  The members are based in Seattle, New York, and Eau Claire, WI (Sue Orfield). Their name honors Billy Tipton, a saxophonist and pianist in the late 20th Century, who was born a woman, but lived her entire adult life as a man. Their genre-busting sound ranges from micro-Big Band to Gospel, Bluegrass to Balkan, whimsical Jazz to Nocturnal Funk to Free Jazz.

Twin Cities Seven @ Vieux Carre, Saint Paul. 8:30pm (No Cover) Seven swinging musicians doing standards, led by saxophonist Doug Haining. Plus, featuring the vocals of Maryann Sullivan, she of the soothing voice, whether on the radio or on stage.

Friday, September 30

Patty and the Buttons @ Vieux Carré, Saint Paul. 9pm ($10) Swing and sway the accordion way. Patty plays button accordion, and with the Buttons providing backing on bass, guitar; and clarinet, they delve into dance songs from the 20s and 30s. Traditional jazz from New Orleans, Gypsy melodies, ragtime, and blues are mixed into a danceable evening.

All Originals Jazz @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. ($10) 7pm It an evening of bands that have mallet players.  The evening begins with – Quo Vadis, featuring: Gary Shulte, violin & viola; Greg Byers, cello, upright bass; Steve Kimmel, mallets, piano, & percussion. At 8:30pm – Davu Seru’s No Territory Band takes the stage, with: Tyler Cessor, tenor; Cole Pulce, baritone sax; Levi Schwartzberg, vibes; and Davu Seru, drums, percussion.

Saturday, October 1

Saturday Night Jazz @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 7pm (Tip Jar) Opening set by the Julius Manzara Quartet, with: Drew Stinson, bass; Levi Schwartzberg on keys (rather than his usual vibes); Dan May, drums, and Manzara on guitar. 8:30 set by Rodney Ruckus and his group (see Thursday listing, above)

Terrence Blanchard with the JazzMN Orchestra @ The Ordway Concert Hall, Saint Paul. 7pm ($42 – $52) The season’s opening concert for JazzMN is a winner. Born in New Orleans, 5 time Grammy Winner Blanchard  came to prominence in the 80s, playing trumpet with Lionel Hampton, and then as a member of Art Blakey & the Jazz Messengers. He’s become known for his soundtrack work with Spike Lee, composing the scores for all of Lee’s films since 1991, including the haunting score for When the Levee Breaks, a documentary about the devastation from Hurricane Katrina. He and the JazzMN Orchestra will be doing works by Basie, Gil Evans, and a Wynton Marsalis arrangement of A Love Supreme. Additionally, Connie Evingson will be paying tribute to Toots Thielman and Shirley Horn.

Tuesday, October 4

Claudia Schmidt & Laura Caviani @ Crooners’ Dunsmore Room, Fridley. 7pm ($10, $35w/Dinner) So… tonight we have a unique pairing of artists. Claudia Schmidt is the storytelling, folk singer/songwriter who has successfully delved into jazz on a number of occasions. Laura Caviani is melodic pianist and composer who plays with her a number of groups including her own trio and the X-Tet, as well as being Karryn Allyson’s go-to pianist when she plays here.

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

Blues, Roots, Other…

Wednesday, September 28

Joe Capoccia & Derek McSwain on KFAI and @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (90.3 & 106.7FM), 7pm (331 Club – Tip Jar) This duo from the state of Washington is making their debut in the Twin Cities. They play guitar/mando duets with power and drive, creating sweet vocal harmonies on bluegrass/old-time songs, nice originals, and edgy covers.

Karla Bonoff @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($30, $40) Bonoff is best known as a songwriter, but she is also noted for her hit recording of Personally, which became a #19 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 as well as #3 on the Adult Contemporary chart in the summer of 1982.Though she didn’t write that one, others that she’s written have been recoded by Linda Ronstadt, Bonnie Raitt, Wynona Judd, and Lynn Anderson.

Leon Bridges @ The Orpheum Theater, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($35 – $45) While Bridges’ style has been called retro soul, that’s a bit unfair. Though there’s no doubt that gospel and soul influences play a big part in his sound, the singer/songwriter looks at life through a contemporary lens. His debut album, Coming Home, reached number 6 in the charts last year. The demo version of the song was released on SoundCloud and brought him to the attention of record companies. The fully produced version became a viral hit when it was released on Spotify, and was used in a commercial for the IPhone 6. It’s too band that he’s already catapulted to theaters, as his intimate style would certainly work well in nightclubs.

Thursday, September 29

Cafe Accordion Orchestra CD Release @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($20) If you’ve been following this fun band for any time during it’s 22 year existence, you probably know this is their 10th album, hence the name CAO 10. It’s full of the usual mix waltzes, swing, and Latin tunes mining the music of France, Brazil, and Columbia, and includes some Dan Newton originals as well. Though the Dakota isn’t set up for dancing, I’m sure a few folk will find some space to do so.

Thursday, September 29 – Sunday, October 2

Jawaahir Dance Company: Shoma @ The Lab Theater, 700 North 1st Street, Minneapolis. 8pm (Thurs, Fri, Sat), 2pm (Sat, Sun) $30, $50) This is described as a Storytelling Dance Theater Journey, set during a bridal henna party in Saudi Arabia. It’s an extravaganza, with 25 actors/dancers and 7 musicians, sure to appeal to your imagination.

Friday, September 30

Paul Cebar @ Wilebski’s, Saint Paul. 6pm – 10pm ($???) A number of Paul’s Twin Cities fans have been following Paul Cebar for 20 years or more, and perhaps might welcome an early show, but really, once you hear him and his band, The Fine Rude Thing, you’ll understand why folks of a certain age turn up to join younger fans at late shows. Definitely, definitely bring dancing shoes.

Charles Walker Band @ The Bedlam Lowertown, Saint Paul. 6pm – 9pm ($8) Saxophonist/Vocalist Charles Walker studied at the UW Eau Claire Jazz program, and was a stand up and improvisational comedian. He and his band, including vocalist/conguero Porsche Carmon, create neo-funk, inviting comparisons to Prince, James Brown, and Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings. Other members of the band are: Nathan P, guitar; Brian Kennedy, bass; and Josh McHatten, drums.

Crankshaft & The Gear Grinders @ The Hook and Ladder Theater & Lounge, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($6, $9) The former Patrick’s Cabaret has been slightly remodeled, allowing for more people in the audience, which is good, because Crankshaft and his colleagues will bring folks in to hear their high energy, stripped down blues.

Octoberfest with the World’s Most Dangerous Polka Band @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 8pm – 11pm (Tip jar?) The band that held down a weekly spot at the late, lamented Nye’s will be filling the Black Dog with polkas and other musical delights from Europe. Meantime, the Black Dog will be offering beer specials, pretzels, and Bavarian delights.

Saturday, October 1

Steve Katz @ the Unitarian Universalist Church of Minnetonka, Minnetonka. 7:30pm – 10:pm ($20) Formerly of The Blues Project, founding member of Blood, Sweat and Tears, and producer of Lou Reed’s live album, Rock and Roll AnimalSteve Katz has written a memoir entitled Blood, Sweat and My Rock n’ Roll Years: Is Steve Katz a Rock Star? Tonight he presents a combination of blues, folk, spoken work, and Steve’s own highly regarded songs. It’s being called a living memoir of one of the most fascinating periods in the history of American music.

Front Porch Swingin’ Liquor Pigs w/Cooker John @ The Viking Bar, Minneapolis. 9pm ($5) Gather round for songs about drinking and other rock n’ roll topics as the loosey goosey, always fun Front Porch Swingin’ Liquor Pigs (the full band) return to their old haunt. Cooker John will be ending the night, starting about 11:30.

Saturday, Sunday, October 1,2

Cabaret Fest @ Phoenix Theater, 2605 Hennepin Avenue So, Minneapolis. Spotlight: 5-9pm Saturday, ($15); Workshop & Soiree, 2-6pm Sunday, ($15) ($25 for both days) The Twin Cities Cabaret Artists Network (TCCAN) is a volunteer group of professional singers, accompanists, and directors who are creating a cabaret scene in the Twin Cities. Saturday will feature over 20 singers, each taking 10 minutes to sing songs and tell stories, while the workshop on Sunday will concentrate on what it takes to create and present a cabaret performance. Singers such as Dorothy Doring, Vicky Mountain, and Rhonda Laurie will be taking part.

Sunday, October 2

Corpse Reviver @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 3 – 5:30pm (Tip Jar) Mikkel Beckmen, percussion; Jillian Rae, fiddle, and Adam Riesling, guitar and banjo, are Corpse Reviver  They have been holding down this afternoon gig for quite a few years now. They play music from the Bible of folkies: The Harry Smith Anthology of American Folk Music. It’s a gig that’s as rootsy as you can get.

Monday, October 3

Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino @ The Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($20 advance/$25 door)  This seven piece band and dancer are from Salento, located on the heel of Italy’s boot, in Puglia. They are considered the leading exponents in a new wave of young performers re-inventing Southern Italy’s Pizzica musical and dance traditions for today’s global audience. They play the traditional dance music of Salento called pizzicato, or taranta. It’s high energy music, full of passion and almost trance-inducing. Opening is Firefly Forest, Steven Hobert’s whimsical world music/folk group.

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.


Summer Music Isn’t Over Yet: 8.26 – 9.2

August 26, 2015
Though dusk is coming earlier these days, music is always available

Though dusk is coming earlier these days, music is always available

Well, the State Fair begins tomorrow, which means that Labor Day, the unofficial end of Summer, isn’t far behind. There is much music at the Fair, and I’ll post a separate, simple listing tomorrow, but there is also plenty of great music to enjoy outside of the fair. Here are a few examples. Have a great week. Music lifts your spirit.

Jazz

Wednesday, August 26

Joe Strachan @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Pianist Strachan graduated from the U o MN a couple of years ago and has become a pianist-about-town, playing with The Adam Meckler Orchestra, Pete Whitman’s X-Tet, Jake Baldwin’s Quintet, Charanga Tropical, and in other groups. Always inventive. Though the film quality on this video isn’t great, the sound comes through quite nicely.

Wednesday, Thursday, August 26, 27

Ben Sidran @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($25) Sidran manages to live in Madison and keep up an international touring schedule and regular release of CDs. Tonight and Thursday he’s celebrating the release of Blue Camus. It’s a two family celebration with Ben on keys and vocals, son Leo on drums, Ricky Peterson on organ, and Billy Peterson on bass. The show is titled Jazz + Philosophy, which isn’t unusual for Sidran, who often interjects hipster rapping into his show, whether it’s about Dylan, the first caveman discovering a beat,  or how commercial radio uses music to deliver potential customers to advertisers. Here’s something from the new album.

Thursday, August 27

Melody Mendis @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) The Detroit native has been singing jazz, R&B, pop, and more around town in a variety of cover bands like High and Mighty, and Boogie Wonderland. She recently released her second album, Love & Madness, full of twisted arrangements and dramatic, dark covers.

Bryan Nichols Quintet @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. 7 :30 – 9:30pm ($10) Given that saxophonist Michael Lewis is now living on the west coast, tonight’s performance is a rare opportunity to see this particular combination of players addressing the original music of pianist Nichols. With Brandon Wozniak, sax; James Buckley, bass; and JT Bates on drums.

Javi Santiago & Lucia Sarmiento @ Bedlam Theater, Saint Paul. 10pm ($5) Here’s a double bill of young talent. The Javi Santiago Trio includes Santiago, piano; Ted Olsen, bass; and Miguel Hurtado, drums. Lucia Sarmieto Quintet includes Sarmiento, still a student at McNally Smith on sax; Trevor Wiest, guitar; Will Kjeer, about to set off for CalArts on piano; Ry Dill, bass; and Blake Huebel, drums. Here’s an example of Lucia’s playing.

Friday, August 28

Javi Santiago & Proper-T Present: Murkury @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8pm – 10pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Pianist Javi Santiago and his long time running mate, drummer Miguel Hurtado, team up with vocalist/pianist Taylor Johnson, aka Proper T to create Murkury  a group that performs improvisational music mining jazz and blues, while bringing pop and electronic innovations to the fore as well.

Charmin Michelle & Sam Miltich @ Third Place Gallery, 3730 Chicago Ave S, Minneapolis. 7pm – 9pm ($15 Suggested Donation) Songstress Michelle and guitarist Miltich address the Ella Fitzgerald/Joe Pass connection in this tribute to both of them.

Patty & The Buttons @ Vieux Carré, Saint Paul. 8:30pm – 11:30pm ($10) Some button accordion-driven swing from a group most often found at the Aster on Sunday mornings. The way the Vieux is set up, you’ll only have to shuffle a couple of tables aside to create a bit of a dance floor.

No Room for Squares @ The Nicollet Cafe, Minneapolis. 9pm – 11pm (Tip Jar) A group of veteran players get together to enjoy themselves playing originals and jazz standards. Jon Pemberton, trumpet; Jimmie Wallace, sax; Mikkel Romstad, keys; Adam Tucker, bass; and Bill Steiger, drums.

Saturday, August 29

Saturday Night Jazz @ the Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. At 7pm, the U of M Combo opens, featuring current and former students: Ryan Christianson, Joe Strachan, Matt McIntyre, and Andres Crovetti, followed at 8:30pm by The Dean Sorenson Sextet CD Release party: Dean on trombone; Steve Kennym, flumpet; Dave Milne, sax; Chris Lomheim, piano; Tom Lewis, bass; Phil Hey, drums.

Maurice Jacox Trio @ Crooner’s Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. 7:30 – 10:30pm (No Cover) I would normally list Jacox under Blues and Roots, but the versatile singer’s appearance tonight at Crooners is more likely to be filled with Nat Cole and jazz-inspired acoustic Motown than full-blown R&B. Even in a trio format, Jacox’s balladry is likely to coax a few couples onto the dance floor.

Sunday, August 30

Tootie Heath Trio, w/Ethan Iverson & Ben Street @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($22) Talk about an entertainment deal. The 79 year old Heath has been an active participant in the nation’s jazz scene since the 50s. The younger brother of Jimmy on sax and Percy on bass, Heath continues to be a force in jazz. His first recording was with John Coltrane in 1957, and his subsequent work encompassed most all of jazz royalty, such as The Modern Jazz Quartet, JJ Johnson, The Jazztet, Bobby Timmons,  Thelonious Monk, and dozens of other artists. Now he’s teamed up with pianist Ethan Iverson, of the Bad Plus, and bassist Ben Street, who spent the 90s exploring free jazz, for three albums, the latest of which is Philadelphia, named for Heath’s home town. Here is the trio at theChicago Jazz Festival.

Monday, August 31

Terrence Blanchard E Collective @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($40), 9pm ($25) Trumpeter Blanchard has appeared a leader or co-leader on over 30 albums, including soundtracks for Spike Lee and his moving, post-Katrina masterpiece A Tale of God’s Will. He and his band are now receiving much praise from the likes of both Downbeat and Jazz Times for Breathless, his latest album. It’s an electrified fusion of R&B and fusion-influenced jazz. It’s has slow jams, deep grooves, a hip-hop/jazz fusion of Les McCann’s “Compared to What,” and a reworking of Hank Williams’ “I Aint Got Nothing But Time.”

James Buckley Trio + One @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($10) Bassist James Buckley and his long-standing trio including Bryan Nichols, keys; and JT Bates, drums, are given the chance to provide new takes on their repertoire with the addition of Jacob Hanson on guitar. Hanson has long been a fixture in many bands around town, providing licks that are twangy, reverb-laden, and imaginative.

For a comprehensive listing of Jazz go to the Twin Cities Live Jazz Calendar. KBEM provides a calendar of jazz and roots music.   For further commentary on Twin Cities jazz, check out the blogs, Jazz PoliceJazz Ink, and Bebopified.

Blues, Roots, Other…

Wednesday, August 26

John Till on KFAI and @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (90.3 & 106.7FM), 7pm (331 club – Tip Jar) Whether he’s playing bottleneck slide, banjo, or acoustic guitar, Till  elivers country blues from the Great Plains to the Delta, with side trips to Appalachia and Chicago. Listen in and head to the 331 afterwards.

Gabby Z @ The Aster Cafe, Minneapolis. 9pm ($5) Gabby Z is a sixteen year old singer/songwriter who is about to release her debut album. Her soulful singing reveals influences of Joss Stone, Sara Bareilles, and Amos Lee.

Mother Banjo @ Vieux Carré, Saint Paul 8pm ($5) Get yourself some bluegrassy gospel and poetic lyrics as Ellen Stanley, aka Mother Banjo  brings her full band to the underground confines of the Vieux Carre.

Thursday, August 27

Flamin’ Ohs & The War Poets @ Music in Mears, Saint Paul. 6pm (Free) The Ohs had a strong following back in the day, and can still deliver their smart pop/punk/new wave sounds with vengeance. Openers The War Poets are a protest band for this generation, writing about homelessness, poverty, and other social issues of the day. Music will be followed by a screening of Dispatched, a comedy action thriller presented by the Twin Cities Film Festival. Here are the Ohs doing a cover of the Rolling Stones.

Joe Ely and Alejandro Escovedo @ The Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis. 7pm ($45) Here’s a double bill of Texas singer/songwriters with a punch to their music. Alejandro Escovedo left Texas for California in the 70s and played guitar with the Nuns and the punk-meets-country Rank & File. After returning to Texas, Escovedo began a steady but slow rise to prominence, working with producers like Chris Stamey and John Cale, and collaborating with Chuck Prophet. Nowadays, Escovedo says he just wants to write “cool pop rock songs.” Ely is a rockin’ troubadour, who has traveled the country singing  about his travels in honky tonks, hook joints, and concert halls. Bruce Springsteen, Raul Malo, and Jimmie Dale Gilmore (with whom he worked in the Flatlanders) have all contributed vocals to his albums.  Here’ Ely at work.

Friday, August 28

Willie Walker and the We R Band @ Crooners Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. 7:30 – 10:30pm (No Cover) Willie’s latest CD, If Nothing Ever Changes, was produced by bluesman/slyman Rick Estrin, of the Night Cats, and it’s terrific. Walker is still a soul master, able to evoke emotion with the slightest change in his gravely voice. He’s brought a good crowd to the Fridley lounge in the past and tonight should be no different. Here he is on a recent tour of South America.

Hipshaker 13th Anniversary @ The Kitty Cat Klub, Minneapolis. 9pm ($5) Get out the talcum powder and your best dancing shoes. And get there early to claim a spot to rest and have a drink every once in a while. Brian, Greg, and George will be pulling out the best of their rare 45s tonight.

Saturday, August 29

Jimmi & the Band of Souls @ Vieux Carré, Saint Paul. 8:30pm ($8) Jimmi & the Band of Souls use mandolins and banjos, as well as the usual guitars, slide guitars, and rhythm section found in a blues band. As a result, they have a unique sound which is strengthened by their winning blend of blues, R&B, and roots music.  Here they are with a classic Memphis Minnie tune.

Sunday, August 30

RAMM Band @ Gasthaus Bavarian Hunter, Stillwater. 3 – 6pm (No Cover) Guitarist Paul Mayasich  together with ace time-keepers John Iden, bass; and Hye Pockets, drums, deliver such blues-based favorites, including Motown, funk, R&B, and even some Rock n’ Roll and Americana. You get to hang out and avail yourself of the Hunter’s favorites, like goulash, all manner of sausages, spatzle, burgers, and more. Since this is an outdoor gig, all bets are off if the weather doesn’t permit.

Charlie Parr & Dave Moore @ Patrick’s Cabaret, Minneapolis. 7pm ($10) This great two-fer is part of the Eclectic Electric series, and features two of Red House Records’ premiere artists in an intimate setting. Parr  of course, is the Duluth bluesman who has captured the imagination of both young and old with his Duluth-meets-the Delta acoustic blues. Moore is the somewhat reclusive singer/songwriter from Iowa City who used to play with Greg Brown and has become a stellar writer and performer in his own right. You might want to get advance tickets for this one, since the Cabaret is a bit small. Here’s Moore at work.

Tuesday, September 1

Doug Otto & the Getaways @ Father Hennepin Bluff Park, Minneapolis. 7pm (Free) The sad sounds of Doug Otto’s expressive voice backed by the rootsy/acoustic sounds of the Getaways will undoubtedly feel just right in an outdoor setting.

Halley DeVestern Band @ Lee’s Liquor Lounge, Minneapolis. 9:00pm (No Cover) This five-piece from New York City delivers some rock/funk/blues with verve. Leader/vocalst DeVestern has a big voice, well supported by band members who’ve been members of Big Brother and the Holding Company, the Zen Tricksters, and the bands of Roger Waters and Shawn Mullins. Refriogerager opens at 9pmn, followed by DeVestern and company at 10:30pm.

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 calendar for U Wanna Dance.


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