Fishing, Mother’s Day, and Music: 5.10 – 5.16

May 10, 2017

Plenty to do this week, even if you don’t land a big one.

This weekend is the Fishing Opener, as the Hula Poppers (not to be confused with the Hula Peppers, below) celebrated back in the 80s with their fun single, and many Minnesotans are anxious to get out on a lake and land a a big one. It’s also Mother’s Day, which means that some folks will have to choose between their first shot at fishing for the season and treating Mom to a nice Brunch or Dinner, of which there are plenty – I shouldn’t have to tell you about them. However, there is plenty of music on other days and evenings, including some outstanding visiting artists in jazz, roots, and world music, and our own bevy of talent to entertain you. Music lifts the spirit.

Jazz

Wednesday, May 10

Katz and Dogs @ Vieux Carré, Saint Paul. 8pm ($7) Jive, jazz, and soul from Steve Katz, bass/vocals; Peter Vircks, sax; Matt Darling, trombone; Park Evans, guitar, and Ken Goldman on drums.

Zacc Harris Group @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. 7pm ($10 Advance, $15 Door) This is another performance in the Jazz at Studio Z series. Guitarist Harris will be accompanied by Bryan Nichols, piano; Chris Bates, bass; and JT Bates, drums. There will be a master class at 6pm for a high school music class field trip from Winnipeg, Canada, but it is open to the public.

Thursday, May 11, Sunday, May 14

Keiko Matsui @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. Thursday: 7pm ($35, $45), 9pm ($30, $40) Sunday: 6pm ($35, $45), 8pm ($30, $40) Japanese born pianist Keiko Matsui create contemporary jazz that blends Eastern and Western influences. Over the course of 27 albums in 32 years her music has ranged from smooth jazz to East/West fusion, to jazz fusion, worldbeats, and funky grooves. Her latest, 2016’s well-received Journey to the Heart, uses a Cuban rhythm section, Peruvian guitarist, a Venezuelan percussionist and strings to weave Afro-Cuban rhythms, Latin jazz, a bit of chamber jazz, and French cafe music into a seamless whole.

Thursday, May 11

Twin Cities Hot Club w/Naomi Uyama @ Vieux Carré, Saint Paul. 8pm ($7) The Twin Cities Hot Club was formed in 2004 and has been dazzling audiences ever since with their takes on acoustic swing, gypsy jazz, bossa novas, and the occasional musettes. Members are: Robert Bell and Reynold Philipsek, guitars; Gary Schulte, violin; and Matt Peterson, bass. Tonight, however, they’re joined by vocalist Naomi Uyama  a NYC-based singer who also specializes in teaching the Lindy Hop and leads her own band.  Here’s the group playing for some very good dancers, including Uyama.

Mill City Jazz @ Dayblock Brewing, Minneapolis. 8pm (No Cover) It’s a monthly evening of cocktails and jazz, with a new round of gin cocktails for audience members to enjoy while listening to this group. Wish I knew who they were.

Friday, May 12

Steve Coleman @ The Walker Art Center, Minneapolis. 8pm ($32) Alto saxophonist Steve Coleman grew up on the South Side of Chicago, where played in a James Brown cover band as a teenager, and later discovered Charlie Parker, Sonny Rollins and John Coltrane while in college. He was introduced to Von Freeman, Bunky Green, and Sonny Stitt, all of whom he credits with influencing his approach to music. Once he moved to NYC in the late 70s he began playing in big bands, and co-founded M-Base, a self-help organization for Black musicians. His spontaneous, fluid playing has been heard with Dave Holland’s group, as well as in his own Five Elements. Tonight he heads up a chamber-jazz hybrid of a group, to explore spontaneous composition and group improvisation. Members are: Matt Mitchell, piano; Greg Chudzik bass; Roman Filiu, tenor; Rane Moore; clarinet; Jonathan Finlayson, trumpet; Kristin Lee; Violin and Jen Shu, voice. Here he is in a completely different setting.

Jeremy Walker/Cedric Fuller & Global Sound @ Vieux Carré  Saint Paul. 6:30pm (Walker, no cover), 9pm (Fuller, $10) Pianist Walker starts off the evening during the dinner hour, and then at 9pm Cedric Fuller and his band takes over: Cedric Fuller, drums; Ernest Bisong, violin; Steven Hobert, piano; Tomas Simpson, guitar; and Kenneth P. Garnier, bass. Here’s Fuller with a number of those players.

Saturday, May 13

Saturday Night Jazz @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 7pm (Tip Jar) Tonight starts out with young Jazz Ensembles from Walker West Music Academy at 7 pm. Open Story is on at 8:30. It a new group with well-known, and highly talented members: Dean Magraw, guitar; Bryan Nichols, piano; and Jay Epstein, drums

Sunday, May 14

Despejada @ Zorongo Flameco Dance Studio, 3012 Minnehaha Ave S, Minneapolis. 5pm ($10) Pianist/accordionist Steven Hobert  who is always involved in interesting projects, has a new trio, featuring Krissy Bergmark on tabla; and Ben Abrahamson on flamenco guitar. As Steven describes the group, “We draw and blend inspiration from the traditions of Flamenco, Hindustani and Jazz.”

Monday, May 15

Dave Graf @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10, $5 w/Student ID) Trombonist Graf seems to spend quite a bit of time in various pit bands for musical shows at the Ordway and other venues about town. Make no mistake, however, he’s an accomplished jazz musician, always being called on to fill out a group and provide the burnished tone of his axe. Tonight he gets to play originals and original arrangements. As always, a jam session follows at 10pm. Here’s an example of Graf’s talent.

Karrin Allyson @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($40), 9pm ($30) Vocalist Karrin Allyson has long been a favorite of Twin Citizens, ever since she lived here for a few years in the 90s. After thirteen albums, and four Grammy nominations during her time with Concord Records, she has moved on to Motema, another important jazz imprint, where she received a 2016 Grammy nomination for Many A New Day, an album of Rogers and Hammerstein songs. For this visit, her show is entitled Allyson Sings Allison, as in Mose Allison. She has often included one of Mose’s tunes in her albums and shows, and is putting together a whole album of his songs. Luckily, we get a preview. Here she is doing one of Allison’s classics.

Monday, Tuesday, May 15, 16

Dave King Trio @ Crooners’ Dunsmore Room, Fridley. 7pm ($20, $45w/Dinner), 8:30pm ($12) Drummer Dave King unites once again with pianist Bill Carrothers, and bassist Billy Peterson for an evening of exquisite music. King of course, is well known for his work with The Bad Plus, Happy Apple, and countless other bands. Carrothers is an outside-the-box improviser, which isn’t to say he plays “free jazz” but that his playing always takes unexpected, and often delightful turns. Peterson is simply a monster bass player who has played or recorded with BB King, Leo Kottke, and Les Paul, among others. His 20+ years on the road with rocker Steve Miller didn’t affect his ability to play inside, outside, and in the pocket – just hear his work with Ben Sidran, Bob Rockwell, or this trio.

Tuesday, Wednesday, May 16, 17

Marcus Roberts Trio @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($30, $40), 9pm ($25, $35) Pianist Roberts, who has been blind since he was about 5 years old, is a virtuosic player who played with Wynton Marsalis as well as with large symphonies. He founded his trio in 1995, based on the philosophy that bass, drums, and piano are all featured equally. Roberts recorded output includes solos, duets, and trio arrangements of jazz standards, original suites, and original arrangements for large ensembles, and symphonies.

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 10

Siama’s Afrobilly Trio on KFAI and @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (90.3 & 106.7FM), 7pm (331 Club – Tip Jar) Siama Matsuzugidi is an African guitarist who  has lived in Uganda, Kenya, Dubai and Japan and has performed with some of the biggest names in soukous, playing on hundreds of recordings. In 2014 he received a McKnight Fellowship, which allowed him to launch a solo career here in Minnesota. His Afrobilly Trio combines the singular sound of his cascading guitar lines with the rootsy percussion of Mikkel Beckmen (an in-demand accompanist to Charlie Parr, Corpse Reviver, and other performers), in addition to incorporating the vocals and percussion of Dallas Johnson. As usual, tune in and head over to the 331 if you want to hear more.

Hula Peppers @ Schooner Tavern, Minneapolis. 7:30pm (Tip Jar) The music of the 1930s was often hopeful and light-hearted – a response to the Great Depression, when people had little money, and even less hope. The Hula Peppers specialize in the music of the 30s, and also throw in some music from the booming 20s, and an Hawaiian tune or two. It’s blues, swing and novelty songs from the golden age of 78s, delivered with sly winks and a generous helping of loving humor. The Peppers are Papa Gasket (Dan Newton) on accordion; with Tiny Gene Pool on Hawaiian guitar; Mysterious Mo, ukulele and saw; Professor Wheat, guitar; Lotta Miles, ukulele; and Rock Bottom, bass.

Wednesday, Thursday, May 10, 11

Davina & the Vagabonds @ Crooners Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. (No Cover, but $10 for a reserved table) If you’ve not heard this rowdy, sassy singer of guitar-less blues, here’s a great opportunity, and Davina and the band will undoubtedly fill the place. The Vagabonds are a brassy group that’s equal to Davina’s strength as a singer and composer.

Friday, May 12

Trailer Trash @ Wilebski’s Blues Saloon, Saint Paul. 6pm – 10pm ($10?) The Blues Saloon becomes Honky-Tonk Heaven, as these purveyors of traditional country music will fill the dance floor with rockabilly, honky-tonk, and old time rock n’ roll, all perfect for swing dancing, or free-form dancing, whatever you choose. Trailer Trash has been at it for over 22 years now, so they’ll easily fill the commodious dance floor at the Blues Saloon.

Amy Helm & Cindy Cashdollar @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($33 – $38) Singer/songwriter Helm is the daughter of Levon Helm, of The Band, and Libby Titus, writer of Love Has No Pride. When she appeared with her Dad at the Fitzgerald Theater some years back, she was already a formidable vocalist. She’ll have another formidable artist in her group – Cindy Cashdollar  the Austin-based dobro and steel-guitarist who as worked with Bob Dylan, Van Morrison, Dave Alvin, Marcia Ball, Leon Redbone, and others. In 2011 Cashdollar became the first female inducted into the Texas Stel Guitar Hall of Fame, and was then inducted into the Texas Music Hall of Fame in 2012. the husband/wife team of Fife and Drom open with their originals, as well as Delta and Chicago blues.

Steve Clarke & the Working Stiffs @ The Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 8pm ($10) Steve Clarke and his roaring saxophone leads an 8-piece group through a heady mix of jump, jive, and swing, from Fats Waller and Count Basie to Louis Jordan, Bill Haley, and Elvis Presley. You’ll end up either snapping your fingers or cutting the rug on the Eagles wonderful dance floor.

Worldwide Discotheque Fifth Anniversary @ The Nomad Pub, Minneapolis. 9pm ($5) It’s already five years since this Pan-Tropical Vinyl Dance Party was started by Deejays Brian Engel and Steely Dan. It’s been mentioned in the New York Times not only for its infectious music that ranges from Afrobeat and Soukous to Calypso, Reggae, and Cumbia, but for its pan-generational and pan-gendered fans. Deejay Steely Dan, who moved back to his home state of Michigan last year, will be returning to the Twin Cities for this special evening. For examples of the kind of music you may hear, visit this site.  You can also check out this video, made back before the event outgrew Clubhouse Jaeger.

Saturday, May 13

Cariba Days Film & Music Fest @ The Parkway Theater, Minneapolis. 2pm – Midnight ($15) The day starts with a free film La Vie Est Belle, featuring guitarist Papa Wembe, and continues (with paid admittance) with Pimento & Hot Pepper, a Jamaican film about Mento music at 4pm, an 11 minute short at 5:30 on life in Pinnacle Jamaica, and then at 6:15, a screening of Hip Hop Colony, a film from Kenya. The last two films will have a Q&A with the director of each after the screening. Music starts at 8:30 with the Soukous Fusion of Siama’s Afrobilly Trio, followed at 9:30 by the Afrobeat of Black Market Brass  and closing the night, the vintage Cuban sounds of Malamanya. Steady Rock Sound DJs will provide music between sets.

Saturday Salon: Dancing Keys @ Crooners’ Dunsmore Room, Fridley. 3pm ($20) This afternoon’s “chamber concert in a cabaret setting” features one piano and four hands. Michael and Kyung Kim will be playing pieces from JS Bach; Mozart; Grieg; Brahms; and Ravel. Drinks and small plates are available until 4:30 pm, when the dinner menu takes over. Here is half of the duo.

Nikki Roux & Rich Rue/Hurricane Harold’s All-Star Blues Revue @ Vieux Carré, Saint Paul. 6:30 (Nikki & Rich, no cover), 9pm (All-Stars, $8) The Vieux’s practice of featuring a dinner hour performer and an evening performer can sometimes result in odd couplings of genres, but often results in worthy double-bills, such as this one that features the folk/rock and country blues of Nikki Roux & Rich Rue to start the evening, and Harp-master Hurricane Harold’s collection of some of the best blues players in town. The All-Star Blues Revue will have the place jumpin’ though they’ll also throw in a slow blues or two to let folks catch their breath.

Festival au Desert: Caravan of Peace @ The Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis. 8pm ($25 Advance, $30 Door) The Ali Farka Toure Band and Terakaft bring the Desert Blues to the Twin Cities as part of The Festival au Desert, which has been banned from it’s homeland in Mali. Though Ali Farka Toure passed ten years ago, The Ali Farka Turi Band consists of musicians who traveled the world with him, including singer Afel Bocoum and master guitarist Mahmadou Kelly. Terakaft is a Tuareg band from Mali that combines Western high-tech with earthy African roots.

Sunday, May 14

Salsa Cafe @ The Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 8pm ($10) Well, there’s not too much information about whether this includes a live band or a deejay. Suffice it to say, if you want to get your week started with some lively dancing, this is the place to be.

Left Lane Cruiser @ The Hook & Ladder Theater and Lounge, Minneapolis. 8pm ($7 Advance, $10 Door) Though the Roots, Rock, & Deep Blues Festival isn’t until July, the Hook & Ladder is already ramping things up with Left Lane Cruiser  area favorites since their appearance at the original Deep Blues Festival some years back. This high-energy, jet-fueled duo takes the Mississippi Hill Country Blues and growls and snarls it up with punk rock energy. Also on the bill: Liquor Beats Winter, a Mpls quartet that describes itself as the love child of The Dead Kennedys and Captain Beefheart, and the relatively new trio, Snarles Bukkakeski, with DJ Rock the Monkey providing between music between sets.

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.


It’s the 4th! Music: 7.1-7.7

July 1, 2015

Unknown-2Well, the day got away from me, so this post doesn’t contain videos, but I think anyone reading this can find videos if you want to hear what an artist sounds like. Anyway,  the defining event of the summer is upon us, and with the 4th of July celebration, we find that music, is not as plentiful as during other weeks of the year. Nevertheless, the weekend brings some celebrations that include music and fireworks, and there are a couple of long-term residencies that you can check out.

Jazz

Wednesday, July 1

Charles Lloyd @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($40, $50), 9pm ($30, $40) If you are a jazz fan, you have to here this master saxophonist at least once in your life. Lloyd’s career goes back to the 60s, when he won many young fans by playing the Fillmore in San Francisco.

Andrew Walesch Quartet @ Crooners Lounge and Supper Club, Fridley. 7pm (No cover) This young singer/pianist is excellent with both of his instruments. He also understands the need to engage the audience as an entertainer. Tonight he’ll be accompanied by Gary Raynor, bass; Pete Johnson, drums; and special guest Adam Meckler on trumpet.

Vector Families @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Yet another project from bassist Anthony Cox, with Brandon Wozniak, sax; Dean Granros, guitar; Dave King, drums; and Cox on cello and bass.

Thursday, July 2

Travis Anderson Trio @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm (No Cover) It’s another foodie night at the Dakota, with no cover, wine specials, and a terrific band. Anderson, piano; Steve Pikal, bass; and Nathan Norman, drums; give new life to standards

Friday, July 3

Thomas Bruce @ Parma 8200, Bloomington. 7:30 – 10:30pm (No Cover) Sublime vocals in the cozy lounge of a D’Amico restaurant.

Jay Young’s Lyric Factory @ The icehouse, Minneapolis. 8pm ($12) Bassist Young has been honing his tribute to Herbie Hancock and Earth, Wind, & Fire, to create an entertaining, groovin’ and jazzful evening.

Hanson, Roessler, & Anderson @ Sweet 17, 308 Prince Street, Suite 317, Saint Paul. 9pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Here’s an under the radar gig if there ever was one. It’s essentially a house concert with Nathan Hanson, sax; Doan Roessler, bass; and Marc Anderson, percussion. It’s a BTOB affair. Doors at 8:30

Saturday, July 4

Big Bands and Fireworks @ City Parks.  Here’s a trio of big bands, each capable of producing their own musical fireworks, providing the entertainment before the holiday fireworks. Whether you live near these towns, or are willing to travel a bit, it’s a musical way to celebrate our country’s Independence Day.

1: St. Croix Jazz Orchestra @ Minnesota Pioneer Park, Stillwater. 7pm (Free) With Andrew Walesch on vocals.

2: Wolverines Big Band @ Excelsior Commons, Excelsior. 7pm – 10pm (Free)  Featuring Judi Vinar, Maude Hixson, and Jason Richards on vocals.

3: Roseville Big Band @ Central Park, Roseville. 7pm – 9pm (Free)

Sunday, July 5

Saints of Swing @ Como Dockside Pavilion, Saint Paul. 7pm – 9pm (Free) Here’s another big band gig, this time it’s lakeside at Como Lake, and the new Como Dockside is right there to serve drinks and food.

Zacc Harris Trio @ The Riverview Wine Bar, Minneapolis. 7pm – 9pm (Tip Jar) There’s a good reason this trio has had a long running residency at the Wine Bar. Harris’ tasteful guitar, along with Pete Hennig’s drumming and Matt Peterson’s bass, provide music that’s just right for drinking the venue’s wide selections of wine and food.

Monday, July 6

Irv Williams CD Release Part @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($7) Irv Williams is 95 and still churning out CDs. This one, Pinnacle, is perhaps his third or fourth since announcing his “retirement” some years back. Always worth seeing. How the man keeps such a gorgeous tone is something every budding young sax player should learn.

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, July 1

Midwest Paul Cook on KFAI and @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (90.3 & 106.7FM), 7pm (331 Club – Tip Jar)

Thursday, July 2

Butanes @ Shaw’s, NE Minneapolis. 8:30pm (No Cover) Another weekly gig. The Butanes played the New Orleans Jazz Festival with Earl King, and most assuredly have earned the title of the best blues band in the Twin Cities.

The Droppers @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 9:30pm (No Cover) If you’re a fan of the Meters and Booker T. and the MGs, then you’ll appreciate this instrumental band of Chris Beaty, guitar; Jim Anton, bass; Noah Levy drums; and Tommy Barbarella, organ. They’ve played together in various groups for over 25 years, and are tight!

Friday, July 3

Booker T. Jones @ the Dakota, Mpls. 7pm ($42), 9pm ($35) He had a hit with Green Onions when he was just 16 and he and the MGs were the house band for Stax Records. Many hits followed and many performances, during which their place in the pantheon of rock n’ roll was secured. Nowadays, with the passing of two of the original members of the group, Jones has worked with established rock bands, winning yet another Grammy Potato Hole, his 2010 album with the Drive By Truckers, and for 2012’s The Road From Memphis with The Roots.

Willie Murphy Blues Trio @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 8pm – 11:30pm Murphy returns to the Black Dog, this time with his blues trio in tow.

Sweet Tea @ The Station, White Bear Lake. 9pm (No Cover) Funky blues for your dancing pleasure on the eve of the 4th.

Freewheelin’ First Friday @ Harriet Brewing Tap Room, Minneapolis. 7pm ($5?) Nikki & the Rue-Mates open at 7pm, followed by the Honky-Tonk/Fok/Roots of Wilkinson James at 9pm.

Patty Peterson & Friends w/Melanie Rosales @ Bunker’s, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($10) Vocalist Peterson likes to straddle the line between jazz and R&B, as do her friends, which tonight includes Melanie Rosales, which long time Twin Citizens may remember from The Doug Maynard Band of the late 70s.

Saturday, July 4

Armadillo Jump @ Lakeside Park, Hudson, WI. 1:30 – 4:30pm. (Free) Head across the Saint Croix for an afternoon of jump blues and general holiday activity, including a hot dog eating contest, a kids tract pull, food stands, and a beer garden, as well as later entertainment by Ponzi Scheme and Uncle Chunk. No fireworks, though.

Booker T. Jones @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($42) One show only tonight, so everyone can get out and see fireworks afterwards.

Sunday, July 5

Phil Heywood @ Dubliner Pub, Saint Paul. 5pm – 7:45pm (Tip Jar) Ace fingerpicking and fine vocals from Heywood provide a comfortable, yet adventurous end to the weekend.

Vinicius Cantuaria @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($25) This soft-voiced Brazilian brings bossa novas into the 21st Century, imbuing the music of Jobim and Gilberto Gil with hints of electronica while staying decidedly acoustic. He’s collaborated with Brian Eno, Bill Frisell, David Byrne, Laurie Anderson and similar forward thinking musicians, and has

Tuesday, July 7

Church of Cash @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm (No Cover) Another foodie night, this one sponsored by the Minnesota Music Coalition, and bringing this quintet’s love of Johnny Cash to the masses.

Mayo, Jacox, and Eckstrand @ The Station, White Bear Lake. 8pm – 11pm (No Cover) Paul Mayasich holds down the guitar chair at the Station (formerly Manitou Station) every Tuesday night, bringing in all sorts of friends to complement his playing. Tonight he has Bobby E. (Eckstrand), an under appreciated guitarist, as well as vocalist extraordinaire Maurice Jacox.

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.


A Wealth of Music: 2.25 – 3.3

February 25, 2015

images-2We are faced with another week in which the richness of artistic offerings here in the Twin Cities can create difficult choices when going out. Much like the teens at right choosing from a jukebox, it’s a good problem to have. Get out and support our resident artists and check out visiting artists as well. We’ll all benefit, since music lifts the spirit.

Jazz

Wednesday, February 25

Andrew Walesch Quartet @ Crooners Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. 7pm (No Cover)  Pianist Walesch is an emerging artist on the vocal jazz scene in the Twin Cities. Though he concentrates on the Great American Songbook and jazz standards, including Frank Sinatra, he also writes his own material and has been known to perform a pop song or two.

Leisure Valley @ Cafe Maude, Minneapolis. 7pm (No Cover) This is a relatively new group featuring Bruce Thornton, reeds; Patrick Harrison, button accordion; Joey Van Philips, drums; and Chris Bates, bass. I have to admit I haven’t heard them, but judging by the inclusion of Bates, Harrison and Van Philips, I’m betting they’ll swing.

UnknownMcNally Smith Orchestra @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Pete Whitman has gathered together a talented big band of 17 students at McNally Smith College of Music. Their repertoire ranges from Hard Bop to Afro-Peruvian Festejo music. They are an exciting ensemble to watch and hear, and have recently toured in Peru, and took first place at the Eau Claire Jazz Festival.

 

Thursday, February 26

Fireside Five and Guests @ The Underground Music Cafe, 1579 Hamline Ave North, Saint Paul. 7:30pm – 10pm (Tip Jar) The UMC is a cozy spot featuring coffee, wine, and beer, as well as chairs for about 40 folks. Lately, they’ve been featuring jazz on a regular basis. Tonight it’s the talented musicians of the Fireside Five: Tom Ashworth, trombone & euphonium; Brian Grivna, reeds; Phil Aaron, piano; Gordy Johnson, bass; and Phil Hey, drums. Special guests include Pat Mallinger, sax; Zack Lozier, trumpet; and Dean Sorenson, trombone. A rather star-studded evening for such an intimate room.

Erin Livingston @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7:30pm – 9:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) It’s vocal night at Jazz Central, and tonight’s artist, Erin Livingston, is not only a vocalist, but a classically trained flautist. She has been singing around town with the Parisota Hot Club, performing blues, some Beatles, and the gypsy jazz of Django Rheinhardt. Tonight she’ll be accompanied by Parisota guitarist Robb Henry. Here’s a surprising choice of music.

Friday, February 27

Photo of Javi by Andrea Canter

Photo of Javi by Andrea Canter

Javi Santiago Quartet @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Pianist Santiago is in town for a few months, and we’re lucky to have some opportunities to hear his fine playing. Tonight he’s joined by Chris Bates, bass; Zacc Harris, guitar; and Miguel Hurtado, drums.

Debbie Duncan @ Crooners Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. 7:30pm – 10:30pm (No Cover) Crooners has become the place to hear many of the Twin Cities best singers, including Ms Duncan, who is somewhat of a legend in the Twin Cities for her superb ability to sing jazz and blues with equal verve.

Saturday, February 28

Bacharach & David with Oscars for "Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head"

Bacharach & David with Oscars for “Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head”

Arne Fogel and Jennifer Eckes: the Songs of Bacharach & David @Bloomington Center for the Arts, Bloomington. 7:30pm ($26) From Alfie and Wishin’ and Hopin’, to What’s New Pussycat and The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence, the team of Burt Bacharach and Hal David created a soundtrack for the 60s. Fogel & Eckes put their own interoperation on these songs and many more, with the help of Rick Carlson, piano; Keith Boyles, bass; and Jendeen Forberg, drums.

Saturday Night Jazz @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7:00pm ($5 – $20 Suggested Donation) It’s an evening of modern, original jazz. Tonight’s opening band is Central Standard Time, a band of young upstarts and a couple of veterans, with Charlie Lincoln, bass; Sten Johnson, sax; Dave Roos, guitar; Steve Kenny, Flumpet; and Alex Burgess, drums. Then at 8:30pm the Zacc Harris Group will take the stage with Zacc Harris, guitar; Bryan Nichols, piano; JT Bates, drums; and Chris Bates, bass.

Monday, March 2

BZ3 Organ Trio @ The Narrows Saloon, Wayzata. 7pm (No cover) Get down with some Soul Jazz from Brian Zienmiak, B3; Troy Norton, guitar; and Kevin Washington, drums.

Bob Parsons @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Parson is a Minnesota saxophonist who lived in NYC for much of the 90s and 00s, where he was an arranger for folks like Herbie Hancock, John Scofield, and the Brecker Brothers, among others, and was co-leader of the Blue Note Late Night Band for several years. He also recorded four albums with guitarist Dave Styker. Since returning to the Twin Cities in 2008 he has been a member of the Acme Jazz Company Big Band. tonight he’ll be playing his own compositions and arrangements.

Tuesday, March 3

Rene Marie @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($30) Vocalist Rene Marie is one of the most distinctive voices in the nation these days, a daring artist with the ability to crawl inside a lyric and make it her own. Tonight she’s performing her homage to the sensual singer and actress Eartha Kitt, the subject of Marie’s most recent (10th) album. Here’s a song from the album.

Dean Magraw & Davu Seru @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7pm – 9pm. ($5 – $20 Suggested Donation) Both Magraw on guitar and Seru on drums & percussion are extremely versatile, and both are capable of finishing the other’s musical thoughts. It’s always a treat to hear them.

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

Blues, Roots, Other…

Wednesday, February 25

Big George Jackson on KFAI and @ the 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (90.3FM & 106.7FM), 7pm (331 club – tip Jar) The big man with the deep deep voice sings the blues like no other in town. It’s authentic, and comes from his heart, whether singing originals or songs that you recognize. One thing is certain, Jackson’s music will make you move.

Radio Joe & the Jazzbos @ The Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 8pm ($5) Treat yourself to some romantic ballads and jumping’ swing tunes from Radio Joe and the guys. It’s high quality stuff.

Thursday, February 26

Beckmen, Roux, & Rue @ The Dubliner, Saint Paul. 5pm – 7pm (Tip Jar) Washboard/percussionist Mikkel Beckmen brings in guests each week to join him on the Dubliner’s small stage. Tonight he’s joined by Nikki Roux and Rich Rue of Nikki & the Rue-Mates. A good way to spend some post work time.

Black Audience & Voice of Culture @ The Bedlam Lowertown, Saint Paul. 9pm. ($10) Vocalist Jayanthi Kyle is the not-so-secret weapon in the arsenal of Black Audience as they play music that draws upon Folk music, Black Heritage, Work songs, and Chain Gang songs. Opening act Voice of Culture is a West African drum and dance group that spans generations.

Friday, February 27

Willie Murphy & the Angel-Headed Hipsters @ The Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 8pm ($7) Blues, Rhythm and Blues, Funk, and good ol’ Rock n’ roll from Mr Murphy and his rockin’ cohorts. There’ll be lotsa dancing on one of the best dance floors in the Twin Cities.

Saturday, February 28

Selby Avenue Syncopaters @ The Bayport BBQ. 8pm ($5) Here’s a change of pace for Chris Johnson’s smoking’ BBQ joint; some traditional jazz. The Syncopaters include Jeffrey Dunitz, guitar; Tom Zosel, reeds; Harold Longley, tuba; Tim Altmann, trumpet; Chris Wiley, trombone; and Tom Lyseng, drums. Heck, this kind of music goes with BBQ just as much as the blues.

Funktion Junction @ Manitou Station, White Bear Lake. 9pm (No Cover) Not sure how this 7-piece funk band will fit on the Station’s small stage area, but I’m betting the mostly middle-aged crowd that frequents the Station will be shaking their booties all night long.

Saturday, Sunday, February 28, March 1

Black Violin @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($40) This classically-trained duo use violin and viola to play a blend of classical music, hip-hop, rock, and R&B, with some bluegrass thrown in for good measure. They’ve played for one of Obama’s Inaugural Balls, on Broadway, and for troops in Iraq, and have collaborated with folks ranging from Kanye West to Aretha Franklin and The Eagles. Opening is Twin Cities artist LOTT.

Sunday, March 1

Grateful Sundays @ The Driftwood Char Bar, Minneapolis. 6pm – 11pm (Tip Jar) Deadheads Unite! You have nothing to lose but a fun time listening to acoustic and electric sets of Grateful Dead music presented by the Shotgun Ragtime Band. Acoustic sets start at 6pm and are family friendly. Electric sets start at 8pm and go until about 11.

FullSizeRender

Cadillac at Pioneer & Soldiers Cemetery

Cadillac Kolstad @ Palmer’s Bar, Minneapolis. 10pm (Tip Jar) With the wildness of a young Jerry Lee Lewis, Kolstad attacks the piano with vigor, backed by a rockabilly rhythm section that matches his ferocity note for note.

Monday, March 2

Jon Rodine @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 6:30pm (Tip Jar) Besides working for Red House Records, Rodine is one of the Twin Cities finest singer/songwriters of blues and roots music, though truth be told, he is relatively unknown, though he’s played and recorded with a heavy duty roster of Midwest musicians. Check him out and then stay for the fun-filled Roe Family Singers at 9pm.

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.


More Visiting and Resident Artists. 10.22 – 10.28

October 22, 2014
Remember these jukeboxes?

Remember these jukeboxes?

It’s another week of music to pique your curiosity and raise your spirits. We have some interesting visiting artists (like Omaha Diner) and exciting resident artists providing all sorts of music for your listening (and dancing) pleasure. Have a good week.

 Jazz

Wednesday, October 22
images-2Charmin & Shapira @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm (No Cover) Sublime singing from Charmin Michelle  along with some gorgeous guitar from Joel Shapira makes for a lovely evening. They’ll be accompanied by Tom Lewis, bass, Paul Harper, sax; and Nathan Norman, drums.

Steven Hobert Piano Improvisation @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7:30 – 9:30pm (Tip Jar) Hobert is a sensitive and imaginative piano player, who can take off on flights of fancy and anchor a swinging tune as well.

Thursday, October 23
Elizabeth Shepard @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Thursday’s vocal night at Jazz Central features a visiting artist, Elizabeth Shepard, whose 2006 album, Start to Move, was voted one of the top jazz albums of the year on the highly influential Gilles Peterson Show on BBC. She’s a Canadian pianist/vocalist who has been called “a jazz virtuoso with a pop sensibility,” an apt description for her re-imagining of standards and her originals. Her most recent album, The Signal, received a positive write-up in the October issue of Jazz Times.

Pavel Jany @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7:30pm ($5 – $20 Suggested Donation) A rare solo performance from guitarist Jany, who is proficient, to say the least, in Latin rhythms as well as improvisation. With his knowledge of songs and rhythms, this is likely to be a musical trip around the world.

Friday, October 24
Jeremy Walker Quartet @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Walker is a talented pianist and prolific composer with a sensitive, lyrical bent to his compositions. Tonight he’s joined by Scott Fultz, sax; Jeff Brueske, bass; and Miguel Hurtado on drums.

Katie Gearty Trio @ Parma 8200, Bloomington. 7:30pm (No Cover) Ms Gearty is a highly versatile singer, more than capable of singing jazz, rock, pop, and soul.  She’s performed with Hookers & Blow, Mick Sterling, Bruce Henry, Arne Fogel, SteveClarke, and Zacc Harris, and starred in the musical “Lot of Living To Do” at The Southern Theater. Here’s a chance to hear her in an intimate setting. (There’s pretty darn good bar food available as well.)

Aaron Keith Stewart’s Homecoming @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 10pm – 11:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Former Twin Cities resident Stewart returns to town to share his marvelous vocals. Here’s an example.

Kevin Washington Quintet @ Dakota Late Night, Minneapolis. 11:30pm ($5) Drummer Washington is conversant in all kinds of rhythms, not to mention a panoply of musical styles, having played with Chico Freeman, James Carter, David “Fathead” Newman and a host of others. Expect some pretty swingin’ music tonight, as well as something Latin and something funky. Here they are about a year ago at the Dakota.

Saturday, October 25
Pippi Ardennia @ The Bedlam Lowertown, Saint Paul. 7pm – 10pm ($?) Pippi’s celebrating her birthday by singing “feel good” music from a repertoire that includes jazz, R&B, and even some blues. I’ll be spinning vinyl afterwards.

Steve Kenny Quartet @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 8pm ($5 – $20 Suggested Donation) – The Saturday Night Jazz series continues at Lowertown’s informal community center. Kenny plays the flumpet, a combination trumpet and flugelhorn. He’ll be accompanied by Chris Bates, bass; Brandon Wozniak, sax; and JT Bates on drums. Here’s Kenny in a slightly different configuration.

Sunday, October 26
Zacc Harris Trio @ Riverview Wine Bar, Minneapolis. 7:30pm – 9pm (Tip Jar) Hear the talented guitarist in his most basic element – a trio – with Matt Peterson, bass; and Pete Hennig, drums. Of course, there’s an extensive wine list and food available.

Monday, October 27
Omaha Diner @ the Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($35)  Here’s a group of stellar improvisers who play top 40 songs. In fact they guarantee that every song they play has hit #1 on Billboard’s pop chart. Now, given the lineup, with artists who have worked with folks ranging from Iggy Pop, Elton John, REM, and Linda Ronstadt, to Roswell Rudd, the Moscow Circus, and Sonny Sharrock, I’m not sure you’ll be able to recognize the songs, but I am sure you’ll be surprised. Charlie Hunter, seven-string electric guitar; Steve Bernstein, trumpets; Bobby Previte, drums; and Skerik, tenor sax. Here they are doing Love Train.

Doug Little @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Doug is a super talented reed player, with an affinity for Latin and Afro-Cuban rhythms. He’s a key player in a number of groups, but tonight he’ll be working with bass and drums.

Rhonda Laurie Trio @ Barbette, Minneapolis. 10pm (Tip Jar) Laurie is a NYC-born chanteuse, with a sophisticated approach to phrasing that’s well suited to acoustic swing music.

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, October 22
Unknown-4Creole Choir @ The Ordway, Saint Paul. 7:30pm ($20 – $45) The music of this Cuban group of ten vocalists draws on West African and Caribbean influences and is marked by passionate vocals and percussion. A must for any student of Cuban music and rhythms.

Ross Kleiner & the Thrill @ Lee’s Liquor Lounge, Minneapolis. 9pm. (Free) This is a band that does more than simply revive rockabilly and old R&B. They add their own accents to create music that’s uniquely their own. Show up early if you want to take advantage of Shannon’s free dance lessons. Then you can swing, Lindy, or what have you to this outfit.

Thursday, October 23
Siama Matuzungidi & Mikkel Beckmen @ The Dubliner Pub, Saint Paul. 5pm – 7pm (Tip Jar) Matuzungidi is a vocalist and guitarist from Republic of Congo/Zaire. Beckmen, host of this Thursday series, plays washboard and other percussion. They will be joined by Dallas Johnson on vocals and percussion to explore the intersections where American Traditional music and the Village music of Zaire coexist. While they are playing you can partake of the Dubliner’s array of pints, or not, as you prefer.

Rockin’ Pinecones @ The Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($?) A little Cajun. A little Zydeco. A bunch of Swamp Pop. It all adds up to dancing nirvana when the Pinecones take the stage.

Friday, October 24
Unknown-3Ecuador Manta @ The Parkway Theater, Minneapolis. 7pm ($15) Though they started in a small village in Ecuador 20 years ago, this group has gone beyond mere pan-pipe offerings (thought that distinctive instrument is still present) to incorporate a number of traditional and contemporary Latin rhythms in their music. Let’s hope there’s enough room for the dancers who will attend.

Tim Sparks & Marcus Wise @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 6:30 – 8:30pm (No cover) Sparks is one of the master finger-pickers we have in this town. Wise plays tablas with more versatility than you would expect from the instrument. Get a table close to the stage for dinner, so you can really appreciate the musicianship of these two men.

Saturday, October 25
5 Bands @ Barely Brothers Records, Saint Paul. Noon – 5pm. Well, the guys at BBR are bringing back live music to accompany and possibly inspire your record browsing and buying. Noon – Country Mike; 1pm – Matt Hannah; 2pm – King of the Tramps; 3pm – Ringout!; 4pm – Monica LaPlante. Plus, it’s free, at least if you don’t buy any records.

Paula Cole @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($35 – $45) Cole had a number of top ten hits in the 90s. She’s recorded six albums in 18 years, and sold about 3 million copies, winning a Grammy, and getting nominated for another seven along the way. Her songs have been covered by Herbie Hancock and Annie Lennox, among others.

Sunday, October 26
2014bluesallstarsposterLGMinnesota Blues All-Stars CD Release Party @ Wilebski’s, Saint Paul. 1pm – 6pm ($10 includes CD) the Minnesota Blues Society is hosting this event. The CD is the second volume of tunes by MN Blues Artists. This one features performances Lisa Wenger; the Walking Wounded; Jimi Primetime Smith; Hurricane Harold w/Eric McCawley; the Mooseknuckle Brothers; and others, many of whom will be playing.

Lonesome Shack @ The Bayport BBQ, Bayport. 8pm ($10) Chris Johnson continues his bent for presenting Deep Blues with Lonesome Shack  a trio with a raw sound. Their latest album is called Primitive, an apt description for their highly charged music. Ticket price generally includes their BBQ buffet, though you might want to check with them to make sure: 651-955-6337.

Sunday, Monday, October 27, 28
Mambo’s Combo @ Bunkers, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($7) Mambo’s Combo, Dr. Mambo’s Combo, or simply The Combo. Whatever the name, this group just keeps on playing (what is it – 20 years now?) and delivering a variety of dance-oriented old-school rock and R&B, with guests often sitting in for a tune or two. Here they are doing a Staple Singers classic.

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.


Picnics, Dancing, and Listening. Music: 7.23 – 7.29

July 23, 2014
Dining outdoors while listening to music is good for all ages.

Dining outdoors while listening to music is good for all ages.

Another week with plenty of opportunities to picnic while listening to bands. Take advantage of these opportunities while you can. Speaking of opportunities, though the closing of the Artist Quarter closed off performance opportunities for many area bands, artists are taking a do-it-yourself attitude and finding new venues or in some cases creating a whole series of jazz events. It’s another sign of the abundance of talent here in the Twin Cities. Get out, picnic to music or hang out in new, non-traditional venues. Wherever you listen, music lifts the spirit.

Jazz

Wednesday, July 23

Tyler Anderson Trio @ Joey Nova’s Pizza, Excelsior. (No Cover) Here’s a chance for those of you who live in the Western ‘burbs to have some jazz with your pizza. Tyler Anderson, sax; Matt Peterson, bass; Adrian Suarez, drums; playing a mix of jazz standards.

Unknown-3Charmin, Shapira & Friends, @ the Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm (No Cover) Charmin Michell’s voice is a thing of understated beauty. She’s can put an intense, yet slow burn on a torch song and in the next song turn around a spit out some fast lyrics with clarity. Joel Shapira’s nylon-stringed guitar provides just the right accompaniment, as does the various friends who step onto the stage.

Framework @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Original music from a trio that’s been playing together for 18 years or so: Chris Olson, guitar; Chris Bates, bass; and the ever-dapper Jay Epstein, drums.

Thursday, July 24

Jerry O’Hagan Orchestra @ Rice Park, Saint Paul. 6pm – 9pm (Free) The Ordway outdoor dance series ends with O’Hagan’s big band. Dance instructors from the Cinema Ballroom will be on hand to help you learn or brush up on your swing dance and foxtrot moves.

World Jazz Collegium @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7-9pm (Tip Jar) Dan Weston, bass/percussion; Pavel Jany, guitar; Josue Alfaro, percussion & vocals. I’ll admit I don’t know much about this particular group, but any group with Pavel Jany in it deserves our attention.

Sarah M. Greer & Blu-7 @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Sarah is a vocal improviser who sings with a number of groups, including Jay Young’s Lyric Factory. She will be paying tribute to Nina Simone in one set and singing standards in a second set. Blu-7 includes John Iden, bass; Jim Ouska, guitar; Doug Rohde, piano; and Dean White on drums.

Rebirth Brass Band @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm, 9pm ($25) Rebirth is celebrating 30 years of re-imagining R&B tunes for a funky brass band, though, of course, they’re completely familiar with the traditional oeuvre as well.  A couple of years ago they became the first brass band to win a Grammy. Not bad for a group that started out playing on the street corners of New Orleans.

Zacc Harris Group @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. 8pm ($10) This is the third of a ten-week long weekly series of original music by area groups. The fact that we have so many that can perform two sets of original music is a testament to our area’s talent. Tonight Zacc Harris, who has been gaining much praise for his guitar work, both locally and nationally,  brings his group to Studio Z. Besides harris, the group (at least on the album) includes the brothers Bates – Chris on bass, and JT on drums; as well as Brandon Wozniak on sax and Bryan Nichols on keyboards.

Friday, July 25

Laura Caviani Trio @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Caviani is a high quality pianist/composer and educator who can also sing when the moment moves her. We don’t get to see her trio often enough, so treat this as a relatively rare opportunity, especially given the intimate setting of Jazz Central.

Kronick Quartet @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 8pm (Tip Jar) Bassist/vocalist Richard Kronick leads this group, which plays tightly arranged jazz, including bop, swing, soul-jazz, and Kronick’s own compositions.

Saturday, July 26

Unknown-3Irv Williams’ CD Release Party @ The Museum of Russian Art, Minneapolis. 7pm – 9pm ($25, members, $30, non-members) Williams is about to turn 95 and still sounds wonderful. He’s celebrating by coming out with a new CD, Then was Then, Now is Now, in which he’s joined by Steve Blons, guitar, and Billy Peterson on bass. I’ve heard the title track, and all I can say is, what a gorgeous sound!  The museum is delight as well, with exhibits that are consistently high quality, much like William’s music.

Monday, July 28

Steve Kenny’s Group 47 Vinyl Release Party @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($8) This band features four college-age musicians whose talent belies their youth, and their leader/facilitator, veteran trumpeter Kenny. Will Kjeer, piano; Alex Burgess, drums; Thomas Strommen, sax; and Adam Tucker, bass; bring passion, talent, and compositions to the group. The new release, Straight to Vinyl, was recorded to tape old school style, with the musicians all facing each other and no overdubbing or “creative editing” of the result. And, just like the jazz records of the 60s and 70s, the album even has a potential “hit single” in iFlower, a hard-boppish tune that can inspire dancing.

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, July 23

Cafe Melange @ The Landmark Center, Saint Paul. Noon – 1pm. (Free) The husband and wife duo of Brian and Sheralyn Barnes perform a mixture of music: French Musettes, Gypsy Waltzes, Latin Tangos, Jazz standards… Well you get the idea. Bring a lunch or buy one in the cafe, and sit in the light-filled cortile of the Landmark Center for a thoroughly relaxing lunchtime experience.

Southside Desire @ The Como Zoo & Conservatory Courtyard, Saint Paul. 6pm – 8pm. (Free) Girl Group Harmonies meet Garage Rock energy with this sextet. It’s a sound that will resonate with the young, and those of us who, umm, remember the groups that inspired this sound. KFAI deejay Miguel Vargas will be spinning sounds before and between sets.

Rich Lewis Band @ Minnehaha Falls Bandstand, Minneapolis. 7pm – 8:30pm (Free) Rich Lewis was a founding member of the legendary Explodo Boys, and has been playing music for 35 years. The band plays a mix of classic rock n’ roll, soul music, New Orleans R&B, country, and standards, with some originals thrown in for good measure. Bring a picnic, or get there very early and stand in line for some food from the Sea Salt Eatery.

Thursday, July 24

Beatles Show @ Marketfest 3rd Street Stage, White Bear Lake. 6pm – 9pm (Free) Well it’s 50 years since the Beatles first performed on American Soil and The Silver Hammer Quartet is going celebrate with an evening of Beatle songs. Mike Ryan, vocals, guitar, harmonica; Andy Richards, vocals, bass; Mike Nilles, vocals, guitar; Doug Salmela drums, percussion, bass guitar. With special guest Matthew Richards on drums.

Rockin’ Pinecones @ Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 7:30 – 10pm ($5?) Get ready to spin, twirl, and two-step on the dance floor as the Pinecones bring another night of infectious Cajun and Zydeco music to the Eagles Club.

Friday, July 25

Black Diet @ The Lake Harriet Bandshell, Minneapolis. 7:30pm (Free) If you missed them at the Roots, Rock Festival, or Como Zoo in the past week, you’ve got a chance to catch them at the Bandshell. Their sound strikes me as being based in Memphis soul of the late 60s and 70s, with a bit more rock to the backing. At any rate, they are a great accompaniment for a summer picnic in the park.

Hookers $ Blow @ Famous Dave’s, Minneapolis. 9pm They claim to play your favorites from “a more permissive era.” They’re talking about the 70s and the great soul, funk, and dance music of that time.

Hipshaker 45 RPM Dance Party @ The Kitty Kat Club, Minneapolis. 9pm ($5) Still going strong, the Hipshaker DJs play rare soul and funk 45s for your dancing pleasure.

Saturday, July 26

Lowertown Blues Festival @ Mears Park, Saint Paul. 3pm – 10pm (Free) The wonderful Mears Park provides a great setting for a festival, and this time it’s the blues. We have hard rockin’ Sena Ehrhardt at 3pm; veterans Lamont Cranston at 4:30pm; Hamilton Loomis at 6:30pm; newly crowned Queen of Chicago Blues Shemekia Copeland rounding out the day at 8:30pm.

Davina & the Vagabonds and More @ Christ the King Lutheran Church Music Festival, 8600 Fremont Ave So, Bloomington. 4pm – 9pm (Free) This family-friendly music festival features three outstanding performers from the area. Starting at 4pm is a group led by pianist Will Kjeer, just out of high school and already leading his own groups and playing with others such as Steve Kenny’s Group 47. At 5:30, it’s Salsa Del Soul, with their hot Latin sounds that are sure to bring out dancers. Davina & the Vagabonds take the stage at 7:30, showcasing Davina’s high energy modern interpretations of classic blues and jazz. Bring a blanket or lawn chair. Food is available from Famous Dave’s, and Fat Lorenzo’s, with ice cream from Culver’s.

Saturday, Sunday, July 26, 27

Palmfest @ Palmer’s Bar, Minneapolis. 1pm – 1am Sat, 2pm – 1am Sun (Free) Recently listed as one of the best bars in the United States by Esquire, Palmer’s annual weekend festival celebrates the music, drinks, and general downscale bonhomie of the West Bank institution. Saturday’s line-up includes: Corpse Reviver, Spider John Koerner, Poverty Hash, and others, with Cadillac Kolstad closing out the night. Sunday look for The Farmhouse Band, McNasty Brass Band, Southside Desire, and more.

Sunday, July 27

Hula Peppers @ Boyd Park, Saint Paul. 3pm – 5pm (Free) Boyd Park is just a couple of blocks east of the Saint Paul Cathedral, on Selby Avenue. The Peppers will delight with their mix of classic tunes from the 20s and 30s, and the occasional Hawaiian tune, just cause they can. Dan “Daddy Squeeze” Newton, accordion, Gary Powell, Hawaiian guitar; Dave Furniss, resonator guitar; and Corey Mohan, ukuleles and musical saw. Vocalist Lauren Asheim joins in on some tunes. Her operatic training belies her 20s-style delivery (think Betty Boop), which perfectly fits the songs.

Monday, July 28

Other Country Ensemble @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7:30pm – 9:30pm (Tip Jar) Here in the U.S.A., we have our own brand of country music. This ensemble, however, plays music from other countries, infusing various music from around the world with some improvisatory jazz. It’s quite the group, with Mark Black and Stephen Spaise on percussion; Steve Clarke, reeds; Greg Herriges and Scott Nieman, bouzoukis; Louis “Rundio” Sinclair, chapman stick; David Stenshoel, violin, sax; and Laurie Knutson, flutes, clarinet, and sax.

Marty Stuart & His Fabulous Superlatives @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($35 – $42) Stuart toured with Lester Flatt as a teenager in the 70s, followed that with six years playing with Johnny Cash, and then became a Grammy winning solo artist in the 90s, garnering five to date. He is the kind of country artist that can appeal to young hipsters, since he  loves and plays the roots of the genre: bluegrass, gospel, and especially honky-tonkin’ rockin’ hillbilly music. When he and his fleet-fingered guitarist Kenny Vaughn get to twin-playing, other guitarists look on in complete delight. Check them out in this video.

Tuesday, July 29

Secret Sisters, with Jillian Rae @ The Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis. 7pm ($15) The Secret Sisters are really sisters, a fact which is not so secret. They were discovered in 2010 and released their second album, Put Your Needle Down, in April. They sing traditional country music, and originals. Resident fiddler Jillian Rae opens. The title song & video from her album Heartbeat perfectly express the rush of infatuation and the fantasies it inspires.

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.


Out and About. Music: 7.16 – 7.22

July 16, 2014
Aquatennial Fireworks

Aquatennial Fireworks

Well, the All–Star Game is over, and though temps haven’t been especially high, we do have a semblance of summer. We also have a number of outdoor events taking place throughout the region. Though I’ve included a couple, there will be events at the Aquatennial, and music festivals at the Midtown Global Market, Prior Lake, Chippewa Valley WI, and Canterbury Park, as well as individual performances at area parks and pavilions.

Larry

Jazz…

Wednesday, July 16

Sophia Shorai @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm (No Cover) With a voice that is somewhere between playful, seductive, and charming, Sophia can go from originals to the Great American Songbook, to pop songs with ease.

Thursday, July 17

Paula Lammers & Reeves Carey @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Paula and Reeves first sang together on the Minnesota Zephyr some years back, and have performed as a duo from time to time since then. They’ll be joined by Marly Louise Knutson, Chris Bates, and Jay Epstein to perform classic duets from the Great American Songbook.

Courageous Endeavors @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. 8pm ($10) Another one of the fine young groups that we have here in the Twin Cities: Joe Strachan, piano; Nelson Deveraux, sax; Miguel Hurtado, drums. Brian Courage, bass. Here’s a video of theirs.

Milo Fine @ Khyber Pass Cafe, Saint Paul. 9pm ($5) Part of the Khyber Pass’ weekly series of freely improvised music. Milo Fine: drum set, electronics; E flat clarinet; Philip Mann; Saxes, bass clarinet, drum set; Ryan Reber, soprano sax, cello; Rick Ness, drum set, alto sax, B flat clarinet, multi-toned tenor bugle; and Kevin Cosgrove, electric shelf and wave drum.

Friday, July 18

Zacc Harris’ Tribute to Wes Montgomery @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($10 Suggested donation) Though an imaginative guitarist in his own right, Zacc Harris is particularly effective at evoking the chordal playing of Wes Montgomery. Harris is also an entrepreneurial musician who is always finding a new way  to present himself and his colleagues, who tonight include Richard D. Johnson, keys; Chris Bates, bass; & Adrian Suarez on drums.

Saturday, July 19

Unknown-2Jay Young & the Lyric Factory’s Jazz Tribute to Stevie Wonder & Michael Jackson @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm – 10pm ($10- Suggested Donation) Jay gets out his piccolo bass and is joined by son Ian Young, bass; John Penny, guitars; Kevin Washington, drums, and Scott Fultz on sax. They’ll be joined by a trio of vocalists: Rachel Holder-Hennig, Judi Donaghy Vinar, and Sarah Greer to explore the jazz side of two of the biggest pop stars of the 20th Century.

Monday, July 21

Bryan Nichols Quintet @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($8) Though these Jazz Implosion gigs can start and end late, it’s worth it to hear Nichols’ original creations. The imaginative pianist will be joined by James Buckley, bass; Brandon Wozniak, sax; Mike Lewis, sax; and JT Bates on drums.

Tuesday, July 22

Explosion Big Band @ The Minnesota History Center, Saint Paul. 6:30 – 8:30pm (Free) Scott Agster on Trombone, and Doug Haining on sax lead this 17-piece big band in a swinging set of tunes just right for dancing. Lessons at 6:30.

Twin Cities Latin Jazz Orchestra @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Anyone who saw them at the Twin Cities Jazz Festival last month knows what a powerhouse this band has become. Join them for an open rehearsal to hear great music and also get an insight into the creative process for a large band.

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, July 16

Unknown-3Michael Monroe @ Landmark Center, Saint Paul. Noon-1pm (Free) It’s another lunchtime concert at the Landmark Center. Monroe is a singer/songwriter from Grand Marais who has been performing for forty years. He’s a self-taught musician who plays guitar, ukelele and glass and bamboo flutes.

Malamanya @ Como Conservatory, Saint Paul. 6pm – 9pm (Free) Malamanya is an acoustic-driven group that celebrates the traditional rhythms and melodies of Cuban son, salsa, samba, as well as the local music of Central and Latin America. They have garnered a large and enthusiastic fan base. BTW, I’ll be spinning some classic salsa and Cuban tunes before and between their sets, beginning about 5:30pm. Here they are doing an original.

Kent Burnside on KFAI and @ the 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (KFAI – 90.3 & 106.7FM), 7pm (331 Club, Tip Jar) Burnside is the grandson of the late RL Burnside, who helped bring the trance-blues music of the Mississippi Hill Country to the attention of the rest of us. Kenthas been in town a number of times and always delivers a blistering set of originals and songs from his grandfather and uncle, Duwayne Burnside.

Thursday, July 17

Paul Metsa & Willie Walker @Shaw’s NE, Minneapolis. 5pm – 7:30pm (No Cover) Willie Walker may have the sweetest soul voice in the nation – certainly the sweetest soul voice in town. He and Metsa on guitar provide acoustic versions of many of your favorite classic soul songs. Plus, Shaw’s has rib and drink specials.

Salsa Del Soul @ Rice Park, Saint Paul. 6pm – 9pm (free) What a way to spend a pleasant summer evening: salsa dancing in Rice Park. If you don’t know how, you can come early and get a dance lesson, or you can just freestyle.

Friday, July 18

 

100 Years of Cameras & Photography @ MPLS Photo Center, 2400 North Second Street, Minneapolis. 6:30pm – 9:30pm (Free) This is the opening reception for what promises to be a cool exhibit. I’ll be spinning almost 100 years of music, from early jazz to rock n’ roll, soul, disco, Daft Punk, and Pharrell Williams.

images-2Curtiss A & His Blues Band, w/Lone Wolf @ Harriet Brewing Tap Room, Minneapolis. 7pm ($5 or RRDB Ticket)  It’s a Pre-Party for tomorrow’s big festival. Lone Wolf, a one-man-band, opens at 7pm, playing slide banjo, bass drum, and harmonica in a punkish, bluefish, folkish vein. Curtiss A, of course, is the Dean of Scream, a devotee of Little Richard, John Lennon, Bo Diddley, and assorted early rockers, who sings at about 12 out of 10 on every amp he uses. He also displays a wicked, sometimes rambling, stream-of-concious patter between songs.

Funk on First @ First Avenue, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10, 18+) It’s a funk festival with four young bands, each of which has a different approach: New Sound Underground, Black Market Brass, Pho, and Grolar Bears, plus, just to add to the fun, HIpshaker & Worldwide Discotheque deejays. Here’s some music from New Sound Underground.

Saturday, July 19 

Roots, Rock, & Deep Blues Festival @ Lake & Minnehaha, Minneapolis. No7 – 11pm (Fri), 11am – 10pm (Sat) ($20) This 4th Annual Festival gets bigger each year as Patrick’s Cabaret, Harriet Brewing, The HUB Bike Co-Op, and the Mosaic Cafe join forces to present over 30 bands on five stages, including bands from Iowa, Texas, and Mississippi. Some of the performers include Sonny Knight & the Lakers; Crankshaft & the Gear Grinders; Kent Burnside, Joe & Vicki Price, Spider John Koerner; Black Diet; Black Market Brass; Nikki & the RueMates; the Dead Pigeons; Molly Maher, and more. After-party at The Eagles Club from 10pm to closing. Whew!

Saturday, July 19

Maurice Jacox @ The Normandy Inn, Minneapolis. 7pm (No Cover) An intimate singer and an intimate band in an intimate setting, though Jacox can sing chill-inducing high notes when he’s got a mind to. It’s a small bar, so call and make reservations if you want to be near the music.

Steve Clarke & the Working Stiffs @ Mendoberri Cafe & Wine Bar, Mendota Heights. 7:30 – 10pm (No Cover) Steve’s swinging sax can boost at R&B song or something much jazzier. At any rate, this relatively small venue with a good wine selection is a fun place to hear him and his mates play.

Monday, Tuesday, July 21, 22

Hot Tuna @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($45), 9pm ($35) Jorma Kaukonen and Jack Casady met as youngsters while growing up in Washington D.C. Years later they would join forces in Jefferson Airplane, for which they were both inducted into the rock n’ roll Hall of Fame. While in the Airplane, they would play the blues and other Americana on the side, and eventually recorded an album. It was so well received, they ended up recording a couple of dozen albums. Fifty years after their first meeting, they are still playing. Here’s a video from a few weeks ago.

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, Blues, Country, Folk. Music: 5.28 – 6.3

May 28, 2014
A little humor from the Zits comic strip

A little humor from the Zits comic strip

We don’t have many visiting artists this week, but the few that are visiting are outstanding, from jazz pianist Bill Charlap to music insider Peter Asher. A passing glance at the resident artists appearing around town will show that we have more than enough high quality talent of our own. However, we have to remember to support our resident artists by attending their shows. As we encounter life’s challenges, we all need to refresh, and music certainly lifts the spirit. Have a good week.

Jazz

Wednesday, May 28

Wolverines Trio w/Maud Hixson @ Hell’s Kitchen, Minneapolis. 6pm – 9pm The ever-tasteful Wolverines, together with Ms Hixson’s clear voice and impeccable diction will win out over the Kitchen’s sometimes noisy environment. It always helps to sit close to the stage.

Dean Magraw & Praire Rhythm Section@ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($7)  With Gary Raynor, bass; and Peter Johnson, drums. Dean Magraw is arguably the most versatile guitarist in town, able to go from psychedelia to John Coltrane to Irish jigs and Indian ragas all in the course of a couple of songs. No wonder he’s been a favorite of Mr. Keillor. Tonight he has a couple of other Prairie Home regulars backing him up.

Graydon Peterson Quartet @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Peterson is a first-call bassist in town, and has been a sideman in a variety of configurations, from trios to big bands. He’s recently been writing his own music, and has gathered Adam Mecler, trumpet; Vinnie Rose, guitar; and Adrian Suarez on drums to give voice to his melodies.

Thursday, May 29

Bill Charlap Trio @ the Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($25, $30), 9pm ($20, $25) W/Peter Washington, bass; Kenny Washington, drums. Pianist Charlap is known for his interpretations of The Great American Songbook, and though he’s imaginative, he also gets to the essence of a song. His trio with the non-related Washington’s is rock solid.

 

Rhonda Laurie @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7:30pm – 9:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) Thursday Night is Vocal Night at Jazz Central, and Ms Laurie is a prime example of the wealth of vocal talent in town. She can swing gypsy jazz, straight ahead, and modern material with equal ease.

Friday, May 30

Eric Kamau Gravatt @ Jazz Central, MInneapolis. 7:30pm ($10 Suggested Donation) If you’ve been paying attention to Twin Cities Jazz for a few years, you probably know of Gravatt’s stints with Weather Report and McCoy Tyner, among others. Tonight he’s joined by Brandon Wozniak, sax; Charles Lincoln, bass; and Zacc Harris, guitar.

Davu Seru and Song Click @ The Black Dog Coffee and Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 8pm (Tip Jar) w/Donald Washington, sax; Nathan Hanson, sax; Brian Courage, bass; Marc Anderson, percussion. A great gathering of musicians who are master improvisers, whether they’re working with variations on written pieces or freely improvising.

Saturday, May 31

Benny Weinbeck Trio @ Parma 8200, Bloomington. 7:30pm – 10:30pm (No Cover) Weinbeck, piano; Gordy Johnson, bass; and Phil Hey, drums, have been delivering weekly doses of high quality music for the d’Amico Brothers for years, first at the Chambers Hotel, and now at this Italian restaurant in the SW quadrant of 494 & 100. They appear in the restaurant’s cocktail lounge, where you are still free to order dinner or one of the smaller plates from the bar menu.

Sunday, June 1

Zacc Harris Trio @ The Riverview Wine Bar, Minneapolis. 7:30pm – 9pm (Tip Jar) Zacc, Matt Peterson, and Peter Hennig have been playing Sunday Nights at the Riverview for quite a while now. All three are such great players that they continually surprise, and have yet to fall into a rut.

Monday, June 2

Tom Rainey & Ingrid Laubrock @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 9:30pm ($10) Germany-born Ingrid Laubrock now lives in Brooklyn, where she composes and plays soprano and tenor sax. She and drummer Tom Rainey have recorded an album  of ten improvisations entitled And Other Desert Towns. They’ve played together in various bands since 2009, when Laubrock arrived in Brooklyn, yet this is their first duo record. Expect closely communicated, freely improvised music. Here they are in a trio format:

 

Tuesday, June 3

Dean Magraw & Eric Kamau Gravatt @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7pm (Tip Jar) Well, if you missed Dean at the Dakota and Eric at Jazz Central, you now have a chance to see them both playing off each other, and having a good time.

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, May 28

Unknown-1Jimmi & the Band of Souls @ Famous Dave’s, Minneapolis. 6pm – 9pm ($5?) Jimmi & the band are an energetic quartet that plays blues that stick in your head. They’re going to the 2015 International Blues Challenge in Memphis, representing Minnesota. This evening they’re celebrating the release of a new album, Live From the Park Theater, by bringing in a couple of special guests for this early evening show.

Thursday, May 29

New Riverside Ramblers @ The Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($5?) Here in Minnesota you’d be hard pressed to find a Cajun group with a history as long as the Ramblers. They’ve been together for twenty years or so, and have studied or performed with many of the genre’s veterans. So get out your dancing shoes and twirl, spin, and dip to your heart’s content.

Friday, May 30

Falderals CD Release @ The Aster Cafe, Minnepolis. 9pm ($10) This husband and wife team of Andrew and Rebecca Andestic met in Armenia, where they were both serving in the Peace Corps. Since then they’ve busked on the streets of Chicago, and have performed regularly around the Twin Cities. They write deeply felt, melodic folk songs (with a touch of folk-rock) that resonate with all ages. The CD is called Witness, and includes Shane Akers, dobro; Jim McGuinn, lapsteel & keys; and Derek McCullum on ukelele; all of whom will be special guests tonight.

Pistol Whippin’ Party Penguins CD Release @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 11pm ($8) A five piece string band that updates that traditional sound with original songs as well as creative arrangements of traditional bluegrass tunes, and untraditional tunes from folk, rock, and blues. They’re celebrating the release of their third studio album, Way Back Home.  Opening is The Last Revel, a passionate trio using three-part folk harmonies supported by an attitude that borrows freely from rock n’ roll rebels.

Saturday, May 31

Moe’s Folk & Blues Festival @ Moe’s, 2400 Highway 10, Moundsview. 3pm – Midnight (No Cover) Okay, you’ve got Paul Mayasich, Randy Webb & Dave Baab, Gene LaFond, Spider John Koerner, Paul Metsa & Sonny Earl, and inside, The Scottie Miller Trio to round out the evening. Who knew the West Bank has moved up to Mounds View?

Hurricane Harold’s All Star Blues Revue @ Neumann’s, North Saint Paul. 9pm (Tip Jar) Well the All Stars vary according to whoever is in town, but don’t worry, Harold’s been at this so long he can always find simpatico players.

Sunday, June 1

Sherwin Linton @ Famous Dave’s, MInneapolis. 10am – 2pm (No cover) How ‘bout some country music to go with those biscuits, gravy, waffles and rib tips? Linton has been performing for some 58 years now, bringing an unmatched authenticity to classic country and rockabilly. Check out his version of Tennessee Stud:

Samantha Harlow @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul., 4pm – 6pm (Tip Jar) This Saint Paul native spent a decade pouring drinks in a Nashville honky tonk, and countless nights touring and singing as a solo act. All that work has helped Harlow  learn how to write classic country tunes.

Jimages-2oe Ely @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($27, $35) Rockin’ honky tonk from Texas, by a guy who has played with Springsteen, Uncle Tupelo, The Chieftains, Lyle Lovett, and John Hiatt. Early on, he and his band toured with The Clash, and he even supplied background vocals on Should I Stay or Should I Go. Plus, he wrote the music for The Horse Whisperer. He and guitar slinger Jeff Plankenhorn will be performing mostly acoustic versions of Ely’s songs.

Tuesday, Wednesday, June 3,4

Peter has every reason to smile.

Peter has every reason to smile.

Peter Asher @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($45) Asher is the ultimate music industry insider, from the days his sister was dating Paul McCartney, to his own singing career with Peter & Gordon, to producing records for a wide variety of artists (two Grammys), as well as musicals, PBS features, and various award shows. He’ll share his story, sing a few songs, and generally be one of the most entertaining dinner guests you’ll ever run across.

 

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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