This week's calendar of live jazz and creative music in St. Louis features a pioneering jazz-fusion keyboardist; a quick-thinking musical impressionist who first gained fame online; one of the top female vocalists in jazz taking on some soul and blues classics; and more. Let's go to the highlights...Wednesday, November 14
Keyboardist Jeff Lorber (pictured, top left)
will perform for the first of five nights at Jazz St. Louis.
Lorber, who last played here in February 2015 at the Bistro, this time is supporting a new release, Impact
, that came out in August on Shanachie Records.
With a band that includes bassist Jimmy Haslip, drummer Gary Novak, guitarist Paul Jackson Jr., and saxophonists Andy Snitzer and Dave Mann, Impact
features 10 new original compositions by Lorber, some of which no doubt will get played this weekend. (You can listen to all the tracks from Impact here
Also on Wednesday, Jazz St. Louis' "Whitaker Jazz Speaks" series presents a talk by NPR jazz critic Kevin Whitehead
at St. Louis County Library's Grant's View Branch
. Whitehead will discuss his forthcoming book Play the Way You Feel
, which examines how fiction and biographical films from 1927 to 2016 told stories about jazz music and musicians. Thursday, November 15
Guitarist Dave Black
leads his latest project, In Touch, in a free concert for the Jazz at Holmes
series at Washington University. In addition to Black, the group features Kyle Honeycutt on drums, Ben Wheeler on bass, the St. Louis Symphony's Asako Kuboki on violin, and Paul DeMarinis on saxophones and clarinets.
Also on Thursday, Nashville-based singer/songwriter Kristen Cothron
performs at The Wolf
, and trumpeter Danny Campbell
leads a trio at The Dark Room
.Friday, November 16
Singer Christina Bianco
, who's gotten tens of millions of views on YouTube for her impressions of various celebrity vocalists, will perform her show "Diva Moments" for the first of two nights at the Gaslight Theater. Saturday, November 17
Singer Dee Dee Bridgewater
brings her tribute to Memphis blues and soul to the Sheldon Concert Hall.
Backed by a group dubbed The Memphis Soulphony, Bridgewater has been touring with a show based on her 2017 album Memphis...Yes I'm Ready,
which features her interpretations of (mostly) well-known songs associated with her hometown.
You can find out more about the project and see some videos of her performing the Memphis show in this post from last Saturday
. Also, the Sheldon is offering a $10 discount for online purchases of tickets to the concert, which can be accessed by going here
and using the promo code MEMPHIS10.
Elsewhere around town, Jeanette Harris
who's billed as the "scintillating saxtress of smooth jazz," will play two shows at .ZACK
.Sunday, November 18
The St. Louis Jazz Club
presents pianist Pat Joyce
and clarinetist Scott Alberici
at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel St. Louis - Westport;
bassist and singer Janet Evra
celebrates the release of her debut album with a performance at .ZACK; and singer Ken Haller
wraps up the Gaslight Cabaret Festival
's fall series with one last performance of his show "Happy Haller Days!" at the Gaslight Theater.Monday, November 19
Faculty members in the Webster University Jazz Collective
will perform at Winifred Moore Auditorium
on the Webster campus.
For more jazz-related events in and around St. Louis, please visit the St. Louis Jazz Notes Calendar
, which can be found on the left sidebar of the site or by clicking here
. You also can keep up with all the latest news by following St. Louis Jazz Notes on Twitter at http://twitter.com/StLJazzNotes
or clicking the "Like" icon on the StLJN Facebook page
.(If you have calendar items, band schedule information, news tips, links, or anything else you think may be of interest to StLJN's readers, please email the information to stljazznotes (at) yahoo (dot) com. If you have photos, MP3s or other digital files, please send links, not attachments.)
Pianist Ahmad Jamal
will be the featured performer for the Sheldon Concert Hall and Art Galleries' annual benefit gala at 8:30 p.m., Saturday, March 30 at The Sheldon
Now 88 years old, Jamal (pictured)
plays only a select handful of concert dates a year, so his performance here should be especially anticipated by local jazz fans.
He's been a fixture on the music scene since the late 1950s, winning just about every honor that can be given to a jazz musician, including being named an NEA Jazz Master back in 1994 and getting a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2017. Jamal's most recent recording is Marseille
, released in 2017, and he last appeared in St. Louis in November 2011 at the Touhill Performing Arts Center.
Patron tickets for the gala can be purchased now by calling the Sheldon at 314-533-9900. Prices start at $500 per person, and include pre-concert cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, dinner, preferred concert seating, complimentary valet parking, and a tax deduction.
Concert-only tickets will be $50 for orchestra seats, $45 front balcony, $40 rear balcony, and will go on sale at 10:00 a.m. Friday, February 15 via MetroTix
and the Sheldon box office. Proceeds from the event benefit The Sheldon's concerts, gallery exhibitions and educational programs.
This week, StLJN's video spotlight shines on singer Dee Dee Bridgewater
, who will be in St. Louis to perform next Saturday, November 17 at the Sheldon Concert Hall
Long known as one of the top female jazz singers of her generation, Bridgewater went in a different musical direction for her most recent album, Memphis... Yes, I'm Ready
, which came out last year and features her takes on famous soul and blues tunes associated with her hometown.
On the album and on tour, she's accompanied by a eight-piece band dubbed the Memphis Soulphony, configured like a vintage show band with rhythm section, horns, and background singers. Though Bridgewater's interpretations of the material mostly are faithful to the spirit of the originals, she and the band add some of their own touches to both update and personalize the material.
You can see and hear what that's like starting with the first clip up above, which features Bridgewater and the Soulphony performing two tunes, "Giving Up" and "Going Down Slow," recorded June 22, 2018 at the Royal Theatre in Victoria, BC, Canada.
After the jump, you can see Bridgewater's recent appearance on NPR's "Tiny Desk Concert," recorded April 2, 2018 at NPR studios in Washington, DC. The three-song set includes "Hound Dog," "Why (Am I Treated So Bad)?" and "B.A.B.Y.".
Next, you can check out Bridgewater and company doing an extended version of "The Thrill Is Gone," as recorded in March of this year by an audience member at the Blue Note Hawaii.
If those samples have whetted your appetite for more, you then can check out two full sets of Bridgewater's Memphis show, as performed in May 2018 at Ronnie Scott's in London, and an earlier iteration of the show from August 2017 at the Montclair Jazz Festival in New Jersey.
The final video is a short biography of Bridgewater, produced by the National Endowment for the Arts last year when she was named an NEA Jazz Master.
For more about Dee Dee Bridgewater and her tribute to Memphis music, read her interviews from last year with DownBeat
and with Jazz Times
You can see the rest of today's videos after the jump...