Picks of the Week: June 28 – July 4

By Don Heckman

Los Angeles

- June 28. (Tues.)  Satoko Fujii.  The envelope stretching music of pianist Fujii, a brilliant composer/improviser will be enhanced by the presence of the similarly adventurous trumpeter (and her husband) Natsuki TamuraThe Blue Whale.    (213) 620-0908.

Bob Sheppard

- June 29. (Wed.)  Bob Sheppard’s East West Band. Saxophonist-flutist Sheppard can always be counted on for a provocative evening of world class jazz.  This time out, he juxtaposes East Coast and West Coast, with Larry Koonse (L.A.), guitar. Anthony Pinciotti (N.Y.) drums, Ed Howard (N.Y.), bass.  Vitello’s.    (818) 769-0905.

- June 29. (Wed.)  Rene Marie.  She got a late start as a jazz singer, but Marie hasn’t wasted any time since she made her professional debut after she turned 40.  She’ll celebrate the release of her fascinating new CD, Voice of My Beautiful Country. Catalina Bar & Grill.  (323) 466-2210.

- June 30. (Thurs.)  Elliot Caine Quartet.  Music on the Main Jazz Series.   Trumpeter/eye doctor Caine and his players perform bebop driven jazz in what is surely one of the summer’s most appealing musical settings.  Descanso Gardens .  (818) 949-4200.

- June 30. (Thurs.)  Janis Mann Quartet. Singer Mann’s rich-toned voice and intimate way with a song affirm her status as one of the Southland’s finest jazz vocal artists. Charlie O’s.   (818) 994-3058.

Rondi Charleston

- June 30. (Thurs.) Rondi Charleston. A story teller at heart, Charleston applies her warm singing style to an exploration of the inner essence of a song.  Catalina Bar & Grill.  (323) 466-2210.

- July 1. (Fri.)  Brian Scanlon Quartet.  Versatile saxophonist Scanlon’s resume reaches from solid jazz with Dizzy Gillespie to a stint with the NBC Orchestra and a busy schedule as a studio musician.  In his spare time he teaches jazz at Pepperdine.  But on this night, he’ll be doing it all his own way, backed by pianist Theo Saunders, bassist Pat Senatore and drummer Kendall KayVibrato Grill Jazz…etc.  (310) 474-9400.

Ballet Folclorico do Brasil

- July 2. (Sat.)  Ballet Folclorico do Brasil. Expect an evening of colorful, high energy, terpsichorean delights when the dancers, capoeiristas and musicians of the Folclorico take the stage with their far-reaching expressions of the rich pleasures of Brazilian culture. Ford Amphitheatre.    (323) 461-3673.

- July 2 – 4. ( Sat. – Mon.)  July 4th Spectacular with Hall & Oates. The pop hit-making duo of Daryl Hall and John Oates showcase an evening of their classics with Thomas Wilkins and the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra.  And don’t forget the always sensational July 4th fireworks.  The Hollywood Bowl. (323) 850-2000.  

San Francisco

- July 1 – 3. (Fri. – Sun.)  James Cotton’s Superharp Band.  The Fourth of July Weekend Blues Festival.  Blues legend Cotton has shared stages with everyone from the Rolling Stones and Janis Joplin to  B.B. King and Sam & Dave.  On this blues driven appearance, he’ll be trading licks with harpist Momo Buford and guitarist Hubert SumlinYoshi’s Oakland.    (510) 238-9200.

- July 1 – 3. (Fri. – Sun.)  Ottmar Liebert & Luna Negra.  Multiple Grammy Award-nominated guitarist Liebert has been defining the nouveau flamenco style since the ‘90s.  Yoshi’s San Francisco.     (415) 655-5600.

Seattle

Milton Nascimento

- June 28 & 29. (Tues. & Wed.)  Milton Nascimento.  He’s one of the great Brazilian artists of song – as a performer and a writer.  Approaching 69, he is still a vibrant performer, his music reaching out to bring Brazilian roots and American jazz and rock into a warm embrace.  Jazz Alley.    (206) 441-9729.

Chicago

- June 30 – July 3. (Thurs. – Sun.)  The Larry Coryell Trio.  Guitarist Coryell has been crossing over from rock to blues to jazz and beyond since the ‘60s.  Although he doesn’t often receive the credit he deserves, his impact on the fusion of the post bop era was vital.  Jazz Showcase.   (312) 360-0234.

New York

- June 28 – July 3. (Tues. – Sun.)  Django Reinhardt Festival, starring the Young Lions of Gypsy Jazz.  Featuring Samson Schmitt, guitar, Ludovic Beier, accordion, Pierre Blanchard, violin, Andreas Oberg, guitar, Brian Torff, bass.  With special guests Anat Cohen, James Carter, Joel Frahm, Edmar Castaneda, Claudio Roditi. Birdland.    (212) 581-3080.

Jon Hendricks

Annie Ross

- June 28 & 29. (Tues. & Wed.) Jon Hendricks and Annie Ross.  Don’t miss this one.  Two of the great principals of the legendary Lambert, Hendricks & Ross trio get together for a stirring reunion.  The presence of the lively, teen-age jazz singer Nikki Yanofsky on Tuesday will undoubtedly spice things up even more.  The Blue Note.   (212) 475-8592.

London

July 4 & 5. (Mon. & Tues.)  The Gary Burton Quartet.  Vibist Burton’s world class ensemble features his frequent musical companion, rising young guitarist Julian Lage, drummer Antonio Sanchez and bassist Jorge RoederRonnie Scott’s.    020 7439 0747.

Paris

Lee Ritenour

- July 30 (Wed.)  Lee Ritenour and Friends.  Guitarist Ritenour continues his European tour with a stop in France, displaying the far-ranging versatility and imagination that have made him one of the prime contemporary jazz practitioners of his art.  New Morning.    01 45 23 51 41.

Tokyo

- June 3 – 6. (Sun. – Wed.)  Sadao Watanabe.  Alto saxophonist Watanabe is one of Japan’s finest gifts to jazz.  Although his style is rooted in the complexities of bebop, he enhances it with a rich improvisational imagination of his own.  Blue Note Tokyo.   03-5485-0088.

Bob Sheppard and Annie Ross photos by Tony Gieske.

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