Picks of the Week: Jan 5 – 10

Don Heckman

Los Angeles

– Jan. 6. (Wed.) John Proulx Trio. Singer/pianist Proulx will no doubt blend his swinging instrumental work with vocal selections from his recent tribute to Chet Baker, Baker’s Dozen. With Kendall Kay, drums and Kevin Axt, bass. Charlie O’s. (818) 989-3110.

Kathleen Grace

– Jan. 7. (Thurs.) The Gil Evans Band led by Miles Evans. Gil Evan’s son, trumpeter Miles, checks out his father’s music with an adventurous band featuring Oz Noy, Darryl Jones, Larry Goldings. Catalina Bar & Grill (323) 466-2210.

– Jan. 7. (Thurs.) Kathleen Grace. The uniquely appealing sound and imaginative vocalizing and songwriting of Grace isn’t heard often enough. Here’s a chance to sample it up close. Upstairs at Vitellos. (818) 769-0905.

– Jan. 8. (Fri.) Luther Hughes’ Cannonball/Coltrane Project. Bassist Hughes and his players relive some of the music from one of the classic jazz albums: Cannonball & Coltrane. Steamers. (714) 871-8800.

– Jan. 8. (Fri.) Cirque de Soleil: “Kooza.” In a return to their origins, the gifted artists of the company explore two circus traditions: acrobatic performance and the art of clowning, presented in a colorful environment emphasizing bold, slapstick humor. Opens for a limited engagement. Orange County Great Park. (949) 724-6247.

– Jan. 9. (Sat.) Mike Melvoin Trio (w. Tony Dumas, bass and Ralph Penland, drums). One of the Southland’s most musically compelling piano trios appears with an equally engaging pair of guest vocalists Bill Henderson and Teresa Russell. Spazio. (818) 728-8400.

– Jan. 9. (Sat.) Sam Most. One of the inventors of the jazz flute, Most also plays tenor saxophone with subtle intensity. He performs with bassist Pat Senatore and pianist John Campbell. Vibrato Grill Jazz…etc. (310) 474-9400.

Dean Torrance

– Jan. 9. (Sat.) “Surf’s Up.” A celebration of ’60s surf rock. With Dean Torrance and the Surf City All Star Band performing hits by Jan & Dean; The Surfaris performing their hit, “Wipe Out”; and Papa Doo Run Run (with former members of the Beach Boys) doing “Little Duece Coupe,” “Good Vibrations” and more. Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza. (805) 449-2787.

– Jan. 10. (Sun.) John Daversa Progressive Big Band (and more) at the California Jazz Foundation’s New Year’s Membership Party. Trumpeter Daversa brings his band – an impressive collection of Southland players — to a fund-raiser for the C.J.F.  Other events include two All-Star Jams, including an impressive array of L.A.’s finest jazz artists, and a performance by Chase Morrin’s Latin Connection, an award-winning student group.  Upstairs at Vitellos. (818) 769-0905.

– Jan. 10. (Sun.) The Dale Fielder/Adam Schroeder Quintet. “A Tribute to Jack Nimitz.” Baritone saxophonists Fielder and Schoeder celebrate the versatile musical career of the late Jack Nimitz. The Northridge United Methodist Church Jazz Vespers Series. 5 –6 p.m. (818) 886-1555

Jan. 10. \(Sun.) Mitch Forman All-Star Band. Keyboardist Forman fronts a musical collective that can range comfortably from hard-swinging mainstream to foot-tapping funk. W. Walt Fowler, trumpet, Brandon Fields, sax, Ernest Tibbs, bass, Joel Taylor, drums, Munyungo Jackson, percussion. Baked Potato. (818) 980-1615.

Otmaro Ruiz

– Jan. 10. (Sun.) Pretzel Logic: Steely Dan Review. Music that was rarely, if ever heard live, springs to life in the hands of this talented tribute band. Vibrato Grill Jazz…etc. (310) 474-9400.

– Jan. 10. (Sun.) Otmaro Ruiz Trio. Venezuelan pianist/composer Ruiz brings extraordinarily versatile musical inventiveness to everything he touches. Charlie O’s. (818) 989-3110.

San Francisco

– Jan. 7 – 10. (Thurs. – Sun.) Roy Hargrove and Friends with special guest Pharoah Sanders. A performance that should make for some fascinating cross-generational and cross-stylistic musical fireworks. Yoshi’s San Francisco. (415) 655.5600.

– Jan. 5 – 10. (Tues. – Sun.) Florence Henderson. You may know her from The Brady Bunch, but Ms. Henderson has had a long career in musical theatre and cabaret. Her live performances are rare these days so don’t miss this opportunity. The Rrazz Room. (415) 394-1189.

New York

Jack DeJohnette

– Jan. 5 – 9 (Tues. – Sat.) Jack DeJohnette Quintet. Drummer DeJohnette, always interested in checking out new sounds and ideas, has put together an eclectic ensemble, including David Fiuczynski, guitar, Rudresh Mahanthappa, alto sax, George Colligan, keyboards, Jerome Harris, bass. Birdland.  (212) 581-3080.

– Jan. 5 – 10. (Tues. – Sun.) Chris Potter Underground. Saxophonist Potter continues into the new territory explored in his Ultrahang album, with Adam Rogers, guitar, Craig Taborn, Fender Rhodes, Nate Smith, drums. The Village Vanguard. (212) 255-4037.

– Jan. 6 – 12. (Wed. – Tues.) The Clayton Brothers Band. The jazz pride of L.A. display their impressive wares in the Big Apple, with Terell Stafford and Obed Calvaire. Dizzy’s Club Coca Cola. (212) 258-9800.

– Jan. 7 – 9 (Thurs. – Sat.) Mark O’Connor, John Patitucci and Julian Lage. It’s an unusual trio, with crossover violinist O’Connor, versatile jazz bassist Patitucci and rising young guitar star Lage. Expect some intriguing sounds. The Blue Note. (212) 475-8592.

Kenny Barron

– Jan. 7 – 10. (Thurs. – Sun.) Kenny Barron Quintet. The musically meticulous pianist Barron always surrounds himself with world class talent. This time out, it includes Anne Drummond, flute, Stefon Harris, vibes, Kiyoshi Kitagawa, bass, Ben Riley, drums. Jazz Standard. (212) 576-2232.

– Jan. 8 & 9. (Fri. & Sat.) 2010 NYC Winter Jazzfest. One of the best musical weekends of the year, with a long list of talent performing at several Village locations. Featured artists include Nicholas Payton, Matt Wilson, Bobby Previte, Peter Apfelbaum, Carmen Consoli, Jenny Scheinman, Lionel Loueke, Vijay Iyer, Gretchen Parlato, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Rudresh Mahanthappa, The Claudia Quintet, The Randy Newman Project and many more. Fri. and Sat. at Kennys Castaways, Le Poisson Rouge and Zinc Bar. Saturday also at Sullivan Hall and The Bitter End. Tickets & Information: Winter Jazzfest.

Jan. 9. (Sat.) Katia Moraes and Sambaguru. Sambaguru is an ensemble of musicians from Brazil, Sri Lanka, and the United States that has been playing a wide-ranging blend of original music since 1997, their dynamic energy driven by the charismatic singing of Moraes. Here, they are making their New York City debut. SOB’s. (212) 243-4940.


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