Picks of the Week: May 17 – 23

By Don Heckman

Los Angeles

– May 18. (Tues.)  Don Menza’s Stan Getz Tribute.  Not exactly the return of the Four Brothers, but it should be a mellow saxophone night with Pete Christlieb, Gary Foster and Gene Cipriano, saxes, Don Rader, trumpet,  Tom Ranier, piano, Chris Connor, bass and Dick Weller, drums.  Vibrato (310) 474-9400.

– May 18. (Tues.)  Styx, Foreigner and Kansas. The seventies come alive with three of the decades most successful hit-makers.  Gibson Amphitheatre.   (818) 622-4440.

Anna Mjoll

– May 18. (Tues.)  Anna Mjoli All-Star Band.  Iceland’s gift to jazz displays her intimate vocal style in the stellar company of saxophonist Bob Sheppard, guitarist Larry Koonse, pianist John Beasley, drummer Jimmy Branley and bassist Chris ColangeloBaked Potato.  (818) 980-1615.

– May 18. (Tues.)  Janis Mann Quartet.  She’s a singer who knows how to find the heart of a song.  “I haven’t heard anyone like Janis Mann in years,” says Roy Haynes.  Charlie O’s.    (919) 994-3058.

– May 18 – 19. (Tues. – Wed.)  Marilyn Maye.  Veteran singer Maye’s career has moved easily from radio and television to cabaret and musical theatre.  In 1965, at 37, she won a Grammy for “Best New Artist,” and she’s still going strong. Catalina Bar & Grill (323) 466-2210.

– May 19. (Wed.)  Takako.  The Japanese jazz singer celebrates the release of her new CD, Common Ground, backed by pianist Vardan Ovsepian and drummer Aaron SerfatyVitello’s. (818) 769-0905.

– May 20. (Thurs.)  Ed Vodicka Organ Quintet.  Bandleader/keyboardist Vodicka displays his versatility in the organ quartet format, backed by L.A. regulars Plas Johnson, saxophone, Nolan Shaheed, trumpet, Roy McCurdy, drums  and John Chiodini, guitar.  Catalina Bar & Grill (323) 466-2210.

– May 20. (Thurs.)  Patrick Berrogain’s Hot Club Combo. Guitarist Berrogain discovered the gypsy jazz style in his native France before forming the Hot Club of San Diego, which morphed into the Hot Club Combo. Vibrato (310) 474-9400.

– May 20. (Thurs.)  Iliana Rose Quartet. Rose’s keyboard montunas generate Latin jazz rhythms that are virtually irresistible.  Expect to feel your toes tapping with everything she plays.  Crowne Plaza,

Frank Marocco

– May 20 – 22. (Thurs. – Sat.)  Flexible Reality.  With their strikingly unusual instrumentation, Flexible Reality brings intriguing new timbres to bebop and straight ahead jazz.  Richard Todd, French Horn, Charlie Bisharat, violin, Frank Marocco, accordion, Michael Valerio and Abraham Laboriel, basses, and Alex Acuna, drums. Vitello’s. (818) 769-0905.

– May 21. (Fri.)  Thom Rotella with the John Heard Trio.  Mr. Versatility brings swing and substance to whatever genre he chances to meet.  Charlie O’s. (919) 994-3058.

– May 21 & 22.  (Fri. & Sat.)  Aaron Parks. Still in his mid-twenties, pianist Parks has already recorded three albums with Terence Blanchard, gigged with Kurt Rosenwinkel and been signed by Blue Note Records. Café Metropol.  (213) 613-1537.

– May 22. (Sat.)  Tom Petty and Joe Cocker. A pair of iconic artists whose careers reach from the ‘60s (for Cocker) to the present, Petty and Cocker are still mesmerizing performers.  Hollywood Bowl. (323) 850-2000.

– May 22. (Sat.) Jan Daley.  Daley, who made many tours with Bob Hope to appear before U.S. servicemen, celebrates a new CD – Where There’s Hope — a tribute to the love songs from the Hope era.  M bar.    (323) 856-0036.

Bruce Forman

– May 22. (Sat.)  Bruce Forman’s Cow Bop.  Guitarist Forman is his own man, fluent, articulate and always in search of intriguing musical solutions – even with a band whimsically called Cow Bop.  The Back Room at Henri’s.   (818) 348-5582.

– May 22 & 23. (Sat. & Sun.)  Baked Potato’s 40th Anniversary. The venerable Studio City jazz spot celebrates four decades with a stellar two day event.  Among the highlights on Sat: Baked Potato All-Stars, Chad Smith, Steve Lukather and the Pasqua/Holdsworth/Haslip/Novak Quartet.  On Sun: John Daversa Big Band, Mitch Forman, Don Randi & Quest, the Yellowjackets, Lee Ritenour and Larry CarltonThe Baked Potato at the Ford Amphitheatre.  (818) 980-1615.

– May 23. (Sun.)  Sing, Sing, SingAnnual Celebration of the Big Band Era. Judy Wolman’s all-join-in singalong celebrates Memorial day with the music of Glenn Miller, Harry James, Benny Goodman and more.  Sing, Sing Sing at the Victorian Mansion. (310) 990-2405

San Francisco

– May 19 – 23 (Wed. – Sun.) Eddie Palmieri and La Perfecta II. Grammy award-winning pianist Palmieri and his La Perfecta bands have been finding the perfect blend of jazz and Latin rhythms for decades. Yoshi’s San Francisco.   (415) 655-5600.

– May 20 – 23. (Thurs. – Sun.)  Jazz Crusaders.  Almost all of the original Jazz Crusaders – Joe Sample, Wilton Felder and Wayne Henderson (Stix Hooper’s the only missing member) – get together for the first reunion since the seventies.  Yoshi’s Oakland.  (510) 238-9200.

New York

Karrin Allyson

– May 18 – 22. (Tues. – Sat.)  Karrin Allyson. Among the coveys of canaries soaring through the jazz world these days, Allyson holds her own.  Always musical, a gifted storyteller, she helps sustain the integrity of the jazz vocal art.  Birdland. (212) 581-3080.

– May 19 – 22. (Wed. – Sat.)  Ted Nash Quintet. Saxophonist Nash spends a lot of time in the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra.  Here’s a chance to enjoy the individual talents of this multi-talented player up close and personal. Dizzy’s Club Coca Cola (212) 258-9800.

– May 20. (Thurs.)  “A Great Night in Harlem” The 9th annual concert to benefit the Musicians Emergency Fund features a remarkable line up.  Among the many headliners: Roberta Flack, Jimmy Scott, Madeleine Peyroux, Jimmy Heath, Ron Carter, Frank Wess, Barry Harris, Terence Conley, with Chevy Chase, Danny Glover and many more.  The Apollo Theatre. A Great Night In Harlem.   NYC.  (212) 245-3999.

– May 20 – 23. (Thurs. – Sun.)  Odean Pope Saxophone Choir.  Pope headlines a saxophone-filled weekend, with Joe Lovano on Thurs. & Friday, Ravi Coltrane on Sat. & Sun.)  The Blue Note.   (212) 475-8592.

Billy Childs

– May 21 – 23. (Fri. – Sun.)  Billy Childs Chamber Ensemble.  Pianist/composer Childs has written some remarkably adventurous music to be performed by this first rate East Coast/West Coast ensemble: saxophonist/flutist Steve Wilson, guitarist Larry Koonse, harpist Carol Robbins, bassist Scott Colley and drummer Brian BladeIridium.  (212) 582-2121.

St. Louis

– May 20 – 22. (Thurs. – Sat.)  Jazz Education Network Inaugural JEN Congress.  University of Missouri, St. Louis. The first conference by the organization that hopes to fill the gap in the jazz education area that was left by the demise of the I.A.J.E.  The three day event features conferences, exhibits and performances by student and professional ensembles from St. Louis and elsewhere.  The Inaugural JEN Congress.

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