Picks of the Week: July 10 – 15

By Don Heckman

Los Angeles

– July 10 (Tues.)  The Los Angeles Philharmonic.  The summer classical at the Hollywood Bowl opens with a performance of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 conducted by Leonard Slatkin. Also on the program — a trio of new works by female composers – Anna Clyne, Anne Lebaron and Cindy McTeeThe Hollywood Bowl.    (323) 850-2000.

Ray Charles

– July 11. (Wed.)  Ray Charles: Genius + Soul = Jazz.  A celebration of the life and work of Ray Charles.  Featured performers include Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds, Martina McBride, Dee Dee Bridgewater, BeBe Winans and the Count Basie OrchestraThe Hollywood Bowl.  .

– July 12 & 13. (Thurs & Fri.)  Moncef Genoud.  The critically praised Swiss pianist is in the vanguard of contemporary European jazz.  Blind since birth, Genoud performs with the stellar international backing of Swiss bassist Banz Oester and English drummer Andy Barron.  Vitello’s.    (818) 769-0905.

– July 13. (Fri.)  Stephen Sondheim in Conversation.  One of the giants of American musical theatre shares stories with ASCAP’s Michael Kerker.  Speial guests Christine Ebersole and Brian Stokes Mitchell provide musical illustrations.  Segerstrom Concert Hall.  (714) 556-2787.

– Jul. 13. (Fri.) String Cheese Incident.  “Keeping the circular energy going” is how String Cheese Incident co-founder Bill Nershy describes the band’s unique blending of jam band freedom with cutting edge electronics and traces of Americana.  The Greek Theatre. (323) 665-5857.

Garrison Keillor

– July 13. (Fri.) A Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor.  Radio still lives – and vibrantly so – in the inimitable blend of wit, wisdom, music, and occasional nostalgia that is the hallmark of the Prairie Home Companion broadcasts – this time from the Hollywood Bowl.  Expect Los Angeles to be the subject of some sardonic humor from Keillor.  The Hollywood Bowl.    (323) 850-2000.

– July 13 & 14. (Fri. & Sat.)  India Adams.  The name may not be familiar, but the voice will be. Adams was one of Hollywood’s busiest secret singing stars during the era of great musicals.  Among others, she was the singing voice of Joan Crawford in Torch Song and Cyd Charisse in Bandwagon. Since  then Adams has had plenty of starring roles of her own in theatrical musicals, and she’s still going strong. Catalina Bar & Grill.(323) 466-2210.

– July 14. (Sat.) Anna Mjoll.  It’s pronounced “Meh-johl”), but Anna’s blend of sultry sound and upbeat swing needs no translating.  Iceland’s gift to jazz will be backed by pianist Ed Czach, bassist Pat Senatore and drummer Bob Leatherbarrow. Vibrato Grill Jazz…etc.   (310) 474-9400.

Cheryl Bentyne and Mark Winkler

– July 14. (Sat.)  Cheryl Bentyne and Mark Winkler: West Coast Cool.  Bentyne – well known as one of the four stars of the Manhattan Transfer – returns to performing after a long bout with a life threatening malady.  She and close musical associate singer/songwriter Winkler will showcase songs written or performed by the likes of Chet Baker, Dave Brubeck, Steve Allen, Bobby Troup and more.  Vitello’s.   (818) 769-0905.

San Francisco

– July 13 & 14. (Fri. & Sat.)  Randy Weston’s African Rhythms Trio.  At 86, Weston, a still-vital, iconic jazz pianist, continues to embrace the rich African linkages to American jazz.  Yoshi’s Oakland.    (510) 238-9200.


Steve Turre

– July 12 – 15. (Thurs. – Sun.)  Steve Turre Quartet.  Trombonist/educator Turre has demonstrated his remarkable eclecticism with everyone from Rahsaan Roland Kirk to Ray Charles and the Saturday Night Live  band.  And don’t forget his remarkable improvised excursions on conch and other seashells. Jazz Showcase.   (312) 360-0234.

New York

– July l0 – 14. (Tues. – Sat.)  Louis Hayes Quintet: “The Cannonball Adderley Legacy.” Veteran drummer Hayes, whose resume is a virtual catalog of the modern jazz of the past  four decades, revisits his days and nights with the legendary Adderley band.  Birdland.   (212) 581-3080.

– July 12 – 15 (Thurs.- Sun.)  The Don Byron New Gospel Quintet.  Clarinetist/saxophonist Byron’s quintet, featuring vocalist Carla Cook, celebrates the joyous, irrepressibly rhythmic African-American gospel tradition.  The Jazz Standard.    (212) 447-7743.


– July 10 & 11. (Tues. & Wed.)  Boubacar Traore.  West African master of Mandingo music, acoustic guitarist Traore has also found the deep linkages between his traditional music and the blues.  Ronnie Scott’s.    020 7439 0747.


– July 11. (Wed.)  Take 6. The incomparable singers of Take 6 have transformed the a cappella genre into a deliciously colorful contemporary musical palette. New Morning.   01 45 23 51 41.


Phil Woods


July 13 – 15. (Fri. – Sun.)  Phil Woods Quintet.  Grammy award winning alto saxophonist Woods proved his bebop mastery decades ago. But his musical versatility has continued to evolve over the dozens of performances in his memorable catalog of recordings.  Blue Note Tokyo.    03.5485.0088.

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