By Don Heckman Robert Davi was back at Herb Alpert’s Vibrato Grill Jazz…etc. Thursday night. And that was great news for fans of the Great American Songbook – as well as fans of Great American pop singing, which Davi does brilliantly. A highly visible actor, Davi is one of the most memorable tough guys since… Read More Live Music: Robert Davi at Vibrato Grill Jazz…etc.
By Don Heckman Studio City CA. There was no doubt in my mind that Cheryl Bentyne would deliver a memorable performance at Vitello’s Saturday night. I just didn’t know how memorable it would be. Fully returned to performing action after recovering from a life threatening illness, Cheryl was in peak condition. She had been a… Read More Live Jazz: Cheryl Bentyne at Vitello’s
By Don Heckman Singers Mark Winkler and Dolores Scozzesi were the headliners at Vitello’s Friday night. And that was good news, since both are among L.A.’s most appealing jazz-oriented singers. But the evening promised even more with a sub-headline announcing that they would be singing songs by “Laura Nyro, Joni Mitchell, Randy Newman: The Great… Read More Live Music: Mark Winkler and Dolores Scozzesi at Vitello’s
By Norton Wright A jazzhead pal living in Europe just e-mailed me asking if he could find some big-band jazz in America when he comes vacationing this summer. Without hesitation I replied that lucky for us Los Angelinos, L.A. has become the nation’s showplace center for an abundance of jazz orchestras. Our treasures include Gerald… Read More Live Jazz: A Christmas Card to the Sensational Sidemen of Paul McDonald’s Big Band
By Don Heckman On the way home from Disney Hall Sunday, the traffic on the 101 magically – and unexpectedly — opened up, and we suddenly realized we could reach Vitello’s just in time to catch the second set by the Ron Jones Jazz Influence Orchestra. Call it an unusual sequence – from the Christmas… Read More Live Jazz: The Ron Jones Jazz Influence Orchestra with April Williams at Vitello’s
By Don Heckman Los Angeles – Mar. 6. (Tues.) John Pisano’s “Guitar Night.” Pisano takes his ever-entertaining, ever-popular “Guitar Night” to a new venue. To celebrate the move, the featured guest is veteran guitarist Mundell Lowe. Lucy’s 51. Toluca Lake. (818) 763-5200. Mar. 6. (Tues.) The Gonzalo Bergara Quartet. Guitarist Bergara and his crew bring… Read More Picks of the Week: March 6 – 11
By Don Heckman Los Angeles – July 26. (Tues.) Justo Almario Quartet. Saxophonist/flutist Almario is one of the Southland’s great jazz treasures, a player who moves convincingly across every jazz arena. Vibrato. (310) 474-9400. – July 27. (Wed.) Gladys Knight and James Ingram. The one and only Grammy-winning Empress of Soul shares the stage with… Read More Picks of the Week: July 25 – 31.
By Tony Gieske Let’s talk about that undermeditated topic, lighting. The lighting at Vibrato’s voluminous listening room, for instance, is without stain and healthy, which is to say clean and well. Equally clean and well lighted, if you’ll forgive the segue, was the Steve Huffsteter big band, a precision ensemble that played the room last… Read More Live Jazz: The Steve Huffsteter Big Band at Vibrato Grill Jazz…etc.
By Don Heckman Dynamic. Enchanting. High spirited. Entertaining. Hard swinging. Those were just a few of the words that came to mind during Cheryl Bentyne’s appearance at Vitello’s on Thursday night. And none of them were really adequate to describe her utterly mesmerizing performance. Everyone knows Bentyne from her long tenure with the Manhattan Transfer,… Read More Live Jazz: Cheryl Bentyne at Vitello’s