Friday, August 29, 2008

Jazz this week: The end of summer
and the Big Muddy blues

As we head into what is effectively the final weekend of summer 2008, things are still in the relatively slow, dog-days mode with regard to live jazz in St. Louis. All of our town's various not-for-profit presenters are basically on hiatus until after Labor Day, and club activity is kind of sparse this weekend, too.

Still, there are a few performances worth nothing, so let's get to it. Tonight, Brandt's has singer Kim Massie, the Dave Stone Trio plays their regular weekly gig at Mangia Italiano, and the Original Knights of Swing big band holds forth at the Casa Loma Ballroom. On Saturday, guitarist Todd Mosby (pictured) brings his group to Brandt's, and saxophonist Willie Akins does his regular late-afternoon performance at Spruill's. Looking beyond the weekend, on Tuesday Brandt's will feature Trio Tres Bien, and saxophonist Bennett Wood returns to The Gramophone.

However, the biggest musical news of the weekend in St. Louis probably is the Big Muddy Blues Festival, which runs from 3:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. Saturday and Sunday on Laclede's Landing. The free event features 30 different bands on three stages, with headliners including Bettye LaVette, Coco Montoya, Sonny Rhodes and Michael Burks. Though it's a blues festival, the lineup does include a few local musicians who cross over into jazz, such as singers Kim Massie and Anita Rosamond, who will open the main stage on Saturday afternoon. For more on the Big Muddy, check out the preview story I wrote for this week's Riverfront Times, available online here.

There's a lot of updating to do to the St. Louis Jazz Notes Calendar over the next few days, so if new posts are somewhat sparse around here for a bit, that - along with the holiday weekend - likely will be the cause. In the meantime, you can continue to see listings for more St. Louis jazz-related events this weekend and beyond by visiting said Calendar.

(If you have calendar items, band schedule information, news tips, links, or anything else you think may be of interest to StLJN's readers, please email the information to stljazznotes (at) yahoo (dot) com. If you have photos, MP3s or other digital files, please send links, not attachments.

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