Here's the latest wrap-up of assorted links and short local news items of interest:* This is the weekend of the Essentially Ellington festival at NYC's Jazz at Lincoln Center, and the East St. Louis High School jazz band is there as one of just 15 bands from across the country selected to participate in this year's competition. On Thursday, the band members made it on to NBC's Today Show, albeit outside the window behind weatherman Al Roker. You can read more about that, and more about the band's trip, in this item from the Post-Dispatch's Deb Peterson.
Meanwhile, the festival performances will be webcast live today and tomorrow. Today's webcast begins at 2:30 p.m., with the ESL band scheduled to go fourth. You can tune into the webcast here.
* And speaking of student musicians, the Belleville News-Democrat had a brief article here about guitarist Clayton Floyd and trombonist William Wolff, the two current members of the Jazz St. Louis All-Stars who are from Belleville.
* Also from the Post, pop music critic Kevin Johnson reviewed Denise Thimes' Mother's Day show at the Sheldon Concert Hall here.