Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Jazz this week: Take 6, David Torkanowsky & Peter Martin, U City Jazz Festival, and more

As fall officially begins, it's another fairly busy week for jazz and creative music in St. Louis, so let's go straight to the highlights:

Tonight, the vocal group Take 6 will make their debut at Jazz at the Bistro, continuing with two sets a night through Saturday. Though primarily known as gospel and pop performers, Take 6 do have some jazz cred as well, both for the lush harmonies they've deployed skillfully throughout their career, and more specifically for their 2008 CD The Standard, which featured interpretations of jazz-associated songs ranging from "Sweet Georgia Brown" to "Seven Steps To Heaven." Presumably, they'll be leaning on that material a good bit this week, and perhaps doing some tunes from the more R&B-oriented album Beautiful World (2002) as well.

On Thursday, bassist Tom Kennedy is back in town to lead a trio with guitarist Bill Lenihan and drummer Miles Vandiver in a free concert for for the Jazz at Holmes series at Washington University.

Then on Friday evening, Peter Martin continues his ongoing concert series at the Sheldon, this time teaming up with New Orleans pianist David Torkanowsky (pictured) for a duo piano concert. Torkanowsky perhaps is best known for his work with the band Astral Project, but he has collaborated with many New Orleans musicians, including the Meters and various members of the Neville family.

Also on Friday, bassist Willem von Hombracht will lead a group featuring saxophonist Eric Schugren (from NYC) and drummer Cornell Fauler (from LA) at Robbie's House of Jazz; and guitarist Daryl Darden will bring a trio to the Cigar Inn in Belleville.

Saturday brings the first-ever U City Jazz Festival, a free, all-day outdoor event held in Heman Park on Olive Blvd. Performers will include singer Jeanne Trevor, Latin jazz band Clave Sol, the Classical Jazz Quartet, a student group billed as the U City Young Lions, and a band led by drummer Maurice Carnes that will do a tribute to John Coltrane. The event also will include a workshop for student musicians led by Carnes, guitarist Bill Lenihan and pianist Kara Baldus Vandiver. Also on Saturday, saxophonist Greg Lewis and Press Play will perform at Robbie's.

On Sunday, the eclectic string ensemble Bridge, with guitarist Dave Black, will play a concert at the Wildey Theatre in Edwardsville.

Looking beyond the weekend, on Monday pianist Kim Portnoy will lead a group in performance of some of his original compositions at Webster University's Winifred Moore Auditorium, and on Tuesday, the Bosman Twins are featured in a free outdoor concert at the Missouri History Museum in Forest Park as part of the museum's Twilight Tuesdays series.

For more jazz-related events in St. Louis this weekend and beyond, please visit the St. Louis Jazz Notes Calendar, which can be found on the left sidebar of the site or by clicking here. You also can keep up with all the latest news by following St. Louis Jazz Notes on Twitter at or clicking the "Like" icon on the StLJN Facebook page.

(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.)


CandiRae said...

I love Take 6! I grew up on gospel music, but have always loved jazz. Take 6 is a great combination of both!

Dean Minderman said...

Lots of people must agree with you, CandiRae, because from what I understand, Take 6 drew some nice crowds this week at the Bistro. I know Jazz St. Louis was very pleased to have them, so perhaps a return engagement will be in the offing.