Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Jazz this week: The return of Rene Marie, Gaslight Cabaret Festival, and more

This week's lineup of jazz and creative music performances in St. Louis puts the spotlight on vocalists, starting with an internationally known singer once signed to a local label, and continuing with the latest set of shows featuring performers from the thriving local cabaret scene.

Mix in some improvised music with a side order of poetry, and various instrumental performances in a variety of styles, and there should be something to entice just about any jazz listener. Let's go to the highlights...

Wednesday March 4
Tonight, singer Rene Marie (pictured, above left) returns to St. Louis for the first time since the mid-2000s to begin a four-night engagement at Jazz at the Bistro.

Marie was one of the first artists signed to the St. Louis based MAXJAZZ label back in 1999, and cut six albums for them over the next five years while also performing here a number of times. More recently, she put out a couple of albums on her own, and then signed with Motema, which last year issued her most recent recording project, a tribute to Eartha Kitt. For more about that, see this Saturday video post from a couple of weeks ago.  

Also tonight, singer Eve Seltzer returns to Evangeline's; and trumpeter Kasimu Taylor and his trio continue their weekly gig at the The Dark Room in Grand Center.

Thursday March 5
Pianist Greg Mills' project The Perihelion Ensemble, with saxophonist Dave Stone, percussionist Henry Claude, cellist Tracy Andreotti, Ajay Khanna on electronics, and recently named St. Louis poet laureate Michael Castro, will perform at the Tavern of Fine Arts.

Also on Thursday, clarinetist Scott Alberici, guitarist Steve Schenkel and bassist Ric Vice will team up to play a free concert for the Jazz at Holmes at Washington University; and singer Feyza Eren (pictured, center left) and a band featuring drummer Steve Davis and pianist Scott Sheperd will perform Sheperd's original material in "Colored Sky - An Evening of St. Louis Jazz," a benefit for the Diversity Awareness Partnership at the Sheldon Concert Hall.

Friday, March 6
The Gaslight Cabaret Festival's first weekend of the spring begins with singer and pianist Neal Richardson performing his show "Pennies From Heaven," with a guest appearance from singer Ben Nordstrom, at the Gaslight Theater.

Elsewhere that evening, Sarah Jane and the Blue Notes will return to Highway 61 Roadhouse and Kitchen; the Original Knights of Swing will play for dancers at Casa Loma Ballroom.; and keyboardists Ptah Williams and Matt Villinger will join forces at Thurman Grill.

Saturday, March 7
Pianist Carolbeth True (pictured, below left) and Two Times True will be doing a free early evening performance in the St. Louis Art Museum's Sculpture Hall as part of SLAM's annual "Art In Bloom" event.

Also on Saturday, the husband-and-wife team of pianist Joe Dreyer and singer Rosemary Watts will present their show "Transitions" at the Gaslight Theater; trumpeter Jim Manley, singer Charlie B. and friends will perform at Nathalie's; and singer Joe Mancuso and guitarist Dave Black will be doing their duo thing for the diners and drinkers at  Element STL.

Sunday, March 8
The late winter/early spring edition of the St. Louis Record Collector and CD Show takes place at the American Czech Hall, 4690 Lansdowne (at Kingshighway) on the south side.

Monday, March 9
Trumpeter Keith Moyer and his group will be back at BB's Jazz, Blues and Soups

For more jazz-related events in and around St. Louis, 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.)

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