Thursday, September 15, 2011

Jazz this week: Joe McPhee, Old Webster Jazz & Blues Festival, St. Louis Jazz Club's annual picnic, and more

There's a touch of fall in the air here in St. Louis, and along with cooler weather, this weekend also will feature plenty of noteworthy jazz and creative music performances. Let's go the highlights:

Tonight, guitarist Daryl Darden, back home from the West Coast for an extended visit, plays a free concert for the Jazz at Holmes series at Washington University, and saxophonist Jim Stevens has the early evening slot at BB's Jazz, Blues and Soups.

On Friday, singer Kim Massie returns to Jazz at the Bistro for the first evening of a two-night stand. If you're planning on heading down, don't forget that the Bistro's new set times of 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. are now in effect for all shows.

Also on Friday, a group billed as the Pleasant Tones Trio, with pianist Dave Becherer, drummer Gary Sykes and bassist Daryl Mixon, will be at Robbie's House of Jazz, and guitarist Dave Black's trio plays at the Cigar Inn in Belleville.

On Saturday, there's a variety of musical choices, starting with this year's edition of the annual Old Webster Jazz and Blues Festival in downtown Webster Groves. The free, all-day outdoor event begins at noon and will feature performances from young blues singer/guitarist Marquise Knox, singer-songwriter Javier Mendoza's "Latin jazz" ensemble, the Funky Butt Brass Band, Webster University's jazz faculty ensemble, the Webster Groves High School jazz band, Alvin Jett and Phat Noiz, Jim Stevens, guitarist Tom Byrne's Pat Metheny tribute Have U Heard? and more.

That evening, the free-improvising multi-instrumentalist Joe McPhee (pictured) and his group Survival Unit III, with cellist Fred Lonberg-Holm and percussionist Michael Zerang, will perform at Kranzberg Arts Center in a concert sponsored by New Music Circle. For much more about McPhee and a selection of videos featuring him, see this post.

Also on Saturday evening, singer Denise Thimes performs at the Grand Opera House in St. Charles in a benefit for the United Way; guitarist Matthew Von Doran plays with his trio at Music Folk; and saxophonist Michael Fitzgerald returns to the Halls Ferry Inn Jazz Cafe.

On Sunday afternoon, the St. Louis Jazz Club will have its annual picnic at the Concord Farmers Club, 10140 Concord School Rd, featuring music by the New Orleans R&B cover band Gumbohead, Time and Place, and Banjos & Brass.

Also on Sunday afternoon, Matthew Von Doran will present a guitar clinic at Music Folk, and that evening, pianist Phil Gomez and his Latin jazz band Clave Sol will play at BB's.

Looking beyond the weekend, on Monday bassist Willem von Hombrecht will lead a quartet in a concert at Webster University's Winifred Moore Auditorium , and drummer Joe Pastor's trio will perform at BB's.

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.)

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