Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Jazz this week: The Bad Plus v 2.0, Storm Large, "Winter Jazz Fest," and more

It's a big week for jazz and creative music in St. Louis, with one performance that's literally drawing international attention, the debut of a new festival, and more.

Let's go to the highlights...

Wednesday, January 17
The gig making headlines all over the globe is the live debut of the revised lineup of The Bad Plus, who will be doing their first-ever performances with new pianist Orrin Evans starting Wednesday night and continuing through Saturday at Jazz at the Bistro.

Evans, who replaces founding member Ethan Iverson, already has recorded an album with the group, which is being released this week and was spotlighted last week by NPR's "First Listen" feature. (NPR also will be recording The Bad Plus during their stay in St. Louis for a future episode of the network's "Jazz Night In America" program.)

While that live stream of the new album may have expired by the time you read this, those who are curious about The Bad Plus v 2.0 (pictured, top left) but can't make it to the Bistro this week can watch a live online stream of Friday night's first set for free, starting at 7:30 p.m. on Jazz St. Louis' Facebook page.

Also on Wednesday, singer Storm Large returns, this time with her band Le Bonheur, for a performance at the Sheldon Concert Hall. While her several previous appearances here in recent years have been in a cabaret setting and with the dance orchestra Pink Martini, this show will offer Large a chance to show off more of her rock-oriented material with a full band.

Thursday, January 18
Guitarist Todd Mosby's New Horizons Ensemble performs at Sky Music Lounge; The People’s Key will play at the Chase Club; and saxophonist Ben Reece‘s Unity Quartet returns to The Dark Room.

Friday, January 19
Saxophonist Kendrick Smith begins a new weekly residency, leading a trio every Friday starting this week at Thurman's in Shaw; and the Ambassadors of Swing play for dancers at the Casa Loma Ballroom.

January 20

The first-ever "Winter Jazz Fest," headlined by jazz/fusion band Yellowjackets, will take place at the Grandel Theatre.

Unlike the long-established, week-long, multi-venue New York City event with which it shares a name, this fest is a single-night, single-location concert, with an emphasis on electric contemporary jazz.

In addition to Yellowjackets (pictured, bottom left), the show also will feature saxophonist Eric Marienthal, Bach to The Future, Tracer (aka pianist Ptah Williams' trio in fusion mode), pianist Royce Martin, and the adjacent Dark Room's regular Saturday night performer, keyboardist Mo Egeston.

If you're thinking about going but don't yet have tickets, Metrotix is offering a "buy one ticket, get the second at half-price" discount to online buyers. To access the offer, go to this page and enter the promo code WINTERJAZZ.

Also on Saturday, saxophonist Dave Stone's begins a new weekly gig at Thurman's in Shaw; Miss Jubilee returns to the Casa Loma Ballroom; and the Funky Butt Brass Band will do their monthly performance at the Broadway Oyster Bar.

Sunday, January 21
The Dave Dickey Big Band performs in the first of a projected series of gigs this year at the Grandel Theatre, with the Lindbergh HS Jazz Ensemble as opener and intermission act.

Monday, January 22
Dizzy Atmosphere plays swing and Gypsy jazz for diners at The Shaved Duck, and singer and impressionist Dean Christopher will present his "Rat Pack and More" show at One 19 North Tapas & Wine Bar.

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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