Heard any good concerts lately? With the embarrassment of riches we experienced during the Jamey Aebersold Summer Jazz Workshop last month, and now the death of Jazz in Central Park, we now find ourselves in the summer doldrums with not much happening in the local concert scene. Fret not, gentle reader, for there are brighter days ahead. The fall lineups for the KCA's Parthenon Capital Management Jazz Cabaret Series and the Bank One Lonesome Pine Specials have been announced and they look pretty darn good.
Let's start with the Parthenon Capital Management Jazz Cabaret Series (boy, that's a mouthful). Clark-Todd hall is the usual venue for these Sunday evening performances, where they strive to recreate the intimate feel of a classic Jazz club of the Thirties and Forties a la The Royal Roost or Birdland. If that weren't enough, they throw in a complementary appetizer buffet from Cove Catering. That's quite a deal.
This fall's lineup begins on Sunday, September 15 with standards and originals from the Jerry Tolson Quartet. For U brings a mix of straight ahead jazz and the smoother side of things on October 20. There's some nice piano jazz to be heard on November 13 from Ray Johnson. The fall series ends on December 15 with vocalist Everett Green. All shows begin at 6 p.m. and it's a great way to hear local and regional talent in a pleasant setting. Tickets are $20 each or $140 for the entire season which lasts until April. We'll tell you about the spring concerts a little later.
The Bomhard Theater is home to the Bank One Lonesome Pine Special Series at KCA and it brings a diverse mix of performers to our city. This fall's series begins on Friday, October 25 with that hoodoo guru from New Orleans. Dr. John. Sure, there will be some debate over whether or not Dr. John is a jazzer, but I think we can all agree that he brings a lot of fun to his performances and frankly, we all need a little fun from time to time.
The other Jazz oriented gig this fall comes up on Friday, December 6 with that funky, groovy organ trio Medeski, Martin and Wood. These guys have been on the scene for about ten years now, coming out of the New York downtown scene, blending the avant-garde and the funky, sort of a mix between John Lurie and Jimmy Smith. They've even attracted the attention of the jam band aficionados with their collaborations with Phish. It should be an interesting evening of music and people watching.
There are some new gigs around town that you might want to know about, particularly the return of Bobby J and the Flying Martini's. Bobby and band are now appearing on Friday and Saturday nights at Bobby's new digs, Steam (although I've also heard it refered to as Steam, Fire and Ice). It's on Bardstown Road right next to the Great Escape.
Another new regular gig (at least for the time being) features the Bill Barnes trio at Shenanagan's on Norris. It was a personal hangout in the early 90s with a crowd who would probably not want to have their names in print, so I'll suffice to say that it was a lot of fun back in the day. But then they did not have music on a regular basis. This could make it a regular hangout again.
Perhaps you've heard that the Blue Wisp in Cincinnati has closed. Well, that's only part of the story. Actually, the Wisp is in the process of moving to a street level location, still in downtown. There's lots of rennovation going on, but it promises to be a great new venue for Jazz in the Queen City.
At the end of July we dedicated the music library at WFPK and WUOL to Phil Bailey, long time Jazz host and Classical music director. As a part of that dedication, Leslie Stewart, whose voice is well known to many Jazz fans in the area, produced a two-hour tribute to Phil called "Time Remembered." It was a loving way to honor Phil's memory filled with anecdotes and stories from Phil's wife Patty and many of the people in the music community who worked with Phil as musicians and as fellow radio hosts. Leslie did an incredible job on the project, putting a lot of love into the long hours she spent putting everything together. She and Andy High, who edited the project, deserve a lot of credit for their work on what was a terribly difficult subject. If you missed the airings of "Time Remembered" on the afternoon and evening of July 19, you probably haven't missed out entirely. I'm thinking of airing it again in the near future.
That's it for this month, get out and hear some live music will ya?