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 Friday, 27 November 2015
Taking Giant Steps into the New Year "COUNTDOWN 2013" Smoke's John Coltrane Festival - 12/19 - 1/5 PDF Print
Written by Ronaldo Oregano   
Sunday, 16 December 2012
John Coltrane

Smoke's Annual John Coltrane festival continues this year featuring jazz heavyweights Louis Hayes, George Coleman, Harold Mabern, Al Foster, Steve Turre, Eric Alexander, Javon Jackson, Azar Lawrence, Eddie Henderson, Steve Wilson, Bruce Harris, Jerry Weldon, and many paying tribute to John Coltrane and his musical legacy. With ten different groups playing over eithgteen nights, several nights feature specific classic Coltrane albums including “John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman" featuring baritone Gregory Generet (12/20), "Cannonball Adderly John Coltrane Quintet in Chicago" featuring Steve Wilson (12/27-28), "Blue Trane" featuring Steve Turre (12/29-30), "My Favorite Things" featuring Harold Mabern & Eric Alexander Quartet (1/1),  "A Love Supreme" featuring Eddie Henderson (1/2-3). Details follow:

"COUNTDOWN 2013"-John Coltrane Festival at Smoke

Jerry Weldon Don Berryman
Wednesday, December 19

Bruce Harris Sextet

  • Trumpeter Bruce Harris kicks off this year’s Coltrane Festival leading a dynamic sextet featuring the irrepressible tenor saxophonist Jerry Weldon.
  • Bruce Harris (trumpet), Jerry Weldon (tenor saxophone), Julius Tolentino (alto saxophone), Jeb Patton (piano), David Wong (bass), Pete van Nostrand (drums)
  • sets @ 7(dinner set), 9, 10:30pm (dinner optional)

Tuesday, December 20    

"Autumn Serenade"Johnny Hartman & John Coltrane Revisited

  • Gregory Generet Quintet featuring Mark Gross. Few Coltrane recordings are more popular than “John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman.” This somewhatunlikely pairing with Johnny Hartman was Trane’s only recording with a vocalist. Baritone GregoryGeneret features tenor saxophonist Marc Gross to recreate this magical meeting.
  • sets @ 7(dinner set), 9, 10:30pm (dinner optional)

Friday. December 21 through Sunday, December 23 

Javon Jackson Quartet

  • Tenor saxophonist Javon Jackson leads an impressive quartet in music associated with John Coltrane. One of the great hard bop tenors working today, Jackson apprenticed with Art Blakey in the final version of his Jazz Messengers and he remains one of the primary champions of the Blakey tradition. After the Messengers, he worked with two more drum masters, Jimmy Cobb and Elvin Jones, who obviously havestrong Coltrane connections. Javon Jackson (tenor saxophone), Joel Holmes (piano), Corcoran Holt (bass), McClenty Hunter (drums)
  • $35 music charge / sets @ 7(dinner set), 9, 10:30pm (dinner optional)

Louis Hayes Andrea Canter
Monday, December 24, Tuesday, December 25, and Wednesday, December 26

Louis Hayes with the Harold Mabern Quartet featuring Eric Alexander

  • Louis Hayes, a drummer who recorded with Trane on several occasions, is featured in a quartet withpianist Harold Mabern, tenor saxophonist Eric Alexander, and bassist John Webber. Hayes, whoseimpeccable ride cymbal has been at the heart of so much jazz history for over 50 years, establishedhimself in the 1950’s and 60’s with Oscar Peterson, Horace Silver, and Cannonball Adderley. Don’t miss this rare opportunity to hear Louis Hayes and Harold Mabern reunited!
  • $35 music charge / sets @ 7 (dinner set), 9, 10:30pm (dinner optional)

Thursday, December 27 and Friday, December 28    

"In Chicago-Cannonball & Coltrane"

  • A month before recording the classic “Kind of Blue” as the Miles Davis Sextet, saxophonists Cannonball Adderley and John Coltrane, were in a Chicago studio making “Cannonball Adderley Quintet in Chicago”…with Miles’ rhythm section featuring Wynton Kelly, Paul Chambers and Jimmy Cobb. Although overshadowed by the success of “Kind of Blue”, “In Chicago” showcases two legendary saxophonists— indeed the whole band — at the top of their respective games and ready to make history. Like the complementary Cannonball and Coltrane, alto saxophonist Steve Wilson and tenor saxophonist EricAlexander so are the two modern equivalents. They are joined by pianist Harold Mabern, bassist John Webber, and drummer Joe Farnsworth.
  • $35 music charge / sets @ 7 (dinner set), 9, 10:30pm (dinner optional)

Steve Turre Anndrea Canter
Saturday, December 29 and Sunday, December 30

"Blue Train" with Steve Turre, Eric Alexander, Harold Mabern, Joe Farnsworth

  • Steve Turre joins Harold Mabern and Eric Alexander to honor the music of John Coltrane’s most popular recordings, “Blue Train” His only effort for the storied Blue Note label, “Blue Train” was one of Coltrane’s personal favorites and is widely considered one of greatest jazz records of all time. Trombone master Turre is a highly versatile and innovative musician who learned at the side of legends like Rahsaan, Roland Kirk, Ray Charles, and Art Blakey.
  • $35 music charge / sets @ 7 (dinner set), 9, 10:30pm (dinner optional)

Monday, December 31

New Year's Eve Celebration with Harold Mabern & Eric Alexander Quartet featuring special guest vocalist Vivian Sessoms

  • The incomparable Harold Mabern, one of the great pianists of modern jazz, hosts a New Year’s Eve Celebration at Smoke Jazz Club with his quartet featuring tenor saxophonist Eric Alexander, bassist John Webber, drummer Joe Farnsworth, and very special guest vocalist Vivian Sessoms. An engaging and enthusiastic performer, Mabern draws on an encyclopedic knowledge and razor sharp memory, illuminating the music in ways few others can. He has worked over the years with a who’s who of jazz royalty including trumpeters Miles Davis and Lee Morgan. He’s also had long associations with legendary tenor men George Coleman — a fellow native of Memphis, Tennessee — and Eric Alexander — his former student and protégé who appears with him here. Mabern brings a powerful technique and deep insight to a wide range of music including rare gems of the Great American Songbook, spellbinding Coltrane classics, and his very own soulful originals. To hear Harold is to become a fan!
  • all-inclusive jazz dinner packages with open bar from $95 – $245 p/person, first seating at 6:30pm and second seating at 9:45pm.

Eric Alexander Andera Canter
Tuesday, January 1

"My Favorite Things"

  • Eric Alexander and Harold Mabern celebrate the standards and remember one of Coltrane’s most beloved recordings, “My Favorite Things.” Great interpreters of the classics by Rogers, Porter, and Gershwin, Alexander and Mabern are also well-known for rediscovering new “classics” that perhaps never got the attention that they deserved. Their quartet includes the stellar rhythm team of bassist John Webber and drummer Joe Farnsworth.
  • $35 music charge / sets @ 7 (dinner set), 9, 10:30pm (dinner optional)

Wednesday, January 2 and Thursday, January 3

"A Love Supreme" Azar Lawrence Quintet featuring Eddie Henderson

  • Azar Lawrence, a powerful and affecting saxophonist with a heavy Coltrane influence, was featured throughout the 1970s by Elvin Jones, McCoy Tyner and Miles Davis. He also worked with Woody Shaw, Freddie Hubbard, and Billy Higgins; wrote music for Stanley Turrentine and Earth, Wind and Fire; and recorded with Roberta Flack and Marvin Gaye. After a lengthy hiatus, he is focusing seriously on jazz again. Lawrence leads an impressive quintet with trumpeter Eddie Henderson, pianist Benito Gonzalez,bassist Essiet Essiet, and drummer Billy Hart.
  • Azar Lawrence (tenor saxophone), Eddie Henderson (trumpet), Benito Gonzalez (piano), Essiet Essiet (bass), Brandon Lewis (drums)
  • $35 music charge / sets @ 7 (dinner set), 9, 10:30pm (dinner optional)

Friday, January 4 and Saturday, January 5    

George Coleman Quartetwith special guest Al Foster

  • Saxophonist George Coleman, a musician of rare improvisational genius, is currently making some of the most inspired music of his career. After arriving here from Memphis, by way of Chicago, over 50 years ago, Coleman took part in classic recordings by Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, and Chet Baker, before focusing on his own groups. Like a late-Romantic, pre-Free Coltrane, “Big George” expands the boundaries of jazz harmony and tonality. His quartet includes pianist Harold Mabern, bassist Doug Weiss, and special guest drummer Al Foster.
  • George Coleman (tenor saxophone), Harold Mabern (piano), Doug Weiss (bass), Al Foster (drums)
  • $35 music charge / sets @ 7 (dinner set), 9pm(dinner optional)

Smoke Jazz & Supper Club-Lounge is located at 2751 Broadway between 105th and 106th Streets. For more information visit or call (212) 864-6662.

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