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    Wood in Bronze/ Bates and Epstein Two-Day Micro Tour, March 10-11 PDF Print
    Written by Andrea Canter, Contributing Editor   
    Monday, 09 March 2015

    Wood in BronzeİAndrea Canter

    Bassist Chris Bates and drummer Jay Epstein seem to follow each other from one jazz gig to another. They form a formidable rhythm section partnership for such esteemed ensembles as Red Planet (with Dean Magraw), Framework (with Chris Olson), and the Dean Granros Quartet (aka Tall Tales); and find themselves together on the bandstand for numerous other projects.  Yet they have never just played as a duo. Now, dubbing themselves Wood in Bronze, Chris and Jay will do just that, taking duo magic on a "micro tour", starting at the Black Dog in St. Paul on Tuesday, March 10, and ending the next night at Jazz Central in Minneapolis.

    Grammy Winner Cassandra Wilson Returns to the Dakota, March 10-11 PDF Print
    Written by Andrea Canter, Contributing Editor, & Ronaldo Oregano   
    Saturday, 07 March 2015

    Cassandra Wilson

    "In song after song, Holiday turned deep troubles into high art, giving voice to sorrows both universal and uniquely her own. Wilson for the most part has taken a quite different tack, her renditions of songs associated with Holiday showing considerable tonal beauty, warmth of delivery and joyousness of spirit. A singer significantly influenced by Holiday, in other words, clearly has decided to celebrate Holiday's life rather than mourn it." --Howard Reich, Chicago Tribune

    Acclaimed vocalist, songwriter and producer Cassandra Wilson returns to the Dakota this week, March 10-11, less than a year after her last visit. Described by critic Gary Giddins as "a singer blessed with an unmistakable timbre and attack who has expanded the playing field," Wilson's signature style incorporates blues, country and folk music into her work. Last year, Cassandra celebrated the 20th anniversary of her iconic album, Blue Light Til Dawn. This spring, she is touring in celebration of the 100th anniversary of Billie Holiday, a prelude to her upcoming release of Coming Forth By Day: A Tribute to Billie Holiday.

    David Sanchez Quartet at the Dakota, March 9 PDF Print
    Written by Andrea Canter, Contributing Editor   
    Saturday, 07 March 2015

    David SanchezİAndrea Canter

    Sanchez makes “solo statements of unmistakable originality, technical acumen and expressive power.” --The Chicago Tribune

    David Sanchez makes “rhythmically entrancing and highly elegant music.” --The New Yorker

    Multiple Grammy nominee and Latin Grammy winning saxophonist David Sanchez makes a welcome return to the Dakota on Monday, March 9. With his acclaimed quartet (Luis Perdamo, Ricky Rodriguez and Obed Calvaire), Sanchez is touring in support of a new project, "Bamboula," tracing the history of West African drum rhythms through his native Puerto Rico, Haiti and on to New Orleans-- the melding of African, Caribbean and American jazz music. Sanchez most recently performed at the Dakota with the SF Jazz Collective (2013).

    Charles Lincoln Group Opens for DD7's Live Recording Session at the Black Dog, March 7 PDF Print
    Written by Andrea Canter, Contributing Editor   
    Thursday, 05 March 2015

    Anthony CoxİAndrea Canter

    Every Saturday night, the Black Dog in St Paul's Lowertown features live jazz, with two bands playing back to back. On March 7, the Charles Lincoln Group featuring some of the youngest stars in the metro opens at 7 pm, followed at 8:30 pm by a special performance and live recording session by DD7-- a veteran quintet featuring Anthony Cox, Michael Lewis, Brandon Wozniak, Steve Kenny and JT Bates.

    JT's Organ Trio at Jazz Central, March 6 PDF Print
    Written by Andrea Canter, Contributing Editor   
    Wednesday, 04 March 2015

    JT BatesİAndrea Canter

    The Bridge Series at Jazz Central, every Friday night at 7:30 pm, was launched shortly after the closing of the Artists Quarter at the end of 2013, designed to provide a venue for the musicians who had performed at the AQ, and for their audience. Over the past year, this series has also supported veteran artists in new configurations, such as JT Bates' B-3 Organ Trio. With B-3 specialist Kevin Gastonguay, guitarist Zacc Harris, and drummer Bates, the trio performs this Friday, March 6.

    Gravatt and Magraw Bring Their "Fire" to The Nicollet, March 6 PDF Print
    Written by Andrea Canter, Contributing Editor   
    Wednesday, 04 March 2015

    Eric Gravatt and Dean MagrawİAndrea Canter

    “There was a time when big band people, if they had a hit, they had to play that same solo every night. We improvise and play off each other. It’s fresh every night.”  --Eric Kamau Gravatt

    Drum veteran Eric Kamau Gravatt (Weather Report, McCoy Tyner) and eclectic guitar titan Dean Magraw (Red Planet) formed a duo only two years ago, but wasted little time developing a magical partnership. “We went the Coltrane direction,” says Magraw. “I really studied his compositions and the way he played music, improvised and writes music.” Gravatt proved to be a kindred spirit, a Philly native who’d grown up immersed in the city’s rich music scene, including the music of fellow Philadelphian John Coltrane. The two virtuosos brought little but their fertile imaginations to Creation Audio last spring, and followed their collaborative muse to light a Fire on the Nile, released in October 2014 by Red House Records. Fortunately they continue their collaboration with occasional gigs. On Friday, March 6 (8:30 pm), they provide the inaugural act for the new Friday Night Jazz at The Nicollet in south Minneapolis.

    Steve Kenny Does It Again: New Jazz Series Launches March 6 at The Nicollet PDF Print
    Written by Andrea Canter, Contributing Editor   
    Tuesday, 03 March 2015

    Steve KennyİAndrea Canter

    Six months after he launched the successful Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog series in St Paul, trumpeter/bandleader/impresario Steve Kenny takes his concept to Minneapolis, with Friday Night Jazz at The Nicollet set for take-off on Friday, March 6. And he's not fooling around-- the first band to play at The Nicollet is the volcanic duo of Eric Kamau Gravatt and Dean Magraw.

    The O'Shaughnessy Presents "Raisin' Cane: A Harlem Renaissance Odyssey" PDF Print
    Written by Andrea Canter, Contributing Editor   
    Tuesday, 03 March 2015


    Avery Sharpe and Jasmine Guy

    "… a sweet salute to Harlem’s Glory Days.”  — The Arizona Daily Star

    On Friday, March 6 (7:30 pm), The O'Shaughnessy at St. Catherine's University presents the multi-media show, Raisin' Cane: A Harlem Renaissance Odyssey, featuring actress/singer/dancer Jasmine Guy and the acclaimed Avery Sharpe Trio, a Women of Substance event. Inspired by the classic 1923 Jean Toomer novel Cane and works by the musicians, composers, poets, and actors of the Harlem Renaissance, the show celebrates and honors the legendary artists who became the voice of a new generation of African Americans at the end of World War I--Langston Hughes, Countee Cullen, Zora Neale Hurston, W.E.B. DuBois and more. Using text, song, music, movement and imagery, Raisin’ Cane brings to life this critical period of American history.

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