Big Week of Jazz at Natalie's February 19 – 23

The latest installments of two excellent local jazz series spearhead a four-night (and one day) run of jazz at Natalie’s this week. Mark Flugge’s “Tribute Series” and Pete Mills’ “Side One Series” both pay respect to the performers’ classic jazz influences in a studied yet heartfelt way. On this go-round, it’s Dave Frishberg and Boss Tenors, respectively. On Friday, Phil Clark & the Soul continue in this vein with their Ray Charles Tribute, and Saturday is the Dan White Sextet‘s last show before their horns move to NYC. To wrap up the run, the Derek DiCenzo Trio will play for Sunday brunch at noon. More details follow:

Wednesday, February 19th: I’m Hip: The Dave Frishberg Songbook is the next installment in the Mark Flugge Tribute series. Dave Frishberg is a jazz pianist, singer, composer, and lyricist who is “arguably the top living lyricist” and has crafted many jazz standards. To honor his jazz contributions, Pianist Flugge’s Trio (with Dave DeWitt on bass and Aaron Scott on drums) will be joined by top local vocalist Jody Mancini as they present their take on Frishberg’s extensive catalog.

Thursday: Picking back up from January’s nod to Wayne Shorter, this week’s Side One Series: Boss Tenors Straight Ahead from Cbus honors another classic 1960s jazz album. 1961’s Boss Tenors: Straight Ahead from Chicago featured tenor saxophonists Gene Ammons and Sonny Stitt locking horns in “battle” on a couple standards and some exciting originals. The 5-tet will perform the album in its entirety, adding their own twists and turns. Joining Mills on the second tenor saxophone will be Michael Cox, and they will be accompanied by a rhythm section of Erik Augis, Andy Woodson, and Zach Compston. Judging from the Shorter show, this should be a lovingly swinging affair.

Friday: Phil Clark & The Soul “combines R&B, Blues, Rock, Gospel and Jazz in an infectious sound that is impossible to deny.” On Friday, the local combo (featuring members of Hoo Doo Soul Band and the Mark Flugge Trio rhythm section) will honor one of their primary influences and sources of material, Ray Charles, with two sets of their favorites.

Saturday: As noted here in an interview last week, Jon Lampley, Chris Ott, and Dan White of the Dan White Sextet are moving to NYC at the end of the month. Saturday’s show is the second of two “farewell shows” and should be a barnburner.

Sunday brunch: To make sure you’ve gotten enough jazz this week, the weekly brunch performance will feature the Derek DiCenzo Trio. Guitarist DiCenzo will be joined by the rhythm section of Dave DeWitt and Aaron Scott, who will both be making their third Natalie’s performance of the week.

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