Happy new year jazz fans! First up is news of new tributes to dearly departed vocalist Dwight Lenox. Today The Columbus Dispatch published a great obituary with memories from family, friends and bandmates. Details have also emerged regarding the first concert tribute in the area (that we know of) to Lenox’s distinguished career. “A Tribute to Dwight Lenox” will take place on Thursday, January 12th, at 7pm at The Skylight, a new venue and event space in Newark. The night starts with a VIP party at 5:30pm featuring music by the Tom Carroll Trio (with Andy Carlson on fiddle and Doug Richeson on bass), and the main performance includes sets by fusion jam band Saus (formerly Monty Carlos) and fusion masters Descendre. This event also serves as the 100th anniversary of the building, which housed the original Newark Post Office, and will be Skylight’s first concert event. Admission is free!
Jazz Night Out
I took advantage of a holiday week opportunity to see one more show in 2016 when I caught two sets of the Wes Perry Quartet at Brothers Drake on Thursday the 29th. Saxophonist Perry was on break from grad school at CSU Long Beach and assembled old OSU classmates for a relaxed get-together at the meadery. The music for the evening felt to me like a thrilling modern brand of hard bop, where straight ahead jazz is influenced more by modern R&B/neo-soul than classic R&B and gospel. While their picks for standards were beautifully executed, like a dark and dramatic take on Herbie Hancock’s “One Finger Snap” and a gently swinging “Beatrice” by Sam Rivers, the band really seemed to gel on Perry’s originals. His “Lullaby” opened with bassist John Allen stretching out on an unaccompanied passage before the band set a soulful groove for Perry’s yearning lead. The rhythm section of keyboardist Robert Mason, Allen, and drummer Willie Barthel (also known as the Robert Mason Trio) then tightened the groove for a soaring solo by Perry, and continued to turn up the heat for Mason to take flight. “Sweet” found Perry blowing soulfully over a thunderous backdrop before more great solo work by Mason and Allen. The second set ended with “No More,” an elegant but hard-charging bop tune where the solos were delivered powerfully and a heavy finale featured fiery work by Barthel. It’s a shame that this quartet can’t play together more often, but they did hit Oranjudio studio to record some of this material on Friday, so stay tuned for the recorded version!
Shows To See This Week
Friday, January 6th (10pm – midnight): Adria Shahid featuring Mistar Anderson at Natalie’s. Released in November, jazz-influenced soul singer Shahid’s new album Waarrioress of Love is filled with soulful grooves and has been gaining support in the UK Neo Soul & Gospel charts. Her tunes cover a spectrum of topics, moods and emotions. “Gray Sky Gold” glows with jazz inflections and a light, sunny vibe that should appeal to jazz fans of many varieties. For Friday’s show, Shahid will be sharing the spotlight with hip-hop, funk and soul band Mistar Anderson, who recently released the single “Alley Talk.” Get ready for grooves of all varieties! Tickets are available here – Shahid’s album will be available for purchase at the show, but you can also sample and purchase online here.
Sunday, January 8th (6pm – 8pm): Bobby Floyd Showcase featuring Jim Masters at Notes. After a two-week break for the holidays, Floyd’s weekly showcase and jam returns to regular duty. Floyd and his trio will be joined by Columbus Jazz Orchestra trombonist Jim Masters, who will be featured on trombone and vocals. This looks to be a swinging way to wrap up your weekend – get advance tickets here and stay tuned for more great guests to join Floyd and crew.
Thursday, January 12th (10pm – 2am): Liver Quiver at Dick’s Den. This sensitive jazz trio of guitarist Aaron Quinn, saxophonist Alex Burgoyne, and drummer Seth Daily is playing their first show in months as Quinn returns to town from NYC for the weekend. Cover is $5. Quinn was kind enough to paint a picture of what he’s up to next week:
I’m heading back to Columbus for one of my favorite people’s wedding. Alex Burgoyne, Seth Daily and I were talking about getting some shows together for Liver Quiver. We do have some new material, and we have two dates on the books. Tuesday the 10th at the Listing Loon in Cincinnati with Animal Mother (Thanks frands), and Thursday the 12th in Columbus at Dick’s Den (Thanks frands). We will make you sad like usual, but at the same time make you want to fight everyone around you because they don’t care enough: Aka, the way we feel all the time. We love you nonetheless and we hope to see you around because we care about you. Hope that’s ok.
Have a great week! Check out a promo video for the Adria Shahid and Mistar Anderson show: