JazzColumbus Weekly – September 1, 2016

Happy September! As you prepare for your Labor Day weekend festivities, I have two news items this week from “The One and Only,” Dick’s Den. The renowned dive bar recently announced that, following in the success of their Wednesday residency program, drummer and Columbus legend Wally Mitchel will be playing every Sunday night from September 4th through the remainder of 2016. His supporting cast will rotate from week to week, likely including many of his collaborators from his June Wednesday residency. Each week’s show will feature two sets running from 8pm to 11pm, and there is NO COVER. This is a wonderful new opportunity to see “The Eastside Kid” in action and enjoy excellent live jazz before having to get ready for the work week. Dick’s Den is also currently looking for local musicians to host a month of Wednesday residency performances in 2017 – email inquiries to theoneandonlydicksden AT gmail.com.

Shows To See This Week

Friday, September 2nd (8 – 11pm): Dwight Bailey & Friends at Phenix Banquet Center, 2101 Noe Bixby Road. After a summer hiatus, this East Side event center’s “First Fridays at Phenix” concert series returns with a bang! Bassist Bailey is in demand around town and around the world with a resume that includes three years in Dr. John’s band. For this show he will be joined by a veteran cast of keyboardist Chris Brown, guitarist Doug Neel, and drummer Neal Cobb. Cover is $10, and there will be food and drink specials. Kick off your holiday weekend with some lively jazz in a new setting.

Sunday, September 4th (8pm – 2am): Rumba Cafe 10 Year Anniversary Concert: Tony Monaco Trio and Hoo Doo Soul Band. This Olde North Columbus live music destination is celebrating ten years in business with four days of concerts this weekend, Thursday through Sunday. While the remainder of the schedule honors other angles of the venue’s eclectic calendar, this pre-Labor Day double bill is a quick but effective summary of Rumba’s contributions to the Columbus live jazz scene. Opening is B3 organ monster Monaco, who has entertained crowds at Rumba on many Tuesdays over the years including the present (when in town), and one of his trios of talented companions. Headlining is the Hoo Doo Soul Band in their weekly Sunday night slot, which they have held down since the bar’s opening (and another decade-plus before that at Oldfield’s on High), making it a great hang for local musicians. The venerable funk/soul/rock/etc. cover band, boasting a lineup of some of Columbus’ finest players, holds court with an energetic blend of irresistible hits. This will be a sweaty wall-to-wall party for the holiday weekend, so get there early! Cover is $10 at the door.

Thursday, September 8th (10:30pm – 2am): Gentleman Brawlers at Dick’s Den. This Brooklyn-based quintet of Afro-soul revivalists is stopping through town for a Thursday dance party as part of a week-long Midwest and East Coast tour. Formed in 2011, the band consists of Becca Fox (vocals), Jim Thomson (guitar/vocals), Matt “CK” Walsh (guitar/vocals), Trevor Brown (bass), and Ben Charnley (drums). As Fox explained to me, the band uses inspiration from classic Afrobeat and Soukous styles to expose new audiences to African music:

It’s been our band’s mission to shake up the independent music world by bringing some rhythmic sophistication from these influences which American audiences mostly haven’t heard, but love it when they do. And it’s our experience that audiences do recognize that we’re playing African music. People come up all the time after shows asking, “Is that African music? What is that you’re playing?”, so we feel that we are bringing African music to people’s ears in this way even though we don’t market ourselves as an African band per se.

Have a great week! Here’s some samples to get you started:

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