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Singer and Songwriter Gabrielle Stravelli at Chelsea Table + Stage. Photo courtesy of gabriellestravelli.com
Cabaret
Edward A Kliszus

Gabrielle Stravelli at Chelsea Table + Stage

NEW YORK – Gabrielle Stravelli at Chelsea Table + Stage, winner of the 2023 Broadway World Cabaret Award for Best Vocal Jazz Show, stormed the stage with guitarist Saul Rubin for the perfect Valentine’s Day performance.

Arthur Kell Speculation Quartet (courtesy ArthurKell.com)
Jazz
Edward A Kliszus

Arthur Kell Speculation Quartet

Jazz lovers will want to see and hear the Arthur Kell Speculation Quartet. With the opening sounds tonight at the fabulous Smalls Jazz Club set in Manhattan’s West Village, one sensed the culmination of 50 years of evolution of fusion first expressed by Chick Corea, Gary Burton, and Wayne Shorter.

Orrin Evans and the Captain Black Big Band Holiday Extravaganza at Birdland. Photo by Edward Kliszus
Jazz
Edward A Kliszus

Orrin Evans Holiday Extravaganza at Birdland

The Orrin Evans Holiday Extravaganza at Birdland was electric with a festive spirit as the big band took to the stage, adorned with shimmering decorations, glittering lights and guest stars Michelle Lordi, Alexia Bontempo, JD Walter, and Milton Suggs.

Hays Street Hart at Smoke Jazz. Photo by Edward Kliszus
Jazz
Edward A Kliszus

Hays Street Hart at Smoke Jazz Club

Hays Street Hart at Smoke Jazz Club presented tunes from their Bridges Record Release tonight. As I sat in the sold-out performance the sounds I heard reminded me of the incredible importance of the jazz trio (aka rhythm section). From the first few bars, I imagined the work of Bill Evans, bassist Scott LaFaro, and drummer Paul Motian—or perhaps Oscar Peterson with bassist Ray Brown and drummer Ed Thigpen.

Conrad Herwig. Photo from ConradHerwig.com
Jazz
Edward A Kliszus

Conrad Herwig and The Latin Side All-Stars at The Django

Conrad Herwig and The Latin Side All-Stars at The Django brought forth classic, expressive jazz. Herwig enriched it with the syncopation, excitement, and complexity of Latin rhythm, the pathos of Coltrane, and a dash of the rhythmic drive of Bebop. After the band played the head, solos didn’t just follow the tune’s melody, a technique common with jazz players. Solos inhabited the structure of bar lines, chords, and powerful rhythms in personal contexts. The complex relationships between improvised melodies, structures, and rhythm resulted in rich, abstract, and contextual meanings for listeners. It was fantastic!

Michael Davis. Photo by Julieta Cervantes
Jazz
Edward A Kliszus

Michael Davis Hip-Bone Big Band

The Michael Davis Hip-Bone Big Band shook the rafters tonight at New York City’s Birdland Jazz Club with one great number after another. Tonight was a celebration of their new album, Open City. Performed for a packed house, they broke it down with contemporary jazz. It was modern, sophisticated, and cool with smatterings of bebop.

Cyclic Journey by Marshall Gilkes
Jazz
Edward A Kliszus

Marshall Gilkes Presents: Cyclic Journey

Gilkes’s new album Cyclic Journey touches anyone who appreciates and enjoys world-class artistry and virtuosity in classical and jazz idioms. Cyclic Journey is a musical adventure where the listener can experience the sounds of a team of musicians at the top of their game. At the same time, Gilkes shares his biographical virtual journey that emerged from his creative imagination. As you listen, close your eyes, and permit yourself to be transported through his ephemeral, beautiful sonic world.

Alexa Tarantino. Photo: Anna Yatskevich
Jazz
Edward A Kliszus

Alexa Tarantino Quartet

The Alexa Tarantino Quartet made the scene at the Birdland Jazz club. Alto saxophonist Tarantino brings the Bird back to Birdland with her smooth, mellow sound. She’s cool, relaxed, and versatile as she solos and trades with the best of them, allowing everyone to speak their own musical voices to songs in a great groove. She draws us into her world of energy, excitement, and romance. Her sound is soulful, rich, and as subtle and formidable as she commands.

L-R: Emmet Cohen – piano, Mary Stallings – vocals, Peter Washington – bass, Joe Farnsworth – drums at the Smoke Jazz Club in New York City. Photo by Edward Kliszus
Jazz
Edward A Kliszus

Mary Stallings at Smoke Jazz Club

Tonight at Smoke Jazz Club featuring vocalist Mary Stallings with Emmet Cohen – piano, Peter Washington – bass, and Joe Farnsworth – drums, was a true jazz event with ample chance to hear each artist solo and improvise. Unified interactions between Stallings, piano, bass, and drums were superbly executed and characterized by focused listening, rhythmic unity, improvisational interchanges, refinement, and a collective sense of musical accord. Along with the vocal sophistication and inspiration of Stallings’s lead, the instrumental trio created a vibrant and harmonious musical tapestry showcasing the exquisite refinement of the music and their respective profound artistry. It was a great night of jazz!

Matt Baker. Photo courtesy of Hannah Celeste
Cabaret
Victoria L. Dammer

Australian Jazz Pianist Matt Baker

The incredibly personable Baker, currently living in New York City, was accompanied by an all-star band from the local jazz scene, including Grammy-nominated vocalist Nicole Zuraitis, 3rd generation jazz musician trumpeter and vocalist Benny Benack III, guitarist Max Light, Kevin Hailey on double bass and Curtis Nowosad on the drums.

Gabrielle Stravelli at Chelsea Table + Stage

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