JAZZ FEST GUIDE 2012: Schedule and bios for Wednesday, June 27

Kneebody. PHOTO PROVIDED

Wednesday, June 27

4 p.m.: Steve Martin & The Steep Canyon Rangers Kodak Hall ($35-$60, SOLD OUT)

4:30 p.m.: Webster Schroeder HS Jazz Band Jazz Street Stage (FREE)

5:15 p.m.: School of the Arts HS Jazz Band Jazz Street Stage (FREE)

5:30 p.m.: Bill Evans Soulgrass Harro East Ballroom ($20 or Club Pass)

5:45 p.m.: Benny Green Hatch Recital Hall ($20 or Club Pass)

6 p.m.: The Westview Project Big Tent ($20 or Club Pass)

6 p.m.: ESM-XRIJF Jazz Scholarships Alumni Combo Jazz Street Stage (FREE)

6 p.m.: Rino Cirinna & Friends Rochester Club ($20 or Club Pass)

6 p.m.: Kneebody Montage ($20 or Club Pass)

6 p.m.: Eliane Elias Brasileira Quartet Kilbourn Hall ($25 or Club Pass)

6:15 p.m.: Shirantha Beddage Quartet Max of Eastman Place ($20 or Club Pass)

6:30 p.m.: Rich Thompson Trio Generations Xerox Auditorium ($20 or Club Pass)

6:45 p.m.: Osian Roberts/Steve Fishwick Quintet Christ Church ($20 or Club Pass)

7 p.m.: Russell Scarbrough Soul Jazz Big Band RG&E Fusion Stage (FREE)

7:15 p.m.: Bill Evans Soulgrass Harro East Ballroom ($20 or Club Pass)

7:15 p.m.: Fred Costello Jazz Street Stage (FREE)

7:30 p.m.: FFEAR Lutheran Church ($20 or Club Pass)

7:45 p.m.: Benny Green Hatch Recital Hall ($20 or Club Pass)

7:45 p.m.: Yvette Landry Abilene ($20 or Club Pass)

8 p.m.: Steve Martin & The Steep Canyon Rangers Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre ($35-$60, SOLD OUT)

8:30 p.m.: Big Sam’s Funky Nation Big Tent ($20 or Club Pass)

8:45 p.m.: Osian Roberts/Steve Fishwick Quintet Christ Church ($20 or Club Pass)

9 p.m.: Russell Scarbrough Soul Jazz Big Band RG&E Fusion Stage (FREE)

9 p.m.: Rich Thompson Trio Generations Xerox Auditorium ($20 or Club Pass)

9:15 p.m.: Fred Costello Jazz Street Stage (FREE)

9:30 p.m.: FFEAR Lutheran Church ($20 or Club Pass)

9:45 p.m.: Yvette Landry Abilene ($20 or Club Pass)

10 p.m.: Rino Cirinna & Friends Rochester Club ($20 or Club Pass)

10 p.m.: Eliane Elias Brasileira Quartet Kilbourn Hall ($25 or Club Pass)

10 p.m.: Shirantha Beddage Quartet Max of Eastman Place ($20 or Club Pass)

10 p.m.: Kneebody Montage ($20 or Club Pass)

10 p.m.: Big Sam’s Funky Nation Big Tent ($20 or Club Pass)

10:30 p.m.: Jazz Jam Session w/Bob Sneider Trio State St. Bar and Grill (FREE)

 

Benny Green

[ JAZZ ]

By the time Benny Green was 7 years old, he was plunking out jazz tunes at the family piano. While still a teenager he was precocious enough to play with greats like Joe Henderson and Woody Shaw. And, in his early 20s, he lent his keyboard talents to jazz royalty including Betty Carter, Art Blakey, and Freddie Hubbard. He was almost 30 when the great Oscar Peterson selected Green as the first recipient of Toronto’s Glenn Gould Protégé Prize in Music. Since then he has traveled the world as one of the most formidable pianists in jazz. (RN)

 

Bill Evans Soulgrass

[ JAZZ ]

Saxophonist Bill Evans has had to contend with sharing a name with one of the greatest pianists in jazz history. To complicate matters, early in his career (like that other Bill Evans) he played with Miles Davis. He also did a stint with John McLaughlin’s Mahavishnu Orchestra. But in recent years Evans has forged a path guaranteed to distinguish him from all other players. Soulgrass combines Evans’ soulful saxophone with a traditionally bluegrass banjo and fiddle, creating a fresh form of fusion as intricate as it is beautiful. (WC)

http://billevanssax.com/wordpress/

 

Eliane Elias Quartet

[ JAZZ ]

Classically trained in Brazil, Eliane Elias honed her piano skills at the Juilliard School in New York in the early 1980’s. But she was adept enough at jazz to be asked to join the jazz supergroup Steps Ahead with well-established players like Michael Brecker and Peter Erskine. Since leaving the group in the mid-1980’s, she’s been concentrating on her own bands. And while she’s known best for her excellent piano skills, she has more recently emerged as a formidable vocal stylist, lending a sultry air to Brazilian classics and American hits like the title tune of her new album, “Light My Fire.” (FD)

http://elianeelias.com/

 

Ffear

[ CHAMBER JAZZ ]

New York’s experimental chamber jazz ensemble Ffear embodies pretty much everything listeners fear when it comes to improvisational jazz. But there is clearly a map in the apparent wandering; that or the band members share the same madness. With its classic phrasing amidst contemporary spelunking, this quartet is quirky, slightly chaotic, and fun. You have nothing to fear but fear itself. (FD)

Reverbnation.com/ffear

 

Fred Costello

[ SWING/ORGAN ]

With a casual elegance and ever-present cheshire grin, Fred Costello has got to be Rochester’s king of hipster swing. Costello works the B-3 as if he had four hands. His organ has accompanied Rochester Red Wings’ balls, strikes, and home runs since 1977. But balls and strikes aside, Costello is a top-notch talent who has gigged everywhere, including extended stands in Vegas. You can get the skinny in his recent autobiography, “Fred Costello: A Lifetime Of Nightclubs & Ballparks.” (FD)

fredcostello.com

 

Generations Trio with Rich Thompson

[ JAZZ ]

When Eastman professor Rich Thompson is not teaching you can find him behind a drum set. Over the years he’s powered The Count Basie Orchestra, Tito Puente’s band, The Byron Stripling quartet, and many other groups. Pianist Christopher Ziemba appeared on “The David Letterman Show” at age 11. In 2011 he won the Jacksonville Jazz Piano Competition. Now 25, Ziemba has been a guest on “Marian McPartland’s Piano Jazz.” When Thompson and Ziemba joined forces with young bassist-composer Miles Brown six years ago, Generations Trio was born. (RN)

 

Jam Session with Bob Sneider Trio

See listing for Friday, June 22.

 

Kneebody

[ AVANT-GARDE ]

The instrumentation may be typical — trumpet, saxophone, keyboard, bass, and drums — but leave it to Kneebody to transform the classic septet into an exotic mix. At times it’s about a kind of insistent minimalism: the repeated riff, built upon and expanded. But it can also be gorgeously strange harmonies and wild flights of fancy. The band members are all top-notch players, but what makes Kneebody stand out from the crowd is a sensibility drawing on artists from Ornette Coleman to John Cage, from Frank Zappa to Radiohead. If you’re ready for one of the festival’s most adventurous journeys, get on board. (RN)

http://kneebody.com/

 

Osian Roberts/Steve Fishwick Quintet

[ JAZZ ]

Saxophonist Osian Roberts is a Welshman and trumpeter Steve Fishwick is British. But put them together and you get a straight-ahead, hard-bop jazz band as American as apple pie. Roberts and Fishwick may both have studied at the Royal Academy of Music in London, but their blistering solos have no British accent. When they harmonize, improvise or trade fours, they’re likely to remind you of an early Miles Davis group or Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers. (RN)

http://osianroberts.com/, http://stevefishwickjazz.com/

 

Rino Cirinna & Friends

[ MINIMALIST SAXOPHONE ]

When the crowds and the heat have your radiator running in the red this year, this is the cat you’ll want to cool off to. Sicilian saxophonist Cirinna has been described as a minimalist, but frankly he’s a just-rightist with his subtle phrasing and willingness to let the others in the sandbox play as well. A third-generation musician, Cirinna also spends his time as a full-time member of the Mediterranean Jazz Orchestra. (FD)

myspace.com/rinocirinn/friends

 

Russell Scarbrough Soul Jazz Big Band

[ JAZZ ]

If you wonder what the word “soul” is doing in this big band’s title, check out a list of Russell Scarbrough arrangements. It includes songs by Ray Charles and Van Morrison, even Billy Paul’s “Me and Mrs. Jones.” Scarbrough’s innovative compositions and distinctive arrangements use the big-band palette in fresh and decidedly different ways. A graduate of the Eastman School of Music, Scarbrough is director of the Roberts Wesleyan College Jazz Ensemble. His own band is a 19-piece contemporary jazz orchestra boasting some of Rochester’s finest musicians. (RN)

http://home.earthlink.net/~rscarbro/russell/

 

Shirantha Beddage

[ JAZZ ]

Born in North Bay, Ontario, saxophonist Shirantha Beddage came to Rochester to earn his doctorate at the Eastman School of Music. While there he received the school’s Raymond and Maxine Schirmer Prize for achievements in jazz composition. His wonderful album, “Roots and Branches,” confirms the high level of his compositional talents in addition to showcasing his formidable skills on baritone, tenor, and soprano saxophones. Beddage, who also plays piano, serves as director of theory and harmony in the music department of Toronto’s Humber College. (RN)

http://www.shiranthabeddage.com

 

Steve Martin & The Steep Canyon Rangers

[ BLUEGRASS ]

Steve Martin is more than just a wild and crazy guy, and The Steep Canyon Rangers are more than just a bluegrass band. The banjo is nothing new to Martin, who has incorporated the instrument into his act for years. To be sure, this is no novelty, as Martin knows his way around the oft-maligned instrument’s neck. He first demonstrated his five-string prowess on Earl Scruggs’ remake of “Foggy Mountain Breakdown” in 2001, and has appeared at a plethora of venues including Carnegie Hall, “A Prairie Home Companion,” and Bonnaroo. The band exhibits breathtaking dexterity, beautiful harmony, and a slick sense of humor. Just dig the groups “Atheists Don’t Have No Songs” and you’ll laugh milk through your nose. (FD)

Stevemartin.com, Steepcanyon.com

 

The Westview Project

[ JAZZ ]

Pianist Jeff Lawlis recently played at the White House, accompanying a young violinist. Saxophonist Doug Stone has toured with Maynard Ferguson’s Big Bop Nouveau. Bassist Tim Larson has performed in blues, rock, and jazz groups from Boston to Seattle. And drummer Jim Blease laid down the beat in a variety of funk and r&b bands from South Dakota to Texas. Put them together in the Westview Project and you’re guaranteed generous helpings of classic jazz from the 1950’s and 1960’s. (RN)

http://thewestviewproject.com/index.php

 

Yvette Landry

[ HONKY-TONK/AMERICANA ]

Call it hard-rocking honky tonk. Call it alt-country. Call it what you want, but Yvette Landry’s music is that jubilant upstart strain that American music is (was?) known for. Hailing from Breaux Bridge, Louisiana, Landry sings pretty with a beautiful tone as twangy as her guitar. She has toured with or backed up folks like Balfa Toujours, Bill Kirchen, Carol McComb, and the Lafayette Rhythm Devils. Landry also plays bass in the all-female Cajun band Bonsoir Catin. Her debut CD, the 16-track “Should Have Known,” was released in 2010. (FD)

yvettelandry.com

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