Fri Mar 1, 7:30 PM / Seattle Jazz Fellowship- 109 S. Main St.
Good to see our friend Skerik back out and gigging again. He hits the SJF weekend shift with familiar company in pianist Tim Kennedy, bassist Geoff Harper and drummer D’Vonne Lewis, all of whom have been collarborators with the eclectic saxophonist. Skerik’s music has a good habit of bringing out something a little extra in those diving into it. His set in 2023 was the best attended Seattle Jazz Fellowship performance– nobody was disappointed. The music had a wide dynamic range and a free spirit that prevailed over two sets. Look for the same on what should be a great evening of music. https://seattlejazzfellowship.org/events
Fri – Sat Mar 1 & 2, 7:30 PM / Jazz Alley
If an evening of a skilled jazz pianist / vocalist covering standards is your thing, then this is your gig. I attended her run last year in Seattle, going in with a commodified impression of Kandace Springs. I left with the understanding that she is a soulful performer who is all in, all the time. Her skill on rhodes and piano are top notch, and her vocal skills are near the top of the trade. Bassist Caylen Bryant and drummer Camille Gainer both double as background vocalists. The trio has tenure and plays with a read and react familiarity. Six shows at the alley is a long haul, but a large opportunity for area jazz fans. https://www.jazzalley.com/www-home/artist.jsp?shownum=7499
Kerry Politzer Trio
with George Colligan & Greg Feingold
Sat Mar 2, 7:30 PM / Seattle Jazz Fellowship- 109 S. Main St.
It’s about time that Seattle listeners become acquainted with Portland based pianist / composer Kerry Politzer. With seven albums released as a leader, Politzer is a nationally acclaimed performer who is currently on the staff at Portland State University. She makes her SJF debut performing with drummer Matt Jorgensen and bassist Greg Feingold, a formidable trio for two sets.
The piano trio is always truly honest and highly vulnerable. This is a good opportunity to gain insight to Politzer’s full musical personality. Her two set night is a nice bookend to a stellar weekend at SJF. https://seattlejazzfellowship.org/events
Jim Knapp Orchestra
Sun Mar 3, 8 PM / Royal Room
The rescheduled date for the previous postponement due to frozen pipes at The Royal Room. Twenty of Seattle’s finest musicians play the music of the late, great composer, Jim Knapp. Knapp is highly regarded on an international scale, but is an absolute legend here in Seattle. Since his passing, the baton has been passed to young pianist/composer-arranger Dylan Hayes and the esteemed veteran, Jay Thomas. Attendance at this show helps continue the Knapp legacy, something difficult to do with such a large, committed band. This is one not to miss. https://theroyalroomseattle.com/event/jim-knapp-orchestra/
Todo Es: Latin Jazz
Thu Mar 7, 7:30 PM / Seattle Jazz Fellowship- 109 S. Main St.
The Seattle Jazz Fellowship is big tent, here bringing in a band that plays a wide array of Latin forms, from Afro-Cuban to Brazilian samba. It’s so often that Latin jazz is presented as dance music. At SJF, the jazz club vibe is closer to concert presentation, where the music must stand up on its own. Kudos to SJF for embracing the whole community and giving it a stage. Band members : Rebecca Garcia – vocals; Daniel Miller – guitar; Stephen Yamada-Heidner – vibraphone and steel drum; Dan Hensley – trumpet and flugelhorn; Tor Dietrichson – percussion; Tim Miller – drums, and John Lilley – acoustic and electric bass.https://seattlejazzfellowship.org/events
Nelda Swiggett Trio with Chris Symer and Adam Kessler
Fri – Sat Mar 8 & 9, 7:30 PM / Seattle Jazz Fellowship- 109 S. Main St.
Pianist/composer Nelda Swiggett has been mostly on the perimeter of the Seattle scene for the past decade. She wasn’t a regular on the local club scene, this after establishing herself as a formidable composer and pianist. Since the live music world came back to life after the pandemic, she has been a frequent participant at local jam sessions, and has reimmersed herself in playing live dates, including this, her second go – around at the Seattle Jazz Fellowship.
Swiggett’s tunes are built around sturdy melodies, taking on a folk vibe that can swing at will. Her piano style is very clean and understated, always lagging a bit behind the beat before catching up in tidy and dynamic fashion. Swiggett has two nights to hit her stride and tell her stories. Chris Symer is a very musical presence on bass and a perfect fit in this trio setting. Drummer Adam Kessler may be the diametric opposite of Swiggett in his approach, setting up his presence as a drummer playing music as opposed to containing himself within the traditional parameters of the rhythm section. Cliff Swiggett will guest on trombone. https://seattlejazzfellowship.org/events
Julian Speaks! with Julian Priester
Sat Mar 9, 1 PM / Seattle Jazz Fellowship – 109 S. Main St.
The personal journey in this music by jazz legend Julian Priester gives us the opportunity to touch the history of jazz in a very personal way. Julian Speaks is where we gather to listen to the many historic recordings Priester has played on, and hear the stories that accompany them. Within those stories are insights into his work with Sun Ra, Herbie Hancock, John Coltrane, Red Garland, Duke Ellington, Max Roach and a littany of others. It is always wise to listen to the elders of our music and gather the wisdom they have collected over decades of time. Don’t miss this opportunity to hang with one of the true masters. .https://seattlejazzfellowship.org/events
Brittany Anjou’s Moon Mode
with Matt Jorgensen, Jessica Lurie & Kelsey Mines
Wed Mar 13, 7:30 PM / Seattle Jazz Fellowship – 109 S. Main St.
New York based pianist Brittany Anjou arrives in her hometown of Seattle for two sets at the fellowship. Leading a quartet, Anjou’s music can stray from piano trio to rock, so expect something a little extra. Anjou is featuring music from a new album project in the works. Her musical journey has taken her around the world. as well as a focus on the scene in New York. The Roosevelt grad always enjoys coming home, something that doesn’t happen all that often. Anjou is joined by an all-star Seattle ensemble featuring drummer/composer Matt Jorgensen, saxophonist/flutist Jessica Lurie and bassist Kelsey Mines. https://seattlejazzfellowship.org/events
Darian Asplund Group
Thu Mar 14, 7:30 PM / Seattle Jazz Fellowship- 109 S. Main St.
Multi- reedist Darian Asplund is known as much for his work with blues artists such as Lee Oskar as he is for playing jazz. A regular on tenor and alto at local sessions, he has always been a known quantity around the city, enough so that his work is definitively cross-genre. This band includes pianist Josh Rawlings and bassist Tony Lefaive, both familiar to the Seattle jazz scene, but guitarist Andrew Friedrich and drummer Jansen Leggett are relative unknowns. Friedrich pulls strongly from the jazz guitar tradition. Rawlings has been performing in the piano trio format quite a bit since his days with Industrial Revelation, including a fine trio outing at SJF. Lefaive glides easily from double bass to electric, a skillset that should serve him well with this playlist.
Asplund will play originals as well as jazz arrangements of rock tunes from “famous bands.” https://seattlejazzfellowship.org/events
Xavier Lecouturier Quintet
with Ben Feldman, Matt Williams, Santosh Sharma & Jack Radsliff
Fri – Sat Mar 15 & 16, 7:30 PM / Seattle Jazz Fellowship- 109 S. Main St.
Drummer / composer Xavier Lecouturier has been busy composing new music and is presented with a weekend to realize that effort performing with a stellar quintet of close musical acquaintances. Bassist Ben Feldman and tenor saxophonist Santosh Sharma are Seattle natives now living in New York. They have a long history with Lecouturier here in the Emerald City, a bond unshaken by a worldwide pandemic and three thousand miles of distance.
Pianist Matt Williams has quickly gained a reputation for being one of the city’s finest pianists and has added vibraphone to that skillset as well. Whether performing acoustically or with electric keyboards, Williams has an orchestral sense and an experimental curiosity to his playing that is very intriguing. Guitarist Jack Radsliff is a Bay Area native currently based in Eugene. He has been showing up on the periphery of the Seattle scene after playing with many of the top players coming out of Portland. Together, this band represents the high end of the newest wave of impactful voices in jazz from Seattle and the Pacific Northwest. Each brings with them an original compositional slant as well, adding to the diversity of sound that should grace this weekend residency. https://seattlejazzfellowship.org/events
Martin Budde Trio
with Trevor Ford & Evan Woodle
Thu Mar 21, 7:30 PM / Seattle Jazz Fellowship- 109 S. Main St.
Celebrating the release of his new trio album Backburner, on the Origin / OA2 label, guitarist Martin Budde leads a formidable trio for two sets at SJF. Drummer Evan Woodle would seem the perfect foil here, with his broad ranging style that features shimmering cymbal work. Bassist Trevor Ford has a definitive richness of tone, adventurous spirit and the ability to flat out swing. Things are lined up for the unknown to have interesting properties and open possibilities for an interesting musical journey.
Budde’s tunes have a folk-like quality to them, stemming from his musical upbringing around the folk and bluegrass scene in his native Alaska. His playing is more John Abercrombie than any folk adventurist however, using that harmonic framework to create open spaces to probe in this wide open trio. https://seattlejazzfellowship.org/events
Thu – Sun Mar 21 – 24, 7:30 & 9:30 PM / Jazz Alley
Bassist Marcus Miller is one of the true titans of the electric bass. With a career that now spans more than four decades, he has stayed on the course of change that was set in motion by his decade-long tenure with Miles Davis in the 1980’s. He has made an indelible mark with his compositional skills as well, penning tunes for records, film and television. No word on the band yet, but safe to assume this will be a fusion performance with a killin’ band. Stay tuned. https://www.jazzalley.com/www-home/artist.jsp?shownum=7511
Beserat Tafesse Quartet
with Chris Icasiano, Matt Williams & Michael Glynn
Fri – Sat Mar 22 & 23, 7:30 PM / Seattle Jazz Fellowship- 109 S. Main St.
It’s been awhile since we’ve seen a trombonist as an out and about bandleader in Seattle. Not since David Marriott’s Triskadekaband have we seen a band fronted by a trombonist as a regular part of the local club scene. It’s been fun watching Beserat Tafesse rise from a mildly tentative, highly trained musician, to a confident, clear voice and an aggressive, active bandleader. His powerful, full sound serves his melody based approach to soloing, utilizing on point long tones and rapid fire bursts.
Tafesse’s skillset in forming a band seems to be on the rise as well. Bad Luck and Fleet Foxes drummer Christopher Icasiano, Seattle first call bassist Michael Glynn and innovative pianist Matt Williams are so much more than a supporting rhythm section. Each brings a spirit of adventure to the stage, with a full weekend to explore where the quartet can go. https://seattlejazzfellowship.org/events
Orrin Evans Trio
featuring Robert Hurst & Mark Whitfield, Jr.
Tue Mar 26, 7:30 PM / Seattle Jazz Fellowship- 109 S. Main St.
Orrin Evans is one of the most noted and influential pianists in jazz over the past twenty years. With fourteen albums released as a leader, he has shown us his artistry via piano trio, quartet and quintet settings, and large ensemble with his Captain Black Big Band. His friendship with trumpeter Thomas Marriott has enabled him to visit Seattle and become a friend of the local scene here. In this trio setting, he teams up with the great Robert Hurst on bass, and sensational young drummer, Mark Whitfield, Jr..
It can’t be overemphasized that to see musicians of this artistry in an intimate space like 109 S. Main is an extraordinary opportunity for Seattle jazz fans. Be sure to get there early to guarantee a spot. There is a cover, and SJF memberships do not apply to this date. https://seattlejazzfellowship.org/events
Jackson Cotugno Quartet
with Tim Kennedy, Stefan Schatz & Paul Gabrielson
Thu Mar 28, 7:30 PM / Seattle Jazz Fellowship- 109 S. Main St.
It has been a lot of fun to see the rise of tenor saxophonist Jackson Cotugno on the Seattle scene. The young tenorist is on a lot of gigs these days, as well as leading his own quartet. Cotugno has benefited greatly from the oral tradition in the music, putting himself in positions to play with the majority of the major voices in Seattle jazz. His sound is old, comping favorably with pre-bop masters like Coleman Hawkins and Ben Webster, but his spirit is adventurous and open minded, more taking cues from post-bop masters.
Cotugno is building his sound and approach among some of the best players in the city. Pianist Tim Kennedy, bassist Paul Gabrielson and drummer Stefan Schatz are top tier players that set the bar high for him, a challenge he takes on with great verve. The two set evening should be swingin’, and a delve into the adventurous spirit represented by its four participants. https://seattlejazzfellowship.org/events
Omar Sosa Quarteto Americanos
Tue – Wed Mar 27 & 28, 7:30 PM / Jazz Alley
Omar Sosa has been on a fascinating musical journey for quite some time now. He has created his sound by his real life adventures in Cuba, Africa, The United States, and during the pandemic shutdown, Spain. What we haven’t witnessed for thirty years is a tour like the current one, featuring American musicians. San Francisco cats, in bassist Ernesto Mazar Kindelan, drummer Josh Jones and saxophonist Sheldon Brown join Sosa in a band that features improvisation within jazz, latin and world forms. The performance will feature compositions from earlier in Sosa’s career, when he first arrived in San Francisco in the mid 1990’s. The ensemble more closely resembles a traditional jazz setup than in the recent past, giving newer fans a glimpse into something more experienced fans remember well from when Sosa first crossed the threshold into American jazz. His performances are always all in, honest and emotive.
Susan Pascal Quartet
with Bill Anschell, Chris Symer & John Bishop
Fri – Sat Mar 29 & 30, 7:30 PM / Seattle Jazz Fellowship- 109 S. Main St.
Vibraphonist Susan Pascal has been a strong presence in Seattle jazz for quite some time, going back to establishing herself with a lengthy residency at the now shuttered Belltown jazz spot, Tula’s. While being one of the few vibes masters around town, she has always managed to put together outstanding bands. Her status as a strong female bandleader over the past twenty years has served as quantifiable inspiration for up and coming female players.
Pianist Bill Anschell is a major headliner in the city himself, and has performed with Pascal during the majority of her tenure as a bandleader. Drummer John Bishop is one of the most original percussion masters ever to rise in Seattle. Bassist Chris Symer is an exceptionally musical bassist, always offering melodic input into the mix aside from hanging on to the groove. Pascal’s vibe (pun intended) as a leader is one of equal partnership within the musical conversation. With these four conversationalists, it should be a fascinating narrative. https://seattlejazzfellowship.org/events