Jazz Avenues - May 2017

Acclaimed vocalist Christie Dashiell performs on May 13 at The Alex in Georgetown and during the DC Jazz Festival next month. Photo: Christie Dashiell

Scott, Ndegeocello, Chestnut Head May Jazz Jams

April showers have given way to May flowers, and jazz is blooming this month with a swinging variety of artists.

Saxophonist Herb Scott, founder of the Capitol Hill Jazz Foundation, leads a group on May 12 at Westminster Presbyterian Church. Vocalist and bassist Meshell Ndegeocello, the multi-talented, multi-genre performer, presents the concert “Pour Ame Souveraine, A Dedication to Nina Simone” on May 13 at the Crossroads Club at the Kennedy Center. Cyrus Chestnut, Baltimore’s virtuoso pianist, appears on May 19 at the Montpelier Arts Center in Laurel, Md.

Other top acts this month include steel drum guru Victor Provost’s “Bright Eyes, CD Release Party,” May 17, at Blues Alley; The Cookers on the same night at Bethesda Blues & Jazz Supper Club; Akua Allrich & The Tribe at Westminster on May 19; trombonist/bandleader Shannon Gunn leading the DC Jazz Jam on May 21 at The Brixton restaurant in DC; and drummer and percussionist virtuoso John Russell Lamkin III performing on May 26-27 at Twins Jazz.

And, brand new jazz comes to us thanks to 705network Music, which begins a monthly afternoon jazz series at 4 p.m., May 27, at St. Augustine’s Episcopal Church, 202-554-3222, on the Southwest DC waterfront.

DC Jazz Festival Coming Soon

The DC Jazz Festival, coming next month, has made many recent announcements about the star-studded lineup set for venues all over the area, with upcoming news expected soon about the annual East River Jazz concerts. The festival’s preview shows, the Jazz and Families’ Fun Days, are June 3-4 at the Phillips Collection in downtown DC, with jazz and visual arts, storytelling art workshops, instrument petting, and more.

Most recent news included the announcement of the 7th Annual CapitalBop DC Jazz Loft Series shows, with performers including the Brandee Younger Trio and Christie Dashiell, June 9, at the Fridge, 516 Eighth St. S.E.; Mary Halvorson Octet and Brian Settles, June 10, at Tropicalia, 2001 14th St. NW; and Odean Pope’s Saxophone Choir and the Reginald Cyntje Group, June 16, at NYU’s Abramson Family Auditorium, 1307 L St. NW.

Festival headliners previously announced include Lalah Hathaway at the Howard Theatre for the opening show on June 9; Roy Haynes Fountain of Youth Band and Ron Carter and Russell Malone on June 10 at the Howard; Afro-Cuban music with Jane Bunnett and Maqueque on June 10 at the Historic Sixth & I; An Evening with Pat Matheny on June 12 at the Kennedy Center; and DC JazzFest at The Yards shows on June 16-18, with Lori Williams, Robert Glasper Experiment, Jacob Collier, Kenny Garrett, Gregory Porter, and others.

See www.dcjazzfest.org for complete information.

We Thank You, Professor Judith Korey – JJA Hero

A special shout out goes to Professor of Music Judith Korey of the University of the District of Columbia (UDC), named last month as the Jazz Journalists Association 2017 Jazz Hero for the Washington, DC, area.

Korey, who joined the faculty of the university’s predecessor institution, Federal City College, in 1972 and credits our area music maestro Bobby Felder for helping her get started, is well-known for being curator of the Felix E. Grant Jazz Archives at UDC, but she is also the force behind UDC’s JAZZAlive concerts and programs and the annual Calvin Jones Big Band Festival.

According to JJA information, Korey “wants to share the recognition bestowed by the Jazz Hero Award with those she calls her ‘awesome JAZZAlive team,’ including Allyn Johnson, Rachel Elwell, Cheryl Hawkins, Michael Fitzgerald, Dr. Eve Byford-Peterson, and Serdar Sirtanadolu.”

May Highlights:Tamir Hendelman, May 10, Bethesda Blues & Jazz Supper Club … Herb Scott, May 12, Westminster Presbyterian Church … Christie Dashiell, May 13, The Alex/Graham Georgetown Hotel … Meshell Ndegeocello/Nina Simone Dedication, May 13, Kennedy Center … John “JS” Williams, May 14, DC Jazz Jam/The Brixton … Victor Provost Group/CD Release Party, May 17, Blues Alley … The Cookers, May 17, Bethesda Blues & Jazz … Arturo Sandoval, May 18-21, Blues Alley … Akua Allrich & The Tribe, May 19, Westminster … Project Natale, May 19-20, Twins Jazz … Cyrus Chestnut, May 19, Montpelier Arts Center/Laurel … Integriti Reeves, May 20, The Alex … Shannon Gunn, May 21, DC Jazz Jam/The Brixton … Joe Fiedler, May 21, Twins Jazz … Gerald Clayton Trio, May 22, Blues Alley … Lena Seikaly, May 23, Blues Alley … Benny Sharoni, May 24, Twins Jazz … Roy Ayers, May 25-26, Bethesda Blues & Jazz … John Russell Lamkin III, May 26-27, Twins Jazz … Rick Whitehead, May 26, Westminster … Jazz Night at the Movies/Ella Fitzgerald “Something to Live For,” May 26, Westminster … Sharon Clark, May 28, Blues Alley … Marty Nau, May 31, Twins Jazz …

May Birthdays: Shirley Horn 1; Richard “Groove” Holmes 2; John Lewis 3; Ron Carter 4; Mary Lou Williams 8; King Oliver 11; Red Garland 13; Jackie McLean 17; Fats Waller 21; Sun Ra 22; Archie Shepp 24; Miles Davis 25; Hilton Ruiz 29, Benny Goodman 30; Louis Hayes 31

Steve Monroe is a Washington, DC, writer who can be reached at steve@jazzavenues.com and followed at www.twitter.com/jazzavenues.