Jazz this week: Samora Pinderhughes, Karl Denson's Tiny Universe, and more


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This week's calendar of live jazz and creative music in St. Louis features the local debut of a much-talked-about young pianist and composer, the return of one of the jam-band circuit's funk-jazz favorites, and more.

Let's go to the highlights....

Wednesday, July 19

Drummer Kevin Bowers will reconvene the large cast of his Brazilian-influenced, imaginary-movie-soundtrack project NOVA in a free concert for the Missouri Botanical Garden's Whitaker Music Festival.

Elsewhere around town, though the Curtain Call Lounge has withdrawn from the “Grand Center Jazz Crawl,"- apparently permanently, according to StLJN's source- the event goes on as usual, with live jazz and no cover charge at three locations in the district.

This week, you can hear guitarist Tom Byrne and keyboardist Nathan Jatcko this week at KDHX's Magnolia Cafe; the jam session with bassist Bob DeBoo and friends at Kranzberg Arts Center; and two separate shows at The Dark Room at the Grandel Theatre, with saxophonist Lew Winer playing from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. and trumpeter Kasimu Taylor from 9:00 p.m. to midnight.

Thursday July 20

Pianist and composer Samora Pinderhughes with special guest trumpeter Christian Scott will perform at the Pulitzer Arts Foundation.

NPR devoted an episode of “Jazz Night in America" earlier this year to Pinderhughes' debut recording The Transformations Suite, and this will be his first St. Louis gig as a bandleader, playing music “inspired by" the soundtrack he wrote for the documentary film Whose Streets?. For more about Pinderhughes, and his socially-conscious brand of jazz, plus the complete Transformations Suite and some other performances on video, see this post from last Saturday.

Also in the Grand Center district, Cabaret Project St. Louis presents their monthly “Broadway Open Mic," temporarily relocated to The Stage at KDHX; and saxophonist Ben Reece’s Unity Quartet will perform at The Dark Room.

Elsewhere around town, the Funky Butt Brass Band will play a free show outside the St. Louis Public Library downtown, and drummer Maurice Carnes leads a group featuring Dallas pianist Myles Tate in a free concert for the Jazz at Holmes series at Washington University.

Friday, July 21

Saxophonist Karl Denson's Tiny Universe returns for an early-evening outdoor show at the Atomic Cowboy Pavilion. Though the heat is expected to be stifling, expect a big audience of young fans ready to party with Denson's crowd-friendly grooves.

For a look at what Denson and Tiny Universe have been up to since they were in St. Louis a year ago, check out this post from a couple of Saturdays ago.

Also on Friday, drummer Montez Coleman celebrates his birthday with the first of two nights of shows at Jazz at the Bistro. He'll be joined by a band including Adaron Pops Jackson (organ), Adam Maness (piano), Eric Slaughter (guitar), Jason Swagler (alto sax), and Ben Wheeler (bass), with Anita Jackson singing on Friday night and Brian Owens on Saturday.

Elsewhere around town, guitarist and singer Tommy Halloran will play a free show at Ritz Park on South Grand; singer Joe Mancuso and guitarist Dave Black return to The Wolf in Ballwin; and Wack-A-Doo will play swing, vintage jazz and Americana at Evangeline's.

Saturday, July 22

Dizzy Atmosphere returns to Missouri Botanical Garden for another “Garden of Glass" event; The WirePilots will have multi-instrumentalist Sandy Weltman as their special guest for a performance at the Webster Groves Concert Hall; and Sarah Jane and the Blue Notes return to the Venice Cafe.

Sunday, July 23

The St. Louis Jazz Club presents the St. Louis Stompers in a matinee performance at the Moolah Shrine Center, and Community Women Against Hardship's summer benefit at Ferring Jazz Bistro will feature Detroit-based saxophonist Yancyy with an ensemble including singer Anita Jackson, pianist Tony Suggs, bassist Jeff Anderson, and drummer Montez Coleman.

Monday, July 24

Trumpeter Jim Manley will play for diners and drinkers at Momo's Greek Restaurant.

Tuesday, July 25

Pianist Pat Joyce returns to Evangeline's, and saxophonist “Blind" Willie Dineen and the Broadway Collective will be back for their monthly gig at BB's Jazz, Blues & Soups.

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This story appears courtesy of St. Louis Jazz Notes by Dean Minderman.
Copyright © 2020. All rights reserved.

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