Jazz This Week: The Clayton Brothers, Cyrus Chestnut, Matt Wilson, Jan Shapiro, Jazz St. Louis Benefit Gala, and More


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Whether it's some kind of side effect of Jazz Appreciation Month or just coincidence, many of the jazz and creative music performers in St. Louis this weekend seem to have some sort of connection to music education.

On Thursday, singer Jan Shapiro will return to St. Louis to do a free concert for the Jazz at Holmes series at Washington University. Shapiro is a former St. Louisan who now heads the vocal music department at Berklee College of Music in Boston.

Also on Thursday, drummer Matt Wilson and his quartet will perform in a concert with the Webster Groves High School jazz band at Hixson Middle School. For details, see this post.

On Frida, the Clayton Brothers (pictured) begin a two-night engagement at Jazz at the Bistro. Bassist John Clayton and saxophonist Jeff Clayton have been in town all week doing an educational residency for Jazz St. Louis, including school performances, master classes, working with students in JSL's JazzU and All-Stars programs, and more.

For this weekend's performances at the Bistro, they'll be joined by pianist Gerald Clayton (John's son) and drummer Obed Calvaire, plus a “special guest" trumpet player each night. St. Louis' own Keyon Harrold will hold forth on Friday, while Terrell Stafford, who's recorded several discs for the St. Louis based MAXJAZZ label and works frequently with the Claytons, will be there on Saturday.

On Saturday afternoon, pianist Reggie Thomas will perform at the Metropolitan Gallery for the penultimate entry in the Nu-Art Series' spring jazz composers concerts. Thomas, who teaches music at SIUE, will team with drummer Marty Morrison and bassist Nick Jost to do the music of Andrew Hill and his own compositions.

On Saturday evening, pianist Cyrus Chestnut takes the stage at the Sheldon Concert Hall for a program of music concetrating on selections from his CD Cyrus Plays Elvis. As far as I know, Chestnut isn't doing any formal teaching while he's in town, but he's definitely got the chops to school some folkswhen he sits down at the piano. To see some video of Chestnut, check out this post from last Saturday. Also, the Sheldon and Metrotix have a “buy one, get one free" offer on tickets for the Chestnut concert.

Also on Saturday evening, pianist Carol Schmidt, who teaches at Webster University, will play a concert with bassist Ric Vice and several guest vocalists at Elliot Chapel in Kirkwood.

On Sunday, Jazz St. Louis presents its annual benefit gala featuring music from saxophonist Houston Person, who will be backed by Good 4 The Soul, plus the Funky Butt Brass Band and the Jazz St. Louis All-Stars student ensemble. Ticket prices start at $250 perperson, and proceeds from the event benefit JSL's education programs. For details, go here.

Looking beyond the weekend, on Tuesday Jazz St. Louis holds the monthly meeting of its CD Listening Club at Borders Books & Music in Brentwood. The featured CD for April is Stanley Turrentine's Sugar, and the special guest will be KMOX and KMOV broadcaster Carol Daniel (who, due to a lack of obvious connections to jazz, seems a puzzling choice to yr. humble editor).

For more jazz-related events in St. Louis this weekend and beyond, please visit the St. Louis Jazz Notes Calendar, which can be found on the left sidebar of the site or by clicking here. You also can keep up with all the latest news by following St. Louis Jazz Notes on Twitter at http://twitter.com/StLJazzNotes or by becoming a “fan" of the StLJN Facebook page.

(If you have calendar items, band schedule information, news tips, links, or anything else you think may be of interest to StLJN's readers, please email the information to stljazznotes (at) yahoo (dot) com. If you have photos, MP3s or other digital files, please send links, not attachments.)

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This story appears courtesy of St. Louis Jazz Notes by Dean Minderman.
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