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The Lead Sheet: Twin Cities Live Jazz, May 26- June 1

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We start off the weekend with our first “summer" holiday, and there's plenty of music to fit in around any barbecues, picnics, or gardening activities. In addition to a good range of local artists, we welcome the return of Chris Potter to the Dakota, with a new quartet celebrating a new release.

Big Gigs This Week

Friday, May 26. At Jazz Central, the cross-generational Schmid/Lewis Ensemblegets back together— 19-year-old guitarist Will Schmid joins forces with veteran trumpeter Greg Lewis and his wife and trombonist Rose Brezinski Lewis, along with two more collegians—Charlie Lincoln on bass and Edmund Catlin on drums. They're playing two sets of all original compositions.

At Vieux Carre', catch the opening set with Jeremy Walker (usually in duo with Jeff Brueske or adding Tim Zhorne for a trio outing), followed by the always-swinging Southside Aces. More: Kronick Quintet at the Public Kitchen (bring dancing shoes); Zacc Harris and James Buckley string it up at the Icehouse; Maurice Jacox croons at Crooners Lounge.

Saturday, May 27. The Selby Avenue Brass band makes its debut on Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog, featuring veterans Larry Sims, Tom Wells, Marilyn Parker and more. They're followed by the Park Evans Quintet— guitar virtuoso Evans with host Steve Kenny on Flumpet, Brandon Wozniak on sax, Cody McKinney on bass, and Greg Schutte on drums.

At Vieux Carre', enjoy the Adam Meckler Quartet. A last-minute replacing for ailing wife Jana Nyberg, Adam and his band are hardly subs. In addition to leader and trumpet master Meckler, the quarter includes Sean Turner on keys, Graydon Peterson on bass, and Kevin Washington on drums.

BDP is back in action at the Aster, with Cameron Kinghorn on vocals, Jake Baldwin on trumpet, Ted Godbout on piano, Ted Olsen on bass, and Andres Crovetti on drums. More: Nachito Herrera returns with some hot Havana fire to the Dakota; Debbie Duncan takes over the lounge at Crooners; Jake Hanson and James Buckleyhandle the dinner sets at the Icehouse.

Sunday, May 28. At the Dakota, a special show with vocalist/actress Regina Marie Williamsas she presents the music of Nina Simone. This is comfortable territory as Williams recently starred in the Park Square Theater production of Nina Simone: Four Women. In the Dunsmore Room, it's the awesome duo of Dave Karr and Sam Miltich—sax and guitar, paying tribute to legend Lester Young. Rounding out the band will be stars in their own right—Chris Bates on bass and Jay Epstein on drums. More: Patty and the Buttonsswing out over brunch at the Aster; Zacc Harris Trio takes their weekly spot at the Riverview Wine Bar.

Monday, May 29. It's a holiday and some of your favorite venues might be closed so check websites etc first. Jazz Central hosts its weekly jam session following some music from local trombonist Gus Murphy.

Tuesday, May 30. A week after Maud Hixson's tribute to Judy Garland in the Dunsmore Room, vocalist Erin Schwab brings another dose to the same venue, adding the music of Bette Midler to the program.

At Jazz Central, Big Band Night presents the Swing Sisterhood—this is the large ensemble directed by Sarah Schmalenberger and featuring some of the metro's top women jazz artists (Joan Griffith, Jendeen Forberg and more).

At the Black Dog, saxophonist Donald Washington's Trio features bassist Dick Studer and drummer Steve Hirsch, while guitarist Zacc Harris opens the evening at Vieux Carre'.

Wednesday, May 31. The Dakota hosts the much anticipated return of saxophonist Chris Potter, and his new quartet is celebrating their ECM release, The Dreamer Is the Dream. The band includes David Virelles on piano, Joe Martin on bass, and Marcus Gilmore on drums, and their music is already drawing rave reviews.

At Vieux Carre', the sonic explorers of the Steven Hobert Quartet take over prime time— pianist Steven with saxophonist Pete Whitman, bassist Yohannes Tona, and drummer Arthur “LA" Buckner. Come early for some jazzy accordion with Patrick Harison.

At Crooners, vocalist Judi Vinar and pianist Lori Dokken are “unplugged" in the lounge, which means “anything goes." Come early for Happy Hour with one of the most delightful duos in town, Charmin Michelle and Denny Malmberg. More— eclectic guitarist Geoff Bouchier is on stage at Jazz Central.

Thursday, June 1. More double fun at Vieux Carre' as Joel Shapira opens on solo guitar, followed by the rebranded “Maryann and the Moneymakers“— formerly known as Corner Jazz. Vocalist (and veteran broadcaster) Maryann Sullivan heads a swinging band with Phil Aaron on piano, Jim Chenoweth on bass, Doug Haining on sax, Pete Enblom on trombone, and Trevor Haining on drums.

At Khyber Pass, it's another opportunity to hear one of the most unique duos in town, Steven Hobert on keys, Issam Rafea on oud as Oudyano.

The Zacc Harris Group is on stage at Reverie—that's guitarist Zacc with Bryan Nichols on keys, Chris Bates on bass and JT Bates on drums. Vocal Jazz Night at Jazz Central features Lawrence Hutera, with Jeff Olson on keys.

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This story appears courtesy of JazzINK by Andrea Canter.
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