Jazz This Week: Dee Dee Bridgewater, Ann Hampton Callaway, Eric Person, Frank Catalano, Frank Rosaly, and More


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You might say this week's menu of jazz and creative music events in St. Louis has a sort of Noah's Ark vibe to it. The performances are coming in pairs, including two female vocalists, two versatile saxophonists, and two shows with an experimental/free improv bent.

It all gets started on Thursday, when Chicago percussionist Frank Rosaly does a solo show of music from his new recording Milkwork at Lemp Neighborhood Arts Center. Rosaly uses both acoustic and electric instruments, touches on a wide variety of genres, and also incorporates free improvisation and unconventional techniques into his pieces. You can see a brief interview with Rosaly and hear some of his music in the embedded video window at the bottom of this post.

If you're in the mood for something a bit more mainstream, that same evening clarinetist Scott Alberici will perform some straight-ahead swing in a free concert for the Jazz at Holmes series at Washington University.

On Friday, singer Ann Hampton Callaway headlines the “Queens of Jazz" event at the Contemporary Art Museum of St. Louis, with St. Louis' own Denise Thimes opening the show. You can see some video samples of Callaway in action in this post from last Saturday.

Also on Friday, Chicago saxophonist Frank Catalano opens a two-night stand at Jazz at the Bistro. Known as a high-energy player who can swing hard or go outside if the situation warrants it, Catalano played in St. Louis last September for the now-defunct Tuesday night jazz series at the Gramophone, and then was invited to make his Bistro debut this year. To see a couple of videos of Catalano, check out this post.

On Saturday evening, singer Dee Dee Bridgewater kicks off the 2009-10 jazz series at the Sheldon Concert Hall with a program paying tribute to Billie Holiday. (You can see a couple of videos of Bridgewater in the above noted “dueling divas" post here.

Also on Saturday, saxophonist and St. Louis native Eric Person (pictured) returns home for the first time since 2007 for a gig at the Ambassador. Person will be playing songs from his most recent CD Rhythm Edge as well as his upcoming release The Grand Illusion, backed by the Midwest edition of his band Meta-Four with Bryan Harrison (keyboards), John King (bass) and Kevin Kelley (drums).

That same evening, keyboardist and composer James Hegarty performs at the Kranzberg Arts Center in a concert presented by New Music Circle. Hegarty's performance, called “eXscapement," is a collaboration with his artist daughter Anna that was inspired by their recent trip to Japan.

Looking beyond the weekend, on Tuesday morning the Sheldon starts their season series of Coffee Concerts with a George Gershwin tribute by singer Debby Lennon and pianist Carolbeth True. (There's another performance on Wednesday morning, too.)

For more jazz and creative music events this weekend and beyond, check out the St. Louis Jazz Notes Calendar, available for viewing on the left sidebar or by clicking here.

(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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