Jazz This Week: Marlena Shaw, Four in One, Cornet Chop Suey, Oikos Ensemble, and More


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It's finally spring in St. Louis, and it's Jazz Appreciation Month all over the world, so it's a good week to get out and hear some live jazz and creative music. Here's a look at what's going on around town over the next few days...

Tonight, singer Marlena Shaw (pictured) returns to Jazz at the Bistro for the first evening of a four-night engagement. Known for signature songs such as “Go Away Little Boy" and “California Soul," Shaw performed in St. Louis most recently in 2010, and had been scheduled to appear at the Bistro last spring but had to cancel.

Given those circumstances, it seems likely that there's some pent-up demand among Shaw's local fan base, and so advance reservations are recommended. For more about Shaw and some video of her performing, check out this post that ran before her last set of shows here at the Bistro.

Also tonight, singer Joe Mancuso leads a quartet at Frontenac Grill, and trumpeter Jim Manley plays at Sasha's Wine Bar.

Tomorrow night, the Jazz at Holmes series at Washington University wraps up for the spring semester with a free concert from Four In One, featuring guitarist Steve Schenkel, saxophonist Paul DeMarinis, bassist Ric Vice and drummer Kevin Gianino engaging in electrified explorations of the compositions of Thelonious Monk. 

Also on Thursday night, Good 4 The Soul will be back serving up jazz, funk and R&B during their monthly gig at BB's Jazz, Blues and Soups

On Friday, guitarist Tom Byrne will perform at the Tavern of Fine Arts; the St. Louis Big Band plays for dancers at the Casa Loma Ballroom, Sarah Jane and the Blue Notes will bring swing and jump blues to Voce, and guitarist Dave Black will lead a trio at Cigar Inn.

On Saturday, singer Wendy Gordon and her band will perform for a jazz brunch at Ace's Bar & Grill, 9600 Natural Bridge Rd (inside the Comfort Inn). That evening, Miss Jubilee will endeavor to get the joint jumping at Schlafly Bottleworks, while guitarists Brian Vaccaro and Randy Bahr team up to play at Wolf Public House.

On Sunday afternoon, the St. Louis Jazz Club presents a matinee performance of traditional jazz and swing from Cornet Chop Suey at Bel Air Bowl, 200 South Belt West in Belleville.

Also on Sunday, just as Cornet Chop Suey is wrapping up, the Oikos Ensemble will be starting a late afternoon performance at Kirkwood United Church of Christ, 1603 Dougherty Ferry Rd. With the group's leader, saxophonist Rev. Cliff Aerie, now based in St. Louis, this is the first of what's projected as a series of “Inner Jazz" concerts sponsored by the church's Ministry of Imagination, Creativity and the Arts. Aerie will be joined for this concert by pianist Carolbeth True, bassist Dave Troncoso, trumpeter Danny Campbell, and drummer Kevin Gianino.

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