Live From Philadelphia

Geno Thackara reports on the month's best live shows from the City of Brotherly Love.

LIVE FROM PHILADELPHIA

Mostly Other People Do the Killing, Sirius Juju and Unspeakable Garbage at Jerry's on Front

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Mostly Other People Do the Killing/Sirius Juju/Unspeakable GarbageJerry's on Frontjny: Philadelphia, PAFebruary 16, 2019 Twenty blocks and a world away from the clubs and bars of Philadelphia's city center, the experimental art space of Jerry's on Front is a room one would hardly imagine for music at all. It's a nondescript one-car-garage-sized space squeezed into a row of shuttered storefronts, looking more suitable for a woodworking space or fly-by-night pawn shop. Dimness makes the bare ...

LIVE FROM PHILADELPHIA

Aaron Goldberg Trio at @exuberance

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Aaron Goldberg Trio @exuberance jny: Philadelphia, PA November 23, 2018 It was a rollicking evening set full of jaunty rhythms and good humor. Aaron Goldberg clearly relished the rich sound of the Steinway and the feel of the room. A packed crowd had come out to unwind at the end of Black Friday--probably the fullest audience this two-year-old concert series has had to date--and the affair felt like the friendliest informal holiday ...

LIVE FROM PHILADELPHIA

Nik Bärtsch's Ronin at World Cafe Live

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Nik Bärtsch's Ronin World Cafe Live jny: Philadelphia, PA May 8, 2018 Of the oddest sights Philadelphia's art scene might offer on any given Tuesday night, a stern-faced figure in samurai hatama whacking a piano with a mallet should probably be in the top five. (Unless there's something like the Fringe Festival going on, in which case, maybe the top twenty.) To the unfamiliar, the music of Nik Bärtsch's Ronin may seem similarly odd and ...

LIVE FROM PHILADELPHIA

Katie Thiroux Trio at South Jazz Parlor

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Katie Thiroux Trio South Jazz Parlor jny: Philadelphia, PA February 24, 2018 In time-honored Philly tradition, South is the kind of venue that recognizes jazz as a vital staple rather than just another aspect of business. Nestled on a corner in Center City's bustling north side (go figure), the place features a classy restaurant/bar that would make a fine dinner spot on its own, right alongside a sectioned-off parlor devoted to performances and regular jams. ...

LIVE FROM PHILADELPHIA

Orion Tango at Kung Fu Necktie

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Orion TangoKung Fu Necktiejny: Philadelphia, PAJune 6, 2017 It's unclear what formal apparel has to do with the martial arts, or what either one has to do with live music for that matter, but nevermind. Adventurous musical acts are always welcome at Kung Fu Necktie as much as open-eared listeners. The wood-paneled corner bar in northeast Philadelphia's Fishtown neighborhood is a cozy space with an inviting local-hangout atmosphere and plenty of character. On this occasion ...

Glenn Zaleski Trio at Chris' Jazz Cafe

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Glenn Zaleski TrioChris' Jazz Cafejny: Philadelphia, PAMay 3, 2017 It might not seem all that difficult to get together with friends in your own neighborhood, but sometimes it's more tricky than you'd think. Glenn Zaleski has made his previous two records as a leader in the span of two years, both with the same trio-mates who are also based in jny: New York City with him, and yet they almost never seem to make it ...

LIVE FROM PHILADELPHIA

Sittin' In with the Odean Pope Trio at the Kimmel Center

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Odean Pope TrioSEI Innovation Studio @ The Kimmel Centerjny: Philadelphia, PAApril 12, 2017 The Kimmel Center's informal Sittin' In program is always about direct connections and communion, but April's exceptional event raised the bar up to the ceiling. Not everyone was even able to sit since the basement theater was packed enough to require some standing along the walls. The enthusiastic crowd came out to acknowledge Jazz Appreciation Month, to honor some local icons and ...

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Kurt Rosenwinkel Trio at Germantown Settlement School

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Kurt Rosenwinkel Trio Settlement Music School jny: Philadelphia, PA December 23, 2016 He's come a long way since first starting lessons at Philadelphia's Settlement Music School, but city native Kurt Rosenwinkel has never forgotten those roots. On a night when they could have been squeezing in a little last-minute shopping or relaxing beside the tree with some good eggnog, he and a pair of good friends were happy to come out to ...

LIVE FROM PHILADELPHIA

Tord Gustavsen with Simin Tander and Jarle Vespestad at Fringe Arts

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Tord Gustavsen (with Simin Tander and Jarle Vespestad) Fringe Arts jny: Philadelphia, PA June 20, 2016 The music of this trio project is “a mystical and spiritual journey," Tord Gustavsen declared early in the set during his first-ever appearance in Philadelphia, an endeavor about “finding the divine light within ourselves instead of looking somewhere outside." He's self-effacingly quiet and unassuming at the microphone, which is no surprise to anyone familiar with his ...

Center City Jazz Fest: Five Years Strong

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Center City Jazz Festival Philadelphia, PA April 30, 2016 “The Fifth Annual Center City Jazz Festival is officially sold out!" Thus tweeted a spokesperson from @ccjazzfest two days before the start of jny:Philadelphia's annual celebration (most likely its founder, local trombonist Ernest Stuart). I'm not sure if there was any backup plan for late stragglers; clearly the familiar crowd knew they didn't want to wait too long to get in on the festivities. The timing had ...

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Brad Mehldau Trio / GoGo Penguin at World Cafe Live

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If there's one thing about music that keeps us all going, it has to be endless adaptability. There's no instrument or genre that doesn't have some fresh possibilities still to discover (except maybe hair metal, I suppose). jny:Philadelphia's World Cafe Live offered yet another illustration of the idea by hosting two exceptional piano trios within the space of a week. The basic setup may be the same, but the results could have hardly been more different. Brad Mehldau ...

LIVE FROM PHILADELPHIA

Hiromi: The Trio Project at the Annenberg Center Live

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Hiromi: The Trio Project Annenberg Center Live jny: Philadelphia, PA April 1, 2016 She walks onstage without a word, makes sure to gesture towards the other players for their share of applause, and gives the cheering a minute to subside before getting down to business. The first song starts with a light cascade of high piano notes, the kind of slow intro that could usher in a classic acoustic set from any era. The crowd ...


Ocean Blues

"Ocean Blues" performed by the Dave Wilson Quartet at Chris’ Jazz Café (Philadelphia) on March 29, 2018. From the album One Night At Chris’ (2019) featuring Dave Wilson (saxophone), Dan Monaghan (drums), Tony Marino (bass) and Kirk Reese (piano).

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