* Jonathan Parker Octet

The alto saxophonist, composer and arranger Jonathan Parker has made something of a dank, sticky home of the Wonderland Ballroom, where he leads his little big band once a month. By 9 p.m. on a Wednesday, it’s fully stocked with happy hour postgrads cueing up their fourth round. It’s not quite the hushed speakeasies or pseudo-anonymous lofts of jazz’s past, but, to be sure, a new kind of venue for a new kind of musician’s struggle. Nothing smells like inspiration more than a patron’s beer spilled down the bell of a bandleader’s horn. Right? Well, Parker is young and adaptable and game, all of which comes in handy. And, luckily for those who meant to arrive at a jazz concert, he also has a bracing command on the saxophone, and tends to assemble strong ensembles. Here he’ll play a collection of originals and covers by the likes of Herbie Hancock and Bob Mintzer, with help from a strong “little big band.”

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Giovanni Russonello

About Giovanni Russonello

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Giovanni is the founder of CapitalBop, and a music critic for the New York Times. He previously served as a contributor to the Washington Post, the FADER, JazzTimes, NPR Music and others, and hosted “On the Margin,” a books show on WPFW-FM. As head of CapitalBop, he has covered the D.C. jazz scene since 2010. (He is no longer directly involved in the presenting of CapitalBop's concerts.) He graduated from Tufts University with a bachelor’s degree in history, with a focus on African-American history. Reach Giovanni at editor@capitalbop.com. Reach Giovanni at editor@capitalbop.com.