by Giovanni Russonello
The D.C. Jazz Loft returns this Sunday with a fresh cast of electrifying bands. Andrew D’Angelo and Victor Provost proved a hard act to follow, but this Sunday we vest our trust in the stunning saxophonist Lyle Link, innovative D.C. Jazz Composers Collective and young drum gun Allen Jones. And of course, there will be an open jam session at the end of the show, per tradition.
As usual, the show is at the Dunes in Columbia Heights, and it’s open to all people: no age limit, no cover. We strongly suggest a $10 donation to the musicians, though, and there’s a fully stocked bar where you can buy them drinks — or, we suppose, grab one for yourself. Hope to see you all out there this Sunday night.
Few saxophonists on the D.C. scene are more respected than Lyle Link. On both alto and tenor saxes, he cuts bluesy, searing lines that slice you right in the chest. Until recently, Link was a regular performer at Utopia, the U St. jazz bar that is closing this week for renovations. Leading a combo again, Link showcases some of that magic on Sunday, with an added dose of intimacy and intensity. (Check out the video below; his startling solo begins around 2:00.)
D.C. JAZZ COMPOSERS COLLECTIVE
The guys who comprise the D.C. Jazz Composers Collective are concerned about getting their local jazz scene to embrace more originality. And they say the best way to promote that is for them and other players to write and play their own compositions. So at their weekly gig at Utopia, saxophonist Bobby Muncy, pianist Gene D’Andrea and bassist Kevin Pace performed only original tunes — for years. The collective, which is a registered nonprofit and has some big plans ahead of it, recently released a strong debut album showcasing six originals that range from the rollicking to the ruminative. Here’s a chance to hear it all come alive.
You might say that Allen Jones’s time has come. When we held the first D.C. Jazz Loft in December 2010, he was a member of the U St. All-Stars band there. Since then, the just-turned-18-year-old drummer has become one of the loft’s most loyal patrons. He’s in the audience at almost every show, and usually takes the drum chair at the post-loft jam sessions. In his own right, Jones has become one of the most buzzed-about players on the scene, leading bands and reshaping those of others at clubs like Twins Jazz, HR-57 and Utopia. At this month’s loft, he’ll helm a combo.
Photo of Lyle Link in flyer courtesy Antoine Sanfuentes.