Weekend in Jazz | 6.1-6.3: Festival invasion

David Sánchez will perform on Sunday as part of the DC Jazz Festival's opening weekend. Courtesy @Siebe!/flickr

by Giovanni Russonello
Editorial board

It’s a weekend full of festivals. Most conspicuous is the DC Jazz Festival, which runs for the next 10 days. (You can find CapitalBop’s full guide to that here.) But it also encompasses a few other, smaller festivals – CapitalBop’s own D.C. Jazz Loft Series; this Saturday’s Dupont Festival; and the very exciting East River Jazz Fest, which runs throughout the DC Jazz Fest. Then there’s the annual Capital Jazz Fest, which takes over Merriweather Post Pavilion this weekend, and puts its focus on R&B and smooth jazz. Find details on those performances and many more in this week’s edition of “Weekend in Jazz,” a listing of every D.C. jazz show on our radar. Our favorites have a label, and as always, you can read CapitalBop’s full listings directly at our D.C. jazz calendar, if you’d rather. Happy hunting!

FRIDAY, JUNE 1

cb picks:

  • East River Jazz Ensemble, Westminster Presbyterian, 6 p.m.
  • Randy Weston & Akua Allrich, The Hamilton, 8:30 p.m.
  • Ron Carter Quartet, Bohemian Caverns, 8:30 & 10:30 p.m.
  • Todd Marcus Jazz Orch. & Christie Dashiell Quartet, The Dunes, 9 p.m.
  • Tony Martucci Quartet, Twins Jazz, 9 & 11 p.m.
  • Donvonte McCoy, 18th Street Lounge, 10:30 p.m.
  • Victor Provost, Cashion’s Eat Place, midnight

East River Jazz Ensemble (DCJF/East River Jazz Fest), Westminster Presbyterian Church, 6 p.m. | This week’s edition of Jazz Night helps launch the East River Jazz Festival (which has an impressive lineup of shows during the DC Jazz Fest, all of which take place east of the Anacostia). The East River Jazz Ensemble features a strong lineup: Denyse Pearson on vocalist, Craig Alston on saxophones, Fred Foss on saxophones, Alan Blackman on piano, Pepe Gonzalez on bass and Tiacoh Sadia on drums.$5 cover for adults, no cover for attendees under 16, no minimum. View event on calendar | Westminster Presbyterian Church website

Karen Gray Trio (DCJF), Sala Thai (Bethesda), 7 p.m.| Commanding vocalist Karen Gray sings laid-back renditions of jazz standards in a drumless trio. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Sala Thai website

Potomac Jazz Project (DCJF), Sala Thai (U St.), 7 p.m. | The Potomac Jazz Project is a jazz combo led by bassist Stan Hamrick that takes on modern and classic jazz tunes with a showmanly flair, as well as skill. The cast of supporting musicians tends to rotate. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Sala Thai website

Yamomanem (DCJF), Sala Thai (Petworth), 7 p.m. | The Yamomanem Jazz Band plays a faithful take on New Orleans jazz, conjuring the days of King Oliver and early Louis Armstrong with its lush brass section. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Sala Thai website

Kristine Key Quartet (DCJF), Mandarin Oriental Hotel, 8 p.m. | Delicate-voiced and wistful singer Kristine Key is accompanied here by an expert quartet. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Mandarin Oriental Hotel website

Capital JazzFest, Merriweather Post Pavilion, 7:30 p.m. | The Capital Jazz Fest hasn’t got much to do with straight-ahead or progressive jazz. On this inaugural evening, Bill Cosby, neo-soul singer Will Downing and vocalist Anita Baker — who splits her passions between R&B and jazz — will perform during a “Night of Music and Comedy.” Tickets vary ($48.50-$260) View event on calendar | Capital JazzFest website

Frederic Yonnet, Blues Alley, 8 & 10 p.m. | Frederic Yonnet, a native of France, has tons of talent, and loads blues flavor lying just below the surface, but he chooses to use it all in service of a smooth jazz. Two separate sets at 8 & 10 p.m. $25 cover, $12 minimum. View event on calendar | Blues Alley profile

Ron Carter Quartet (DCJF), Bohemian Caverns, 8:30 & 10:30 p.m. | The venerable president of the bass is still hard at work after playing on thousands of recordings, and after performing in some of the most celebrated groups in jazz. From the beginning of his career in the waning years of the 1950s to today, Ron Carter has performed with virtually every important musician in the Music. As a bandleader he has been equally prolific, leading acclaimed groups like the Golden Stryker trio as well as his own big band. His music has also been an influential force in hip hop, classical music, and film. Ron Carter performs with fellow NEA Jazz Masters pianist Kenny Barron, vibraphonist Stefon Harris, and drummer Lewis Nash, in the Classical Jazz Quintet. Two separate sets at 8:30 & 10:30 p.m. $38 cover, no minimum. [words by Luke Stewart] View event on calendar | Bohemian Caverns profile

Randy Weston & Akua Allrich (DCJF), The Hamilton, 8:30 p.m. | Kicking off 10 days of outstanding programming at the DC Jazz Festival, the Hamilton presents pianist Randy Weston, an American jazz legend. The 86-year-old’s two most apparent musical influences are Duke Ellington and Thelonious Monk – but it’s the rhythmic roots inherent to his African lineage that Weston is most passionate about honoring. He appears here with his trio, and is joined on the bill by singer Akua Allrich. For Allrich, Nina Simone and Miriam Makeba are strong influences. The Howard University graduate, who composes many of her own tunes, is a strong and effervescent singer who wields a warm but dogged optimism. Cover varies ($27.50-$38), no minimum. View event on calendar | Hamilton website

Peter Edelman Trio (DCJF), Columbia Station, 9 p.m. | The stalwart D.C. piano player Peter Edelman every Friday night leads a rotating cast of musicians that often outgrows the title “trio.” No cover, one-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Columbia Station profile

Alfredo Mojica (DCJF), Bossa Bistro, 9 p.m. | No description available. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Bossa profile

Todd Marcus Jazz Orchestra & Christie Dashiell Quartet (DCJF-CapitalBop), The Dunes, 9 p.m. | In the first of three nights in CapitalBop’s D.C. Jazz Loft Series at the DC Jazz Festival, bass clarinetist, composer and big band leader Todd Marcus brings his exploratory nine-piece ensemble to the Dunes. He’s joined on the bill by Christie Dashiell, the talented vocalist who wowed millions last year as the leading light of Afro Blue, the Howard University a capella ensemble that nearly prevailed on NBC’s The Sing-Off. All ages are welcome. $10 in advance, $14 at the door, $8 discounted midnight set. View event on calendar | D.C. Jazz Loft Series page

Tony Martucci Quartet (DCJF), Twins Jazz, 9 & 11 p.m. | A frequent sideman and bandleader in the D.C. area, drummer Tony Martucci is a seasoned bop drummer with a lively swing. He has recorded with such superstars as Joe Lovano, and for this show he’s assembled an all-star cast of D.C. talent: Luis Hernandez and Jeff Antoniuk on saxophones, John Lee on guitar and Tom Baldwin on bass. Two separate sets at 9 & 11 p.m. $15 cover, $10 minimum. View event on calendar | Twins Jazz profile

Aaron Myers (DCJF), Black Fox Lounge, 9:30 p.m. | Vocalist Aaron Myers leads a straight-ahead jazz quartet, featuring piano, bass and drums. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Black Fox profile

Pete Muldoon, Kramerbooks, 10 p.m. | Jazz guitarist Pete Muldoon is a frequent face on the D.C. jazz scene. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Kramerbooks website

Donvonte McCoy (DCJF), 18th St. Lounge, 10:30 p.m. | Arguably the city’s best jazz trumpeter, Donvonte McCoy plays every Friday and Saturday at the hip 18th St. Lounge. He likes to mix in some funk as well during the lounge gig, and he’s liable to inflect a touch of Chuck Brown-esque groove into his combo’s treatment of classic bop tunes by the likes of Miles Davis and Freddie Hubbard. After all, the setting is that of a dance club, not a jazz joint – no tables and chairs or hushed applause after every solo. Cover varies ($5-10), no minimum. View event on calendar | 18th St. Lounge profile

Victor Provost (DCJF), Cashion’s Eat Place, midnight | Victor Provost isn’t just the only jazz steel pan player in D.C. He’s also one of the best improvisers, on any instrument. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Cashion’s website

SATURDAY, JUNE 2

cb picks:

  • Jazz ‘n’ Families Fun Day, Phillips Collection, 10 a.m.
  • Reginald Cyntje, Anacostia Art Gallery, 4 p.m.
  • Michael Bowie, Anacostia Art Gallery, 8 p.m.
  • Ron Carter Quartet, Bohemian Caverns, 8:30 & 10: 30 p.m.
  • Tarbaby & Kris Funn and Corner Store, The Fridge, 9 p.m.
  • Tony Martucci Quartet, Twins Jazz, 9 & 11 p.m.
  • Donvonte McCoy, 18th Street Lounge, 10:30 p.m.
  • Victor Provost, Cashion’s Eat Place, midnight

Jazz & Families Fun Day (DCJF), Phillips Collection, 10 a.m. | Today and tomorrow, the usually quiet halls of the Phillips Collection welcome a total of 12 hours of jazz and a small children’s carnival throughout the galleries. There will be an instrument petting zoo, storytelling, face-painting and portraits. The bands playing today are strong, including the Marianne Solivan and Brian Settles Quartets. Free. View event on calendar | DCJF website

Capital JazzFest, Merriweather Post Pavilion, 12 p.m. | The Capital Jazz Fest hasn’t got much to do with straight-ahead or progressive jazz. On its second day, George Benson and Kirk Whalum will be serving up smooth sounds on the Pavilion Stage, while the Soul Stage features Musiq Soulchild and Tower of Power. Tickets vary ($48.50-$260). View event on calendar | JazzFest website

Jam Session with Peter Edelman (DCJF), Columbia Station, 4 p.m. | Pianist Peter Edelman, a constant presence on the D.C. jazz scene for years now, leads an afternoon jam session every Saturday and Sunday. No cover, no minimum. View event on calendar | Columbia Station profile

Reginald Cyntje (DCJF-East River Jazz Fest), Anacostia Art Gallery, 4 p.m. | A trombonist of grace and precision, Reginald Cyntje recently released his debut CD, “Freedom’s Children: The Celebration,” and this performance is likely to draw heavily from its material. The record is glimmeringly hopeful, immersed in the warm, danceable rhythms of Cyntje’s native U.S. Virgin Islands. Free. View event on calendar | DCJF website

Little Red & the Renegades (DCJF), Gallery O on H, 5:30 p.m. | This all-evening, four-band musical celebration, held in the courtyard at Gallery O on H St. NE, culminates in a set by modern-day Zydeco band Little Red & the Renegades. $5 cover, no minimum. View event on calendar | Gallery O website

Charles Woods (DCJF), Johnny’s Half Shell, 6 p.m. | Saxophonist Charles Woods plays and has recorded in both free and straight-ahead jazz styles, but for his regular gig at Johnny’s Half Shell he keeps things within the traditional bop realm. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Johnny’s Half Shell website

Matt Wigler Quartet (DCJF), Kennedy Center Millenium Stage, 6 p.m. | Matt Wigler is a talented teenage pianist who also sings in a swingin’-blues style. Here he appears with a quartet. Free. View event on calendar | Millenium Stage website

Mark Mosley Trio (DCJF), Sala Thai (U St.), 7 p.m. | Baltimore guitarist Mark Mosley plays a slick hand as a smooth jazz guitarist, but he can also hunker down on serious bop. He performs laid-back straight-ahead here with his trio. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Sala Thai website

Full Ascent (DCJF), Sala Thai (Petworth), 7 p.m. | This jazz band plays in a number of traditional styles, from hard-bop to Dixieland to calypso. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Sala Thai website

District Jazz Trio (DCJF), Sala Thai (Bethesda), 7 p.m. | A self-described “cool swinging jazz trio,” the District Jazz Trio is saxophonist Seth Popkin, pianist Dan Nathan and bassist Roger Rosa. The group plays jazz standards. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Sala Thai website

Nancy Scimone (DCJF), Henley Park Hotel, 7:30 p.m. | Nancy Scimone reaches into the jazz and popular American songbooks during this weekly gig at the Henley Park Hotel in downtown D.C., where she’s accompanied by a pianist. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Henley Park’s website

Frederic Yonnet, Blues Alley, 8 & 10 p.m. | Frederic Yonnet, a native of France, has tons of talent, and loads blues flavor lying just below the surface, but he chooses to use it all in service of a smooth jazz. Two separate sets at 8 & 10 p.m. $25 cover, $12 minimum. View event on calendar | Blues Alley profile

Sara Jones Quartet (DCJF), Mandarin Oriental Hotel, 8 p.m. | Vocalist Sara Jones sings jazz standards sweetly; her top-notch band here includes Chris Grasso on piano, Tommy Cecil on bass and Andrew Hare on drums. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Mandarin Oriental Hotel website

Les Nubians (DCJF), The Hamilton, 8 p.m. | Les Nubians are a Parisian R&B duo. Two separate shows at 8 & 10:30 p.m. Cover varies ($20-$27.50), no minimum. View event on calendar | The Hamilton website

Lydia Lewis Trio, Tasting Room, 8 p.m. | Tasteful drummer and composer Lydia Lewis leads her trio in background fare at the Tasting Room, a wine bar in Friendship Heights. She’s consistently joined by expert side musicians. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Tasting Room website 

Michael Bowie (DCJF-East River Jazz Fest), Anacostia Art Gallery, 8 p.m. | Michael Bowie is an accomplished bassist whose band, Sine Qua Non, draws on Spanish classical guitar music as an inspiration for world-wise, ambitiously arranged tunes. Tickets $15 in advance, $20 at the door. View event on calendar | DCJF website

Ron Carter Quartet (DCJF), Bohemian Caverns, 8:30 & 10:30 p.m. | The venerable president of the bass is still hard at work after playing on thousands of recordings, and after performing in some of the most celebrated groups in jazz. From the beginning of his career in the waning years of the 1950s to today, Ron Carter has performed with virtually every important musician in the Music. As a bandleader he has been equally prolific, leading acclaimed groups like the Golden Stryker trio as well as his own big band. His music has also been an influential force in hip hop, classical music, and film. Ron Carter performs with fellow NEA Jazz Masters pianist Kenny Barron, vibraphonist Stefon Harris, and drummer Lewis Nash, in the Classical Jazz Quintet. Two separate sets at 8:30 & 10:30 p.m. $38 cover, no minimum. [words by Luke Stewart] View event on calendar | Bohemian Caverns profile

Tony Martucci Quartet, Twins Jazz, 9 & 11 p.m. | A frequent sideman and bandleader in the D.C. area, drummer Tony Martucci is a seasoned bop drummer with a lively swing. He has recorded with such superstars as Joe Lovano, and for this show he’s assembled an all-star cast of D.C. talent: Luis Hernandez and Jeff Antoniuk on saxophones, John Lee on guitar and Tom Baldwin on bass. Two separate sets at 9 & 11 p.m. $15 cover, $10 minimum. View event on calendar | Twins Jazz profile

Tarbaby & Kris Funn and Corner Store (DCJF-CapitalBop), The Fridge, 9 p.m. | For the second of our three shows in the D.C. Jazz Loft Series at the DC Jazz Festival, CapitalBop presents Tarbaby – a jazz supergroup on a mission. Featuring pianist Orrin Evans, bassist Eric Revis and drummer Nasheet Waits, this band is uncompromisingly experimental and valiantly outspoken. Tarbaby will perform at the Fridge, a back-alley art gallery on Capitol Hill. The trio is double-billing with one of D.C.’s greatest bassists, Kris Funn, a member of the famous Christian Scott Quintet. All ages are welcome. $10 in advance, $14 at the door, $8 discounted midnight set. View event on calendar | D.C. Jazz Loft Series page 

Cubista (DCJF), Bossa Bistro, 9 p.m. | No description available. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Bossa profile

Jeron White (DCJF), Black Fox Lounge, 9 p.m. | Bassist Jeron White leads a straight-ahead jazz combo. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Black Fox Lounge profile

Pete Muldoon (DCJF), Kramerbooks, 10 p.m. | Jazz guitarist Pete Muldoon is a frequent face on the D.C. jazz scene. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Kramerbooks website

Donvonte McCoy (DCJF), 18th St. Lounge, 10:30 p.m. | Arguably the city’s best jazz trumpeter, Donvonte McCoy plays every Friday and Saturday at the hip 18th St. Lounge. He likes to mix in some funk as well during the lounge gig, and he’s liable to inflect a touch of Chuck Brown-esque groove into his combo’s treatment of classic bop tunes by the likes of Miles Davis and Freddie Hubbard. After all, the setting is that of a dance club, not a jazz joint – no tables and chairs or hushed applause after every solo. Cover varies ($5-10), no minimum. View event on calendar | 18th St. Lounge profile

Victor Provost (DCJF), Cashion’s Eat Place, midnight | Victor Provost isn’t just the only jazz steel pan player in D.C. He’s also one of the best improvisers, on any instrument. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Cashion’s website

SUNDAY, JUNE 3

cb picks:

  • Jazz ‘n’ Families Fun Day, Phillips Collection, 10 a.m.
  • Marshall Keys, Acadiana, 11 a.m.
  • Ted Brown & Brad Linde, Atlas PAC, 5 p.m.
  • David Sánchez & Charlie Sepulveda, The Hamilton, 7 p.m.
  • Dianne Reeves, Howard Theatre, 8 p.m.
  • Mark Turner Quartet, Atlas PAC, 8 p.m.

Jazz ‘n’ Families Fun Day (DCJF), Phillips Collection, 10 a.m. | Today and tomorrow, the usually quiet halls of the Phillips Collection welcome a total of 12 hours of jazz and a small children’s carnival throughout the galleries. There will be an instrument petting zoo, storytelling, face-painting and portraits. The bands playing today are strong, including the Heidi Martin Quartet and Michael Bowie’s Sine Qua Non, plus a “meet the artist” session with Kenny Barron. Free. View event on calendar | DCJF website

Roy Cross & Brannock Reilly (DCJF-East River Jazz Fest), Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens, 10 a.m. | No description available. Free. View event on calendar | DCJF website

Marshall Keys (DCJF), Acadiana, 11 a.m. | Marshall Keys’ saxophone can sing the blues or swing to the rhythms of bebop with a laid-back sense of cool; the native Washingtonian is a fluid, graceful player. He plays every Sunday brunch at Acadiana, usually with a group consisting of the city’s top jazz scene veterans: Federico Peña on piano, Tarus Mateen on bass and either Lenny Robinson or Mark Prince on drums. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Acadiana website

Capital Jazz Fest, Merriweather Post Pavilion, 12 p.m. | The Capital Jazz Fest hasn’t got much to do with straight-ahead or progressive jazz. On the last of its three days, the festival features performances by smooth jazz acts Fourplay and Walter Beasley, as well as soul artists like KC and the Sunshine Band and Anthony David. Tickets vary ($48.50-$260). View event on calendar | Capital Jazz website

Airmen of Note (DCJF), Dupont Festival, 2 p.m. | The Airmen of Note, the Air Force big band, features some of the strongest musicians in D.C. jazz. No cover, no minimum. View event on calendar | Dupont Festival website

Jam Session with Peter Edelman (DCJF), Columbia Station, 4 p.m. | Pianist Peter Edelman, a constant presence on the D.C. jazz scene for years now, leads an afternoon jam session every Saturday and Sunday. No cover, no minimum. View event on calendar | Columbia Station profile

Herb Spice & Cinnamonstix (DCJF-East River Jazz Fest), Ft. Dupont Park, 4 p.m. | Herb Spice & Cinnamonstix is talented saxophonist Herb Scott’s foray into deep groove and smooth melodies. Free. View event on calendar | DCJF website

Ted Brown & Brad Linde (DCJF), Atlas Performing Arts Center, 5 p.m. | Saxophonist Ted Brown was a critical member of the cool jazz scene during its heyday. He recorded with recorded with Lennie Tristano, Art Pepper and Lee Konitz, among others. Here he appears at a masterclass and performance alongside D.C. saxophonist Brad Linde. They’ll examine the music of Lester Young, Charlie Parker and the Tristano School. $10 cover, no minimum. View event on calendar | Atlas website

D.C. Jazz Jam (DCJF), Dahlak, 6 p.m. | This jazz jam presents a friendly, relaxed environment where professionals and amateurs can play together. No cover, no minimum. View event on calendar | Dahlak profile

Potomac Jazz Project, Laporta’s, 6:30 p.m. | The Potomac Jazz Project is a quartet that takes on modern and classic jazz tunes (and even some pop covers) with a showmanly flair, as well as skill. It’s led by bassist Stan Hamrick, and its rotating lineup often features some of D.C.’s best musicians. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Laporta’s website

Reggie Pittman Quartet (DCJF), Bohemian Caverns, 7 p.m. | Reggie Pittman is a trumpeter and educator who’s played with Aretha Franklin, Sarah Vaughan and Lester Bowie. Two separate sets at 7 & 9 p.m. $15 cover, no minimum. View event on calendar | Bohemian Caverns profile

David Sánchez & Charlie Sepulveda (DCJF), The Hamilton, 7 p.m.| Saxophonist David Sánchez draws liberally from both his Puerto Rican background and the American jazz tradition, but rather than “blending” them, his flaying tenor saxophone seems to tear both apart with equal fervor. He’s won a Latin Grammy and been nominated for a Grammy. He’ll appear with a small group here, at a double-bill show with trumpeter Charlie Supúlveda, who leads his own band, the Turnaround. Cover varies ($20-$27.50), no minimum. View event on calendar | The Hamilton website

DC Choro, Grill from Ipanema, 7:30 p.m.| DC Choro is a sextet that plays Brazilian music drawing on European folk traditions. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Grill from Ipanema profile

Mike Flaherty’s Dixieland Jazz Direct (DCJF), Zoo Bar Café, 7:30 p.m.| This combo specializes in traditional New Orleans-style jazz. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendarZoo Bar website

Dianne Reeves (DCJF), Howard Theatre, 8 p.m. | The voice of Dianne Reeves captivates, invoking the numerous vocal innovators of the past, while remaining staunchly original. At a very early age, she learned how to utilize her uniqueness. Her musical family certainly played a part in this Detroit native’s development, not to mention the mentorship she received from some of the greats in music, from Sergio Mendes to Harry Belafonte. Ms. Reeves’ acclaim is so great that she is not only a four-time Grammy Award winner, but she is the only singer to ever win in the ‘Best Jazz Vocal Performance’ category three times consecutively. She performs at the Howard Theater on Sunday, June 3. Tickets vary ($45 for general admission, $65 for seating), no minimum. [words by Luke Stewart] View event on calendar | Howard website

Cravin’ Dogs, Blues Alley, 8 & 10 p.m. | Cravin’ Dogs is a roots rock band. Two separate sets at 8 and 10 p.m. $18 cover, $12 minimum. View event on calendar | Blues Alley profile

BJ Simmons (DCJF), Twins Jazz, 8 & 10 p.m. | BJ Simmons is a jazz saxophonist. Two separate sets at 8 and 10 p.m. $10 cover, $10 minimum. View event on calendar | Twins Jazz profile

Mark Turner Quartet (DCJF), Atlas Performing Arts Center, 8 p.m. | Mark Turner, a fleet and masterful improviser, stood alongside Joshua Redman as one of the crucial tenor saxophonists holding high the flag of experimentalism during mainstream jazz’s neo-conservative ’90s. Here he appears with a quartet. $25 cover, $15 for students, no minimum. View event on calendar | Atlas website 

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