Weekend in Jazz | 12.24-12.26: Very few jazz shows this Christmas weekend

Pianist Hope Udobi performs Christmas music with his quartet at Twins Jazz on Friday. Giovanni Russonello/CapitalBop

by Giovanni Russonello
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Welcome to this week’s installation of “Weekend in Jazz,” a full list of every D.C. jazz show that we can get our hands on. Not too many shows are going on this weekend, as many venues take a break for the Christmas holiday. If you’re just breezing through, check for the shows with a label — those are our favorites. As always, you can read CapitalBop’s full listings directly at our monthly calendar, if you prefer. Happy hunting!

FRIDAY, DEC. 24

cb pick:

  • Hope Udobi, Twins Jazz, 9 p.m.

Christmas Eve Jazz, Westminster Presbyterian Church, 4 p.m. | Nowhere in D.C. would it make more sense to celebrate jazz and Christmas together: Westminster Presbyterian Church for over 10 years has been bringing a variety of the District’s best jazz musicians together every week for its “Jazz Night.” Every Friday, the house of God becomes a hub for fish frying, communing and jamming on straight-ahead. For its special, earlier-than-usual Christmas Eve Jazz show, Westminster hosts Vince Evans on piano, Phillip Hamilton on alto sax, James King on bass and Jay Jefferson on drums. $5 cover for adults, no cover for attendees under 16, no minimum. View event on calendar | Westminster Presbyterian Church website

Updated: Jolley Brothers, B. Smith’s, 7 p.m. | The Jolley Brothers, Noble on keyboard and Nate on drums, play thrice a weekend at B. Smith’s, the upscale soul-food restaurant in Union Station’s massive East Hall. The Jolleys, who perform with a bassist, comprise one of D.C.’s most exciting and auspicious acts. With roots in gospel, soul and the modal bop of the 1960s, the brothers (who also compose prolifically) bring some of the most creative elements in the African-American music canon forward into the 21st century, all while stamping it with their own distinctive flavoring. But B. Smith’s is a restaurant first, and the music remains in the background – no matter how expertly played. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendarB. Smith’s website

Hope Udobi, Twins Jazz, 9 p.m. | Pianist Hope Udobi isn’t just one of the D.C. scene’s most promising young jazz players from a musicianship standpoint; he’s one of the most riveting, creatively speaking. Udobi’s incendiary bop style is brimming with furious energy, mad montunos and unpredictable lines that venture “out” and dig into the blues’ depths with equal aplomb. Here he performs a holiday program entitled, “A Charlie Brown Christmas Eve Concert.” His quartet is comprised of Braxton Cook on saxophone, Stephen Synk on bass and Warren “Trae” Crudup III on drums. $15 cover, $10 minimum. View event on calendar | Twins Jazz profile

Brulee, Columbia Station, 9:30 p.m. | Brulee is a jazz and alt-pop fusion quartet featuring vocalist Aura Kanegis. No cover, one-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Columbia Station profile

SATURDAY, DEC. 25

Merry Christmas – No jazz shows

SUNDAY, DEC. 26

cb pick:

  • Jolley Brothers, B. Smith’s, 12 p.m.

Kevin Pace Trio, Chef Geoff’s, 11 a.m. | Kevin Pace has a strong command on the bass and an intuitive ear as a composer. He puts both on display at the restaurant Chef Geoff’s, where he performs every week during Sunday brunch. This is background music, but that’s because of the environment, not the performance — which is anything but second-rate. (To hear Pace stretch out a bit more, catch him at Utopia with the Bobby Muncy Quartet, every Wednesday except the third of the month.) No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Chef Geoff’s website

Jolley Brothers, B. Smith’s, 12 p.m. | The Jolley Brothers, Noble on keyboard and Nate on drums, play thrice a weekend at B. Smith’s, the upscale soul-food restaurant in Union Station’s massive East Hall. The Jolleys, who perform with a bassist, comprise one of D.C.’s most exciting and auspicious acts. With roots in gospel, soul and the modal bop of the 1960s, the brothers (who also compose prolifically) bring some of the most creative elements in the African-American music canon forward into the 21st century, all while stamping it with their own distinctive flavoring. B. Smith’s is a restaurant first, and the music remains in the background – no matter how expertly played. But as far as jazz brunch goes, it’s hard to top the Jolleys’ music. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendarB. Smith’s website

Jam Session with Peter Edelman, 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

Jazz Jam, Dahlak, 6:30 p.m. | This jazz jam presents a friendly, relaxed environment where professionals and amateurs can play together. For this week’s holiday edition, Peter Runk is on keys, Tony Song on guitar, Craig Falk on bass and Will Stephens on drums. 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

Monty Alexander, Blues Alley, 8 & 10 p.m. | Longtime pianist Monty Alexander plays multicultural, world music-steeped jazz. In collaborations with the likes of Ray Brown and Milt Jackson, his Caribbean roots shine through. Two separate shows at 8 & 10 p.m. $35 cover, $10 minimum. View event on calendar | Blues Alley profile

Eric Mayo, Twins Jazz, 8 p.m. | R&B singer Eric Mayo, a native of soul haven Philadelphia, was a finalist on Lil’ Wayne’s TV show “Making the Next Hit.” $10 cover, $10 minimum. View event? on calendarTwins Jazz profile

Peter Edelman Trio, Columbia Station, 8:30 p.m. | The stalwart D.C. piano player every Sunday night leads a rotating cast of musicians that often outgrows the title “trio.” No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Columbia Station profile

Cheryl Jones Trio, Utopia, 9 p.m. | Singer Cheryl Jones has a weekly engagement every Sunday at Utopia, where she sings with depth, force and clarity. Jones is equally likely to sing jazz standards, pop tunes or gospel classics. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Utopia profile

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