Weekend in Jazz | 2.28-3.2: Young talents take the Kennedy Center stage; Baltimore’s best hit U St.

Editorial board

The pianist Gerald Clayton and the drummer Jamison Ross are two early bloomers who owe a lot to the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition. Clayton’s career got a boost after he came in second at the piano contest in 2006; last year, when the competition focused on drums, Ross took home first place and found himself instantly morphed from a dark horse into a rising star. The Monk competition always takes place at the Kennedy Center, so it will be with a touch of pride and nostalgia that Clayton and Ross return to play their own gigs at the concert hall this weekend. Friday night, Clayton brings his lush and lilting trio to the KC Jazz Club; the following evening the same stage welcomes Jamison Ross and Joy Ride, a band that refracts modernism through the time-resistant vitality of New Orleans.

At the clubs on U Street on Friday and Saturday, two talented horn players with roots in the Baltimore area perform: The saxophonist Tim Green is at Bohemian Caverns, and the trumpeter Alex Pope Norris is at Twins Jazz. You can also find our full listings at CapitalBop’s D.C. jazz calendar. All our favorite shows below have a label. Happy hunting!

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 28

cb picks:

  • Gerald Clayton, KC Jazz Club, 7:30 & 9:30 p.m.
  • Alex Norris, Twins Jazz, 8 p.m. & 10 p.m.
  • Tim Green, Bohemian Caverns, 8:30 & 10:30 p.m.
  • Jazz Jam, Ulah Bistro, 11 p.m.
  • Donvonte McCoy, 18th St. Lounge, 10:30 p.m.

Mavis Waters, Westminster Presbyterian Church, 6 p.m. | What began as an experiment over a decade ago continues today as one of Washington’s greatest weekly traditions: Westminster Presbyterian Church’s “Jazz Night.” Every Friday night, the house of God becomes a hub for fish frying, communing and jamming on straight-ahead jazz. This time the compelling vocalist Mavis Waters performs with an all star quintet featuring Elijah Jamal Balbed on saxophone, Todd Simon on piano, Eliot Seppa on Bass, Donvonte McCoy on trumpet, and Robert Shahid on drums. $5 cover for adults, no cover for attendees under 16, no minimum. View event on calendar | Westminster Presbyterian Church website

Charles Rahmat Woods Duo, Firelake Grill, 7 p.m. | The saxophonist Charles Woods plays in both free and straight-ahead jazz styles, but for his regular gig leading a low-key duo at Firelake Grill, he keeps things within the traditional, swinging realm. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Firelake Grill website

Karen Gray Trio, 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

Triple Double Jazz Band, Sala Thai (U St.), 7 p.m. | Consisting of Joey Whitney on tenor sax, Ed Gallagher on guitar, Alan Pachter on bass and Tom Reed on drums, the Triple Double Jazz Band plays straightforward, straight-ahead versions of jazz standards. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Sala Thai website

Night and Day Trio, Sala Thai (Petworth), 7 p.m. | The Night & Day Trio plays traditional, swing-oriented jazz, featuring Renée Tannenbaum on vocals, Mike Suser on piano and vocals and Dennis Johnson on saxophone. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Sala Thai website

Tuck & Patti, Blues Alley, 8 & 10 p.m. | Tuck & Patti are a vocal-guitar duo, performing jazz standards with an easygoing manner. Patti’s voice recalls influences from Ella Fitzgerald to Betty Carter, though her singing is a bit less aggressive than those idols’. Two separate sets at 8 & 10 p.m. $25 cover, $2.50 surcharge, $12 minimum. [words by Allen Jones] View event on calendar | Blues Alley profile

Gerald Clayton, KC Jazz Club, 7:30 & 9:30 p.m. | The 29-year-old pianist Gerald Clayton has proven to be among the most well-rounded and personable players of his generation. His Grammy-nominated 2013 release “Life Forum” stands apart from his other records, a delicately approached and intensely executed collection of entirely his own compositions, rendered with help from three horns and two vocalists. A second-place finisher at the 2006 Monk Competition, Clayton has also released two other rhythmically morphing, open-aired efforts that pack a diligently modern virtuosity into the straight-ahead jazz tradition. Those first two albums featured his trio, a quietly powerful unit that performs this evening at the Kennedy Center. Two separate sets at 7:30 & 9:30 p.m. Cover varies ($26-30), no minimum. [words by Allen Jones] View event on calendar | KC Jazz Club profile

Alex Norris Quintet Featuring Troy Roberts, Twins Jazz, 8 & 10 p.m. | Alex Norris has completed all levels of music education, up to Ph.D, and at a relatively young age is already considered an elder statesman of jazz. His album “A New Beginning” showcases his sure-footed and swinging virtuosity over standards and his own classic-sounding compositions. At this particular event, he is showcasing the tenor saxophonist Troy Roberts, who is originally from Australia and is now based in New York. The two spent time together on staff at University of Miami, and will bring some of that chemistry to front line of this weekend’s performances. Two separate sets at 8 & 10 p.m. $15 cover, $10 minimum [words by Allen Jones] View event on calendar | Twins Jazz profile

Allison Crockett, Loews Madison Hotel, 8 p.m. | For those who have been following the jazz internet’s most popular – and circular – debate of the past two years, let’s put it to rest: #BAM exists. (That is, “Black American Music,” the big-tent term that Nicholas Payton coined as an alternative label for much contemporary jazz.) And it’s what Allison Crockett sings. She’s got the laggard rhythm of an Erykah Badu, the dance instinct of a Chaka Kahn, and the maverick relationship to the jazz canon of a Lizz Wright. Here she will be skewing straight-ahead, fronting a small combo featuring Chris Grasso on piano and James King on bass. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Loews website

Tim Green, Bohemian Caverns, 8 & 10:30 p.m. | Both chittering and ruminative, the alto saxophonist Tim Green resonates command and passion. The Baltimore native’s touchstones are in gospel and blues, and when he ups the ante on a solo you can feel the soul virtually dripping off his horn. Green, who was runner-up in the definitive Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition, performs here with a small combo. Two separate sets at 8:30 and 10:30 p.m. $20 cover in advance, $25 at door, no minimum. View event on calendar | Bohemian Caverns profile

Peter Edelman Trio, 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

Antonio Parker Quartet, HR-57, 9 p.m. | The alto saxophonist Antonio Parker’s playing is doggedly swinging, soulful and colored by a bright, aggressive tone. He casually sprinkles neo-soul and R&B influences into his otherwise straight-ahead bop, and his improvisation shows a redolence of Kenny Garrett. $15 cover, no minimum. View event on calendar | HR-57 profile

Donvonte McCoy Quintet, 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

U St. Jazz Jam, Ulah Bistro, 11 p.m. | U Street restaurant Ulah Bistro has stepped up to fill the void that Utopia left open last year, when it closed to make way for the construction of a new condos complex. That restaurant housed the block’s most reliable, convivial jam sessions. Ulah gives a taste of that energy once a week, late on Friday nights. A rotation of bands handles house duties; this week, it’s the Wayne Wilentz Trio. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Ulah website

SATURDAY, MARCH 1

cb picks:

  • Jamison Ross and Joy Ride, Kennedy Center, 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.
  • Mardis Gras Party, Bethesda Jazz and Supper Club, 8 p.m.
  • Alex Norris, Twins Jazz, 8 p.m. & 10 p.m.
  • Tim Green, Bohemian Caverns, 8:30 & 10:30 p.m.
  • Donvonte McCoy, 18th St. Lounge, 10:30 p.m.

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

Betty Carter Listening Party, Kennedy Center, 4 p.m. | Jason Moran leads a discussion on the legacy of Betty Carter whilst listening to some of her most famous songs. Tickets $12.View event on calendar | KC Jazz Club profile

Mark Mosley Trio, 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, 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

Jamison Ross and Joy Ride, KC Jazz Club, 7:30 & 9:30 p.m. | Soul is at the heart of the jazz tradition and Jamison Ross has plenty of it. Originally from Florida, he helped bring his high school band to New York, where it won Lincoln Center’s Essentially Ellington competition in 2006 and he received special accolades. He then went on to win the 2012 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition, where he showcased his understanding of jazz’s social roots. With his band Joy Ride, he maintains that winning spirit by bringing the audience with him on an adventure through jazz’s history. As a drummer and composer, his original works feature myriad grooves incorporating everything from classic New Orleans rhythms that jump up and dip down in perfect tempo to a more modern interchanging between hard-bop and hip-hop. Joy Ride is deserving of its name, in that this band keeps a keen interest in the audience member from beginning to end. Two separate sets at 7:30 & 9:30 p.m. Cover $20, no minimum. [words by Allen Jones] View event on calendar | KC Jazz Club profile

Alex Norris Quintet Featuring Troy Roberts, Twins Jazz, 8 & 10 p.m. | Alex Norris has completed all levels of music education, up to Ph.D, and at a relatively young age is already considered an elder statesman of jazz. His album “A New Beginning” showcases his sure-footed and swinging virtuosity over standards and his own classic-sounding compositions. At this particular event, he is showcasing the tenor saxophonist Troy Roberts, who is originally from Australia and is now based in New York. The two spent time together on staff at University of Miami, and will bring some of that chemistry to front line of this weekend’s performances. Two separate sets at 8 & 10 p.m. $15 cover, $10 minimum [words by Allen Jones] View event on calendar | Twins Jazz profile

Mardis Gras Party, Bethesda Jazz and Supper Club, 8 p.m. | See how much battered food, bubbling alcohol and traditional jazz it takes to escape the suburbs of your mind. That’s what the ticket promises at the Bethesda Blues & Jazz Supper Club’s Mardi Gras party: It includes two drinks and all-you-can-eat buffet. Onstage, the strong local saxophonist Jeff Antoniuk plays Second Line music and old-school New Orleans jazz. Tickets $35. View event on calendar |

Tuck & Patti, Blues Alley, 8 & 10 p.m. | Tuck & Patti are a vocal-guitar duo, performing jazz standards with an easygoing manner. Patti’s voice recalls influences from Ella Fitzgerald to Betty Carter, though her singing is a bit less aggressive than those idols’. Two separate sets at 8 & 10 p.m. $25 cover, $2.50 surcharge, $12 minimum.[words by Allen Jones] View event on calendar | Blues Alley profile

Tim Green, Bohemian Caverns, 8 & 10:30 p.m. | Both chittering and ruminative, the alto saxophonist Tim Green resonates command and passion. The Baltimore native’s touchstones are in gospel and blues, and when he ups the ante on a solo you can feel the soul virtually dripping off his horn. Green, who was runner-up in the definitive Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition, performs here with a small combo. Two separate sets at 8:30 and 10:30 p.m. $20 cover in advance, $25 at door, no minimum. View event on calendar | Bohemian Caverns profile

Julian Hipkins, Loews Madison Hotel, 8 p.m. | Julian Hipkins sings with a swinging flair and jaunty, deep voice that recalls Jimmy Rushing. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Loews website

Cubano Groove, HR-57, 9 p.m. | The name says it all. $15 cover, no minimum. View event on calendar | HR-57 profile

Donvonte McCoy Quintet, 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

SUNDAY, MARCH 2

Gospel Brunch, The Hamilton, 10 a.m. & 12:30 p.m. | Every Sunday morning, the Hamilton presents two sets of rafters-raising gospel, along with an all-you-can-eat buffet. Two separate shows at 10 a.m. & 12:30 p.m. $25 cover, no minimum. View event on calendar | The Hamilton website

George Oakley Group, Redwood Restaurant, 11 a.m. | George Oakley invests all the reeds he plays – saxophone, clarinet and flute – with a whispering coolness. In this weekly brunch gig, he performs with a laid-back trio featuring Scott Giambusso on bass and Nick Lipkowski on guitar. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Redwood website

Harlem Gospel Choir, Howard Theatre, 12 p.m. | The talented Harlem Gospel Choir, which has been active since 1986, performs a Sunday brunch show every week at the Howard Theatre. Either an all-you-can-eat buffet or an a la carte menu are available. Doors open at noon, and the music starts at 1:30 p.m. Tickets vary ($35 for all-you-can-eat or $20 for admission and a la carte options in advance, $45 or $30 at the door). View event on calendar | Howard website

Todd Simon, Kellari Taverna, 12 p.m. | The sturdy and swinging pianist Todd Simon performs every Sunday in a duo setting; his accompanists vary from bass to guitar to saxophone, depending on the week. No cover, 1-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Kellari Taverna website

Nguyen Nguyen, Ulah Bistro, 12 p.m. | Nguyen Nguyen plays jazz piano and sings in a scruffy, boyish tone. At Ulah Bistro’s weekly brunch, he mixes jaunty covers of jazz standards with his own compositions, and his combo stays at a background level. No cover, one-drink minimum. View event on calendar | Ulah Bistro

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

D.C. Jazz Jam, Dahlak, 6:30 p.m. | The D.C. 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

Ellen Christi, Bohemian Caverns, 7 & 8:30 p.m. | Ellen Christi is a jazz vocalist who presents originals and standards in a smooth and rounded singing voice. She is a musician who has spent a lot of time around the world and brings with her a clear sense of direction. Two separate sets at 7 & 8:30 PM. $15 cover in advance, $20 at the door, no minimum. [words by Allen Jones] View event on calendar | Bohemian Caverns profile

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

Victor Dvoskin Duo, Tabard Inn, 7:30 p.m.| The bassist Victor Dvoskin leads a straight-ahead jazz duo every Sunday evening at the Tabard Inn restaurant. No cover, one-drink minimum. View event on calendar |

Tuck & Patti, Blues Alley, 8 & 10 p.m. | Tuck & Patti are a vocal-guitar duo, performing jazz standards with an easygoing manner. Patti’s voice recalls influences from Ella Fitzgerald to Betty Carter, though her singing is a bit less aggressive than those idols’. Two separate sets at 8 & 10 p.m. $25 cover, $2.50 surcharge, $12 minimum. [words by Allen Jones] View event on calendar | Blues Alley profile

Tony Martucci with Amy Shook, Twins Jazz, 8 & 10 p.m. | A frequent sideman and bandleader in the D.C. area, the drummer Tony Martucci plays comfortable bop with a lightly dabbed, clarion swing on the ride cymbal. He is joined here by Amy Shook on bass and Pat Shook on saxophone. Two separate sets at 8 & 10 p.m. $10 cover, $10 minimum. View event on calendar | Twins Jazz profile

Peter Edelman Trio, Columbia Station, 8:30 p.m. | The stalwart D.C. piano player Peter Edelman every Sunday 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

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