By J. R. Carroll
Vacation time? Not for the musicians of New England. An amazing amount of live music this month, not a little of it free and open to the public.
Photo by Denise Sullivan
Treme trombonist and vocalist Glen David Andrews bridges gospel and New Orleans jazz at Johnny D’s in Somerville, MA at 9 p.m. on Tuesday, August 3. (He’ll also be at the Red Fox Inn in Bondville, VT at 9 p.m. on Saturday, August 7.)
Warming up for its Saturday appearance at Newport, the Berklee Global Jazz Institute Septet offers two free performances on Thursday, August 5; the first is at noon as part of the Kendall Square Concert Series, followed by a 6 p.m. visit to the Institute of Contemporary Art as part of its HarborWalk Sounds series.
Also on August 5, the Gregorio Uribe Big Band wraps up the Tito Puente Latin Music Series with a free concert at The Caboose at The Greenway in East Boston at 7 p.m. Then, at 8 p.m. at Scullers, pianist Alfredo Rodriguez demonstrates just what turned Quincy Jones into such an enthusiastic mentor for the young Cuban emigre.
Peruvian-Irish, raised in Sweden, the intriguing vocalist Elin brings her distinctive mingling of Brazilian and American standards to Framingham’s Amazing Things Arts Center on Friday, August 6 at 8 p.m. Back in town the same evening, Scullers welcomes innovative saxophonist David Binney and his Third Occasion band (pianist Craig Taborn, bassist Eivind Opsvik, and drummer Brian Blade) at 8 and 10 p.m.
Touring in support of his Imagine Project CD, pianist Herbie Hancock appears with guitarist Lionel Loueke, keyboardist Greg Phillinganes, bassist Tal Wilkenfeld, drummer Vinnie Colaiuta, and vocalist/violinist Kristina Train at the Lowell Summer Music Festival on Saturday, August 7 at 7:30 p.m.
Also on August 7, at 8 and 10 p.m. at Scullers, powerhouse vocalist Athene Wilson offers her unique mix of jazz, gospel, R&B, and an occasional nod to her Jamaican roots. And in Framingham the same night at 8 p.m., drummer Jerry Leake’s Cubist Band fuses contemporary sounds and world percussion traditions at the Amazing Things Arts Center.
Brooklyn-based guitarist Xander Naylor visits New England with his trio (bassist Ian Kovac and drummer Peter Negroponte), stopping by Burlington, VT’s Radio Bean at 10 p.m. on Saturday, August 7, Portland’s Slainte at 9 p.m. on Tuesday, August 10, and Cambridge’s Outpost 186 on Wednesday, August 11 at 8 p.m.
More free performances on Tuesday, August 10, as the Kendall Square Concert Series presents the Ezekiel’s Wheels Klezmer Band at noon and Kendrick Oliver & the New Life Jazz Orchestra wrap up the Franklin Park Coalition season at 6 p.m.
Bassist/vocalist/composer/arranger Alex Alvear has long demonstrated his mastery of styles from across the Americas, but in recent years he’s looked homeward to Ecuador for inspiration; his inimitable Ñawi collaboration comes to the World Wednesdays series at Ryles at 9 p.m. on Wednesday, August 11. And you can start your evening with the Revolutionary Snake Ensemble slithering their Second Line through the South End’s Titus Sparrow Park at 6:30 p.m.
There’ll be more Second Line magic when saxophonist John Ellis and his band Double Wide come to Scullers at 8 p.m. on Thursday, August 12. Across town the same evening, Return to Forever drummer Lenny White presents his Anomaly, with guitarist Jimmy Herring, at 7:30 p.m. at the Regattabar.
The New Orleans funk continues as guitarist Leo Nocentelli brings the Meters Experience to New England, with stops at the Regattabar at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, August 13, at Wellfleet’s Beachcomber on Saturday, August 14 at 9 p.m. and at Portland’s Asylum on Thursday, August 19.
Pack your pith helmet for an expedition to Johnny D’s on Wednesday, August 18; trumpeter Jerry Sabatini’s Sonic Explorers open the evening at 8 p.m., followed by reedman Charlie Kohlhase’s Explorer’s Club.
Lend support to the Acton Jazz Cafe Longevity Fund when pianist Phill Argyris and his quartet are joined by guests saxophonist Stan Strickland and trumpeter Phil Grenadier at 9 p.m. on Friday, August 27 for a fundraiser for this treasured Metro-West institution.