From intimate house concerts for neighbors in Fort Point, Cambridge, Brookline, and Newton – organized for the 4th year with guidance from JazzBoston – to outdoor concerts attracting hundreds of fans, Jazz Week 2017 has something for everyone. As always, many events are free or low-cost.
Here’s a sample of events coming up all over Greater Boston. To see the complete listings, visit our
Jazz Week calendar.
Newport Folk Presents Blind Boys of Alabama
The Blind Boys of Alabama have the rare distinction of being recognized around the world as both living legends and modern-day innovators. They are not just gospel singers borrowing from old traditions; the group helped to define those traditions in 20th century and almost single-handedly created a new gospel sound for the 21st. April 21. Presented by The Cabot at The Cabot, Beverly.
Bruce Millard & Friends
“ … content to explore on his own, what he’s found is a landscape rich with roots in a number of American art forms … a musical tapestry of modern sensibilities and musical traditions highlighted by a few rock ‘n’ roll flourishes.” — The Daily Times “ … musical skills in abundance from Bruce Millard … did someone say spontaneous combustion?” — The Boston Globe “ … infectiously merry … ” — Mountain Stage website, NPR.org. April 21. Presented by Amazing Things Arts Center at Amazing Things Arts Center, Framingham.
Cecile McLorin Salvant featuring Sullivan Fortner
Salvant makes an electric connection with live audiences. “Resoundingly eloquent, whether growling the blues or barely breathing, Salvant has inbuilt swing, an actor’s stagecraft, an instrumentalist’s precision of nuance, and an appetite for dusting off rarely performed songs,” declared The Guardian. In the mold of her idols, Vaughan and Abbey Lincoln, McLorin Salvant makes every song utterly her own. April 22. Presented by Scullers Jazz Club at Scullers Jazz Club, Boston.
Melissa Kassel & Tom Zicarelli Group
A concert featuring Melissa Kassel – Voice Tom Zicarelli – Piano Phil Grenadier – Trumpet Bruce Gertz – Bass Gary Fieldman – Drums. April 22. Presented by Third Life Studio at Third Life Studio, Somerville.
A monumental Jazz Week 4tet: Legends Joe McPhee, Ra-Kalam Bob Moses + Jeb Bishop and Damon Smith
A monumental meeting which is not to be missed between the great Joe McPhee (last performed here in 1/2015) and Boston drum legend Ra-Kalam Bob Moses, plus significant other Boston cutting-edge musicians, Jeb Bishop and Damon Smith. April 23. Presented by The Creative Music Series at Lily Pad, Cambridge.
The Kurtis Rivers Quartet Returns to the Piano Craft Gallery
The Piano Craft Gallery is excited to welcome back Makanda Project lead Alto saxophonist Kurtis Rivers. A long time veteran of the Boston Jazz scene, Kurtis is also well known for his quartet/quintet performances in intimate club settings. April 23. Presented by Piano Craft Gallery at Piano Craft Gallery, Boston.
Ella at 100: The Centennial Celebration – Patrice Williamson presents Ella & Me
Welcome to Patrice’s third annual birthday concert for Ella Fitzgerald. April 25th marks Ella Fitzgerald’s 100th birthday and the release of Williamson’s first tribute album to the First Lady of Song. Ella Fitzgerald (1917- 1996) was a musical titan, a perfect vocalist who could also sing like an instrumentalist. April 25. Presented by Regattabar at the Charles Hotel at Regattabar, Cambridge.
Guitarist Bobby B. Keyes defines our American musical heritage by blending rhythm & blues, country, jazz, rock, pop and swing. His guitar playing is inspired and passionate, his musical taste is exquisite, and his sound is clean and refreshing. April 25. Presented by Chianti Tuscan Restaurant & Jazz Lounge at Chianti Tuscan Kitchen & Jazz Lounge, Beverly.
NEC Jazz Composers’ Workshop Orchestra
NEC’s Jazz Composers’ Workshop Orchestra features the music of NEC students performed by their peers, under the direction of Frank Carlberg. April 25. Presented by New England Conservatory at NEC’s Jordan Hall, Boston.
The Branford Marsalis Quartet with Kurt Elling
It is no secret that the Branford Marsalis Quartet can be as freewheeling off the bandstand as in performance. Saxophonist Marsalis, pianist Joey Calderazzo, bassist Eric Revis and drummer Justin Faulkner are each bold personalities with strong opinions, equally intense in both musical and verbal exchanges. April 28. Presented by Spectacle Management at Cary Memorial Hall, Lexington.
Ron Carter Trio: 80th Birthday Celebration
Ron Carter is among the most original, prolific, and influential bassists in jazz. With more than 2,000 albums to his credit, he has recorded with many of music’s greats: Tommy Flanagan, Gil Evans, Lena Horne, Bill Evans, B.B. King, the Kronos Quartet, Dexter Gordon, Wes Montgomery, and Bobby Timmons. April 28 – 30. Presented by Regattabar at the Charles Hotel at Regattabar, Cambridge.
Bob Ockenden & Jon Taubman Duo
The Bob Ockenden/Jon Taubman Guitar Duo delivers hard bop, bebop and blues in original arrangements of popular titles from artists like; Wes Montgomery, Thelonious Monk, Pat Metheny, Miles Davis, Wayne Shorter and more. April 28. Presented by JazzBoston at White Rose Coffeehouse, Lynn.
Luciana Souza and Guillermo Klein: World Premiere of Works on Hope
Two of South America’s greatest jazz artists, Grammy award winning vocalist Luciana Souza and celebrated composer Guillermo Klein, join the MIT Wind Ensemble, MIT Festival Jazz Ensemble and MIT Vocal Jazz Ensemble in creating innovative new compositions and arrangements. The performance will represent the culmination of Klein’s and Souza’s MIT residency and a semester-long exploration of their music by the three MIT student ensembles. April 28. Presented by Arts at MIT at MIT’s Kresge Auditorium, Cambridge.
The Lance Martin Jazz Trio Ryles Brunch
You come in for a tasty brunch at Ryles Jazz Club, write your request, and we will try to play it. This is our 14th year of fun, and we would also like to thank and invite the great Fred Taylor for his many years of Jazz and support of us throughout years. John Baboian on Guitar and Dave Clark on Bass, Lance Martin on flutes. April 30. Presented by Ryles Jazz Club at RYLES Jazz Club, Cambridge.
Jazz on the Plaza, featuring the Harvard Jazz Band and Yosvany Terry Quintet
Celebrate International Jazz Day with a free concert under the Tent! Grammy-nominated saxophonist/composer Yosvany Terry directs the Harvard student “Monday” big band in a program featuring compositions of such celebrated jazz masters as Herbie Hancock and Joe Henderson and showcasing his powerhouse Quintet from New York. April 30. Presented by Office for the Arts at Harvard at Science Center Plaza, Cambridge.
UJazz Boston International Jazz Day Concert
The UJazz Boston Trio performs LIVE on April 30 in celebration of International Jazz Day. Pianist Tony Martin, bassist Domenic Davis, and drummer Brian Hull, all music majors at UMass Boston, share an evening of music celebrating jazz composers from the last half century. April 30. Presented by UMass Boston at UMass Boston Performing Arts – University Hall – Recital Hall, Boston.