Jazz, Music, Philadelphia

If I Were You…

Having been out of Philadelphia for just over a week visiting a friend in Atlanta, I am looking forward to getting back to the city and return to normalcy.  The break from town was something I really needed.  Although I missed some great music which I hope someone reading this checked out (ie…Feeler Gauge and the Rhinoceri Trio last Friday @ Green Line), nothing makes the heart grow fonder as absence.

This week brings some really great music to Philadelphia that I’ll unfortunately have to miss because of my own schedule.  Here’s a quick rundown of things I’d check out if I weren’t busy myself.

Wednesday, May 18th – The Flat Earth Society, a group I know very little about, is playing at Johnny Brenda’s with the great local band Inzinzac.  Inzinzac consists of Alban Bailey on guitar, Dan Scofield on saxophones and Eli Litwin on drums.  They play a loud, raucous, improvised style of music that reminds me of Hilmar Jensson’s group TYFT but with a more worldly influence.  I saw them perform for the first time a few months ago at Kung Fu Necktie and really enjoyed their set.  Johnny Brenda’s usually does a great job with sound as well so I expect this show to be even better than the Kung Fu Necktie show for that reason.  This is another show from Ars Nova Workshop’s fantastic 2010-2011 season.

Friday, May 20th – The Philadelphia Museum of Art continues to bring in great national acts with its Art After 5 program.  In recent past, the museum has commissioned great jazz composers-performers to write music based on rotating exhibits featured at the time of performance.  This weekend and next, two of jazz music’s most heralded tenor saxophonists will perform new music in the Great Stair Hall.  May 20th, Joe Lovano will bring his group to Philadelphia to perform pieces inspired by Ellsworth Kelly’s Seine, apparently an important acquisition by the museum.  The following Friday, May 27th, Chris Potter will lead an acoustic quintet performing music inspired by the same exhibit.  I’ve seen both musicians play several times in different configurations and have had some great experiences listening to their music.  Chris Potter’s performance is of note because he is finally bringing an acoustic group to Philadelphia after over-doing-it with his electric Underground outfit for the past 4-5 years.  All of the info can be found here.

Also on Friday, stop by Little Bar at 8th and Fitzwater in South Philly to catch either Chris Aschman’s Group at 8pm or Matt Davis’ Aerial Photograph at 10pm.  Both groups are local and will surely not disappoint.

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Checking out the calendar for this week, these few performances strike me as the ones to check out.  Please support this great music going on Philadelphia so that it continues.

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