Dinner & Show: $65
Show Time: 8pm
Called "one of the best jazz ensembles in the world" (Jazz Podium, Germany), the Aardvark Jazz Orchestra kicks off its 44th season at Scullers with a high-energy show including Mark Harvey's Spaceways (for Sun Ra) and Saxophrenia (two pieces from Aardvark’s new CD Passages from Leo Records). Also on tap: the world premiere of a Mark Harvey’s Northeast Express, plus the Duke Ellington-Juan Tizol classic Caravan and the Ellington-Johnny Hodges ballad Jeep's Blues, in honor of Cambridge-Boston native Hodges on the 110th anniversary of his birth. “Aardvark suggests the best and the brashest of Charles Mingus, Gil Evans, George Russell, and even Frank Zappa.” (JazzTimes)
Dinner and Show: $75
Show Time: 8 and 10pm
Monty Alexander is an American classic, touring the world relentlessly with various projects, delighting a global audience drawn to his vibrant personality and soulful message. His spirited conception is one informed by the timeless verities: endless melody-making, effervescent grooves, sophisticated voicings, a romantic spirit, and a consistent predisposition, as Alexander accurately states, “to build up the heat and kick up a storm.” In the course of any given performance, Alexander applies those aesthetics to repertoire spanning a broad range of jazz and Jamaican musical expression—the American songbook and the blues, gospel and bebop, calypso and reggae. Like his “eternal inspiration,” Erroll Garner, Alexander—cited as the fifth greatest jazz pianist ever in The Fifty Greatest Jazz Piano Players of All Time (Hal Leonard Publishing) and mentioned in Robert Doerschuk’s 88: The Giants of Jazz Piano—gives the hardcore-jazz-obsessed much to dig into while also communicating the message to the squarest “civilian.”
In live performance with Harlem-Kingston Express, Alexander spontaneously orchestrates, switching-off from straight-ahead to two-worlds-meet. “I’m captain of the ship, and everything is freewheeling,” he says. A boxing aficionado since his earlier days in Jamaica, he offers the sweet science as a metaphor. “It’s like you go into the ring, and you throw the left, you throw the right—but whatever you throw, throw it right,” he says. “There’s almost always some kind of jet taking off when I transfer the music to one rhythm or the other. Whether it’s 4/4 straightahead acoustic or a rhythm from Jamaica, it’s cathartic. It’s a bring-people-together thing, and the musicians enjoy each other. You can see the camaraderie, no matter who I’ve got. It’s constantly, ‘let’s do it this way, let’s do it that way.’ It never gets old.”
At the 2016 Newport Jazz Festival, Monty Alexander and the Harlem Kingston Express had the capacity crowd on it's feet feeling good and they are sure to repeat the excitement at Scullers on September 30.
Scullers Jazz Club at the Doubletree Suites by Hilton Boston-Cambridge 400 Soldiers Field Road Boston, MA 02134
For tickets: 866.777.8932 Email: Info@ScullersJazz.com Ticket purchases are non-refundable.