A happy 80th birthday wish goes out to Chicago tenor saxophone titan Von Freeman, the father of fellow tenor Chico Freeman. The elder musician was both this day in 1922.
Jazz impresario George Wein was born in Boston this day in 1925. He began his music career as a pianist but is far better known as a festival producer. He ran the very first Newport Jazz Festival back in 1954, an event that launched thousands of festivals all over the world. Wein's firm, Festival Productions Inc., has produced many of them.
Looking at today's hip happenings...
On the New York jazz scene... singer Karrin Allyson and organ marvel Joey DeFrancesco are at the Blue Note this week. Jimmy Scott is at Birdland through Saturday. Drummer Carl Allen and his band New Spirit are at the Jazz Standard through Sunday. Guitarists Vernon Reid and James "Blood" Ulmer bring their Band "Raw Blues" into the Iridium all week. Pianist Brad Mehldau's trio is at the Village Vanguard through Sunday.
Jazz at Lincoln Center welcomes two vocalists, Mark Murphy and Claudia Acuna, for the first Singers Over Manhattan concerts of the 2002-03 season tonight through Saturday in the Stanley H. Kaplan Penthouse. Trumpeter Kermit Ruffins is at the Knitting Factory tonight. The Eric McPherson/Nasheet Waits duo is at The Jazz Gallery.
Joe Lovano's Street Band with Gil Goldstein, Scott Lee, Judi Silvano, Ed Schuller and Carmen Castaldi is at Scullers in Boston tonight and Friday. The Tony Perez trio is at The Regattabar in Cambridge, Mass. "Fever!" -- a tribute to late singer Peggy Lee, starring Lezlie Anders with the Benny Goodman Tribute Big Band and with music arranged and conducted by Buddy Greco, is at the Stoneham Theatre in Stoneham tonight through Sunday. Singer Rene Marie is at the Iron Horse in Northhampton.
Singer Nnenna Freelon is at the University of South Carolina in Spartanburg tonight.
Jimmy Smith is at Nighttown in Cleveland tonight. Rosario Cambria's Wordjazz series tonight examines "The Birth of Bebop: Early Dizzy And Bird" in a discussion at Borders in Strongsville.
In and around Chicago tonight... the Ron Freidman quintet is at Andy's. Judy Roberts is at The Chicago Firehouse through Saturday. Alan Gresik's Swing Shift Orchestra is at the Green Mill. Chris Potter's quartet is at the Jazz Showcase through Sunday. Erwin Helfer and the Chicago Boogie Ensemble are at Joe's BeBop Cafe and Jazz Emporium tonight.
Ken Saydak's band is at Pops for Champagne tonight. Steve Million's trio is at Pete Miller's Steakhouse in Evanston. John Wright is at Philander's in Oak Park. The weekly jam at The Chambers in Niles features John Bany, Don Stille and Charles Braugham.
In New Orleans... the Improvisational Arts Council's "Acid Test" and New Orleans Jazz Vipers are at the Blue Nile tonight. Riccardo Crespo is at Cafe Matrix. New Orleans Streetbeat is at the Crescent City Brewhouse. Evan Christopher and Tom McDermott are at Donna's. Rebecca Barry is at Dos Jefes. Jeremy Davenport is at the Ritz Carlton's French Quarter Bar. David Torkanowsky and Organism and the Evan Howard Band are at the Funky Butt.
Louis Ford is at Satchmo's Jazz Room in Harrah's casino. The Soul Rebels Brass Band is at Le Bon Temps Roule. Lloyd Washington and the Crescent City Joymakers are at the Palm Court. Dave Bartholomew leads tonight's band at Preservation Hall. Riccardo Crespo is at the Red Bike. Tim Green is at Rene Bistrot. Diane Delin and Dennis Luxion are at Snug Harbor. The Hot Club of New Orleans and the Panorama Jazz Band are at the Spotted Cat. Kermit Ruffins and the Barbecue Swingers are at Vaughan's.
In California... the Dave Holland Big Band is at the University of California Los Angeles at Royce Hall tonight. Ozomatli and Toshi Reagon are at California Plaza tonight for a free concert as part of the Los Angeles edition of the Verizon Music Festival. Bill Charlap's trio is at the Jazz Bakery in Los Angeles this week. The Ron Eschete trio is at Steamers Jazz Cafe in Fullerton. New Orleans drummer Earl Palmer is at Charlie O's in Valley Glen tonight with Ernie McDaniel on bass and Tateng Katindig on piano.
Charles McPherson's band is at the Museum of Photographic Arts' After Dark jazz series tonight at Balboa Park in San Diego. Acoustic Alchemy and Strunz and Farah are at Humphrey's By The Bay in San Diego tonight.
Jon Cleary and the Absolute Monster Gentlemen at The Powerhouse in Sebastopol. George Duke's band is at Yoshi's in Oakland. Mark Levine and Lorenzo Farrell are at Paradise Pizza in San Francisco tonight.
On the recording front...
Saxophonist Andy Snitzer has released his first acoustic jazz recording on the Chicago-based A440 Music Group label. He's featured with bassist James Genus, drummer Clarence Penn and pianist Alain Mallet on this session.
The Tokuma Japan label is out this week with the latest release by pianist Satoko Fujii's New York trio featuring bassist Mark Dresser and drummer Jim Black. It is called "Bell the Cat." Their 1998 debut, "Looking Out of the Window," made several critics' top 10 lists that year in Coda and Jazziz magazines.