Today is Nov. 6.
Trumpeter and arranger Andy Gibson was born this day in 1913 in Zanesville, Ohio. He spent much of the 1930s playing in a succession of big bands before becoming a free-lance arranger for Count Basie, Charlie Barnet, Cab Calloway and Harry James.
Trombonist and arranger Ray Conniff was born this day in 1916 in Attleboro, Mass. He toured with Bunny Berigan before recording Bob Crosby, Artie Shaw and Bobby Hackett, as well as prior to forming his own group of singers and instrumentalists in the late 1950s to perform his arrangements of light pop music. The Ray Conniff Singers were popular well into the 1970s. Conniff died this year.
Trumpeter Arturo Sandoval was born this day in 1949 in Havana, Cuba. He began studying classical trumpet at age 12 and caught jazz fever soon after. The founding member of the Cuban group Irakere was voted his native country's best instrumentalist in 1982, 1983 and 1984. In 1990, Sandoval and his family sought and obtained political asylum from the United States while on a European tour. He became a U.S. citizen in 1999 after a long naturalization fight.
On this day in 1935... Benny Goodman began an important engagement at Chicago's Congress Hotel. That one-month contract turned into a six-month stay.
On this day in 2001, Columbia Records released Tony Bennett's "Playin' With My Friends: Bennett Sings the Blues." The nine-time Grammy winner and his quartet teamed up with Ray Charles, Natalie Cole, Sheryl Crow, Billy Joel, B.B. King, Diana Krall, k.d. lang, Bonnie Raitt, Kay Starr and Stevie Wonder.
Looking at today's hip happenings...
Saxophonist Jimmy Heath, drummer Elvin Jones and singer Abbey Lincoln have been named the 2003 winners of the American Jazz Masters fellowships by the National Endowment for the Arts. Each will receive $20,000 with the prestigious honors, to be awarded Jan. 10 at the 30th annual International Association for Jazz Education conference in Toronto. They were cited for significant contributions to jazz, artistic excellence and impact on music.
On the New York jazz scene... the Gary Bartz Quintet plus String Quartet are at The Jazz Standard through Sunday. He will premiere a new work, "The Rimsky Korsakov Project -- Jazz Interpretations of Sheherazade" and also perform his piece "The Coltrane Project." Jon Hendricks and Company are at the Blue Note for its Fall Vocal Festival. Greg Osby's band is at the Village Vanguard this week. Mose Allison's quartet is at Iridium. Santi Debriano and Circle Chant are at the Zinc Bar tonight.
In and around Boston... Brazilian singer-songwriter Caetano Veloso is at Symphony Hall in Boston tonight. Singer Karrin Allyson is at Scullers. The Greg Burk trio is at The Regattabar in Cambridge. Trumpeter Greg Hopkins band featuring Billy Pierce and Mick Goodrick is at Ryles in Cambridge tonight.
The Wayne Shorter quartet and Regina Carter quintet are at the Tampa Theater tonight as part of the Verizon Music Festival in Tampa Bay, Fla.
The Herbie Hancock quartet is at the Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor tonight,
In the Chicago area... the Pat Metheny Group is at the McAnich Arts Center at the College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn tonight. William Russo leads his Chicago Jazz Ensemble in five performances -- "Sketches of Spain" -- and conducts his own work, "Jubilatum," starting tonight at the Metropolis Performing Arts Center in Arlington Heights. The other performances are Nov. 8 at Rockford College's Maddox Theater in Rockford, Ill., Nov. 9 at the Centre East Theater in Skokie, Nov. 13 at Columbia College Chicago, and Nov. 23 at the Beverly Arts Center.
Henry Johnson's Organ Express is at Andy's tonight. The Ron Smith duo is at Bistro America. Mike Finnerty and the Jazz Hippies are at Cafe Ennui. Bill Porter Orchestra with Rich Fudoli is at Green Dolphin Street. The Kurt Elling Quartet is at the Green Mill. The Louis Bellson quintet is at the Jazz Showcase through Sunday. Ken Saydak is at Joe's BeBop Cafe and Jazz Emporium tonight. The Scott Lies duo is at Michael's Jazz Bistro in Glen Ellyn. Jackie Allen and Judy Roberts are at Philander's in Oak Park. The Matt Skoller duo is at Pops for Champagne. Peter Lerner trio is at Pops of Highwood tonight.
In New Orleans... the Milonga Tango band is at the Blue Nile tonight. Lenny McDaniel is at Cobalt. Leigh "Little Queenie" Harris is at Dos Jefes. The Soul Rebels Brass Band is at El Matador. Ingrid Lucia is at the Ritz Carlton's French Quarter Bar. Topsy Chapman is at Satchmo's jazz room at Harrah's casino. Kermit Ruffins and the Barbecue Swingers are at Le Bon Temps Roule.
John Brunious leads the band at Preservation Hall. The John Mahoney Big Band is at Snug Harbor tonight. The Richie Moten trio and the Silverleaf Jazz Band are at the Sonesta's Mystick Den. The South African Connection is at the University of New Orleans Sandbar room tonight. The Ian McPhail quintet is at d.b.a. tonight.
Tonight's schedule at the 20th anniversary edition of the San Francisco Jazz Festival features the Patricia Barber quartet at the Palace of Fine Arts Theatre.
Elsewhere on the California jazz scene... Polish trumpeter Tomasz Stanko is at the Athenaeum in La Jolla tonight. The Elvin Jones Jazz Machine is at the Jazz Bakery in Los Angeles through Sunday. Flora Purim and Airto Moreira are at the Catalina Bar and Grill in Hollywood this week.
The Cal State Fullerton big bands, under the direction of Chuck Tumlinson, are at Steamer's Jazz Cafe in Fullerton. Alan Broadbent's trio is at Spazio in Sherman Oaks. The Cedar Walton trio with Vincent Herring and Nicholas Payton is at Yoshi's in Oakland this week. Pianist Don Alberts' trio is at Jazz at Pearl's in San Francisco.