Today is May 20.
Clarinetist Rod Cless was born this day in Lennox, Iowa, in 1907. He recorded with Muggsy Spanier, Frank Teschemacher, Gene Krupa and Mezz Mezzrow. He died in 1944 at age 37 after a drunken fall.
On this day in 1941, Harry James recorded the song "You Made Me Love You," which quickly soared to the top of the pop charts.
This was also the day, in 1942, when Glenn Miller recorded his hit "Kalamazoo" for the Victor label.
On this day in 2001, pianist Chick Corea had a street named in his honor in his hometown of Chelsea, Mass.
On this night in 2002 in New York, trumpeter Wynton Marsalis went uptown to the historic Apollo Theatre in Harlem to host an all-star fundraising event for Jazz at Lincoln Center. It featured Whoopie Goldberg, Stevie Wonder, Vanessa Williams, Savion Glover and Roland Hanna.
Looking at today's hip happenings...
On the New York jazz scene... saxophonist Bob Belden's soul-jazz organ group Ice is at the Jazz Standard tonight. Taj Mahal is at the Blue Note this week. The Uri Caine trio with Drew Gress and Ben Perowsky is at the Village Vanguard tonight through Sunday. The McCoy Tyner trio with special guest Bobby Hutcherson is at Iridium this week.
The Duke Ellington orchestra directed by Paul Mercer Ellington and Jack Jeffers is at Birdland tonight. Steve Coleman and Five Elements are at The Jazz Gallery through Tuesday. Harvie S and Eye Contact are at Sweet Rhythm tonight and Wednesday. Trumpeter Russell Gunn and Ethnomusicology are at the Zinc Bar tonight and Wednesday. The Christian McBride band is at Southpaw in the Park Slope section of Brooklyn tonight.
The John Payne Saxophone Choir is at The Regattabar in Cambridge, Mass., tonight. Saxophonist Phillippe Crettien is at the Center for the Arts in Natick, Mass., tonight.
In Chicago... Jack DeJohnette is at The Jazz Showcase this week with Danilo Perez and Jerome Harris. Men of Note are at Andy's tonight. Natalie Yoakley is at the Backroom. Bobby Broom's Deep Blue organ trio is at the Green Mill tonight. Ken Cheney is at Joe's BeBop Café and Jazz Emporium. Alfonso Ponticelli and Swing Gitan are at Katerina's.
Saxophonist Von Freeman and Friends are at the New Apartment Lounge on Tuesdays. The Marc Pompe trio is at the 100 South Chop House in Elmhurst tonight. The Ron Perrillo trio is at Pete Miller's Steakhouse in Evanston. Marshall Vente is at Philander's in Oak Park. Savoir Faire is at Pops for Champagne tonight. The Taku Akiyama quartet is at Smoke Daddy tonight. The Kimberly Gordan quartet is at the Underground Wonder Bar.
In New Orleans... Continuum Jazz is at the Blue Nile. Earl Brown is at Cafe Sbisa. Jimmy Moliere and Fred Sheppard are at the Circle Bar. Steve Yokum and The Catahoulas are at Fritzel's. The Funkin' Horns are at the Funky Butt tonight. Topsy Chapman is at Harrah's.
The ReBirth Brass Band is at the Maple Leaf. Greg Stafford leads tonight's band at Preservation Hall. The Rob Wagner trio is at the Seaport Café tonight. Maurice Brown is at Snug Harbor tonight. Linzzi Zaorski and Delta Royale are at the Spotted Cat tonight.
On the California jazz scene... trumpeter Gilbert Castellanos leads the Tuesday night jam at the Onyx Room in San Diego. The Heath Brothers are at the Jazz Bakery in Los Angeles through Sunday. Drummer Steve Smith and Vital Information with special guest Bill Evans on sax are at Catalina's Bar and Grill in Hollywood this week. The Chris Williams quintet is at Steamers Jazz Café in Fullerton tonight.
This is John Pisano's Guitar Night with Scott Henderson at Spazio in Sherman Oaks tonight. The Ralph Moore quartet is at Charlie O's in Valley Glen. The Heath Brothers are at the Kuumbwa Jazz Center in Santa Cruz tonight. The John Hammond band is at Yoshi's in Oakland tonight.
Keiko Matsui is at Dimitriou's Jazz Alley in Seattle this week.
On the recording front...
Trumpeter Roy Hargrove is out today on the Verve label with "The RH Factor: Hard Groove." It is his first album as a bandleader using electronic sounds and a funk/soul/hip-hop approach. Hargrove's new band, The RH Factor, made its debut last September to two packed venues on the opening night of California's Monterey Jazz Festival. On CD, Hargrove's band is joined by a host of high-profile guest artists, including Common, D'Angelo, Erykah Badu and Q-Tip.
Verve is also out today with "Up All Night," the latest CD from guitarist John Scofield's band, and "Nina Simone-Four Women: The Nina Simone Philips Recordings." The latter is a four-CD set by the late singer.
Scufflin' Records has released "Boogaloo to Beck." It's a quartet session by soul-jazz veteran Dr. Lonnie Smith with special guest David "Fathead" Newman. It's a project covering the music of rock artist Beck Hansen. Guitarist Doug Munro arranged the jazz versions of 11 Beck tunes.
Blue Note is just out with soul-jazz guitarist Paul Jackson Jr.'s "Still Small Voice" this month. His cohorts include Gerald Albright, Brian Culbertson, Sheila E, Jeff Lorber, Harvey Mason, Billy Preston and Patrice Rushen. This is his sixth recording as a leader.