Today is May 3.
Trumpeter Yank Lawson was born this day in Trenton, Mo. A regular with the World's Greatest Jazz Band, he cut his jazz teeth with Wingy Manone, Ben Pollack, Bob Crosby, Tommy Dorsey and Benny Goodman. Some consider Lawson's distinctive phrasing and blues feeling to have been the standout sound in Bob Crosby's Bobcats.
Pianist John Lewis, longtime musical director of the Modern Jazz Quartet, was born this day in 1920 in LaGrange, Ill. He died in 2001.
Looking at today's hip happenings...
On the New York jazz scene, the Lou Donaldson quartet is at the Village Vanguard through Sunday. The Danilo Perez trio is at the Jazz Standard all week. The Michel Camilo and Kenny Werner trios are at the Blue Note through Sunday. Kenny Garrett is at Iridium this week
Trumpeter Chris Botti brings his band into the Van Dyck in Schenectady, N.Y., tonight.
Jackie McLean joins the Cedar Walton trio at The Regattabar in Cambridge tonight through Sunday. Spyro Gyra is at Scullers in Boston tonight. The Preservation Hall Jazz Band is at Symphony Hall in Boston tonight. Guitarist John Stein's trio is at Ryles in Cambridge tonight.
The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, better known locally as JazzFest, continues today with Marcia Ball, Bonnie Raitt, Karl Denson's Tiny Universe, Yellowjackets, the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Henry Butler, the Cyril Neville All-Stars, Charles Neville, Michael White and the Original Liberty Jazz Band with guest singer Thais Clark, and many more. The festival's evening concert series features Gilberto Santa Rosa and Fredy Omar at the House of Blues and Lloyd Price and the Twilighters at Praline Connection Gospel and Blues Hall.
Elsewhere in New Orleans, Samirah Evans is at Charley G's, the Mama Digdown Brass Band and the Treme Brass Band are at Donna's and Jeremy Davenport is at the Ritz-Carlton's French Quarter Bar. Louis Ford and Topsy Chapman are at Satchmo's jazz room in Harrah's Casino. The Jazz Mandolin Project is at the House of Blues Parish Room. Charlie Hunter, Moore and More and Project Logic are at Howlin' Wolf.
Brotherhood of Groove plus the Motet are at the Old Point. Bela Fleck and the Flecktones plus Soulive are at the Orpheum Theatre. Ernie Elly's Slickshots are at Palm Court. Pete Fountain is in the spotlight at his club. Leroy Jones leads the band at Preservation Hall. Medeski, Martin and Wood plus Cornershop are at the Saenger Theater. Ellis Marsalis is at Snug Harbor.
Fog City Records' Funk Fest featuring Robert Walter's 20th Congress, Mofro and Papa Mali is at Tipitina's French Quarter club. The Radiators plus the ReBirth Brass Band are at Tipitina's uptown. Los Hombres Calientes plus Kermit Ruffins and the Henry Butler Band are at the TwiRoPa Arts Center tonight, Michael Ray and the Cosmic Krewe and the Raymond Williams Quintet are at Zeitgeist tonight.
Pianist Tom McDermott presents a lecture-demonstration this afternoon on New Orleans Piano Professors at the New Orleans Jazz National Historic Park. The Mingus Big Band presents a JazzFest clinic at Southern University today.
On the California jazz scene, Kenny Barron, Stefon Harris, Javon Jackson, Rufus Reid and Lewis Nash are featured in a tribute to the late Joe Henderson at Yoshi's in Oakland. Benny Green is at the Catalina in North Hollywood through Sunday. Jason Moran's trio is at the Jazz Bakery in Los Angeles through Sunday. Wild Mango is at the Kuumbwa Jazz Center in Santa Cruz.
In San Francisco, the Brian Melvin trio is at Rubicon this afternoon. Bill Henderson, Eric Comstock and Dena deRose bring their Hollywood Songbook show to The Plush Room tonight. Drummer Vince Lateano's trio is at Jazz at Pearl's.
The Big Sur Jazz Festival opens its spectacular weekend run tonight, The three-day lineup includes the Scott Amendola band, Eric Person and Meta-Four, the Kitty Margolis quintet, the Brad Mehldau trio, the Omar Sosa Septet and the Russell Malone band.