Jazz in NYC This Week

English: Muhal Richard Abrams, moers festival 2009

Source: The New York Times.

JOSHUA ABRAMS AND NATURAL INFORMATION SOCIETY at Bridget Donahue (April 23, 7:30 p.m.). At once tensile and hypnotic, “Simultonality,” the new album from Joshua Abrams and Natural Information Society, has an aesthetic of repetition and renewal. Mr. Abrams draws on a global scrapbook of sources: the liquid chime of 20th-century minimalism, the trebly funk of guitar-driven jazz fusion, the burrowing pulse of West Africa’s Gnawa music. At the Bridget Donahue gallery the group will appear in quartet form, with Mr. Abrams on guimbri (a Gnawa stringed bass), Lisa Alvarado on harmonium and percussion, Ben Boye on Wurlitzer and chromatic autoharp, and Mikel Avery on percussion. The concert is part of a continuing series of performances in coordination with the gallery’s exhibition of Ms. Alvarado’s work, which blends textiles, paintings and sound.
646-896-1368, bridgetdonahue.nyc

OLIVER LAKE BIG BAND at the Jazz Gallery (April 21-22, 7:30 and 9:30 p.m.). There’s no mistaking the acerbic sound of Mr. Lake’s alto saxophone; it’s both quizzical and deadly serious. Across five decades, that tone has defined the sound of the World Saxophone Quartet, the all-star combo Trio 3 and a range of Mr. Lake’s own ensembles. With his big band, he offers plush arrangements of his compositions, often undergirded by a trenchant groove. The group includes remarkable young improvisers like the trumpeters Josh Evans and Freddie Hendrix and the saxophonists Jason Marshall and Darius Jones.
646-494-3625, jazzgallery.nyc

CHARLES MINGUS 95TH-BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION at Jazz Standard (April 24, 7:30 and 9:30 p.m.). When the era of the jazz big band passed in the 1950s, the bassist Charles Mingus held on to his grand ambitions as a composer. Working with groups of various sizes — usually five to 10 members — he united the influence of Duke Ellington’s marbled orchestral sound with the sharp-elbowed dispatch of bebop. Mingus’s legacy has a home at the Jazz Standard, where the Mingus Big Band performs his music Monday nights. On what would have been his 95th birthday — he died at 56 in 1979 — the band will spend the evening trading off with its sister ensemble, the Mingus Orchestra, and welcome family members and friends to give short talks on his life.
212-576-2232, jazzstandard.com

S.E.M. ENSEMBLE at Bohemian National Hall (April 25, 7 p.m.). Led by the conductor Petr Kotik, this orchestra champions an alternative Western classical canon, drawing heavily on the 20th-century avant-garde and often introducing new works by contemporary composers. Since 1965 the Chicago-based Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians has played a similar role in redefining the limits of jazz — or Great Black Music, as its members call it. Muhal Richard Abrams, Roscoe Mitchell and George Lewis, all seminal constituents of the A.A.C.M., have worked intermittently with Mr. Kotik in recent years. On Tuesday they will join his orchestra in performing original pieces alongside works by other composers.
646-422-3399, bohemiannationalhall.com

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