New York Music Daily

Global Music With a New York Edge

Tag: jazz

Luscious Noir Atmosphere in Alphabet City Last Night

An icy, distantly lurid, reverbtoned mist of sound began wafting through the PA moments after keyboardist Enzo Carniel’s haunting House of Echo quartet took the stage last night at Nublu 151. Slowly and methodically, guitarist Marc-Antoine Perrio added thicker washes to darken the fog, finally introducing a few portentous, lingering chords from his Fender Jazzmaster. Bassist Simon Tailleu added subtle pitchblende textures, then Carniel’s Fender Rhodes finally entered the picture with a brooding, echoey minor-key riff. There hasn’t been music this profoundly noir made anywhere in New York this year.

Which makes sense; Carniel and his group hail from the part of the world that invented noir. The rest of their set was every bit as Lynchian as their opening Twin Peaks tone poem. It would be at least ten minutes before drummer Ariel Tessier made an entrance, trailing the music as it unspooled slowly on its path of no return. As the set went on, it was somewhat akin to Sun Ra playing Bill Frisell…or Anthony Braxton disassembling Angelo Badalamenti film themes at a glacial pace.

Carniel stuck mostly to blue-neon arpeggios and rippling riffs, often making live loops out of them: there were places where minimalist 20th century composers like Ligeti came to mind. Tailleu could easily have put much of what he played into a loop pedal, but instead he ran those slowly circling motives and greyscale shades over and over without tiring. And when he finally went up the scale for a tersely bowed solo, Carniel took over and ran the riff.

Perrio’s role grew more and more demanding as the hour grew later and the temperature fell outside, shifting with split-second precision between stompboxes, resonantly pulsing Fender licks and echoey phrases looped via a mini-synth. A guest tenor saxophonist joined them for a few numbers, adding wary, astringently enveloping phrases, at one point becoming the trailer in an intricate five-piece rondo. Tessier’s spaciously echoing work on the toms gave the music additional grim inevitability.

Perrio’s emphatic, enigmatic series of minimalist chords around a central tone in the last number echoed 90s shoegaze acts like Slowdive as well as cinematic indie soundscapers like the Quavers and Aaron Blount. It was a real surprise, and practically funny how they made a resolutely triumphant anthem out of it at the end, hardly the coda you’d expect after such a rapturously dark buildup.

After House of Echo, tenor saxophonist Jacques Schwarz-Bart completely flipped the script, leading a spirited quartet – Aaron Goldberg on the Rhodes plus bassist Or Bareket and drummer Ari Hoenig – through a series of jazz variations on well-known Shabbat themes. Goldberg really made that Rhodes sing with his robust neoromantic chords and cascades in the opening number, which Schwarz-Bart had obviously written for acoustic piano.

The saxophonist’s duet with Hoenig on Adon Olam was as poignant as it was propulsive; it was also the only other moment in the set where Schwarz-Bart’s reinventions of these old Jewish themes took on a particularly solemn tinge. Where John Zorn and his posse, or Uri Gurvich will take ancient cantorial melodies to similarly otherworldly places, Schwarz-Bart’s shtick is to make catchy, toe-tapping, early 60s Prestige Records-style postbop out of them.

Oseh Shalom was almost unrecognizable until he backed away from a sizzling, perfectly articulated, Coltrane-esque series of arpeggios to reveal the theme. He prefaced his version of the foundational Passover litany Ma Nishtana with similarly apt commentary on migrations, forced and otherwise, happening around the world in this era. Much as there was plenty of relentless good cheer in the rest of the set, it would have helped if Schwarz-Bart had stayed away from the pedalboard and the cheesy octave and pitch-shifting patches that only ramped up the schmaltz factor.

The show was staged by Paris Jazz Club, the indispensable website which maintains an exhaustive concert calendar for Paris and the surrounding area: it’s absolutely essential if you want to find out what’s happening, especially off the beaten path. House of Echo continue on tour tomorrow night, Jan 17 at 8 PM, opening for pianist Florian Pelissier’s quintet and then psychedelic Afropop bassist Bibi Tanga & the Selenites at L’Astral, 305 rue St.-Catherine Ouest in Montreal. Cover is $28.


An Enigmatically Dancing Album and a Chelsea Show by Individualistic Vibraphonist Yuhan Su

Vibraphonist Yuhan Su plays with a terse, riff-driven sensibility, a persistent restlessness and a frequently wry sense of humor. Her latest album, City Animals – streaming at Sunnyside Records – is a study in contrasts: urban vs. rural, action vs. stillness, agitation vs. contentment. Su has done a lot of work with dance companies in recent years, so it’s no surprise that there’s an especially lithe quality to a lot of the tunes here. Unlike a lot of vibraphonists, she likes to hang out in the midrange rather than working a bell-like attack way up the scale. She’s playing the Cell Theatre on Jan 19 at 8 PM with her quintet; cover is $15.

The album’s first track, El Coche Se Murio, was inspired by an untimely breakdown on a Spanish highway, four hours from a gig. There’s a coy solo vibraphone intro where the vehicle loses it, an insistent I-can’t-believe-this-happened passage, bustling Alex LoRe alto sax against balmy Matt Holman trumpet, a scampering Su solo and then what seems to be disaster averted.

Sax and trumpet flutter uneasily against each other in Viaje, as Su leads the rhythm section – bassist Petros Klampanis and drummer Nathan Ellman-Bell – with a lingering unease as the segments coalesce in turn, yet never fully resolve. Immigration and similar big journeys are like that.

The surreallistically titled Feet Dance has a steady, almost stalking pulse underpinning bright unison playing and sax-trumpet harmonies. As is frequently the case in Su’s music, those harmonies remain a tantalizing hair away from any kind of traditional chromatic scale, raising the unease factor.

Poncho Song, a jazz waltz, is similar but more wistful, with an expansively stairstepping vibraphone solo at the center and a tasty, nebulous outro that’s over too soon. The album’s title track contrasts fluttery urban bustle with lustrous, lingering phrases, Holman and LoRe bobbing and weaving.

Kuafu, the album’s centerpiece, is a triptych inspired by a Chinese myth about a titan of sorts hell-bent on running down and catching the sun. The first section has Su’s restless resonance paired against LoRe’s animated sax, the rhythm section entering with the hint of a second-line shuffle. Then it’s Su’s turn to go in a carefree direction as the horns converge.

The second part, Starry, Starry Night is the high point of the record, and also its most vividly melodic moment, a bittersweet anthem that diverges to a starry/dancing vibes-sax dichotomy and then a moody rondo. The metrically tricky coda has some irresistibly funny, over-the-top moments from Ellman-Bell and jaunty Indian allusions from LoRe.

The languid ballad Tutu & D – inspired by The Book of Joy, a conversation between the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu – has cleverly spacious counterpoint between all the instruments and an expansive, lyrical Holman solo. The album’s final number, Party 2AM is more genteel and conversational than the title would imply. Refreshingly distinctive, purposeful stuff from someone who’s really found a sound of her own. 

Winter Jazzfest, New York, January 12, 2019: Late Start, Early Departure

The new “luxury” Public Hotel at 215 Chrystie Street in Chinatown was constructed so cheaply that they didn’t even spend the two hundred bucks it would have cost them to put a sink in the men’s latrine.

The exit door swings open to the inside. There are also no paper towels.

Meaning that if you want to leave, you have to use your bare hand to yank something that many other dudes have yanked earlier in the evening, presumably with bare hands as well.

What relevance does this have to night two of the big marathon weekend of Winter Jazzfest 2019? You’ll have to get to the end of this page to find out.

For this blog, the big Saturday night of the increasingly stratified annual event began not in Chinatown but at the eastern edge of the Bleecker Street strip, which has traditionally traded in its cheesiness for a couple of nights of jazz bliss to accommodate the festival. Less so this year.

What’s the likelihood of seeing a band playing spaghetti western rock two nights in a row? It happened this weekend at Winter Jazzfest. Guitarist/singer Markus Nordenstreng, co-leader of the eclectic Tuomo & Markus took an early stab at defusing a potential minefield. “I know we’re pushing the limits of what you can do at a jazz festival. But we’re Finnish, so we don’t have to play by the rules,” he grinned. The group had just slunk their way through a triptych of slow, lurid, Lynchian soundtrack instrumentals in front of an aptly blue velvet backdrop. Trumpeter Verneri Pohjola took centerstage in a mashup of Angelo Badalamenti and late Bob Belden noir, with a couple of departures into Morricone-esque southwestern gothic. After that, Nordenstreng sang a new wave-flavored tribute to Helsinki pirate radio and then took a turn for the worse into Americana.

In past editions of the festival, the thrill of getting into a coveted set has too often been counterbalanced by the failure to do the same: a festival pass doesn’t guarantee admission, considering how small some of the clubs are. Down the block from Zinc Bar, it was heartwarming to see a long line hoping to get in to catch darkly tuneful pianist Guy Mintus with explosive singer Roopa Mahadevan. It was less heartwarming to have to go to plan B.

Which meant hunkering down and holding a seat for the better part of an hour waiting for Jen Shyu to take the stage at the rundown venerable cramped intimate Soho Playhouse. Shyu’s music inhabits a disquieting dreamworld of many Asian languages and musical idioms. She’s a talented dancer, a brilliantly diverse singer and composer. At this rare solo gig, she played more than competently on Taiwanese moon lute, Japanese biwa, Korean gayageum, American Rhodes piano and Korean soribuk drum, among other instruments.

Shyu’s themes are often harrowing and fiercely populist; this show was a chance to see how unselfconsciously and bittersweetly funny she can be, via a retelling of an ancient, scatological Taiwanese parable about the dangers of overreaching. “Cockfighting,” she mused. “You can laugh. It’s a funny word.” It got way, way funnier from there, but a dark undercurrent persisted, fueled by the devastating loss of a couple of Javanese friends in a brutal car crash in 2016.

Back at Subculture, it was just as redemptive to watch Dave Liebman challenge himself and push the envelope throughout a mystical, hypnotic trio set with percussionists Adam Rudolph and Hamid Drake. Liebman’s meticulous, judiciously slashing modal work on soprano sax was everything a packed, similarly veteran house could have wanted. His trilling wood flute, adventures plucking under the piano lid, and unexpectedly emphatic, kinetic tenor sax were more of a surprise from a guy who’s in many ways even more vital than he was forty years ago – and that says a lot. Rudolph wound up the set playing sintir – the magical Moroccan acoustic bass – and looping a catchy gnawa riff as Drake boomed out a hypnotic beat on daf frame drum.

Even better than two successive nights of spaghetti western music was two nights of Carmen Staaf compositions. The poignantly lyrical pianist shared the stage with the similar Ingrid Jensen on Friday night; last night, Staaf was with polymath drummer Allison Miller and their wryly titled Science Fair band with Dayna Stephens on tenor sax, Jason Palmer on trumpet and Matt Penman on bass. Staaf proved a perfect, hard-hitting rhythmic foil throughout Miller’s compositions, which are as restless as Miller’s drumming would have you believe. We’re not just taking A and B and C sections; we’re talking M and N and maybe more, considering how many fleeting ideas were flickering through her metrically glittering tunes. Palmer started out as bad hardbop cop but got lingeringly Romantic, fast; Stephens stayed in balmy mode, more or less. And Miller’s hyperkinetic, constantly counterintuitive accents added both mirth and mystery to Staaf’s methodically plaintive balladry, a richly bluesy Mary Lou Williams homage and a final, broodingly modal latin-tinged anthem.

That’s where the night ended for this blog; much as it could have been fun to watch tenor sax heavyweights JD Allen and David Murray duke it out, or to hear what kind of juju trumpeter Stephanie Richards could have conjured up alongside reedman Oscar Noriega, sometimes you have to watch your health instead.

Now about that bathroom and how that factors into this story. According to the printed festival schedule, there was a whole slate of hot swing jazz scheduled in a downstairs room – hidden behind an unmarked, locked doorway, as it turned out – at the “luxury” Public Hotel. According to a WJF staffer, a last-minute change of venue two train stations to the north was required when the hotel suddenly cancelled because someone had offered them more money to do a wedding there instead. The result was a lot of mass confusion.

And the Public Hotel staff did their best to keep everybody in the dark. None of the support people seemed to have been briefed that such a room existed, let alone that there was any such thing as Winter Jazzfest – notwithstanding that the hotel had been part of the festival less than 24 hours before. Those who knew that there actually was such a room gave out conflicting directions: no surprise, since it’s tucked away in an alcove with no signage.

It is pathetic how many people will not only kiss up to those they view as bosses, but also emulate their most repulsive characteristics. Cornered by a posse of a half dozen of us, the Public Hotel’s front desk people on the second floor wouldn’t make eye contact. Despite repeated entreaties, they pretended we didn’t exist. Entitlement spreads like herpes.

A floor below, the bar manager couldn’t get his story straight. First, there was no way to the downstairs room other than through the locked outside door. Then, woops, it turned out that there was an elevator, but that we weren’t “allowed to use it.” Likewise, he told us that the venue – whose website didn’t list the night – also didn’t have a number we could call for information.

“A Manhattan music venue without a phone, that’s a first,” a veteran in our posse sneered.

The simpering manager finally copped to the fact that there was in fact a phone, “But it’s private.” Would he call it, or get one of his staff to call it for us and find out what the deal was? No.

“The hotel and the venue are separate places,” he confided – and then enumerated the many types of information the two share. What he didn’t share was what would have sent us on our way. And maybe he didn’t have the answer. What was clear was how much he wanted us to abandon our search, and stay and pay for drinks amidst the Eurotrash.

One tireless member of our posse went down into the basement and opened one of many, many doors marked “private.” Behind it was the kitchen. One of the cooks, a personable individual eating a simple plate of what appeared to be Rice-a-Roni, volunteered to help. First, the cook suggested we go up to the front desk and ask. After hearing how all we were getting was the runaround, the cook was still down for finding an answer: “Let me just finish this and I’ll come up with you.”

As welcome as the offer was, one doesn’t drag people away from their dinner…or into a fiasco that clearly was not going to be resolved. But it was reassuring to know that in the belly of the beast, surrounded by Trumpie Wall Street trash and their enablers who mistakenly think they can get ahead by aping them, that good people still exist.

Winter Jazzfest, New York, January 11, 2019: Tantalizing, Changing Modes

For this blog, night one of this weekend’s Winter Jazzfest marathon, as it’s now called, began with Big Heart Machine at the Sheen Center. Multi-reedman Brian Krock’s careening big band reflected the zeitgeist in more and more large ensembles these days – Burnt Sugar’s unhinged if loosely tethered performance at Lincoln Center Thursday night was much the same. Miho Hazama’s conduction in front of this group followed in what has become a hallowed tradition pioneered by the late Butch Morris, directing dynamic shifts and subgroups and possibly conversations, especially when she sensed that somebody in the band had latched onto something worth savoring.

In the first half hour or so of the band’s set, those included long, sideswiping spots from trombone, trumpet and Olli Hirvonen’s fearlessly noisy guitar. Vibraphonist Yuhan Su launched many pivotal moments with characteristic vigor and grace. Otherwise, methodically blustery upward swells contrasted with tightly circular motives that would have been as much at home in indie classical music, if not for the relentless groove. It would have been fun to have been able to stick around for the whole set.

Winter Jazzfest is a spinoff of the annual booking agents’ convention, from which they have parted for the most part (there was a mini-marathon with a bunch of big names for the talent buyers last weekend). Crowds on the central Bleecker Street strip last night seemed smaller than in years past, although that might been a function of all the stoner fratboy faux-jazz being exiled to the outskirts of Chinatown, and the craziest improvisers being pushed to the edge of SoHo. And a lot of people come out for that crazy improvisational stuff. It also seems that a lot of fratboys get their parents to buy them weekend passes (cost – over a hundred bucks now) for the fusion fodder.

At Zinc Bar a little further west, it was a treat to see trumpeter Ingrid Jensen playing at an early hour, in front of a quintet including the similarly luminous, glisteningly focused Carmen Staaf on piano. It was the best pairing of the night. Jensen has rightfully earned a reputation as a pyrotechnic player, but her own material is more lowlit, resonant and often haunting, with profound roots in the blues. Her technique is daunting to the point that the question arose as to whether, at one point, she was playing with a mute or with a pedal (the club was crowded – it was hard to see the stage). No matter: her precision is unsurpassed. As was her poignancy in a circling and then enveloping duet with Staaf, and a blissful, allusively Middle Eastern modal piece, as well as a final salute with what sounded like a Wadada Leo Smith deep-blues coda.

At the Poisson Rouge, pianist Shai Maestro teamed up for a similarly rapturous, chromatically edgy set with his trio, bassist Jorge Roeder and drummer Ofri Nehemya. Maestro represents the best of the current vanguard of Israeli pianists, with as much of a gift for melodic richness as Middle Eastern intensity. It’s rare to see a piano-led trio where the rhythm section, per se, are so integral to the music. Barely a half hour earlier, Jensen’s guitarist had launched into a subtly slashing, feathery passage of tremolo-picking while the trumpeter went into vintage Herbie Hancock-ish blues. Roeder did much the same with his fleet volleys of chords, way up the scale, while Maestro built levantine majesty with his cascades. Yet there was no way the two acts possibly could have heard each other do that…unless maybe they share a rehearsal space.

With Rachmaninovian plaintiveness, Wynton Kelly wee-hours bluesiness and finally some enigmatically enveloping, hypnotic, reflective pools of sound common to other pianists who have recorded for ECM (Maestro’s debut album as a leader is on that label), the trio held the crowd rapt. And all that, despite all sorts of nagging sonic issues with the stage monitors. It’s not often at the Poisson Rouge that you can hear a pin drop.

Back at the Sheen Center, a tantalizing half hour or so of Mary Halvorson and her quintet reprising her brilliantly sardonic Code Girl album validated any critics’ poll that might want to put her on a pedestal. What a treat it was to watch her shift through one wintry, windswept series of wide-angle chords after another. Trumpeter Adam O’Farrill served as the light in the window, bassist Michael Formanek and drummer Tomas Fujiwara each kicking in a series of waves, singer Amirtha Kidambi channeling sarcasm and wounded righteousness along with some unexpectedly simmering scatting.

A couple of doors down at the currently reopened Subculture, pianist Aaron Parks packed the house with his Little Big quartet, featuring Greg Tuohey on guitar, Jesse Murphy on bass and Tommy Crane on drums. Hearing Tuohey bend the wammy bar on his Strat for a lurid, Lynchian tremolo effect on the night’s third number made sense, considering the darkly cinematic tangent Parks had been taking. The first half of the set was a mashup of peak-era 70s Pink Floyd, late 60s Santana and P-Funk that grew more devious and metrically challenging as the night wore on. A slow, distantly ominous, methodically swaying border-rock theme – Lee Hazlewood via the Raybeats, maybe? – was a highlight. From there they edged toward Santana as Weather Report might have covered him, complete with all sorts of wry Bernie Worrell-ish synth textures.

And that’s where the night ended, as far as this blog is concerned. The lure of Miles Okazaki’s solo guitar reinventions of Thelonious Monk, or psychedelic Cameroonian guitarist Blick Bassy’s reinventions of Skip James were no match for the prospect of a couple of leisurely drinks and some natural tetracycline to knock out the nasty bug that almost derailed this report. More after tonight’s big blowout – if you’re going, see you at six on the LES at that hastily thrown up new “luxury” hotel at 215 Chrystie for clarinetist Evan Christopher’s hot 20s jazz quartet.

A Broodingly Catchy, Lithely Orchestrated Album and a Week at the Vanguard by Pianist Edward Simon

Duke Ellington liked suites. So does Edward Simon. Likewise, the jazz icon and the Venezuelan pianist share classical roots, a genius for orchestration and a completely outside-the box sensibility. Simon’s latest album Sorrows and Triumphs – streaming at Bandcamp – reaffirms his darkly eclectic sensibility, interspersing material from two suites. The first is the broodingly orchestrated title suite, the second is his more rhythm-centered House of Numbers suite. The result is as lavishly hypnotic as it is incisive and edgy. Simon is bringing a stripped-down version of the band on the album – his Steel House trio with bassist Scott Colley and drummer Brian Blade – to a stand at the Vanguard that runs from Jan 8 through the 13th, with sets at 8:30 and 10:30 PM; cover is $35.

The album’s epic opening track, Incessant Desires begins with a misterioso rustle, chamber quartet the Imani Winds wafting over a tersely enigmatic series of hooks, alto saxophonist David Binney adding spaciously placed colors. Singer Gretchen Parlato joins them as the music rises joyously, guitarist Adam Rogers leading a pensive return downward. Darcy James Argue at his most plaintively lyrical is a strong reference point; Binney’s moody modal solo over Simon’s tense, distantly menacing glimmer as the wind ensemble circle around behind them could be the high point of the album.

The group keep the eerily dancing glimmer going with the circling counterpoint of Uninvited Thoughts, with piano that’s both carnivalesque and carnaval-esque. Once again, Binney adds judicious riffage, this time throughout a lively exchange with the wind ensemble.

The shadowy interweave between piano, guitar and Parlato’s tender yet assertive vocalese as Equanimity gets underway slowly reaches toward anthemic proportions. This time it’s Rogers who gets to take centerstage in the ongoing enigma: the sense of mystery throughout this album is pretty relentless.

With its persistently uneasy, often hypnotic piano chromatics, the winds weaving in and out, Triangle is equal parts Bernard Herrmann suspense film theme and Darcy James Argue altered blues. It’s the key to the album.

The balmiest, most atmospheric track is Chant, anchored by Rogers’ tremoloing guitar waves and Parlato’s gentle, encouraging vocals. Colley’s minimalist solo echoes Simon – and is that an organ, back in the mix, or just Rogers using a pedal?

Venezuela Unida, a shout-out to Simon’s home turf, has most of the band running a warily dancing melody together, then diverging into clever, tightly clustered polyrhythms. The sparse/ornate dichotomies and moody/ebullient contrasts as it winds up and out wouldn’t be out of place in the Maria Schneider playbook.

Triumphs is part circling indie classical, part terse latin jazz, Parlato’s misty mantras and Rogers’ wry oscillations at the center. The album’s slowly pulsing closing cut, Rebirth, is even more envelopingly stripped down. If this otherwise jauntily orchestrated masterpiece slipped under the radar for you in the past year’s deluge of albums, now’s as good a time to immerse yourself in Simon’s dark melodic splendor.

Live Music Calendar for New York City and Brooklyn for January and February 2019

Daily updates – if you go out a lot, you might want to bookmark this page and check back regularly. If you’re leaving your hood, make sure you check for service changes considering how the trains are at night and on the weekend.

If you don’t recognize a venue where a particular act is playing, check the comprehensive, recently updated list of over 200 New York City music venues at New York Music Daily’s sister blog Lucid Culture.

This is not a list of every show in town – it’s a carefully handpicked selection. If this calendar seems short on praise for bands and artists, it’s because every act here is recommended if you like their particular kind of music. Many different styles to choose from.

Showtimes listed here are set times, not the time doors open – if a listing says something like “9ish,” that means it’ll probably start later than advertised. If you see a show listed without the start time, that’s because either the artist, their publicist or the venue in question sent incomplete info – those acts are usually listed last on a particular date.  Always best to check with the venue for the latest information on set times and door charges, since that information is often published here weeks in advance. Weekly events first followed by the daily calendar.

If you see a typo or an extra comma or something like that, remember that while you were out seeing that great free concert that you found out about here, somebody was up late after a long day of work editing and adding listings to this calendar ;)

On select Wednesdays and Sundays, an intimate, growing piano music salon on the Upper West Side featuring iconoclastically insightful, lyrical pianist Nancy Garniez – a cult favorite with an extraordinarily fluid, singing, legato style – exploring the delicious minutiae of works from across the centuries, beverages and lively conversation included!  email for details/address

Mondays at 7 PM multi-instrumentalist Dennis Lichtman’s popular western swing band Brain Cloud at Barbes followed at 9:30 PM by a variety of south-of-the-border-style bands playing cumbias, boogaloo, salsa, maybe all of the above.

Mondays in January and February, 8 PM the unpredictably fun, funny  art-rock/psychedelic soul band the Academy Blues Project at Shrine

Mondays at the Jazz Standard it’s all Mingus, whether with the Mingus Orchestra, Big Band or Mingus Dynasty: as jazz goes, it’s arguably the most exhilarating show of the week, every week. The first-rate players always rise to the level of the material. Sets 7:30/9:30 PM, $25 and worth it.

Also Monday and Tuesday nights Vince Giordano’s Nighthawks, a boisterous horn-driven 11-piece 1920s/early 30’s band play Iguana, 240 W. 54th St ( Broadway/8th Ave) , 3 sets from 8 to 11, surprisingly cheap $15 cover plus $15 minimum considering what you’re getting. Even before the Flying Neutrinos or the Moonlighters, multi-instrumentalist Giordano was pioneering the oldtimey sound in New York; his long-running residency at the old Cajun on lower 8th Ave. is legendary. He also gets a ton of film work (Giordano wrote the satirical number that Willie Nelson famously sang in Wag the Dog).

Mondays at the Vanguard the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra – composer Jim McNeely’s reliably good big band vehicle – plays 9/11 PM, $30 per set plus drink minimum.

Mondays in January, 10 PM noir guitar legend Jim Campilongo leads his trio at the big room at the Rockwood, $10

Mondays in January Rev. Vince Anderson and his band play Union Pool in Williamsburg, two sets starting at 10:30 PM. The Rev. is one of the great keyboardists around, equally thrilling on organ or electric piano, an expert at Billy Preston style funk, honkytonk, gospel and blues. He writes very funny, very politically astute, sexy original songs and is one of the most charismatic, intense live performers of our time. It’s a crazy dance party. Paula Henderson from Burnt Sugar is the lead soloist on baritone sax, with frequent special guests.

Tuesdays in January clever, fiery, eclectic ten-piece Balkan/hip-hop/funk brass maniacs Slavic Soul Party  at 9 PM at Barbes (check the club calendar). Get there as soon as you can as they’re very popular. $10 cover.

Wednesdays in  January, 8 PM the Binky Griptite Orchestra (formerly Sharon Jones’ brilliant oldschool soul backing band) at Threes Brewing Outpost, 113 Franklin St (Greenpoint/Kent Aves) in Greenpoint, free

Thursdays at 8:30 in January the Brooklyn Raga Massive – a rotating cast of A-list Indian, jazz and rock musicians who love to jam out classic Indian themes from over the centuries to the present day – play the Jalopy, $15 adv tix at the bar at the main space. Tons of special guests followed by a wild raga jam!

Fridays and Saturdays at 5 PM adventurous indie classical string quartet Ethel plus frequent special guests playing a mix of classical and more contemporary material at the balcony bar at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, free w/museum adm

Fridays at 7:30 PM tenor saxophonist Ken Fowser leads his band at the Django. Jukebox jazz in a JD Allen vein but not as dark and more straight-ahead/groove-oriented: as postbop party music goes, nobody’s writing better than this guy right now.

Free classical concerts on Saturdays at 4 PM in  January at Bargemusic;  usually solo piano or small chamber ensembles. If you get lucky, you’ll catch pyrotechnic violinist/music director Mark Peskanov and/or the many members of his circle. Early arrival advised.

Saturdays in January, 6 PM eclectic, edgy soul/art-rock/funk/chamber-pop cellist/singer Marika Hughes at Barbes

Saturdays in February, 6 PM low register reedman Josh Sinton’s Phantasos play Morphine at Barbes. Hard to think of anyone more capable of tackling that ominously kinetic songbook

1/1-6, 8:30/10:30 PM lyrical jazz piano icon Fred Hersch  at the Vanguard, through 1/3 with his trio and the rest of the stand with a quartet

1/2, 8 PM psychedelic klezmer/bluegrass mandolin and clarinet legend Andy Statman at Barbes, $10

1/2, 8:30 PM Dervisi feat. guitar god Steve Antonakos play “exotic Greek gangsta blues” at Troost. 1/17, same time they’re at at Espresso 77, 35-57 77th Street (just off of 37th Ave), Jackson Heights

1/3, 7 PM improvisational ten-piece reeds/vox/drums ensemble PRNCX at Arete Gallery, $15. Followed at 9 (separate $15 adm) by Iraqi composer Saman Samadi and his Quintet at Arete Gallery, $15

1/3, 7:30 PM, repeating on 1/5 at 8 the NY Philharmonic play Sibelius’ Lemminkainen and Maidens of the Island suites plus Ravel’s Daphnis & Chloe and Dvorak’s Cello Concerto with soloist Gautier Capuçon at Avery Fisher Hall, $34

1/3, 7:30 the booking agents’ convention is in town and there are some phenomenal, cheap lineups around town. Tonight at Drom there’s a free show with intense, rapturous Balkan/Middle Eastern ensemble the Secret Trio –Tamer Pinarbasi, Ismail Lumanovski & Ara Dinkjian – followed at 8:30 by brooding Greek crooner Pericles Kanaris and at 10:00 by chanteuse/uke player Dahlia Dumont’s Blue Dahlia playing edgy, smartly lyrically-fueled, jazz-infused tunes in English and French with classic chanson and Caribbean influences

1/3, 7:30/9:30 PM playfully lyrical postbop pianist Art Hirahara plus a killer rhythm section of bassist Linda Oh, & drummer Rudy Royston at Mezzrow, $20

1/3, 7:30 PM trumpeter Etienne Charles’ creole jazz band at the Lincoln Center Atrium, free, early arrival advised

1/3, 7:45 PM slinky female-fronted psychedelic tropicalia band Delsonido at the big room at the Rockwood

1/3, 8 New York’s most charismatic, darkly compelling lyrical songwriter/storyteller/keyboard genius Rachelle Garniez followed at 10 by Sveta Kundish & Patrick Farrell play original Yiddish songs for voice and accordion at Barbes

1/3, 8 PM bouncy Iranian/Swedish dance-pop sister act Abjeez followed by  charismatic Egyptian revolutionary singer Ramy Essam at the Poisson Rouge, $25 adv tix rec

1/3, 8 PM Alaskan Americana fiddler/poet Ken Waldman opens his annual mega-star show at at the Jalopy followed by short sets featuring but not limited to torchsong duo Max Hatt & Edda Glass, fiddle/cello duo Hen’s Teeth with Jane Rothfield and Nathan Bontrager,  the DuoDuo Quartet with Maeve Gilchrist, Nic Gareiss, Natalie Haas, Yann Falquet–virtuosic harp, dance, cello, guitar; Scottish and Appalachian string music by Jenna Moynihan & Mairi Chaimbeul ,Cathy Fink & Marcy Marxer doing gypsy jazz to classic country to anything else;  Cajun songstress Erica Weiss & Shindig and bluegrass guitar/bass duo Mark Kilianski & Nate Sabat at the Jalopy, $15

1/3, 8 PM legends from the zeros: singer/guitarist Genie Morrow’s super-catchy, erudite powerpop band Sputnik at the Parkside

1/3, 9 PM wild live techno band Bombrasstico  at Bar Chord

1/3, 9 PM wickedly jangly surf/twang/country instrumentalists the Bakersfield Breakers at 11th St. Bar

1/3, 10 PM fiery, deviously fun oldtimey swing guitarist/crooner Seth Kessel & the Two Cent Band  at Skinny Dennis. He’s also here on 1/31 at 9

1/3, 10 PM the great unsung NYC hero of darkly purposeful, noir-tinged jazz guitar, Saul Rubin at the Fat Cat.  He’s also here on 1/8 at 7

1/4, 7 PM best free concert of the year? Maybe. Toronto Cuban salsa dura band Okan followed at 7:45 by psychedelic tropicalia-folk bandleader Ramon Chicharron; at 8:30 Mexican border-rock songwriter Quique Escamilla9:15 a lame Replacements ripoff; at 1o high-voltage Neapolitan tarantella string band Newpoli; 10:45 Haitian funk/pop singer Malou Beauvoir; and at 11:30 the amazing, phantasmagorical klezmer band Lemon Bucket Orkestra at Drom

1/4, 7 PM folk noir singer Anna May – the missing link between Aimee Mann and Kath Bloom, maybe – at Shapeshifter Lab, $10 

1/4, 7 PM semi-supergroup Vicki Kristina Barcelona (the incomparable, charismatic Rachelle Garniez, Bollywood-influenced Amanda Homi, and Terry Radigan) reinvent the songs of Tom Waits at Pangea, $20 

1/4, 7:30 PM Tibetan throat-singing ensemble Altai Kai at the Rubin Museum of Art, $30

1/4, 8 PM ex-Chicha Libre keyboard sorcerer Josh Camp’s wryly psychedelic cumbia/tropicalia/dub band Locobeach  followed by sizzling Niger duskcore guitarist/bandleader Mdou Moctar at Baby’s All Right, $15

1/4, 8 PM haunting, magical Middle Eastern classical singer Shelley Thomas and her band followed at 10 by Super Yamba playing their psychedelic Afrobeat jams at Barbes

1/4, 9 PM hauntingly lyrical art-rock songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Joanna Wallfisch at  the small room at the Rockwood

1/4. 10 PM Garifuna bandleader Andy Ordonez and his psychedelic coastal Caribbean combo at Silvana

1/4-6 and 1/10-12, 10 PM (except for 1/6 at 8 PM) singer/dancer Nora Chipaumire “reckons with the production and consumption of pop sound and imagery in the hyper-reality of global capitalism, resurrecting the era of drum magazines, African broadcast stations, color bars, and a people with active connections to rural and township lifestyles playing all-night parties at underground apartheid-era South African speakeasies” at Jack, $25

 1/4, 10:30 PM catchy Booker T-esque soul jazz with the David Gibson/Jared Gold Hammond B3 organ band at the Fat Cat

1/5, 4  PM cinematic, psychedelic quirk-pop keyboardist Michael Hearst presents “Curious, Unusual and Extraordinary” songs from his many bands followed at 8 by intense, lyrical jazz bassist/composer Pedro Giraudo leading his Tango Quartet, and at 10 by epic ranchera/bolero brass crew Banda de los Muertos at Barbes

1/5, 6 PM state-of-the-art jazz bassist Christian McBride and his quartet at Bethany Baptist Church – 275 W Market St, Newark, free

1/5, 7:30 PM an awesomely inexpensive global lineup: theToomai String Quintet with psychedelic tropicalia chanteuse Miss YaYa play all kinds of adventurous, global classical repertoire followed at 8:15 by haunting, psychedelic Turkish band Yeni Nostalji ; at  9 the Bil Afrah Project celebrates one of the Middle East’s legendary albums: Ziad Rahbani’s 1975 Bil Afrah suite. An all-star NYC lineup includes percussionist Michel Merhej, who played on the haunting, dynamic original album, very rarely played live in its entirety; at 9:45 sizzling Niger duskcore guitarist/bandleader Mdou Moctar; at 11:15 haphazardly psychedelic Afrobeat-influenced psych-punk guitarist/bandleader Yonatan Gat at & the Eastern Medicine Singers; at midnight awesomely slinky downtempo/cumbia/psychedelic salsa dura band La Mecanica Popular and at 12:45 AM explosive, creepy, colorful psychedelic rembetiko metal band Greek Judas at Drom, $10

1/5. 7:30/9:30 PM mighty, tectonic latin jazz with the Dafnis Prieto Big Bandat the Jazz Standard, $30

1/5, 8 PM latin jazz drummer Antonio Sanchez & Migration followed by soaring, epic all-female mariachi/tropicalia orchestra Mariachi Flor de Toloache at Highline Ballroom, $20 adv tix rec

1/5, 8 PM legendarily eclectic surf band Tiki Brothers followed at 9 by guitarslinger Phil Gammage playing his dark Americana and blues at the Way Station

1/5. 8 PM guitarist Loren Connors duets with fellow six-string luminary David Grubbs and performance poet Steve Dalachinsky; bookended around an a cappella performance by bluesy vocalist Suzanne Langille and poet Yuko Otomo at Holo, $10

1/5, 8:30 PM darkly lyrical Middle Eastern-tinged jazz pianist Laila Biali at the third stage at the Rockwood, $10

1/5 Unsteady Freddie‘s monthly surf rock extravaganza at Otto’s begins at 9 PM with the percussive Bongo Surf, at 10 metalish Providence band the Infra-Men, at 11 wickedly jangly surf/twang/country instrumentalists the Bakersfield Breakers and at midnight or so majestic, darkly cinematic surf band the TarantinosNYC. 

1/5, 9 PM eclectic, electric C&W/blues band the Jug Addicts at Bar Chord

1/5, 10 PM fiery electric bluegrass and C&W with Demolition String Band at Skinny Dennis

1/6, 11 AM (in the morning) NY original klezmer icons Metropolitan Klezmer & their mostly-female sister band, kinetic klezmer/cumbia/cinematic jamband Isle of Klezbos at City Winery, $10

1/6, 4 PM a launch event for the new Philip Glass Institute at the New School including a performance by the Philip Glass Ensemble, a panel discussion including the composer and a performance of an excerpt from Lisa Bielawa’s in-progress, made-for-TV opera, Vireo, at the New School ground floor auditorium at 63 5th Ave, free

1/7, 6 PM short sets by violinist Rubén Rengel, trumpeter Brandon Ridenour, the Thalea String Quartet, Verona Quartet and brass quartet the Westerlies at Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall, free,

1/6, 7 PM wildly theatrical, creepy circus rock band Orphan Jane at LIC Bar

1/6, 7 PM pastoral gothic accordion art-rock with Sam Reider & the Human Hands followed at 9:30  by Romany jazz/psychedelic rock guitar mastermind Stephane Wrembel at Barbes

1/6. 8 PM in reverse order: spot-on Vermont retro honkytonk band Wild Leek River, fiery oldtimey string band the Four O’Clock Flowers.  and eclectic, tuneful accordionist/songwriter Ali Dineen at Starr Bar, 214 Starr St. off Irving, Bushwick, L to DeKalb

1/6, 8 PM perennially tuneful, pensively lyrical Americana janglerocker Mike Ferrio of Tandy and Good Luck Mountain at 11th St. Bar

1/6, 9 PMoldschool-style high plains C&W singer Hope Debates & North 40 at  Skinny Dennis

1/6, 9ish eclectic, globally-inspired violinist Dina Maccabee at the Owl

1/6, 10:30 PM hotshot bluegrass mandolin slinger Jacob Joliff and band at the big room at the Rockwood 

1/7, 4 and 7 PM all-star indie classical choir Roomful of Teeth sing the world premiere of Caroline Shaw’s Partita for 8 Voices at Times Square, free, follow the sound if you can hear it

1/7, 7 PM riveting, purposeful 30s swing singer Catherine Russell, torchy Europolitan swing band the Hot Sardines & South Atlantic Coast Gullah soul band Ranky Tanky at City Winery, $20 standing room avail

1/7, 7:30 PM indie classical chamber orchestra Wild Up, dark Mediterranean psychedelic bandleader Zola Jesus and intrepid NYC indie classical composer William Briittelle at Merkin Concet Hall, $25

1/7, 7:30 PM pyrotechnic klezmer clarinetist David Krakauer, Kathleen Tagg and the Omer Quartet play works by Prokofiev, Debussy, Golijov, John Zorn and Kinan Azmeh at Music Mondays, Advent Church, northwest corner of 93rd and Broadway, free

1/7, 8:30 PM Lebanese art-rock/metal/goth band Gurumiran at Pete’s 

1/7, 9 PM sweeping, swinging vibraphonist Behn Gillece and group at the Fat Cat 

1/7, 9:30ish Los Mochuelos plays classic Colombian vallenato music at Barbes

1/7, 8:30 PM brief half-hour sets by cellist Clarice Jensen, Carolina Eyck (theremin), and indie classical group ACME (American Contemporary Music Ensemble) at Drom, $10

1/7, 9 PM slashing guitarist Steve Antonakos plays slide guitar blues with his band at Bar Chord. He’s also at the Parkside on the 19th at 8 

1/7, 10 PM tuneful, state-of-the-art postbop jazz guitarist Will Bernard and group followed eventually at midnight by awesome, creepy Texas psychedelic band Acid Carousel at the small room at the Rockwood 

1/8, 7 PM eclectic, hard-hitting, lyrical composer/tenor saxophonist Stan Killian at 55 Bar

 1/8, 7:30/9:30 PM a killer, darkly lyrical trio:  crystalline-voiced, noir-tinged third-stream jazz chanteuse Tessa Souter with brilliant latin jazz piaist Luis Perdomo and bassist Dezron Douglas at Mezzrow, $20. She’s also at 55 Bar on 1/11 at 6 for less.

1/8, 8:15 PM edgily lyrical guitarist Matt Forker leads his catchy but acerbic sextet at Shapeshifter Lab, $12 

1/8-13. 8:30/10:30 PM pensively edgy, purposeful latin jazz pianist Edward Simon with his Steel House trio at the Vanguard

1/8, 9 PM wickedly torchy noir songwriter Julia Haltigan and her killer band on her old home turf at 11th St Bar

1/8, 9:30 PM the Bronx Conexion play their mighty salsa big band jazz at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe

1/9, 7:30/9:30 PM pan-Asian chanteuse/composer Jen Shyu with her hauntingly atmospheric Jade Tongue ensemble at the Jazz Gallery, $25

1/9, 7 PM celebrating the centenary of politically fearless sound collage pioneer Ake Hodell, a rare public performance of the original quadraphonic versions of three of Hodell’s most revered text-sound compositions – on the disappearance of Black Panther members, apartheid in Rhodesia and a JG Ballard-esque history of the 20th century through the prism of automobiles – plus Fia Backström reads from her new translations of Hodell’s writing, at the Emily Harvey Foundation, 537 Broadway #2 (Spring/Prince), $10

1/9,  7 PM Nublu honcho and psychedelic postbop tenor saxophonist Ilhan Ersahin wears many hats throughout the night, which starts with  Nublu Orchestra doing a tribute to their late great conductor/leader Butch Morris; at 8:30 longtime Gil Scott-Heron collaborator and electric pianist Brian Jackson; at 10 Silver with Ersahin, Eddie Henderson, Juini Booth, Kenny Wollesen playing the album release show for their new one and at 1 AM Ersahin’s Oceanvs Orientalis at Nublu 151, $tba

1/9, 9 PM darkly psychedelic circus punks Yula & the Extended Family at LIC Bar

1/10. 7 PM soaringly explosive jazz composer/torch singer Nicole Zuraitis at 55 Bar

1/10, 7 PM electrifying Balkan/Americana violinist/bandleader Sarah Alden at the third stage at the Rockwood, $10

1/10, 7:30/9:30 PM tenor saxophonist Jure Pukl leads a killer band with Melissa Aldana – saxophone; Harish Raghavan – bass; Kush Abadey – drums at the Jazz Gallery, $20

1/10, 7:30 PM Burnt Sugar celebrate 20 years of lush Braxton-ish largescale improvisation, hard funk, James Brown and Bowie covers and more at the Lincoln Center Atrium, free, early arrival advised

1/10, 7:30 PM, repeating on 1/12 at 8 the NY Philharmonic play Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3 with soloist Simon Trpčeski, Janacek’s Cunning Little Vixen Suite and Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherezade at Avery Fisher Hall, $31

1/10, 7:30 PM Soule Monde – imagine RIck Wakeman playing Booker T  & the MG’s  – at Symphony Space, $30/$20 age 30 and under

1/10, 8 PM hauntingly noisy/ambient solo cello from Leila Bordreuil plus electoacoustic sets by  David Wesley Sutton, singer Charmaine Lee and Kieran Morris at the Fridman Gallery,​ 169 Broadway, $20/$15 stud

1/10, 8 PM dynamic, subtle all-female klezmer band Tsibele at Barbes

1/10, 8:30 PM tarantella percussionist Alessandra Belloni jams out classical Indian carnatic themes with bansuri flutist Steve Gorn at the Jalopy, $15

1/10, 8:30 PM brilliantly improvisational pianist Mara Rosenbloom‘s philosophically-inspired FLYWAYS with bassist Adam Lane and singer/percussionist Anais Maviel at Shapeshifter Lab, $15

1/10, 8:30 PM Greg Hammontree’s Trumpet Marmalade: “four-NYC hailing, old-school dixieland style jazz musicians call upon Louis Armstrong for inspiration,” at Arete Gallery, $15

1/11, 5:30 PM laid-back Americana/country blues songwriter Jon LaDeau at the American Folk Art Museum

1/11, 7:30 PM this era’s most spellbinding oldschool country singer, Laura Cantrell acoustic at the Rubin Museum of Art, $25 adv tix rec

1/11-12. 7:30/9:30 PM this era’s most cutting-edge, politically relevant large jazz ensemble, Darcy James Argue’s Secret Society at the Jazz Gallery, $25

1/11, 8 PM playfully lyrical, fearlessly political superduo Kill Henry Sugar – guitar/banjo mastermind Erik Della Penna and drummer Dean Sharenow – at Bargbes

1/11, 8 PM a screening of the fascinating documentary Milford Graves Full Mantis, exploring the work of the polymath jazz drummer/music historian/cardiac music visionary, plus a drum duel between Susie Ibarra and Brian Chase at the Fridman Gallery,​ 169 Broadway, $20/$15 stud          

 1/11, 8 PM irrepressibly fun blues/swing harmony pals Mamie Minch and Tamar Korn; followed by Hawaiian guitar group King Isto’s Tropical String Band playing the album release show for their new one at the Jalopy, $10

1/11, 8 PM genre-smashing avant-jazz saxophonist/singer Stephanie Chou Stephanie Chou and band play her new suite Comfort Girl, focusing on women forced into sexual slavery in Asia during World War II at the Cell Theatre, $20

1/11, 9 PM Super Yamba play their psychedelic Afrobeat jams at Bar Chord

 1/11, 9:30 PM catchy, fun guy/girl indie soul band Sunshine Nights at Freddy’s

1/12, 3 and 5 PM the new electroacoustic, gospel-inspired opera Stinney: An American Execution, examining the ugly background behind the murder of 14-year-old South Carolina black teenager, framed and executed in 1944 for a crime he didn’t commit, at the French Institute, 55 E 59th St., $30

1/12, 4 PM this year’s first installment of Luisa Muhr’s amazing Women Between Arts multidisciplinary series opens with performance poet Adeenna Karasick with klezmer trumpet legend Frank London, nterdisciplinary artist Alison Kobayashi and Marisa Michelson & Constellation Chorwho do hypnotic Pauline Oliveros style improvisations at the Glass Box Theatre at the New School, 55 W 13th St, $20, “sliding scale available” for low-income/students

1/12, 6 PM eclectic, edgy soul/art-rock/funk/chamber-pop cellist/singer Marika Hughes  followed at 8 by surreal, intense klezmer/oldtime gospel guy/girl duo Book of J and at 10 byPangari & the Socialites playing classic ska and rocksteady – most of it from the 60s Skatalites catalog – at Barbes 

1/12, 7 PM the NJ Symphony Orchestra play Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 22 with Emmanuel Ax as soloist and Tschaikovsky’s Manfred Symphony at NJPAC in Newark, $20 tix avail

1/12. 7 PM the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra play late works by Mozart and Dvorak at Stern Auditorium at Carnegie Hall, $25 tix avail

1/12, 8 PM the Royal Arctic Institute – who veer between surfy rock instrumentals and darker, quieter, more noir and jazz-tinged themes – at the Parkside

1/12, 8 PM electronic works by Stephen Vitiello and Taylor Deupree, magical thereminist Dorit Chrysler and Nadav Assor screening video and doing “tunneling” – archaeology? Subway building? – ​at the Fridman Gallery,​ 169 Broadway, $20/$15 stud   

 1/12, 8 PM erudite, purist torchy cosmopolitan jazz chanteuse Svetlana & the NY Swing Collective at the Cell Theatre, $15

1/12, 8 PM raucous, politically sharp, anthemic folk noir songwriter Mac McCarty at Sidewalk

1/12, 8 PM subversive avant garde/psych-folk Iranian crooner Mohsen Namjoo at Symphony Space, $30 tix avail

1/12, 8 PM Victor Jara-influenced songwriter Fred Arcoleo followed by south Williamsburg oi punk band the Infiltrators at the People’s Voice Cafe, sugg don, $20, “more if you choose; less if you can’t; no one turned away.”  

1/12, 8ish creepy noir chamber pop/murder ballad duo Charming Disasterand high-voltage steampunk duo Frenchy & the Punk at Coney Island Baby 

1/12, 8:30 PM theatrical newgrass/Americana band the  Lobbyists at the big room at the Rockwood, $10 

1/12, 10:30 PM hilarious, smartly political faux-French retro 60s psych-pop band les Sans Culottes followed by a mysterious guy named Davey playing electric sitar at Freddy’s

1/13, 3 PM violinist Juliet Kurtzman and Libertrio play a program TBA at the 92nd ST. Y, free

1/13, 3 PM the North/South Chamber Orchestra plays works by Christopther James, Max Lifchitz, Alexandro Rodriguez and John Winsor. Violinist Claudia Schaer and guitarist Hermann Hudde are the soloists, free, at Christ & St. Stephen’s Church, 122 W. 69th St

1/13, 3 PM indie classical ensemble Sandbox Percussion play a program TBA at Concerts on the Slope, St. John’s Episcopal Church, 139 St. John’s Place downhill from 7th Ave, Park Slope, any train to Grand Army Plz, sugg don

1/13, 4 PM ten-piece early music ensemble the Academy of Sacred Drama perform the modern premiere of Giovanni Antonio Gianettini’s 17th century cautionary oratorio/parable, La creatione de’ magistrati at Corpus Christi Church, 529 W 121St St $10 tix avail  

1/13. 5 PM pianists Joseph Kissner and Evelyne Luest play music of Brahms, Schumann and Chopin at the Lounge at Hudson View Gardens, 128 Pinehurst Ave @ W 183rd St, A train or #1 train (to 181st St) or the M4 bus (to 183rd St), $15/$12 stud/srs

1/13, 7 PM Bombay Rickey’s Drew Fleming does his honkytonk Telecaster twang thing with Brain Cloud’s Skip Krevens on pedal steel and Super Hi-Fi’s Ezra Gale on bass followed at 9:30  by Romany jazz/psychedelic rock guitar mastermind Stephane Wrembel at Barbes

1/13, 7 PM smart, darkly pensive third-stream jazz pianist Noa Fort at the small room at the Rockwood. Intense female-fronted psychedelic groove/funk band Imunuri are next door at the big room, same time

1/13, 7 PM haunting Middle Eastern guitarist Ayman Fanous at Scholes St. Studio

1/13, 7:30 PM Igor Butman & the Moscow Jazz Orchestra play their tectonic, epic repertoire at Dizzy’s Club, $35

1/13, 8 PM solo sets by renowned tuba player Dan Peck, singer Chiquita Magic, guitar loopmusic composer Wendy Eisenberg, bassist Sean Ali and intense improvisational cellist Leila Bordreuil at Brooklyn Conservatory of Music, $15

1/13, 9:30 PM noir guitar legend Jim Campilongo leads his trio at 55 Bar

1/14, 7 PM tuneful postbop pianist Jim Ridl leads his group from behind the Rhodes at 55 Bar

1/14, 7 PM “a double bill of two genre-defying drummers performing their newest work. Shayna Dunkelman performs a rare solo set weaving electronic sounds with acoustic percussion. Still searching for a word to describe a live performance with acoustic percussion and electronics that isn’t like watching karaoke. It’s dope, so shut up and call/text/@ if you think of the word. Lia Braswell brings her new project, Mimi Was with Jared Samuel; a combination of improvised as well as composition: ethereal landscapes, intertwining soft grooves between a variety of dynamic and pedal-infused instrumentals to compliment the melodic power of theatrical lyricism, busting ass with class (and vice versa) at Arete Gallery, $15

1/14, 9 PM energetic delta blues/Romany swing guitarist Felix Slim at LIC Bar

1/14, 9:30 PM Cumbiagra – who’ve been going in a much more psychedelic, electric cumbia direction lately-  at Barbes

1/15, 7 PM bassist Max Johnson’s Heroes Trio with Jason Rigby on saxophone, Jeff Davis on drums playing  “compositions by the great bassists and heroes, past and present, such as Jimmy Garrison, Henry Grimes, Charlie Haden, Mark Dresser, Slam Stewart and many more” at Barbes followed at 9 by clever, fiery, eclectic ten-piece Balkan/hip-hop/funk brass maniacs Slavic Soul Party at Barbes

1/15, 7:30/9:30 PM the haunting, smokily atmospheric Michael Leonhart Orchestra with Chris Potter on tenor sax at the Jazz Standard, $30

1/15, 7:30 PM edgy, shapeshifting, charismatic Korean art-rock/chamber folk/acoustic psychedelic band Black String jam with Ned Rothenberg (woodwinds), Jonathan Goldberger (electric guitar), Satoshi Takeishi (percussion) and more special guests at National Sawdust, $25 adv tix avail. Black String are also at the Lincoln Center atrium on 1/17, same time for free.

1/15, 8 PM slinky, oud-fueled Middle Eastern/Nile Delta dance orchestra Alsarah & the Nubatones  at the Old American Can Factory, 232 3rd St., Gowanus, $18, rsvp reqd, this is an intimate space and likely to sell out, early arrival advised

1/15, 8:30 PM perennially tuneful, lyrical piano improviser/composer Kris Davis leads a series of ensembles at the Stone at the New School, $20. Choice pick: 1/16 with the bes rhythm section she’s ever had, Jeff ‘Tain’ Watts and John Hébert, wow

1/15-19, 8:30/11 PM Jamaican jazz piano icon Monty Alexander at Birdland, $30 seats avail

1/15-20, 8:30 PM perennially vital latin jazz piano sage Eddie Palmieri at the Blue Note, $30 standing room avail

1/15, 9 PM elegant oldtimey/frontporch folk/jazz songwriter Shannon Pelcher at Bar Chord

1/15, 9:30 PM the charismatic Fran Pado – of dark art-rockers Goddess – and Hannah Bleier star in Prism and Dewdrop’s Cult Sing-A-Long: “Hell takes many forms. In this hilarious, painful battle between haggard cult devotees, you’ll sing along with Prism and Dewdrop, two middle aged 70’s burnouts with ravished faces and frail selves. They grapple for the love, or at least sexual attention, of their long dead cult leader whose rotting corpse graces the stage. And they, frozen at 14 yrs., recreate, again and again, their yearning for adult male approval. Much Ado About Nothing meets Stage Door in this bio-feminist roller coaster of laughter and tears,” at Dixon Place, $13 adv tix rec

1/15, 10 PM psychedelic funk/Afrobeat jammers the People’s Champs at Baby’s All Right, $10

1/15,  10:30 PM brilliant drummer/percussionist Willie Martinez & La Familia Sextet play classic salsa grooves at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe, $10

1/16 and 1/22, 7:30 PM, also on 1/19 at 8 the NY Philharmonic with soloist Yefim Bronfman play Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 2 and Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 2 at Avery Fisher Hall, $31

1/16. 8 PM pianist Simone Leitao plays Rachmaninoff’s Piano Sonata No. 2 in B-flat Minor plus works by Villa-Lobos and Bach at Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall, $30

1/16, 9 PM cinematic rock band Fuck You Tammy play amazingly spot-on recreations of themes and songs from Twin Peaks and David Lynch films at LIC Bar

1/16, 9 PM world-weary noir pop songwriter Mara Connor at Baby’s All Right, free

1/17, 7:30/9:30 PM an all-star 18-piece big band plays new jazz compositions by Angela Morris, the Wing Walker Orchestra’s Drew Williams and the cinematic Heyseon Hong at the Jazz Galley, $15

1/17, 7:30 PM pianist Per Tengstrand plays works by Debussy, Ravel & Chopin. at Scandinavia House, $25

1/17, 7:30/9:30 PM tuneful, purposeful guitar/piano duos by Nate Radley & Gary Versace at Mezzrow, $20

1/17, 7:30 PM edgy, shapeshifting, charismatic Korean art-rock/chamber folk/acoustic psychedelic band Black String at the Lincoln Center Atrium, free, early arrival advised

1/17, 8 PM centuries-old, mystical Jewish spiritual counting songs performed by Psoy Korolenko (vocals), Zisl Slepovich (clarinet, flute, piano, vocals) & Ilya Shneyveys (accordion, guitar, vocals) at Barbes

1/17, 8 PM ferociously dynamic, tuneful, female-fronted power trio Castle Black at Gold Sounds, $10

1/17, 8 PM dark cabaret legend  Sanda Weigl sings her new interpretations of obscure 13th century revolutionary poet Walther von der Vogelweide at Joe’s Pub, $18

1/17, 8:30 PM Indian-inspired cellist George Crotty plays the album release show for his new one at the Jalopy, $15

1/17. 9 PM thunderous, titanic Rhode Island Balkan street band What Cheer Brigade, hard-hitting, brass-fueled newschool latin soul/boogaloo dance band Spanglish Fly  and epic, original, intense original Balkan monsters Raya Brass Band at Littlefield, $12

1/18-19, starting at 6 PM it’s Golden Fest, the nation’s most ecstatically fun festival of minor keys, chromatics, eerie close harmonies and music from the Balkans to points further east and west. Not cheap, but a delicious all-you-can-eat buffet is included. At Grand Prospect Hall, 263 Prospect Ave in south Park Slope, R train to Prospect Ave.

1/18, 7 PM improvisational organist/multi-instrumentalist Jamie Saft with bassist Brad Jones and drummer Bobby Previte plus cellist Hank Roberts with drummer Vinnie Sperrazza and pianist Jacob Sacks at the Owl

1/18, 7 PM the debut of classical ensemble Quartet121 playing works by Olga Neuwirth, Katherine Balch, Camila Agosto, James Diaz and Reiko Füting, featuring soprano Amber Evans at the Tenri Institute, $10/$5 stud

1/18, 7:30/9:30  PM drummer/hip-hop artist Kassa Overall duets with Jason Moran at the jazz Gallery, $25, get there early

1/18, 7:30 PM carnatic vocal/tabla duo Ganavya and guitarist Ty Citerman’s Bop Kabbalah playing ‘new radical liberation songs” at Arete Gallery, $15

1/18, 8 PM rustic Brazilian jungle guitar-and-accordion sounds with Regional de NY at Barbes

1/18, 9 PM  catchy, brilliantly lyrical, irrepressibly sardonic janglerock/folk-punk songwriter, New Yorker illustrator and White Hassle alum Marcellus Hall at Pete’s

1/18, 10 PM a short and very welcome return show by singer Jodie Rae Plaut’s refreshingly down-to-earth, wickedly smart, Costelloesque janglerock band Delusions of Grand Street at the Parkside

1/18, 11 PM the darkly eclectic, enigmatic Lorraine Leckie  – equally adept at Slavic and Americana noir and dark cabaret – at Sidewalk

1/19, 7 PM an avant garde summit: fearlessly relevant, genuinely riveting, populist tenor sax visionary/improviser Matana Roberts , electroacoustic film composer/performerHaley Fohr aka Circuit des Yeux  & Suzanne Langille and Daniel Carter, plus Brooklyn Raga Massive sitar mastermind Neel Murgai & Loren Connors at Issue Project Room, $25/$15 stud

1/19, 7:30 PM cleverly funny, catchy female-fronted band Talay, edgy, punk-inspired female-fronted funk band  Eliza and the Organix , creepy, psychedelic circus rock/Russian folk band Mad Meg and guitarslinger Mallory Feuer’s fiery power trio the Grasping Straws – sort of a mashup of Patti Smith and Hole’s first album – at Coney island Baby, $10

1/19, 6 PM eclectic, edgy soul/art-rock/funk/chamber-pop cellist/singer Marika Hughes  followed at 8 by trumpeter Ben Holmes’ broodingly Middle Eastern/klezmer-tinged Naked Lore trio and then at 10 by psychedelic salsa bandleader Zemog El Gallo Bueno at Barbes

1/19, 8 PM Americana songstress Erin Durant and Philly Goat and ferociously lyrical, Macbeth-inspired art-rock/psychedelic songwriter Rose Thomas Bannister and her killer band at the Jalopy, $10

1/19, 8 PM in the round: fearlessly political, picturesque retro folk/blues songwriter Joshua Garcia, 60s folk vet Tom Smith and Gary Allard at the People’s Voice Cafe, sugg don, $20, “more if you choose; less if you can’t; no one turned away.”  

1/19, 8 PM kinetic jazz vibraphonista Yuhan Su leads her quintet  at the Cell Theatre, $15

1/19, 9:30 PM ominous Laurel Canyon-style psych-folk band the Flowered Gnomes – a Volebeats spinoff – at Pine Box Rock Shop 

1/19, midnight baritone crooner Sean Kershaw‘s Serpentones play “hi octane Brooklyn honkytonk”at at Sidewalk

1/20, 3 PM a dynamic, haunting, sometimes explosive afternoon of Hungarian music with Vadalma and Fényes Banda at Hungarian House, 213 W 82nd St., $15  

1/20, 6:30  PM a post Golden Fest Balkan blowout at the Jalopy with the Balkan-American stars of decades to come, Cocek Nation followed at 7 by dynamic, subtle all-female klezmer band Tsibele, at 8  by the Romany-flavoed Sarma Brass Band and at 8 by the ferocious Novi Hitovi Brass Band, $10, “nobody turned away,” proceeds to benefit Balkan music education

1/20, 6 PM fearlessly relevant, genuinely riveting, populist sax visionary/improviser Matana Roberts duets on alto with Darius Jones followed at 7 by RaaDie with Lorenz Raab on trumpet and Christof Dienz on zither at Downtown Music Gallery

 1/20 ,7 PM darkly torchy southwestern gothic/Europolitan songwriter/guitarist Miwa Gemini at the third stage at the Rockwood, $10

1/20, 9 PM violinist Damian Dudu leads a nine-piece band playing classic and new rembetiko sounds at Drom, $15 standing room avail

1/21, 7:30 PM jazz trumpeter Bria Skonberg and her swing band, edgy, eclectic pan-Mediterranean art-rock/latin/chanson ensemble Banda Magda  and hip-hop/math-metal band R.O.T.I. at National Sawdust, pay what you can, all proceeds to Planned Parenthood in celebration of the 46th anniversary of Roe v. Wade 

1/21, 9:30 PM ex-Chicha Libre keyboard sorcerer Josh Camp’s wryly psychedelic cumbia/tropicalia/dub band Locobeach at Barbes

1/22-27, 7:3-0/9:30 PM this era’s arguably best jazz pianist, Vijay Iyer at the Jazz Standard, $30. 1/22-23 he lead his trio, 1/24-26 with his sextet

1/22, 8 PM ex-Dylan lead guitarist Larry Campbell with singer Teresa Williams at City Winery, $25 standing room avail

1/22, 8 PM hard-charging oldschool soul/funk/rock singer Bette Smith and band at the Mercury, $10

1/22, 8:30 PM haunting Middle Eastern jazz violinist Layale Chaker and group play the album release show for their new one at the Stone at the New School,  $20. Very highly recommended.  

1/22, 9 PM brooding cello slowcore songs with Meaner Pencil at Freddy’s

1/22, 10 PM rising star trumpeter Adam O’Farrill‘s Stranger Days Quartet at 55 Bar

1/23-26, 7/9 PM ferociously smart postbop trumpeter Ingrid Jensen leads her quintet at Birdland, $30 seats avail

1/23, 7:15 PM classic rural Macedonian sounds with reedman Vedran Boshkovski and ensemble at Balkan Cafe, 455 W. 56th St, $15

1/23-26, 8:30 PM hauntingly atmospheric pan-Asian chanteuse/composer and multi-instrumentalist Jen Shyu leads a series of ensembles at the Stone at the New Scnool, $20. Choice pick:1/24 with drum sampler Ikue Mori and wicked violist Mat Maneri

1/24, 7 PM the epically haunting Moscow-based East/West Trio – Marina Omelchenko, organ ; Oganes Kazarian, duduk; Tehmine Zaryan, soprano performing works by Bach, Ekmalyan, Komitas, Mozart, Pachelbel and Shirakazi at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, free

1/24, 7 PM perennially sharp;, wickedly tuneful, jangly Americana band Mary Lee’s Corvette revisit their classic live performance of Dylan’s Blood on the Tracks album in its entirety at Joe’s Pub, $18

1/24, 7:30 PM, repeating 1/25-26 at 8 Jaap van Zweden conducts the NY Philharmonic in Julia Wolfe’s new immersive visual and musical event — featuring lights, chamber choir, video, and projection — weighing the legacy of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, at Avery Fisher Hall, $31

1/24, 7:30 PM Son Sublime play oldschool Afro-Cuban charanga jams at the Lincoln Center Atrium, free, early arrival advised

1/24, 7:30 PM poet Paul Muldoon hosts a colorful roundttable with fellow poet Jorie Graham, novelist Colm Tóibín and visionary violinist/social critic Laurie Anderson discussing how to keep the arts alive amid corporate fascism, social media saturation and other grim current events at National Sawdust, $30 adv tix rec

1/24, 8 PM edgy lefty lead guitarist Damian Quinones and his psychedelic latin soul band at Barbes

`1/24, 8:30 PM clarinetist Aaron Novik and band explore classic Indian raga themes at the Jalopy, $15

1/24, 8:30 PM ambient guitar ensemble Fyrn – whose guitars are “bowed with metal files and metal bars, creating dense and hauntingly beautiful, decaying sonic ambient landscapes that engulf the audience as the ensemble sets up in a large circle around them,”  at Arete Gallery, $15

1/24, 8 PM conversational pianist Jeffrey Siegel plays musical miniatures by Wilhelm Stenhammar (Sweden), Jean Sibelius (Finland), Carl Nielsen (Denmark), Dag Wirén (Sweden), Christian Sinding (Norway) and Brahms at Scandinavia House, $25

1/24, 8 PM Lea Bertucci and Amirtha Kidambi sing their new duo vocal project followed by the world premiere of Mass of Dissolution, Bertucci’s new work for percussion trio Tigue (Matt Evans, Amy Garapic, and Carson Moody), “an incantation against the blind violence of military-industrial power that dominates global dynamics,” at the Kitchen, $25

1/24, 8:30 PM a wild klezmer dance party with Steven Weintraub  Ken Maltz, Lauren Brody, Aaron Alexander at Town & Village Social Hall, 334 E 14th St.(between 1st & 2nd Ave.), $15

1/24, 10 PM raucous Boston newgrass band Mamma’s Marmalade at Pete’s 

1/25, 6 PM oldtime resonator guitarist/songwriter Rust Dust at the American Folk Art Museum

1/25, 7:30 PM violinist Stanichka Dimitrova leads a quintet playing a haunting, literary twinbill: Beethoven – Sonata for Violin and Piano No. 9, Opus 47 (“Kreutzer”) and  Janáček – String Quartet “Kreutzer Sonata”at the Old Stone House in Park Slope, $25/$10 stud/srs

1/25, 8 PM the year’s best twinbill so far: intense Balkan chanteuse Jenny Luna‘s haunting, traditional Turkish band Dolunay  followed by the world’s creepiest crime jazz/film noir band, Big Lazy at Barbes

1/25-26, 8 PM the reliably entertaining, adventurous Chelsea Symphony  play an Aaron Dai world premiere plus Frank Martin — Ballade for Flute and Orchestra with soloist Kim Lewis; Bach — Violin Concerto in D minor, BWV 1052R;  Sibelius — Symphony No. 2 in D Major, op. 43. The 1/26 show switches out the Martin for Nielsen’s Clarinet Concerto, at St. Paul’s Church, 315 W 22nd St., $20 sugg don

1/25, 8 PM meticulous, unbelievably tight, hypnotic tabla-and-harmonium ensemble Talavya at Flushing Town Hall, $16/$10 stud/srs, under 19 free w/id

1/25, 8 PM the 11-person Tri-Centric Vocal Ensemble perform lush, microtonal Anthony Braxton works from their new album of his Syntactical Ghost Trance Music at Roulette, $18 adv tix rec

1/25, 8 PM pianist Mary Prescott plays solo improvisations at Arete Gallery, $15

1/25, 8 PM the NJ Symphony Orchestra with soloist Daniel Trifonov play Schumann’s Piano Concerto  No. 1, Scriabin’s Poem of Ecstasy and Strauss’ Also Sprach Zarathustra at NJPAC in Newark, $20 tix avail

125. 8 PM the American Symphony Orchestra play works of Robert Mann, Jacob Druckman, Vivian Fine and William Schuman at Stern Auditorium at Carnegie Hall, $25 tix avail

1/25, 8 PM lustrously tuneful percussionist James Shipp with guitarist Taylor Ashton and elegant folk noir songwriter Jean Rohe at the Owl

1/25, 8 PM ex-October Project bandleader and art-rock chanteuse Mary Fahl at City Vineyard, $25

1/25, 9 PM Stefan Jackiw, violin & Conrad Tao, piano play works by Stravinsky, Lutoslawski, Saariaho and Brahms at the 92nd St. Y, $25

1/25, 11 PM purist CBs style female-fronted punks the Carvels NYC followed by punk/rockabilly band the Screaming Rebel Angels at the Mercury, $12

1/26, 2:30 PM pianist Beth Levin performs works of Wang Jie, Vladimir N. Drozdoff,Beethoven and Handel at the NY Public Library for the Performing Arts, free

1/26, 4 PM “music, performances, and readings inspired by Wu-Tang Clan’s 1993 song “C.R.E.A.M” (Cash Rules Everything Around Me) with a lineup led by Sable Elyse Smith, including Jibade-Khalil Huffman and Simone White, Devin Kenny, and Bonita Oliver, as well as poetry readings by A. H. Jerriod Avant and Smith herself. “Works that dismantle and reimagine “C.R.E.A.M.” as a song and as a larger cultural moment. The contributors interrogate mass incarceration and shed light on the interrelationship between the prison-industrial complex and high finance, violence, intimacy, and trauma, to pursue what exists beyond those broken narratives,” free w/rsvp 

1/26, 4/5:30 PM oldschool Colombian cumbia jammes La Cumbiamba Eneye at Flushing Town Hall, $14,$8 kids

1/26, 6 PM eclectic, edgy soul/art-rock/funk/chamber-pop cellist/singer Marika Hughes followed at 8 by the Dirty Waltz Band- a seven-piece group playing more than a dozen instruments in 3/4 time from Balkan, Irish, jazz, blues and American folk traditions – and then at 10 by the haphazardly funny Eastern Blokhedz  – who do psychedelic covers of 60s Russian psychedelic pop songs and specialize in the catalog of legendary Polish singer Edita Piaha –at Barbes

1/26, 8 PM the Orlando Consort, Joined by bass Robert Macdonald,sing works by Josquin des Prez, Clemens non Papa, Nicolas Gombert and others, concluding with Lamentations by English Tudor composer Robert White at the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, 145 W 46th St,  $30 tix avail

1/26, 10:30 PM long-running, high-energy, sardonic Irish folk-punk band Box of Crayons at Freddy’s

1/27, 4 PM the Orchestra Now play Stravinsky’s “The Firebird,” and Ravel’s arrangement of Mussorgsky’s classic, creepy “Pictures at an Exhibition,” at Symphony Space, free

1/27, 4 PM German recorder quintet Han Tol & Boreas Quartett Bremen play medieval tunes by Tye, Holborne, Dowland, Vivaldi, Boismortier and others at Corpus Christi Church, 529 W 121St St $10 tix avail

1/27, 7 PM brilliant steel guitarist Mike Neer’s Steelonious – who do Monk covers in the same vein as Buddy Emmons –   followed at 9:30  by Romany jazz/psychedelic rock guitar mastermind Stephane Wrembel at Barbes

1/27, 7 PM Wavefield Ensemble premiere works by Matthew Ricketts, Rebecca Saunders, Katherine Balch’s Una Corda, plus works by Iannis Xenakis  at National Sawdust, $25 adv tix rec 

1/27, 8:30 PM eclectic, tuneful accordionist/songwriter Ali Dineen at Pete’s

1/28, 7:30/9:30 PM powerhouse reedwoman Anna Webber plays flute and sax leading a sextet with Matt Mitchell on piano at the Jazz Gallery, $15

1/28, 10ish singer Carolina Oliveros’ mighty 13-piece Afro-Colombian trance/dance choir Bulla en el Barrio at Barbes

1/29, drinks at 5:30 PM, show at 6, indie classical chamber group Either/Or play works by their leader Richard Carrick at the Miller Theatre, free

1/29, 6:30 PM “In her new film Pellea[s], Josephine Meckseper adapts Maurice Maeterlinck’s otherworldly play Pelléas et Mélisande for our current sociopolitical landscape, weaving together fictional scenarios and dramatic footage captured from the last Presidential inauguration, as well as from the landmark women’s march that followed. Conflating contemporary political realities with a timeless love story, the city of Washington D.C. and its architecture become a context and site of departure, giving voice to debates around notions of gender found in the original play. Underscoring the film is Arnold Schoenberg’s modernist version of Pelléas et Mélisande,” at the Kitchen, free

1/29, 8 PM New Andalucia play Middle Eastern tunes at Sisters Brooklyn, 900 Washington St., C to Clnton/Washington

 1/29-2/2, 8:30 PM perennially interesting piano/percussion ensemble Yarn/Wire lead a series of ensembles at the Stone at the New Scnool, $20. Choice pick: 1/31 with bassoonist Katherine Young

1/29, 9 PM sharply lyrical janglerock/Americana/soul songwriter Matt Keating and guitarist Steve Mayone’s catchy new project the Bastards of Fine Arts at 11th St. Bar

1/30, 7:30 PM unstoppably edgy, deservedly iconic, fearlessly political downtown guitarist Marc Ribot plays his enigmatic, witty acoustic score to Charlie Chaplin’s The Kid at the World Financial Center, free

1/30, 7:30/9:30 PM whirlwind B3 jazz organist Pat Bianchi leads a killer quartet with Joe Locke on vibes at the Jazz Standard, $30

 1/30-31, 7:30 PM, repeating 2/1-2 at 8 the NY Philharmonic play Mozart’s Symphony No, 1 and Jupiter Symphony; Emmanuel Ax joins them on piano for Stravinskiy’s Capriccio for Piano and Orchestra and Haydn’s Piano Concerto No. 11 at Avery Fisher Hall, $34

1/30, 8 PM haunting, cinematic lapsteel genius Myk Freedman leads his band  at Barbes

1/30, 8 PM bassist Nick Dunston leads his highly improvisational quintet, Atlantic Extraction, with Louna Dekker-Vargas on flutes, Ledah Finck on violin, Tal Yahalom on guitar, and Stephen Boegehold on drums at Roulette, $18 adv tix rec

1/30, 9 PM powerhouse soul singers Meah Pace, Shelly Bhushan, Nicole Zuraitis, Carol Thomas and special guests salute Aretha Franklin at LIC Bar

1/31, 7 PM Burnt Sugar celebrate 20 years of lush Braxton-ish largescale improvisation, hard funk, James Brown and Bowie covers and more at the Brooklyn Museum, $16

1/31, 7:30 PM a screening of F.W. Murnau’s Nosferatu with electronic score by Irene and Linda Buckley at the World Financial Center, free

1/31, 7:30 PM fearlessly relevant latin rock songwriter and protest song connoisseur Ani Cordero at the Lincoln Center Atrium, free, early arrival advised

1/31, 7:30/9:30 PM postbop/improv jazz drum maven Ches Smith leads a new two-guitar quartet with both Mary Halvorson and Liberty Ellman at the Jazz Gallery, $15

1/31, 8 PM deviously theatrical oldschool C&W/rockabilly parodists Susquehanna Industrial Tool & Die Co at Otto’s

1/31, 8:30 PM dynamic, subtle all-female klezmer band Tsibele at Town & Village Social Hall, 334 E 14th St. (between 1st & 2nd Ave.), $15

1/31 8:30 PM Indian carnatic singer Samyukta Ranganathan with her electric raga band at the Jalopy, $15

1/31, 8:30 PM Brooklyn folk-punk legend Paranoid Larry at Freddy’s

1/31, 10 PM drummer Arthur Vint & Associates reinvent classic Morricone spaghetti western soundtracks at Barbes

1/31, 10 PM legendary punk-soul bandleader Jon Spencer at Rough Trade, $20 gen adm

1/31. 10;30 bouncy live hip-hop groove band the Hypnotic Brass Ensemble at the Blue Note, $20 standing room avail

 1/31, 10:30 PM noisy, careening, paint-peeling duo Wolf Eyes at Brooklyn Bazaar $17

2/1, 5:30 PM soul/gospel belter (and Lenny Molotov collaborator) Queen Esther at the American Folk Art Museum 

2/1, 7 PM indie classical ensemble SoundArt NYC play a rare program of Costra Rican composers including Valeria Brenes, Carlos Jose Castro Mora and Susan Campos-Fonseca at the Americas Society, free

2/1, 7:30 PM Alloy Orchestra play their live score to Josef von Sternberg’s silent gangster film Underworld at the World Financial Center, free

2/1, 9:30 PM chamber tango night with poignant, eclectic, lyrical jazz bassist/composer Pedro Giraudo’s Tango Quartet and similarly adventurous pan-latin singer Sofia Tosello at joe’s Pub, $20

2/1, 9:30 PM Cumbiagra – who’ve been going in a much more psychedelic direction lately – at Barbes. They’re also here on 2/11 at 9:30ish

2/1, 10 PM Atlas & the All World Band play fiery, socially aware roots reggae at Shrine 

2/2, 4 PM cinematic, psychedelic quirk-pop keyboardist Michael Hearst presents “Curious, Unusual and Extraordinary” songs from his many bands followed eventually at 6 by low register reedman Josh Sinton’s Phantasos playing Morphine covers,  followed at 8 by pianist Lucian Ban and violist Mat Maneri playimg their creepy Transylvanian jazz at Barbes

2/2. 5 PM pensive, Middle Eastern-tinged guitarist Jonathan Goldberger and band followed at 6 by atmospheric, cinematic drummer/composer Tim Kuhl and his group at Pete’s

2/3, 7 PM tuneful, state-of-the-art postbop jazz guitarist Will Bernard and band play Strayhorn followed at 9:30  by Romany jazz/psychedelic rock guitar mastermind Stephane Wrembel at Barbes

2/4, 9:30ish Los Mochuelos plays classic Colombian vallenato music at Barbes

2/5, 7 PM Free Range Rat with Slavic Soul Party‘s John Carlson 0- trumpet, pocket trumpet & flugelhorn; Eric Hipp – tenor saxophone – Shawn McGloin – bass and George Schuller – drums, followed at 9 by SSP doing their amazing Balkan brass/hip-hop mashups at Barbes

2/6, 8 PM pyrotechnic clarinetist Ismail Lumanovski’s ferociously kinetic NY Gypsy All-Stars  at Drom, $10 adv tix rec

2/6, 9:30 PM high lonesome Orbisonesque acoustic Americana with Bobby Blue the Balladeer at the Jalopy. 2/16 at 11 they’re at Better Days, 302 Broome St; 2/22 at 10 they’re at Diviera Drive, 131 Berry St in Wiliamsburg

2/9, 8 PM the NY Repertory Orchestra with Gretchen Windt, mezzo-soprano play Vaughan Williams: English Folk Song Suite; Elgar: Sea Pictures; Moeran: Symphony in G minor at the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, 145 W 26th St., $15 sug don

3/24, 5 PM the Manhattan Chamber Players perform works by Mozart, Schumann, and Bruch at the Lounge at Hudson View Gardens, 128 Pinehurst Ave @ W 183rd St, A train or #1 train (to 181st St) or the M4 bus (to 183rd St), $15/$12 stud/srs

4/7, 5 PM the Kandinsky Trio perform a lyrical early Beethoven piano trio and then will be joined by clarinetist Jose Garcia Taborda and narrator Patricia Raun for Messiaen’s Quartet for the End of Time at the Lounge at Hudson View Gardens, 128 Pinehurst Ave @ W 183rd St, A train or #1 train (to 181st St) or the M4 bus (to 183rd St), $15/$12 stud/srs

5/26, 5 PM pianist Andrea Lam performs Bach, Schumann and Stravinsky at the Lounge at Hudson View Gardens, 128 Pinehurst Ave @ W 183rd St, A train or #1 train (to 181st St) or the M4 bus (to 183rd St), $15/$12 stud/srs

6/16, 5 PM cellist Angela Lee, with pianist Evelyne Luest play works by Beethoven, Prokofiev and Janáček at the Lounge at Hudson View Gardens, 128 Pinehurst Ave @ W 183rd St, A train or #1 train (to 181st St) or the M4 bus (to 183rd St), $15/$12 stud/srs

Sam Broverman Skewers Holiday Overkill

Sam Broverman is the Tom Lehrer of cabaret music. Like Lehrer, he’s a math professor with an insatiable love for parodies. His latest album A Jewish Boy’s Christmas is out just in time for the holidays and streaming at Spotify. The songs first took shape as part of what would become a spoofy annual concert. They’re sardonic, cynical, sometimes schmaltzy, other times absolutely priceless.

True to form, he covers Lehrer’s Hanukkah in Santa Monica, but adds some lyrics of his own, a litany of holidays too good to give away here. Then he does the first verse again – in what sounds, at least from a former Lower East Sider’s perspective, to be perfectly good Yiddish. If you want a translation of “Every California maid’ll find me playing with my dreydl,” this is where to find it.

What’s a Jew to Do on Christmas is a deadpan, faux-wistful swing ballad about Christmas envy. What if ham could be kosher for a day – and maybe shrimp too? Multi-instrumentalist Drew Jurecka’s clarinet echoes that sentiment over the judicious backdrop of Peter Hill on piano, Ross MacIntyre on bass and Ernesto Cervini on drums.

As one of several shout-outs to Jewish artists who’re responsible for famous Christmas songs, Mel Torme is represented twice. The Christmas Waltz is a duet with Broverman’s cabaret partner, chanteuse Whitney Ross-Barris. The other is The Christmas Song, a.k.a. Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire – it’s not Nat Cole, but Broverman nevertheless characterizes it as one of the album’s more “serious” songs. Oy.

Ross-Barris’ misty take of the British folk staple Coventry Carol is the best of the serious tunes here, a somber jazz waltz. Then Broverman flips the script with You’re Speaking Yiddish, an irresistibly dixieland-flavored litany of chazzerai, shiksas, kvelling shlemiels and such which have insinuated themselves into everyday English.

The First Noel Parody, featuring the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, casts a suspicious eye on members of the tribe who celebrate Christmas – hey, don’t laugh, in the old country the cossacks would leave you alone if you were ho-ho-hoing with everybody else.

Ross-Barris offers a brassy take of the Tom Waits classic Christmas Card From a Hooker in Minneapolis. Christmas Carol Parodies might be the album’s best track, a cautionary medley about holiday selfies, overindulgence and the Halloweenish experience of children’s concerts.

Broverman explains Swinging the Chicken as “a comedic look at the traditional Yom Kippur ritual ‘kapores,’ when a live chicken is passed overhead three times with the hope that it will help atone for one’s sins.” Mazel tov. Ken Whiteley plays slide guitar and Jurecka switches to fiddle in this ersatz western swing tale of poultry in motion. To call this one of the alltime great Christmas albums is akin to saying that Shoko Nagai is one of the world’s greatest Japanese klezmer accordionists. Such things do exist; this is one of them.

Slinky, Eclectic, Unpredictable Psychedelic Grooves from International Orange

International Orange are one of the most distinctive, unpredictable instrumental jambands out there. In a single, expansive tune, they can shift between Afrobeat, oldschool soul, psychedelic funk, gutbucket organ grooves and Bahian-flavored beats. Pretty much everybody in the band writes.Their latest album A Man and His Dog (For Gaku)  is streaming at Bandcamp. They’re playing at 11 PM on Dec 30 at Offside Tavern at 137 W 14th St,

While their music is hardly melancholy, there is a sad backstory. The group lost their bassist, Gaku Takanashi, who appears on half the tracks here: this would be his final recording. Guitarist David Phelps’ tune Keep the Blue Side Up opens it with an upbeat, catchy soukous guitar flair, then Dan Stein’s organ solo takes the music toward gutbucket organ groove before Phelps returns to with a metal attack. Meanwhile, the rhythm section – Takanashi’s bass and Todd Isler’s drums – follow a carefree tropical shuffle. 

Olinda – by Isler and Fender Rhodes player Adam Morrison – is a starry boudoir soul jam with more than a hint of roots reggae, Phelps’ slide guitar adding unexpected Hawaiian flavor as Leo Traversa’s hammer-on bass riffs weave through the mix. How I learned Not To Worry, another Phelps tune, is a syncopated oldschool soul song without words, with more of that keening slide guitar and Takanashi’s bass percolating over the organ.

The lively Strut Orange brings to mind steel guitarist Raphael McGregor’s adventures in instrumental southern rock. Freight Liner, also by Phelps, is a more tipetoeing, New Orleans-flavored strut, Phelps’ exchanges with Morrison’s organ bringing to mind vintage 60s Mulatu Astatke Ethiopian funk before the guitar goes in a shreddier direction.

Maracuja, an Isler tune, has a catchy oldschool soul melody over an animatedly shuffling maracatu groove, Phelps’ hard funk lines and detours toward metal flaring overhead. Sookie’s Rhumba, by Traversa, keeps the soul ambience simmering as Isler flits along on his rims, Phelps adding warm, Smokey Robinson-esque lines until the bass signals a shift into bubbling West African territory. 

Their take of Pat Metheny’s Sirabhorn is part twinkling Hawaiian seascape, part Carnaval them, another showcase for Phelps’ sunbaked slide work. His original The Penguin comes across as Peter Gabriel-era Genesis motoring through an oldschool soul groove with unexpected, tongue-in-cheek success: imagine a more original, focused Dopapod.

First Principle, by Stein is a dub reggae jam as organist Brian Charette might do it, with a little Beatlesque psychedelia thrown into the mix. Phelps’ solo guitar tribute to his bassist friend Gaku, A Man And His Dog closes the album on a steady, warmly reflective, pastoral note.

Catchy Riffs, Ambitious Stylistic Leaps and Irrepressible Fun from David Dominique

People who play off-the-wall instruments tend to write off-the-wall music. David Dominique’s axe is the flugabone, a higher-pitched valve trombone usually limited to marching-band music. As you might expect from someone from that milieu, his new octet album Mask – streaming at Bandcamp – is irrepressibly fun, and rhythmic, and sounds like absolutely nothing else out there. It seems as if he’s been listening to a lot of Ligeti and other minimalist composers, although imputing influences to musicians is never a safe bet.  Reduced to lowest terms, this album combines the hypnotic, cyclical quality of a lot of indie classical music with the exuberance of a brass band. Other reference points are the snark of Mostly Other People Do the Killing (and possibly some other snarky critters), along with the surreal live techno of German dancefloor nuts the Jazzrausch Bigband.

The bright opening track, The Wee of Us has jaunty New Orleans flavor, chattering dixieland voicings and tricky, staggered syncopation. If the Microscopic Septet were just getting started right now, they might sound like this, Alexander Noice’s flickering guitar mingling with  Brian Walsh’s tenor sax and the altos of Joe Santa Maria and Sam Robles while violist Lauren Baba and bassist Michael Alvidrez hold down an insistent beat in tandem with drummer Andrew Lessman.

Grief at first seems to be a very sardonically titled jazz waltz, Santa Maria’s flute at the center paired against the flugabone and Robles’ baritone, the bandleader overdubbing a da-da chorus of vocals. The music gets serious at the end over Noice’s uneasy jangle.

Beetle, a coyly nocturnal swing number, brings to mind creepy cinephiles Beninghove’s Hangmen in a lighter moment…or Tredici Bacci. To Dave Treut – a shout-out to the ruggedly individualistic Brooklyn multi-instrumentalist – shifts surrealistically from balmy swing to a riffy mashup of Terry Riley and Dopapod, with a tingly viola solo on the way out. Then the band negotiate the odd syncopation of Invisibles, a sliced-and-diced march which is just as much about space as melody.

The band follow Five Locations, a series of brief sketches, with The Yawpee, an exuberant racewalk through a series of catchy, loopy hooks strung together, with a cynically sinister oldtimey outro. Separation Strategies, with its motorik bassline and tight counterpoint, is the one track that most vividly evokes the Jazzrausch guys. The album ends with Gotta Fumble, tense low-register pedalpoint anchoring a lively flute hook, variations from individual voices spiraling up to puncture the playful, carefree ambience. Throughout the album, the jokes – some completely over the top, some much more subtle – are as entertaining as the band’s tightness and Dominique’s completely unpredictable seismic shifts.

Cartoons and Monsters From Satoko Fujii’s Thermos

File this under be careful what you wish for: a dozen albums, one every month, from perennially intense, captivating pianist Satoko Fujii? To celebrate her sixtieth birthday, she’s done exactly that. Much as the nuts and bolts of officially putting out each record must have been tiresome, the music has been characteristically fresh and outside-the-box. And the project has been a lot easier for her than it would be for most artists. Like most jazz musicians these days, she pretty much lives on the road, and at this point in her career everybody from Wadada Leo Smith on down wants to work with her, so she has pretty much unlimited access to global talent. And she’s figured out that the way to make albums in this era is simply to record her shows and release the best ones.

Album number ten in her twelve-album cycle is the debut of a group she calls Mahobin. In Japanese, it means “thermos,’ but the literal meaning is “magic bottle.” To what extent did she manage to bottle the magic at this 2018 set in Kobe, Japan with her husband and longtime collaborator, Natsuki Tamura, along with tenor saxophonist Lotte Anker and Ikue Mori on laptop? The results are both hilarious and macabre. This is an amazing record, even if the electronics are too loud.

There’s a set and an encore here – ot so it seems. The humor is relentless at the beginning  of the 42-minute first piece, Rainbow Elephant. Everybody is in on it; Star Trek command center bubbles and blips, black noise like at the end of A Day in the Life, a fishtank on steroids, cuisinarted minor-key piano blues riffage, mulish snorts, a ridiculously funny trumpet fanfare and cartoon mice on a treadmill inside the piano tinkling away are just a few things the music might remind you of.

Then Fujii suddenly flips the script with a stern, syncopated low lefthand pedal note and works uneasy Messiaenic permutations, moving slowly upward as Mori oscillates wildly. Anker’s role here is mostly quavery, uneasy sustained lines; Tamura sticks mostly to more sepulchral extended technique, although when he goes in with his chromatics, he goes for the jugular.

Meanwhile, it seems like Mori is sampling her bandmates and then spinning everybody back on themselves, sometimes using a backward making pedal for extra surrealism. Fujii’s ability to make up a theme on the spot and embellish it later on is unsurpassed in all of music, and the enigmatic way she ends this very long, very strange trip goes against all conventional thinking in order to drive it home, dark and hard.

The relatively short encore, Yellow Sky is seven minutes ten seconds of Frankenstein building a fire – that’s Fujii – with the rest of the band as seagulls circling overhead. Creative music in 2018 doesn’t get any better, or more captivatingly weird, than this. Fujii and Mahobin are at the Stone – which is now located at the first-floor Glass Box Theatre at the New School at 55 W 13th St. – at 8:30 PM on Dec 13. Cover is $20; get there early, because Fujii’s New York shows have been selling out regularly.

The best overview of Fujii’s yearlong project is not at this blog, sadly. The New York City Jazz Record put her on the cover of their September issue and included an exhaustive and enthusiastic review of her 2018 output. But not to worry: there will be much more Fujii on this page in the weeks and months ahead.