New York Music Daily

Global Music With a New York Edge

Tag: latin music

Celebrating an Eclectic, Dynamic Force in Venezuelan Classical Music

“I’m having a great time up here,” bassist Gonzalo Teppa told his bandmates with an unselfconsciously grin. He’d been exchanging sly rhythmic riffs all night with the Jimi Hendrix of the cuatro, Jorge Glem. Not something you might expect at a concert celebrating the work of a pioneering classical composer.

Friday night at the Baruch Performing Arts Center, an all-star chamber orchestra played the first-ever career retrospective of music by Aldemaro Romero, a 20th century Venezuelan counterpart to Ernesto Lecuona. Romero came to New York at age 34 with his family and worked prolifically as an arranger in both classical and jazz before returning to found the Caracas Philharmonic Orchestra. His 1955 symphonic album Dinner in Caracas, focusing on his signature mashup of neoromanticism and a wide array of styles from across the Americas, was a huge global hit. His son Aldemaro Jr., a biologist and dean of the college, conducted a shapeshifting ensemble which also comprised the Alexander String Quartet, pianist/singer Selene Quiroga, pianist Gonzalo Grau and drummer Fabio Rojas.

In an eerie stroke of fate, the concert took place on the exact spot on 25th Street that housed the RCA studio where Romero Sr. recorded his famous album. The younger Romero, who also contributed a couple of witty cameos on melodica, did not know this until shortly before the performance. “It gave me goosebumps,” he admitted. That the energy and vitality of the show was as fresh as it was testifies not only to the liveliness of the music but also the fact that the group had come up with some of the charts only a couple of days beforehand.

And the concert was anything but stuffy. This music is full of life, and color, and much of it was made for dancing. Subtle rhythmic shifts were everywhere, referencing grooves from the Romeros’ home turf to Cuba, Mexico and ultimately, Spain. The most striking of the instrumental numbers was Capriccio for Viola and Piano, a world premiere given a vigorously incisive workout by Quiroga and Alexander Quartet violist Paul Yarbrough.

Another world premiere, the second movement of the Concerto for Teresa (a dedication to a Venezuelan New York Philharmnoic member ) rose from starkly elegaic into a lush, majestic remembrance. And the entire string section closed with Fuga Con Pajarillo, the most widely performed piece on the bill, an expansive bit of neoromantic dancefloor indulgence that brought to mind Astor Piazzolla’s late work.

When’s the last time you saw a classical pianist move to the mic for a display of vocal power and versatility? The elder Romero probably would have gotten a kick out of the fact that global audiences probably know Quiroga best as a member of irrepressible ska-punk band Desorden Publico. With dramatic flair and often plaintive nuance, she delivered a series of moody, crescendoing ballads, through the expectancy and longing of Quien to the bouncy, salsa-tinged El Musiquito to the uneasily lilting Lo Que Paso Contigo (What’s Up with You), backed by Glem and Teppa’s erudite jousting. Baruch’s choir the Blue Notes, strolling down the stairs on both side of the audience, added harmonic enhancement.

As is across the various CUNY campuses, diversity rules at Baruch. This is the real New York. The next concert in this year’s eclectic season is a holiday show on Dec 5 at 8 PM with pianist Eugene Marlow’s Heritage Ensemble, who blend acerbic klezmer and latin jazz sounds. Cover is $26/$11 stud.


Live Music Calendar for New York City and Brooklyn for November and December 2017

Free and cheap concerts in just about every neighborhood. If you’re leaving your hood, make sure you check for service changes considering how the trains are at night and on the weekend.

Constant updates. 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.

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. Up next: Bartok, Mozart and fascinating improvisations. Sugg don $10 (pay what you can), delicious gluten-free refreshments, beverages and lively conversation included! email for info/location.

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 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 at 10 noir guitar legend Jim Campilongo leads his trio at the big room at the Rockwood

Also Mondays in November, 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 November, 8:30 PM the George Gee Swing Orchestra play surprising new arrangements of old big band standards at Swing 46, 349 W 46th St,  $15

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

Wednesdays at 6 PM, irrepressible pianist/singer Champian Fulton – as entertaining a postbop improviser as torch singer – plays at Talde, 8 Erie St. (Bay/1st) in Jersey City, a block and a half from the Grove St. Path station

Wednesdays at 8 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 Art Cafe, 884 Pacific St.(at Washington Ave) in Brooklyn, $15; closest train is the 2 to Bergen St. Tons of special guests followed by a wild raga jam!

Wednesdays in November, 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

Wednesdays at 9 PM Feral Foster’s Roots & Ruckus takes over the Jalopy, a reliably excellent weekly mix of oldtimey acts: blues, bluegrass, country and swing.

Wednesdays in November, 10 PM the uneasily cinematic art-rock Pi PowerTrio  – film composer and former Raybeat Pat Irwin (guitar, electronics), Sasha Dobson (drums, vocals) and Daria Grace (bass, vocals) at LIC Bar

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 around 9:30 PM Bulgarian Romany sax legend Yuri Yunakov with his wild but haunting band at Mehanata

Saturdays at 4 PM at Bargemusic there are impromptu free classical concerts, 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 November, 6 PM eclectic, edgy soul/art-rock/funk/chamber-pop cellist/singer Marika Hughes & Bottom Heavy at Barbes

Saturdays in November, 10 PM oldschool female-fronted psychedelic soul/groove band Empire Beats at the Way Station

Saturdays eclectic compelling Brazilian jazz chanteuse Marianni and her excellent band at Zinc Bar, three sets starting at 10 PM.

Sundays there’s a klezmer brunch at City Winery, show starts around 11:30 AM – 2 PM, $10 cover, no minimum, lots of good bands

Sundays in November, at sometime past noon at Hank’s, Nashville gothic crooner Sean Kershaw‘s legendary honkytonk brunch is back; special guests from his wide circle of NYC Americana acts keep the afternoon going until about 7. It’s just like 1999 again!

11/1, 1 PM clarinetist Sam Boutris and ensemble play a program tba at the Greene Space, free, rsvp req 

11/1, 6 PM koto player Asuka Yoshizaki at the Rubin Museu of Art, free w/museum adm

11/1, 7:30 PM Brandi & the Alexanders play their torchy oldschool soul and groove music at  at Friends & Lovers, $TBA

11/1, 8 PM Dervisi feat. guitar god Steve Antonakos play “exotic Greek gangsta blues”at Troost 

11/1, 8 PM psychedelic klezmer/bluegrass mandolin and clarinet legend Andy Statman at Barbes, $10

11/1, 8 PM the  deviously eclectic, psychedelic Tredici Bacci jam out original psychedelic instrumentals inspired by Italian film themes from the 60s and 70s at Roulette, $15 adv tix rec

11/1, 8 PM pianist Katie Reimer’s reliably adventurous Mimesis Ensemble play a New York premiere by Clarice Assad plus works by Mohammed Fairouz, Mary Kouyoumdjian, Arvo Pärt, and William Grant Still at Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall, $25

11/1-3, 8 PM trio The HawtPlates (Justin Hicks, Kenita Miller Hicks, Jade Hicks) and director Charlotte Brathwaite perform their Toni Morrison-inspired suite about ownership and the American Dream via the “ancient songs, shifting murmurs, calls, shouts, stomps and whispers” of a house’s many inhabitants. Goldilocks and the Three Bears and s Twilight Zone episode “unpack the subtle radicalized under-breath utterances of a community in flux – the inherited language and layered vocabularies of gentrification and conversations on so-called progress,”  at Jack, $15

11/1-2, 8:30/10 PM lyrical jazz piano icon Fred Hersch solo at the Vanguard. 11/3-5 he’s there with his great trio.

11/1, 8:30 PM legendary Irish crooner Pierce Turner – sort of the missing link between the Pogues and the Moody Blues – at 11th St. Bar

11/1, 9 PM catchy Connecticut newgrass/Americana band Plywood Cowboy at the Bitter End 

11/2, 7 PM pyrotechnic klezmler clarinetist David Krakauer’s surprisingly funky Ancestral Groove at National Sawdust, $30 adv tix rec. Followed at 10 (separate $25 adm) by amazing, psychedelic instrumentalists Sandcatchers – who blend cinematic, pastoral Americana and Middle Eastern themes – playing the album release show for their new one.

 11/2, 7 PM organist/composer Richard J. Clark’s Requiem pour une américaine à Paris and works by Hovhaness, Pinkham and Sowerby, performed with Richard Kelley on trumpet at St. Patrick’s Cathedral

11/2, 7:30 PM witchy Mexican psychedelic folk singer Edna Vazquez and band at the Lincoln Center Atrium, free, early arrival advised

11/2, 7:30/9:30 PM erudite, reliably tuneful postbop pianist Orrin Evans leads a new quartet at the Jazz Gallery, $15

11/2, 8 PM a rare US show by eerie Japanese freak-folk pioneer Kazuki Tomokawa, the “screaming philosopher” of the 1970s Tokyo avant garde underground at Greene Naftali, 508 W 26th St, $20

11/2, 8 PM melancholy Americana harmony band the Cut Worms play the album release show for their new one at Baby’s All Right, $10

11/2, 8 PM music of Michael Byron performed by pianists Joseph Kubera & Marilyn Nonken, plus Juho Laitinen‘s Manifesto of Sounding for solo cello at Roulette, $15 adv tix rec

11/2, 8:30 PM hot klezmer string band jams with Sarah Myerson & the NY Fidl Kapelye led by Amy Zakar at the Jalopy, $15

11/2, 9 PM quirky, smartly lyrical avant chamber pop with the Icebergs – Jane LeCroy – vox; Tom Abbs – cello; David Rogers-Berry – drums – at Pete’s

11/2, 10 PM Chicago’s street-smart Lowdown Brass Band at Barbes 

11/2, 10 PM the great unsung hero of darkly purposeful, noir-tinged NYC jazz guitar, Saul Rubin leads his  quintet at the Fat Cat. He’s also leading his “Zebtet” here at 7 PM on 11/7

 11/3, 5:30 PM oldtime country blues duo Piedmont Bluz at the American Folk Art Museum:

11/3, 7:30 PM jaunty Hawaiian swing sounds with King Isto followed by ragtime-influenced guitarist Gabriel Zucker’s indie jazz orchestra the Delegation at Spectrum, $15

 11/3. 7:30 PM Glass Farm Ensemble plays new piano works by Yvonne Troxler, Paul Matthusen, Michael Jarrels and Balz Trümpy at Symphony Space, $20

 11/3. 7:30 PM pianist Beth Levin and her ensemble Vista Lirica play works by Brahms, Schubert, Zemlinsky and Royston at Greenwich House Music School, $30/$20 stud/srs

11/3. 7:30 PM Indian-influenced sax trio Mughal Muesli at Scholes St. Studios

11/3, 8 PM awesome awesome twinbill: ancient kinetic hypnotic ritual African call-and-response songs from Morocco and Colombia with Innov Gnawa; and Bulla en el Barrio at C’Mon Everybody, $12

11/3, 8 PM irrepressible, historically informed folk noir/art-rock songwriter Elisa Flynn at the Way Station

11/3, 8 PM pianist Kaveh Karandish leads his trio with oudist Mazy Karandish and kaval player Eric Zang doing the album release show for their elegantly moody, Iranian-influenced new one at Caffe Vivaldi

 11/3, 8 PM singers and players celebrate the deep, immersive work of Pauline Oliveros: Anne Bourne, Carrier Band, Seth Cluett, Viv Corringham, David Grubbs, Ethan Hayden, Kristin Norderval, Daniel Weintraub at Shapeshifter Lab, $10

11/3, 8 PM Xander Naylor plays from his creepily squirrelly new guitar-and-efx album at Greenpoint Gallery, 390 McGuinness Blvd., G to Greenpoint Ave.

11/3, 8:30 PM darkly torchy southwestern gothic/Europolitan songwriter/guitarist Miwa Gemini   at Hank’s, $8

11/3, 9 PM bizarre segue, good twinbill: enigmatic new wave-ish Yukon Blonde followed by catchy, anthemic Americana rockers the Rural Alberta Advantage at  Rough Trade, $20 adv tix rec. The following night, 11/4 they’re at Bowery Ballroom for the same deal

11/3, 9ish exotic vibraphone surf rock band the Vibro-jets – a Sea Devils spinoff – at Troost

11/3, 10 PM the world’s creepiest crime jazz/film noir band, Big Lazy at Barbes

11/3, 10 PM guitar mastermind Danny Weiss’ and magical Americana singer Mary Olive Smith’s soulful retro bluegrass band Stillhouse Serenade at Sunny’s

 11/3. 10 PM oldschool, no-BS all-female punk band LA Witch at St. Vitus, $15

11/3, 10:30 PM catchy Booker T-esque soul jazz with the David Gibson/Jared Gold, Hammond B3 organ band at the Fat Cat

 11/4, 1:30 PM this era’s most spellbinding oldschool country singer, Laura Cantrell at Union Pool, $20

11/4, 4 PM stark but hard-hitting Georgian folk ensemble Dancing Crane Ensemble at Actors Fund Art Space,  160 Schermerhorn St, downtown Brooklyn, $20

11/4, 4 PM cinematic, psychedelic quirk-pop keyboardist Michael Hearst presents “Curious, Unusual and Extraordinary” songs from his many bands followed at 6 by eclectic, edgy soul/art-rock/funk/chamber-pop cellist/singer Marika Hughes & Bottom Heavy , at 8 by pianist Lucian Ban and violist Mat Maneri playing their creepy Transylvanian jazz and then at 10 by epic ranchera/bolero brass crew Banda de los Muertos at Barbes

 11/4, 7 PM multiphonic guitarist Benjamin Miller, percussive postrock pioneers the Wharton Tiers Ensemble and the original downtown guitar shredmeister, Elliott Sharp at Spectrum, $15

11/4,  7ish Bobby Radcliff – the rare blues guitarist who plays a ton of notes but doesn’t waste them, sort of a funkier Stevie Ray Vaughan – with his trio at Terra Blues

11/4, 7:30 PM the Juilliard String Quartet play works by Beethoven and James MacMillan at Washington Irving HS Auditorium, 16th St./Irving Place, $15

 11/4, 8 PM magical chamber ensemble Music From China play premieres by Mathew Rosenblum, Zhou Long and Wang Guowei at Symphony Space, $18 adv tix rec

11/4, 8 PM haunting, kinetic, paradigm-shifting Middle Eastern jazz with Ensemble Fanaa at Alwan for the Arts, $20/$15 stud

11/4 8 PM Owls at Night with Yoon Sun Choi, vocals/piano, Dana Lyn on violin and Vinnie Sperrazza, drums. ollowed at  9:30 by Mother Octopus with Dana Lyn on violin Mike McGinnis (clarinet), Clara Kennedy (cello), Ty Citerman (guitar), Vinnie Sperrazza (drums) at I-Beam, $15

11/4, 8 PM “avant neo-jazz” pianist Yayoi Ikawa leads her quintet followed by edgy jazz violinist Tomoko Omura leading hers at the Cell Theatre, $10

11/4, 8:30 PM the truly legendary, murderously intense, creepy punk/ghoulabilly Legendary Shack Shakers at Hill Country Brooklyn, $18

11/4, Unsteady Freddie‘s monthly surf rock extravaganza at Otto’s begins at 9 with surfed-up tv themes from Commercial Interruption, at 10  jangly New York original surf rock cult heroes the Supertones, , at 11 the swirly, hard-hitting, reverb-iced Strange but Surf  and at midnight the southwestern gothic-tinged Derangers (#2 band in Rockland, Massachusetts according to Reverbnation)

11/4, 9 PM ten-piece country/carnivalesque/acoustic rock powerhouse M Shanghai String Band at the Jalopy, $!0

11/4, 9 PM fiery, guitar-fueled female-fronted Americana punks Spanking Charlene at Sidewalk

11/4, 11 PM fiery, psychedelically bluesy oldschool soul/southern rockers Lizzie & the Makers  at the Way Station

11/4, midnight, dark, fiery, female-fronted female-fronted surf rockers High Waisted – who’ve been flailing around with generic dreampop lately – at Rough Trade, $10 adv tix rec

11/5, 4 PM the release show for rising indie designer Mary Symczak’s classy Fall women’s collection with live jazz from bassist Jeon Lim Yang‘s group and a performance by the Mari Meade Dance Company at Barbes, free. Followed at 7 by state-of-the-art postbop guitarist Will Bernard  leading a Billy Strayhorn tribute and then at 9:30ish by Romany jazz/psychedelic rock guitar mastermind Stephane Wrembel

11/5, 6 PM the genuinely Beyond Group (Cheryl Pyle, Michael Eaton, Jamie Baum, Claire Daly, Matt Lavelle and Gene Coleman) followed by tenor saxophonist Jonathan Moritz with bassist Sean Ali and drummer Carlo Costa improvising up some flickering new elements at Downtown Music Gallery

11/5, 7 PM spine-tingling, darkly mystical art-rock/avant-garde/chamber pop songwriter Carol Lipnik – pretty much everybody’s choice for best singer in all of NYC – at Pangea

11/5, 7 PM a twin album release show by atmospheric postrockers Empyrean Atlas and kinetic, tuneful vibraphone/percussion Ensemble Et Al. at Baby’s All Right, $15

11/5, 7:30 PM sweeping, swinging vibraphonist Behn Gillece leads his quintet at Smalls

 11/5, 8:30 PM violinist Benjamin Sung plays works by Sciarrino, Berio, Paganini, Schnittke and Maderna at Spectrum, $15

11/5, 8:30 PM New York’s most charismatic, darkly compelling lyrical songwriter/storyteller/keyboard genius Rachelle Garniez at at the third stage at the Rockwood, $12. 11/26 at 7 she’s at Pangea.

11/5, 9ish darkly edgy jazz guitarist/composer Lucas Brode at Troost

11/6, 8 PM microtonal violinist Mari Kimura plays a interactive audio-video show for violin and motion sensor, featuring traditional Japanese ceramics (one assumes for sonics..or maybe just to eat off of?) at Roulette, $20 adv tix rec

11/6-7 plus 11/9-12 and 11/15-18, 8:30 PM Joan LaBarbara stars in Paul Pinto’s Thomas Paine in Violence, an “electro-acoustic opera-sermon set in Thomas Paine’s afterlife,” backed by a choir and intense indie classical ensemble Thingny at Here, 145 Sixth Ave south of Spring, $25

11/6, 9 PM Matkot play their torchy Mediterranean vocal jazz at Shrine

11/6, 10 PM high-voltage delta blues/Romany swing guitarist Felix Slim at LIC Bar

11/7, 7 PM innovative, tuneful Indian-influenced drone-raga band Arranged Marriage NP followed at 9 by ten-piece funky Balkan brass jazz monsters Slavic Soul Party at Barbes

11/7, 7:30 PM the incomparable, lush, eclectic Jenifer Jackson – a connoisseur of Americana, Beatlesque janglerock, bossa nova and Texas noir – at the Owl

11/7, 7:30 PM charismatic, adventurous postbop/avant garde trombonist/crooner Frank Lacy leads his  quintet at Smalls

11/7, 7:30 PM the New Juilliard Ensemble play new works by Mauricio Kagel and Giya Kancheli, at Bruno Walter Studio, Room 309 at Juilliard, free

11/7, 8 PM fiery, psychedelically bluesy oldschool soul/southern rockers Lizzie & the Makers – the only soul group on the planet who got their inspiration for a song from a Rachmaninoff classic – at American Beauty, $12 adv tix rec

11/7, 8 PM eclectic, nuanced jazz chanteuse Tammy Scheffer leads her sextet at Cornelia St. Cafe, $10 + $10 min

11/7, 8:30 PM perennially edgy 80s dreampop heroine Kristin Hersh at City Vineyard, $25

 11/7-12, 8:30 PM unstoppably edgy, deservedly iconic, witty downtown guitarist Marc Ribot leads a series of small groups at the Stone, $20. Choice pick: his protest-jazz Songs of Resistance project on 11/10 with Shahzad Ismaily (percussion, bass, keys) Briggan Krauss (sax)

11/7, 9 PM dynamic, subtle new female-fronted klezmer band Tsibele (Yiddish for onion) at the Jalopy, $10. 11/11, 7:30 PM they’re at the People’s Voice Cafe, at the People’s Voice Cafe, sugg don, $20; $12 for subscribers; “More if you choose; less if you can’t; no one turned away”

11/7, 9 PM perennially dark, soaring noir soul singer/bandleader Nicole Atkins  at the Music Hall of Williamsburg, $25

11/7, 9:30 PM harpist/singer Pia Salvia with her five-piece band  at Shapeshifter Lab, $tba

11/7, 10 PM creepy lo-fi horror-folk band Lucky Witch & the Righteous Ghost followed at midnight by anthemic lit-rocker Dalton Deschain at Sidewalk

11/8, 7 PM shamisen player/singer/improviser Emi Makabe lead her group with Jacob Sacks on Rhodes at 55 Bar

11/8, 7 PM pianist Javor Bracic plays Chopin waltxes, mazurkas and more at the Bulgarian Consulate, 221 E 62nd St, free

11/8, 7:30 PM first-rate purist honkytonk crooner/bandleader Clifford Westfall at Lovecraft Bar, Ave. B/4th St.

11/8, 8 PM accordion genius Shoko Nagai ’s Tokala at Barbes “Tokala is the name of a mysterious country in Central Asia which had a connection to Japan via the silk road which was responsible for bringing Middle Eastern culture to ancient Japan.  The band explores the sound of this ancient connection where cultural exchange left an imprint which became integral part of Japanese culture.” With Zisl Slepovitch (clarinet); Kenny Warren (trumpet) and Stomu Takeishi (bass) at Barbes

11/8, 8 PM kinetic jazz vibraphonista Yuhan Su leads her quartet at Cornelia St. Cafe, $10 cover plus $10 minimum

11/8. 8 PM night one of the Alvin Lucier retrospective program features the four-guitarist, three-sax, four-violinist Ever Present Orchestra playing recent works; composer/sound artist Joan La Barbara also performs the American premiere of Lucier’s Double Rainbow, a new commissioned work for voice and oscillator and then Lucier himself staging his seminal 1976 work Bird and Person Dyning. “Dyning” is Lucier’s abbreviated version of “heterodyning,” a term from the early days of radio describing the phenomenon of two waves mixing in a non-linear medium to produce two extra signals (created with the sum and difference in frequency), at Issue Project Room, $20/$15 stud

11/8, 8:30 PM Giant Sand honcho and southwestern gothic icon Howe Gelb’s Future Standards at the Owl, $15

11/8, 9 PM ageless golden-age roots reggae crooner Freddie McGregor at B.B. King’s, $25 adv tix rec

11/8, 10:30 PM fearlessly populist, cutting-edge trombonist/composer Ryan Keberle & Catharsis at Smalls

 11/9, 7 PM Rimi Basu & Ensemble play Indian sufi sounds at Drom, $15 adv tix tec

11/9, 5 PM pianist Cesar Reyes plays a tribute to Violeta Parra at Brooklyn College Auditorium, 2900 Bedford Ave, free

11/9, 7 PM Mapuche-language Patagonian art-rock/avant garde sounds with multi-keyboardist Juan Namuncura followed by pianist Ignacio Montoyo Carlotto playing works by Horacio Salgán, Astor Piazzolla, and other oldschool tango composers at St. Peter’s Church, 54th/Lex, $20

11/9, 7:30 PM haunting cinematic loopmusic cellist Julia Kent and multi-reedman Doug Wieselman‘s Trio S at the Owl, $10

 11/9, 7:30/9:30 PM trombonist Kaila Vandever leads an excellent quintet with Immanuel Willkins on tenor sax and Kanoa Mendenhall on bass at the Jazz Gallery, $15

11/9, 7:30 PM torchy singer Jennifer Charles’ and guitar mastermind Oren Bloedow’s long-running art-rock/noir band Elysian Fields in their similarly haunting psychedelic Sephardic folk disguise, La Mar Enfortunada at the Jewish Museum, 1109 5th Ave at 92nd St,  $18/$15 stud/srs

11/9, 8 PM plush, balmy, oldtimey uke swing band Daria Grace & the Pre-War Ponies followed at 10 by well-loved Boston alt-country vets Session Americana at Barbes

11/9, 8/9:30 PM tenor saxophonist Kyle Nasser leads his sextet at Cornelia St. Cafe, $10 + $10 min

11/9, 8 PM night two of the Alvin Lucier retrospective features a performance of Lucier’s 2013 Criss-Cross for two electric guitars played by Oren Ambarchi and Gary Schmalzl, Lucier’s first and only piece for electric guitar; the four-guitarist, three-sax, four-violinist Ever Present Orchestra playing NY premieres and finally Lucier himself staging his paradigmatic 1970 work I am sitting in a room – several sentences of recorded speech simultaneously played back and re-recorded sequentially for a cool crowd-noise effect at Issue Project Room, $20/$15 stud

11/9-11,  7:30/9:30 PM dazzlingly eclectic purist jazz singer Brianna Thomas and her band at Ginny’s Supper Club, $20

11/9, 8 PM feral, satirical, inimitable Americana/oldtime/swing crew the Brothers Comatose at Bowery Ballroom, $20

11/9, 8:30 PM dynamic klezmer trombonist Dan Blacksberg’s Radiant Others at the Jalopy, $15

 11/9, 10 PM fiery oldtimey string band the Four O’Clock Flowers at Sunny’s

11/9, 10:30 PM noir-inspired alto saxophonist/composer Nick Hempton leads leads a trio at Smalls

11/9, 11 PM quirky, smartly lyrical avant chamber pop with the Icebergs – Jane LeCroy – vox; Tom Abbs – cello; David Rogers-Berry – drums –  at Sidewalk. 11/16 they’re at Wayward Social, 135 Ingraham St. in Bushwick, L to Morgan Ave., time tba

11/9, 11 PM atmospheric, cinematic drummer/composer Tim Kuhl – sort of a more straightforwardly trippy version of John Hollenbeck – at Pete’s

11/10, 5:30 PM clarinet wizard Dmitri Zisl Slepovitch, leader of wild Polesian klezmer dance outfit Litvakus,at the American Folk Art Museum 

11/10, 7 PM Darcy James Argue’s Secret Society play their haunting, sardonically menacing big band suite, Real Enemies at Shapeshifter Lab, $20

11/10, 7 PM the magical New York Andalus Ensemble Chamber Trio play ancient Jewish themes from the Middle East and North Africa at the Manhattan JCC, Amsterdam at 76th, $18

11/10, 7 PM Nashville gothic sister duo Larkin Poe at the Mercury, $15

11/10, 7:30 PM Afro-Cuban percussionist Roman Diaz and theBrooklyn Raga Massive reinvent classic Indian themes at the Lincoln Center Atrium, free, early arrival advised

11/10, 7:30 PM indie classical ensemble Hotel Elefant play music of Kirsten Volness and Jascha Narveson at Scholes St. Studios, sugg don

11/10, 7:30 PM the Rolling Stones’ Tim Ries on sax leading his quintet followed at 10:30 PM by pianist Brian Marsella’s tuneful, first-rate original postbop jazz sextet the Flail at Smalls. The Flail are also here the following night, 11/11

11/10, 7:45 PM the world’s creepiest crime jazz/film noir band, Big Lazy , wild, theatrical, fun female-fronted barrelhouse piano blues band the Claudette & Brian Carpenter and the Confessions – the dark oldtime jazz maven’s Lynchian rock band – at Drom, $12 adv tix rec

11/10 , 8 PM trippy electro/downtempo chanteuse Pearla,  excellent, catchy rainy day psych-pop band Minor Poet and haunting, Siouxsie-esque Canadian art-rock trio Little Coyote at Bushwick Public House, $5

11/10, 8 PM 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  followed 10 by Super Yamba playing their psychedelic Afrobeat jams at Barbes

 11/10, 8 PM energetic, sometimes hilarious acoustic Veracruz-style folk-punk band Radio Jarocho at Guadalupe Inn

 11/10, 8 PM the Downtown Voices sing Rachmaninoff’s ethereal and lush setting of the mystical All-Night Vigil at Trinity Church, free. The program repeats on 11/12

11/10, 8 PM elegant, sharply lyrical parlor pop stylist Heather Eatman, crystalline-voiced noir Americana songwriter Jessie Kilguss  and dark Americana guy/girl harmony duo the Tall Pines at Red Hook Bait & Tackle

11/10, 9 PM intense female-fronted psychedelic/funk band Imunuri at Bar Chord

11/10, 9ish CBs style female-fronted punks the Carvels NYC and Heidi Lieb’s recently reunited all-female punk/powerpop NYC legends Sit N Spin at Hank’s, $tba

11/10, 10 PM Super Yamba play their psychedelic Afrobeat jams at Barbes

11/10, 10 PM entrancing singer Sandra Lilia Velasquez’s hypnotic downtempo/psychedelic band SLV at Pete’s, free. They’re also at C’mon Everybody on 11/29 at 9 for $12

11/10, 10 PM hard-hitting bassist Dawn Drake & Zapote play hot Afrobeat-tinged funk grooves at the Way Station

11/11 4 PMthe Erik Satie Quartet – Ron Hay (trombone), Max Seigel (bass trombone), Ben Holmes (trumpet), and Andrew Hadro (bari sax) –reinvent classic and obscure Satie chamber pieces as well as rare compositions by his obscure contemporaries, followed at 6 PM by eclectic, edgy soul/art-rock/funk/chamber-pop cellist/singer Marika Hughes & Bottom Heavy, at 8 by the reputedly amazing  Night Kitchen – Gene Yelin – guitar & vocals; Trip Henderson – harmonica; Joanna Sternberg – bass and vocals – playing “Hank Williams, old timey and country” and at 10 by La Mecanica Popular playing their original, psychedelic update on classic 70s Nuyorican salsa dura at Barbes

11/11, 7 PM Argentine songwriter Luna Sureña plays Patagonian music at St. Peter’s Church, 54th/Lex, free

11/11, 7 PM cellist Matt Haimovitz and pianist Christopher O’Riley play works by Rachmaninoff, Prokofiev, Shostakovich and others from the top at National Sawdust, $30 adv tix rec

11/11, 7:15ish dark psychedelic acoustic blues/klezmer/reggae/soca jamband Hazmat Modine at Terra Blues. They’re also here on 11/25

 11/11, 7:30 PM incomparable country/jazz/janglerock icon Amy Allison at Dixon Place, free. Brilliant new material, all kinds of rarities and devastatingly funny between-song banter

 11/11, 8:30 PM slinky, oud-fueled Middle Eastern/Nile Delta dance orchestra Alsarah & the Nubatones  at C’Mon Everybody, $12

11/11, 8:30/10 PM Transylvanian pianist Lucian Ban leads his Elevation sextet at Cornelia St. Cafe, $10 + $10 min

11/11, 9 PM hilarious, smartly political faux-French retro 60s psych-pop band les Sans Culottes at Bar Chord. 11/25 at around 10 they’re at Hank’s for $10.

11/11, 10 PM delicious original Americana/newgrass band Chamomile & Whiskey atHill Country

11/12, 2 PM lush Asian woodwind sounds with the Japan Kocarina Ensemble with  folk singer Kanemi Yaguchi and the Ai Chorus at Stern Auditorium at Carnegie Hall, $25

11/12, 2 PM the Rolston String Quartet play Tschaikovsky’s String Quartet No. 1 plus works by Mozart and Murray Schafer at the New School Auditorium, 66 W 12th St., $!8

 11/12, 3 PM the Downtown Chamber Players play piano and woodwind music by female composers Llii Boulanger, Cecile Chaminade, Madeleine Dring, Louise Farrenc and Mira Spector at St. Marks Church, 2nd Ave/1oth St, $20

11/12, 3 PM catchy, darky entrancing Honduran beach party sounds with the Garifuna Jazz Ensemble at the BMHC space, 1303 Louis Niné Blvd in the Bronx, free; 2 or 5 train to Freeman St

11/12, 4 PM An die Musik – Mark Peskanov, violin; Nicholas Mann, viola; Robert Ingliss, oboe; Constance Emmerich, piano with special guest Thomas Demenga, cello play works by Beethoven, Handel, Mozart and Haydn at Merkin Concert Hall, $16

11/12, 4 PM the Enso String Quartet play works by Webern and Beethoven at the Dreck Center at the Brooklyn Public Library, free, no under-sixes.

11/12, 5 PM psychedelically machinegunning virtuoso Max ZT on the hammered dulcimer with Uri Sharlin on accordion followed at 9 by Romany jazz/psychedelic rock guitar mastermind Stephane Wrembel at Barbes

11/12, ​5 PM Ensemble Connect play works by Hartske, Brahms and Dvorak’s String Quintet in G Major, Op. 77 at Our Saviour’s Atonement, 178 Bennett Ave (one block west of Broadway at 189th St), free

11/12, 5:30 PM Baltimore Symphony flutist Emily Skala plays works by Debussy, Bach, Messiaen, Mendelssohn, and Franck at Baruch Performing Arts Center, 55 Lexington Ave,$25/$15 stud/srs

11/12, 7:30 PM 70s psychedelic Britfolk legends the Strawbs – whose Grave New World is more relevant than ever – at B.B. King’s, $26.50 adv tix rec

11/12, 7:30 PM soaringly explosive jazz composer/torch singer Nicole Zuraitis plays the album release show for her harrowing new one Hive Mind at Dron, $10 adv tix rec

11/12, 7:30 PM eclectic, tuneful accordionist/songwriter Ali Dineen, at the Owl

11/12, 9 PM legendary 70s postrock pioneers Pere Ubu at the Music Hall of Williamsburg, $25 adv tix rec

11/12, 9 PMArki play darkly classic Ethiopian funk grooves at Silvana

 11/13, 8 PM charmingly nuanced, erudite singer/pianist and Dinah Washington reinventor  Champian Fulton leads her trio at Radegast Hall, She’s also here on 11/20

11/13, 10 PM awesomely slinky, psychedelic Israeli Ethiopiques groove instrumentalists Anbessa Orchestra at the small room at the Rockwood

11/14, 7 PM eclectic, hard-hitting, lyrical composer/tenor saxophonist Stan Killian and group at 55 Bar

11/4. 7:30 PM fiery alto saxophonist Lucas Pino’s twin-guitar No No Nonet at Smalls

11/14, 7:30 PM an all-star benefit for the National Jazz Museum in Harlem with iconic North African scholar/pianist Randy Weston and bassist Reggie Workman, lyrical piano genius Marc Cary and blues dude Guy Davis at the Schomburg Center, $25 seats avail. Cary is also at the museum on 11/28 at 7 playing Ellington tunes, $10

11/14, 8 PM haunting, crepuscular folk noir songwriter Erin Regan  at Sidewalk

11/14-19, 8:30/10 PM various groups play John Zorn’s Masada Book 3 at the Vanguard, $30. Choice pick: Zorn’s monstrous surf band Abraxas with Aram Bajakian on guitar on 11/16

11/14, 8 PM Nancy Wu, violin; Kari Docter, cello; Vladimir Valjarevic, piano play works by Haydn and Dvorak at Mannes School of Jazz Performance Space, Arnhold Hall, 55 W13th St on the 5th floor, free

11/14-19, 8:30 PM legendary electroacoustic percussionist Ikue Mori leads a series of ensembles at the Stone, $20. Choice pick: Mephista on opening night with Sylvie Courvoisier (piano) Susie Ibarra (drums) Jim Staley (trombone)

11/14, 8:30 PM torchy, eclectically brilliant dobro player Abbie Gardner of Red Molly  followed at 9:30 by her darkly lyrical ex-bandmate, multi-instrumentalist/songwriter Carolann Solebello, at Pete’s

11/14, 9:30 PM the Bronx Conexion play their mighty salsa big band jazz at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe, $10

11/15, 6 PM music by brilliant, darkly cinematic composer Dobrinka Tabakova in a multimedia performance at the Bulgarian Consulate, 221 E 62nd St, free

11/15. 6 PM sensational Indian classical violinist/improviser Arun Ramamurthy with his group at the Rubin Museu of Art, free w/museum adm

11/15, 6 PM charismatic, darkly eclectic cellist/songwriter Meaghan Burke  leads her Creature Comforts parlor pop trio at Cornelia St. Cafe, $10 + $10 min

11/15, 7 PM pianist and harpsichordist Magdalena Baczewska plays works by Clementi, Monterverdi and Berio at the Italian Academy at Columbia University, 1161 Amsterdam Ave north of 116th St., free

11/15, 7:30 PM vividly lyrical rising star pianist Chris Pattishall and sensational trumpeter Adam O’Farrill play a live score to projections by visual artist Kambui’s new project Where Does the Time Go starring Irungu Mutu and Jessica Allie at the Lincoln Center Atrium, free, early arrival advised

11/15, 7:30 PM the gentler side of powerpop: the Low Doses, Jay Gonzalez & the Guilty Pleasures and the Eyelids doing their post-Dream Syndicate thing at WFMU’s Monty Hall, 43 Montgomery Street, Jersey City. 11/18, same time they’re at Cape House, 2 Knickerbocker Ave in Bushwick for the same deal

11/15, 8 PM Glas (riveting singer/percussionist Corinna Snyder’s Macedonian duo with Vedran Boskovski) followed by singer Jenny Luna’s haunting, oud-and-clarinet-driven Turkish band Dolunay and oud/kora wizard Kane Mathis at Trans-Pecos, $10

11/15, 8 PM eclectic, lyrical jazz bassist/composer Pedro Giraudo and his Tango  Trio joins the string quartet Quartetto Tomassini at Barbes. Giraudo and band are also at Terraza 7 the following night, 11/16 at 9 for $10

11/15, 8:30 PM noir slowcore art-rock with Black Heart Procession at Baby’s All Right, $20. They’re at the Mercury the following night, 11/16 at 10:30 for three bucks less in advance

11/16, 7 PM intense Greek classical pianist Vassilis Varvaresos plays a program tba at Merkin Concert Hall, free, rsvp req

11/16,  7 PM latin jazz alto sax luminary Yosvany Terry leads a trio at the National Jazz Museum in Harlem, $15. They’re also at the Jazz Gallery on 11/30 at 7:30/9:30 for the same price

11/16, 7:30 PM the album release show for the new one by paradigm-shifting, irrepressibly edgy, fun Dominican bandleader Irka Mateo & La Tirindanga at the Lincoln Center Atrium, free, early arrival advised

11/16. 7:30/9:30 PM ambitious, lustrous trumpeter/composer Jonathan Finlayson & Sicilian Defense at the Jazz Gallery, $22

11/16, 8 PM singer Jenny Luna’s haunting, oud-and-clarinet-driven Turkish band Dolunay followed at 10 by a killer tuneful improvisational trio::Hearing Things‘ JP Schlegelmilch – organ; Jonathan Goldberger – guitar and Jim Black – drums – at Barbes 

11/16, 8:30 PM all-star klezmer trio Midwood with Jake Shulman-Ment on violin, Yoshie Fruchter on guitar and Klezmatic Richie Barshay on drums at the Jalopy, $15

10/16, 8:30 PM killer improvisation: Cheryl Richards on vocals, Claire De Brunner on bassoon and the feral Mara Rosenbloom on piano at I-Beam, $15

11/17, 5:30 PM gentle, topical original folk songwriter Jeremy Aaron at the American Folk Art Museum

11/17, 7:30 PM the Arion Chamber Music trio play works by Beethoven and Dvorak at at Christ & St. Stephen’s Church, 120 W 69th St., $25/$12 stud

11/17, 7:30 PM salsa piano legend Arturo Ortiz Y Los 7 Con Calle at the Lincoln Center Atrium, free, early arrival advised

 11/17, 8 PM catchy, fiery, female-fronted janglerockers/powerpop band Above the Moon – like a more forceful take on Versus – at the Delancey, $10

11/17, 8 PM the NYU01 new music ensemble plays Philip Glass’ Symphony No. 1 at the NYU  Skirball Center, LaGuardia and Washington Square South, free

11/17, 8 PM baritone saxophonist Carol Sudhalter’s Astoria Big Band play swing classics at Flushing Town Hall, $16/$10 stud

 11/17, 8 PM golden age pottymouth dancehall reggae nostlgia:  Yellowman and band at SOB”s, $25

11/17, 8 PM Monika Krajewska, mezzo-soprano, and Natasha Ulyanovsky, pianist and organist, join forces for a program of ancient Jewish music, Yiddish art songs, Russian romances and Argentine tango, at Barnard College’s Sulzberger Parlor, 3rd Floor Barnard Hall, 117th St and Broadway, free

11/17, 8:30 PM haunting, gorgeously lyrical pianist Satoko Fujii’s darkly slinky, Romany-inspired Gato Libre at I-Beam, $15

11/17, 8:30  PM violinist Jennifer Choi with the Secret Quartet play works by Ljova Zhurbin and Ursula Chinn at the New School’s Glass Box Performance Space, 55 W 13th St, $20. She’s also there on 11/18 with pianists Kathleen Supove and Alexandra Joan playing works by Jen Shyu and Stravinsky.

11/17, 9 PM hauting female-fronted Turkish art-song trio Neotolia at Silvana

11/17, 9 PM goth-tinged arena rock with Swanky Tiger at Shrine

 11/17, 9:30 PM urban country legends Miller’s Farm – who did the original dis song about the L train – at Hill  Country

11/17, 10 PM accordionist/sitarist Kamala Sankaram’s hot surfy Bollywood/cumbia/psychedelic rock project Bombay Rickey – a launching pad for her spellbinding four-octave voice –  at Barbes

11/17. 10 PM darkly playful, epic piano-based art-rock singer Eve Lesov followed by the darkly eclectic, enigmatic Lorraine Leckie  – equally adept at Slavic and Americana noir and dark cabaret – at Sidewalk

11/17, 10 PM the Shockwaves – a catchy blend of glam, psychedelia, stoner boogie and a little edgy Raybeats thrown in – at Greenpoint Gallery 

11/17, 11 PM ferociously fun, menacing psychobilly/horror rockers the Omega Men at Otto’s

 11/18, 1;30 PM the Kunqu Society perform dramatic Chinese opera pieces at Flushing Town Hall, $16/$10 stud

11/18 4 PM pyrotechnic klezmer clarinetist and Dave Tarras protege Michael Winograd  and lyrical trumpeter Ben Holmes join forces for edgy new klezmer tunes followed at 6 byeclectic, edgy soul/art-rock/funk/chamber-pop cellist/singer Marika Hughes & Bottom Heavy, at 8 by playfully lyrical, fearlessly political superduo Kill Henry Sugar – guitar/banjo mastermind Erik Della Penna and drummer Dean Sharenow – and at 10 by haunting Puerto Rican bolero revivalists and Sylvia Rexach reinventors Miramar. Best quadruplebill of the year!

11/18, 7 PM charming oldtimey trio the Crimson Ragdolls:  Joanna Sternberg, Ali Dineen & Lucine Yeghiazaryanne at Terra Blues

11/18, 7:30 PM sharply lyrical, sometimes uproariously amusing purist janglerock songwriter Sharon Goldman at the People’s Voice Cafe, sugg don, $20; “More if you choose; less if you can’t; no one turned away”

11/18, 7:30 PM the Dover String Quartet play music by Mendelssohn, Laks, Schumann and Viktor Ullmann at Washington Irving HS Auditorium, 16th St./Irving Place, $15

11/18, 8 PM early music ensemble Vox Luminis sing royal funeral music at the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, 145 W 46th St between 6th and 7th aves, $30 seats avail. We need a royal funeral in this country right about now! 

11/18, 8 PM purist, lyrical pianist/singer Kelly Green leads her plays the album release show for her new one with her sextet at the Cell Theatre, $10

11/18, 8 PM haunting minimalist/cinematic multi-keyboardist Dominique Lawalrée at the San Damiano Mission, 85 N 15th St, Williamsburg, $20

11/18, 8 PM Athens’ #1 gangster hash-smoking 1920s/30s style rebetiko music band, Rebetiki Istoria at Roulette, $25

11/18, 9 PM the NY Jazzharmonic Trio with the amazing ArcoIris Sandoval on piano at Bar Thalia adjacent to Symphony Space, free

11/18, 10 PM epic, cinematic Indian violin-fueled art-rock themes with Rini and her explosive band at  at Legion Bar, $10

11/18, 10 PM oldschool psychedelic soul/groove band Empire Beats at the Way Station

11/18, 10:30 PM wild, intense, frequently satirical newgrass/oldtimey hellraisers the Dustbowl Revival at the big room at the Rockwood, $15

11/18, time tba a subset of fiery latin noir/circus rock band Kotorino with the similarly phantasmagorical Not Waving But Drowning at House of Collections, 315 Berry St, Williamburg

11/19, 3 PM Omega Ensemble play chamber and string works by Rachmaninoff, Debussy, Beethoven and Gershwin at Christ & St. Stephen’s Church, 120 W 69th St. free

11/19, 4 PM the Apollo Trio play works by Mozart and Brahms  at the Dreck Center at the Brooklyn Public Library, free, no under-sixes.

 11/19, 4 PM the Navatman Music Collective – the only carnatic choir on this continent – sing their innovative, lustrous, lush new arrangements of ancient Indian themes at Symphony Space, $32 but worth it. Like the choir says, “Think you know Indian classical music? Think again!”

11/19, 4 PM the Orchestra Now play Bruckner’s Symphony No. 4 plus Goossens’ Jubilee Variations at Symphony Space, free, rsvp req 

11/19, 5 PM cleverly lyrical, edgily funny, spine-tingling powerpop/acoustic rock singer Tamara Hey at the small room at the Rockwood

11/19. 5 PM clarinetist Matt Rosen and ensemble play works by Bartok, Dolphy and Brahms at the New School’s Glass Box Performance Space, 55 W 13th St, free

11/19. 7 PM NYC’s own rippling, hypnotic, epic Javanese gamelan, Gamelan Dharma Swara at the Fat Cat

 11/19, 8 PM lush, lustrously haunting Balkan art-rock ensemble Dashina at Silvana

11/19, 8ish recently revitalized, careening ten-piece Balkan brass crew Veveritse followed by explosive, creepy, colorful psychedelic rembetiko metal band Greek Judas at Starr Bar, 214 Starr St. (Irving/Wyckoff) in Bushwick, L to Jefferson St.

11/19, 8 PM explosively thundering Ukrainian art-folk band DakhaBrakha at Littlefield, $30

11/20, 7:30 PM Trident Ensemble with Miranda Cuckson, violin and Raman Ramakrishnan, cello play Messiaen’s Quartet for the End of Time. Also on the bill: vocal works  by Pérotin, Francis Poulenc, Arvo Pärt, Mariano Garau at Music Mondays, Advent Church, northwest corner of 93rd and Broadway, free 

11/20, 8:30 PM pianist Karl Larson plays dystopic new piano music by Wollschleger at Spectrum, $15

11/20, 9:30ish Chicha Libre spinoff Locobeach play trippy electro-cumbia at Barbes

11/20, 10 PM dark psychedelic Americana rock – electric Neil soundalikes Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real at the Music Hall of Williamsburg, $20

 11/21, drinks at 5:30, show at 6: rustic Brazilian jungle guitar-and-accordion sounds with Regional de NY at the Miller Theatre, free

11/21, 7 PM longtime Piazzolla sideman and tango jazz piano luminary Pablo Ziegler l & brilliant violinist Lara St. John revisit Piazzolla’s Central Park concert at the Poisson Rouge, $25 adv tix rec

11/21, 7 PM Daniel Binelli‘s Bandoneorama, the world’s only four-bandoneon group play classic and nuevo tango plus works by Bach, Stravinsky and more followed at 8 by Baden Goyo, piano and Eddy Marcano, violín playing works by Binelli, Galindez, Camacaro, Piazzolla, Hernández, at St. Peter’s Church, 54th/Lex, $20

11/21, 7 PM lyrical pianist Angelica Sanchez leads her group followed at 9:30 by clever, fiery, eclectic ten-piece Balkan/hip-hop/funk brass maniacs Slavic Soul Party  at 9 PM at Barbes

11/21, 7:30/9:30 PM Gamelan Yowana Sari with the Queens College Percussion Ensemble and special guests  at the Jazz Gallery, $15

11/21, 8 PM Manhattan Chamber play music by Richard Auldon Clark, Howard Cass, Seymour Barab, Eric Ewazen and Alan Symphony Space, $20 adv tix rec

11/21-26, 8:30/10 PM one of this era’s great, purist blues-based jazz pianists, Jason Moran & the Bandwagon at the Vanguard, $30

11/21, 8:30 PM haunting folk noir duo Karen & the Secret Documents f.k.a.  Pear Claw at Sidewalk 

11/21, 10 PM brilliant drummer/percussionist Willie Martinez & La Familia Sextet play classic salsa grooves at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe

11/22, 3 PM irrepressible trumpeter Steven Bernstein leads an allstar 14-piece band with Marc Cary on piano, Luis Bonilla on trombone, Marika Hughes on cello and more at the Town Hall, “revisiting Coretta Scott King’s Freedom Concerts,  a milestone collaboration between Dizzy Gillespie and Chano Pozo,  and cantor Moishe Oysher’s anti-Nazi fundraising rally,” $27 tix avail. at the box office

11/22, 7:30 PM, repeating 11/24-25 at 8 the NY Phil play  Rachmaninoff’s Third Symphony, with concertmaster Frank Huang as soloist in Saint-Saëns’s Violin Concerto No. 3 at Avery Fisher Hall, $35 tix avail

11/22. 8/9:30 PM concise, tuneful jazz pianist Marta Sanchez leads her  quintet at Cornelia St. Cafe, $10 + $10 min

11/22, 8:30 PM intense, rapturous Balkan/Middle Eastern ensemble the Secret Trio –Tamer Pinarbasi, Ismail Lumanovski & Ara Dinkjian – at Bar Lunatico

11/23, 9:30 PM lyrical trumpet powerhouse Nadje Noordhuis leads her Quintet at 55 Bar

11/24-25, 7:30/9:30 PM drummer Johnathan Blake’s “My Life Matters” with Dayna Stephens – saxophones / EWI; Joel Ross – vibraphone; Fabian Almazan – piano; Rashaan Carter – bass at the Jazz Gallery, $25

11/24, 8 PM majestic, haunting Turkish psychedelic rockers Barakka at Drom, $10

11/24, 8 PM rustic Brazilian jungle guitar-and-accordion sounds with Regional de NY followed at 10 by Pangari & the Socialites playing classic ska and rocksteady – most of it from the 60s Skatalites catalog – at Barbes

11/25, 6 PM eclectic, edgy soul/art-rock/funk/chamber-pop cellist/singer Marika Hughes & Bottom Heavy  followed at 8 by a very rare US appearance by Australian pedal steel player Lucky Oceans and his band at Barbes  

 11/25, 7:30 PM the Aviary bassoon and cello duo  play a program tba at Scholes St. Studios

11/25, 8;30 PM violinists Conrad and Pauline Kim Harris play compositions for solo violin by Eric Lyon and the NY premiere of Paul Marquardt’s Variations on a theme from “Young Frankenstein” at Spectrum, $15

11/25, 9 PM cleverly lyrical, murderously witty murder ballad/chamber pop allstars Charming Disaster  at Pete’s

11/25, 9 PM popular, purist blue-eyed soul crooner Eli Paperboy Reed at Union Pool, $12

 11/26, 2  PM fiery agitator Rev. Billy & the Church of  Stop Shopping Choir – sort of the Dead Kennedys or Public Enemy of original, politically spot-on original gospel music at Joe’s Pub, $10

 11/26, 10:30 PM tuneful soul-jazz trombonist Dave Gibson leads his quintet at Smalls

11/27, sets at 6, 7 and 8 powerful jazz belter – and Gil Scott-Heron reinventor –  Charenee Wade leads her quintet with special guest and frequent vocal sparring partner Brianna Thomas at the American Folk Art Museum

11/27, sets at 6, 7 and 8 chanteuse/uke player Dahlia Dumont’s Blue Dahlia play edgy, smartly lyrically-fueled, jazz-infused tunes in English and French with classic chanson and Caribbean influences at 30 Lincoln Plaza across the street from the Lincoln Center atrium. Epic, original, intense original Balkan monsters Raya Brass Band will be marching around the neighborhood as well.

11/27, 6:30 PM sensational ex-Klezmatics fiddler Alicia Svigals‘ Klezmer Express at Dante Park at the triangle on Broadway north of 63rd St.

11/27, 7:30 PM the Juilliard String Quartet play works by Haydn and Dvorak plus Bartok’s searing String Quartet No. 5 at Alice Tully Hall, $20

11/27, 8/10:30 PM ageless, perennially hard-hitting jazz piano sage and ex-Coltrane bandmate McCoy Tyner at the Blue Note, $30 standing room avail

11/27-28, 8 PM synth player/composer Laurel Halo and guest percussioist Eli Keszler play selections from her recent album Dust, “revolving around loose and languid songs; warped, sun-filled, melted and at times, heavy-hearted and obscure. A collection of breezy, broken songs, based on woody instrumentation, sub bass and restlessness” at the Kitchen, $20

11/27-28, 8 PM drummer Adam Rudolph’s strikingly tuneful, rumblingly improvisational Go Organic Orchestra at Roulette, $15

11/27, 10ish haunting, powerful Afro-Colombian trance choir Bulla en El Barrio at Barbes 

11/28, 7 PM tuneful, terse guitarist/singer Camila Meza and her Nectar Orchestra chamber jazz septet at at the third stage at the Rockwood, $10

11/28, 7 PM the world’s funniest improvising ensemble, Mostly Other People Do the Killing play a trio show with Ron Stabinsky on piano, Moppa Elliott on bass and Kevin Shea on drums followed at 8 by sometimes haunting baritone sax player Charles Evans’ quartet at Shapeshifter Lab, $10

11/28, 7 PM the Cassatt String Quartet and clarinetist Vasko Dubrovski premiere Gerald Cohen’s new spacescape with projections at the Hayden Planetarium (use the 81st St. entrance), $13.50

11/28, 7:30 PM Bomsori Kim, violin and Drew Petersen, piano play works by Messiaen, Faure, Ravel and Saint-Saens at Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall, free tix available at 6:30 PM day of show

11/28, 7:30 PM brilliantly cinematic, kinetic violinist Dana Lyn  & guitarist Kyle Sanna do their Irish thing followed byintense, fearlessly relevant Middle Eastern clarinetist Kinan Azmeh and his group at the Owl. Azmeh and his haunting, epic Songs for Days to Come project are at Symphony Space on 11/30 at 7:30 PM for $30

11/28, 7:30/9:30 PM eclectic drummer/vibraphonist Kate Gentile‘s new quartet with Matt Mitchell on piano at the Jazz Gallery, $25

 11/29, 1 PM the Howard Williams Jazz Orchestra play big band standards at St Peter’s Church, Lex/54th

 11/29, 6 PM harmonium player Doyal Gauranga at the Rubin Museum of Art, free w/museum adm

11/29, 7 PM tenor saxophonist Jan Kus & the Slavo Rican Assembly mash up latin and Balkan jazz at Drom, $10

 11/29, 7:30/9:30 PM a large ensemble assembled by the brilliant, epic Miho Hazama plays new big band jazz tunes by similarly awesome composers: Christopher Zuar, Erica Seguine, Jon Schapiro, Martha Kato, Chuck Iwanusa, Michael Thomas, Andy Clausen, Jihye Lee and Hazama herself at the Jazz Gallery, $15, wow.

1/29, 8 PM haunting, atmospheric brass band Slavic Soul Party spinoff the Mountain Lions at Barbes. They’re here the following night, 11/30 opening for the Eastern Blokhedz – who specialize in the catalog of legendary Polish singer Edita Piaha – who play at 10.

11/29, 9 PM gamelanesque downtown percussion icon Susie Ibarra plays the album release show for her new one, Perception with her DreamTime Ensemble at the Park Church Coop in Greenpoint, $15 adv tix avail at the Poisson Rouge box ofc

11/29. 9 PM the New School Punk & Noise Ensemble at Mannes School of Jazz Performance Space, Arnhold Hall, 55 W13th St on the 5th floor, free. Hey ho, let’s go! 

11/29, 9 PM smart, cleverly lyrical original swing chanteuse/songwriter/trombonist Emily Asher’s Garden Party at Radegast Hall.

11/29, 9 PM funky, lyrically intense dark folk jamband the Sometime Boys– with the riveting Sarah Mucho on vocals  at the small room at the Rockwood. Darkly jangly, catchy, new wave-ish rockers Melissa & the Mannequins  are at the big room an hour later for $10

11/30, 6 PM tuneful postbop jazz guitarist Dave Juarez leads his trio at Cornelia St. Cafe, $10 + $10 min, followed at 8/10:30 by cinematic, nocturnally-inclined pastoral jazz vibraphonist Chris Dingman in a rare trio performance

 11/30, 7:30 PM indie classical chamber luminaries Talea Ensemble  play the NY premiere of FACE for voice and ensemble by Pierluigi Billone at the Italian Academy at Columbia University, 1161 Amsterdam Ave north of 116th St., free

11/30, 7;30 PM the edgy, microtonal Frikativ String Quartet: Sarah Bernstein , Scott Tixier, Mat Maneri, Tomeka Reid at the Owl

11/30, 8 PM Hans Tammen & the eleven-piece electroacoustic Dark Circuits Orchestra play “a controlled chaos of loud, visceral blast of colors, flashes and polyrhythmic machinations” at the Knockdown Center, $10

11/30, 9 PM one of the year’s best triplebills: Balkan bands Tipsy Oxcartt, Raya Brass Band and Dolunay at Littlefield, $10

11/30, 9:30 PM smartly populist oldtimey-flavored Americana band 2/3 Goat  at Hill Country

11/30. 9:30 PM enigmatically intense, sometimes assaultive jazz/postrock group Desert Foxx  at Pine Box Rock Shop

 11/30, 9:30 PM bouncy, catchy, sardonically lyrical 90s style Britrock band Maximo Park at Bowery Ballroom, $20 adv tix rec

12/1, 7 PM violist Aundrey Mitchell and pianist Tim McCullough play 19th to early/mid-20th century works tba at Bloomingdale School of Music, 323 W 108th St (off of Broadway), free

12/1, 7:30 PM 10-piece Austrian new music ensemble Studio Dan play works rarely heard in the US including a Christian Schiller premiere at the Austrian Cultural Center, 11 E 52nd St., free, res req 

12/1, 8 PM don’t let the name fool you – Fairy Tale are more Brothers Grimm than Cinderella – in Korean. Amazing Korean psychedelic folk sounds from this mostly-female group at Flushing Town Hall, $16/$10 stud

12/1, 9 PM searing, theatrical Romany/Balkan punk rockers Bad Buka at Radegast

12/1, 10 PM iconic second-wave roots reggae road warriors John Brown’s Body at Bowery Ballroom, $20 adv tix rec

12/1, 11 PM the eclectic, Balkan/latin/funk brass Underground Horns  followed by fiery, noirish Canadian Balkan/Romany band Lemon Bucket Orkestra at Drom, $15 adv tix rec

12/2, 1 PM an 8-hour almost-all Leonard Bernstein marathon with a barrage of singers backed by pianists Michael Barrett and Leann Osterkamp, plus world premieres by composers Daniel Sabzgabhaei and Denise Mei Yan Hofmann at the CUNY Grad Center, 35 5th Ave. north of 34th, free

12/2, 7 PM dark, intense, psychedelic guitarist/songwriter Anna Coogan at the small room at the Rockwood

12/2, 8 PM Gamelan Kusuma Laras with Javanese gamelan luminaries Darsono Hadiraharjo, “the best young Javanese gamelan player of his generation;” master musician Midiyanto; and rising star singer Heni Savitri; at Roulette, $25

12/2, 9 PM Television’s Richard Lloyd and his band open for Steve Wynn’s iconic, amazingly vital 80s darkly psychedelic, noisyjamband the Dream Syndicate at Bowery Ballroom, $25 gen adm

12/8, 7 PM guitarists Mark Mollica and Nate Radley with John Ellis on saxophone, Ike Sturm on bass and Jared Schonig on drums at Bloomingdale School of Music, 323 W 108th St (off of Broadway), free

12/9, 4 PM the Desoff Choir sing Handel’s Messiah at Union Theological Seminary, 3041 Broadway @ 121st St, $15

12/9,  5 PM tenor sax explorations by Ras Moshe Burnett and open jam session along with speakers from Take the Stands and the Stop Mass Incarceration Network at Dacia Gallery, 53 Stanton St

12/9, free kettle corn at 7 PM, show shortly thereafter by the Argus Quartet with guest soprano Lucy Fitz Gibbon performing works by Kaija Saariaho, New York premieres by Loren Loiacono and Jordan Nelson with text by Gertrude Stein at the 53rd St. library, 18 W 53rd St. free, rsvp reqd 

12/11, drinks at 5:30 PM, show at 6, all-female punk classical French horn quartet Genghis Barbie play works from Bizet to Queen to Badfinger at the Miller Theatre, free

12/13, 7:30 PM eclectic mostly-female klezmer/cumbia/tango jamband Isle of Klezbos  at Piano on Park, 10 Park Ave #22D, $25

12/16, 9 PM very diverse works by rising star jazz composer Sarah Weaver: a solo bass piece written for and played by the great Mark Dresser followed by Weaver’s killer twelve-piece orchestra featuring Min Xiao-Fen on pipa and Ned Rothenberg on reeds, among others, at the DiMenna Center, $25/$15 stud/srs

12/20, 9:30 PM pianist Jesus Hernandez’s lush, intense flamenco jazz group the Bojaira Project at Drom, $15 adv tix rec

12/31, 11 PM organist William Trafka performs works by Bach, Guilmant and Mendelssohn at St. Bartholomew’s Church, free, champagne after midnight!

Party People in the House in Flushing Tonight

If you’re in a party mood, grab the 7 train and head to Flushing Town Hall tonight, Oct 21 where Betsayda Machado and La Parranda El Clavo are throwing a wild Afro-Venezuelan bash at 7:30 PM. There will be all kinds of ecstatic call-and-response, booming drums and dancing: Flushing Town Hall always keeps the front section close to the stage open for the dance crowd. Cover is $16, $10 for seniors, and if you’re a kid between 13-19, you get in free, as you can at all the shows here.

Machado recreates a Venezuelan hill country party vibe, a high-voltage tradition passed down through the centuries and maintained by the descendants of the first African slaves kidnapped and brought to the Venezuelan coast. But not all those slaves remained in chains: just as the Maroons in Jamaica did, some managed to escape and set up self-sustaining communities where the the old African traditions survived more or less intact. Machado and her village band trace their ancestry to those days: with just a choir and many drums handmade from local lumber, they are as oldschool as you can get. Parranda musicians don’t stand still – they typically make a procession. The soaring voices and stomping rhythms of Machado’s band are similar to Carolina Oliveros’ Afro-Colombian bullerengue crew Bulla En El Barrio.

Machado’s new album Loé Loá – Rural Recordings Under the Mango Tree is streaming at Spotify. It’s amazing how catchy these songs are: a brass band or a salsa orchestra could have a great time filling in the harmonies between the singers and the beats. Which are all over the place: sometimes a straight-up dancefloor thump but more likely to be a swaying triplet groove, a funky dance pulse or tricky, intricate polyrhythms. What’s consistent throughout the album, and the music in general, is the contrast between the hypnotically booming drums and the energy of the vocals. The songs celebrate good times, dancing, console the lonely or the bereaved and invoke the ancient spirits, recast as Christian saints. You can sing along; it helps if you know Spanish.

Avenida B Turn Lincoln Center Into a Lower East Side Salsa Hideaway

Emcee and NYU professor Carlos Chirinos grinningly told the crowded dancefloor at Lincoln Center this past evening that salsa dura revivalists Avenida B’s show was “Designed to get you to come back every month.” And it looks like pretty much everybody here does. The couples didn’t wait to get their twirl on while oldschool salsa hits resounded through the atrium space just south of 63rd Sreet. The monthly dance party series there is called Vaya 63 – get it?

This was a real throwback show – it wasn’t hard to imagine frontman/crooner David Frankel and his octet grinding it out in some tightly packed Lower East Side social club forty years ago. With twin trombones, congas, bongos and cowbell, piano, bass and coros, the group mirrors the multicultural lineups of the great bands of the Fania years. Frankel explained that as the son of a popular Lower East Side bandleader in the 80s, he “Basically grew up with a salsa band underneath me, from birth.”

The band opened with a couple of dark, undulating originals, minor-key piano tumbling elegantly over the waves of beats and the trombones’ nocturnal lustre. Frankel kept a close eye on the dancefloor: “That’s the way to do it!” he announced, inspired by a veteran couple close to the stage. 

Did Lluvia Con Nieve hang overhead, gloomy and cold? Not really: as the band broke it down to punchy brass riffs, with a little suspense from the piano in between verses, it fit in with a day that forty years ago would have been called unseasonably balmy. There were hints of vintage James Brown and glittering Fender Rhodes psychedelia in their take of Cañonazos. They wound up the first set with a stormy new one, Paradoja, driven by an ominous, lingering bass riff, the band getting into it with Frankel who by now was showing off some dance moves of his own.

They picked right up where they left off, starting the second set with Que Humanidad, a blustery stomp centered around a ridiculously catchy four-chord riff. The next number was Guaguanco, “But you’re gonna hear a lot of different styles,” cautioned Frankel, and he wasn’t joking, in this Cuban-Loisaida mashup of rhumba, mambo and gritty Nuyorican flavor. They contrasted the fire of Timbalame with a balmier original inspired by Frankel’s teenage dreams of Latin America and the Caribbean, then made coy salsa out of the jazz standard All of Me and wound up the show on the slinky tip, alternating between classics and originals.

Avenida B’s next gig is at Taj II, 48 W 21st on Nov. 6 at 9 PM. And fans of edgy music from south of the border ought to check out witchy singer Edna Vazquez and her band, who are at the atrium on Nov 2 at 7:30 PM. The concert is free, the earlier you get there the better.

Ampersan Play Dreamy, Cinematic Tropical Psychedelia in Their New York Debut at Lincoln Center

There were some ecstatic moments in Ampersan’s New York debut at Lincoln Center last night, part of the ongoing Celebrate Mexico Now festival. The high point might have been where the punteador and jarana of the five-piece Mexico City band’s founders Kevin Garcia and frontwoman Zindu Cano intertwined with a rippling, slinky intensity. But more often than not, throughout their roughly hourlong set,  the music was simply something to get lost in, reflecting the band’s long background scoring for film.

Ampersan make hypnotic, psychedelic sounds with instruments typically associated with far more boisterous styles. The show came together slowly. Was this going to be just another evening of vampy trip-hop-influenced tropicalia with the occasional psychedelic flourish? The lilting, harmony-infused opening number and the stately candombe ballad afterward suggested that, bassist Sergio Medrano’s terse pulse in tandem with cajon player Héctor Aguilar Chaire and his fellow percussionist Nirl Cano.

Then the group took a detour into reggaeton and Cano switched to violin, raising the energy with his stark, rustic resonance. Garcia played mostly electric guitar and the small, uke-like punteador. Rocking a slinky, gothic black dress, the group’s lead singer began the set on jarana and then switched to guitar; she also had a couple of mics set up for her vocals, one which she ran through a mixer for subtle atmospheric effects.

Then Garcia went up to the board, twiddled with it as it hiccupped and burped…and just when it seemed that the electronics were about to clear the room, they simmered down and the group followed with what could have been the best song of the night, a lush, dreamy, slowly crescendoing tropical psychedelic anthem. The quintet would make their way through more of these while animated videos of Adriana Ronquillo and Mónica González’s mystical deep-forest narratives and imagery played on the screen above the stage.

Likewise, the band’s Spanish-language lyrics have a mysterious, allusive quality: themes of escape, and unease, and occasional heartbreak floated to the surface over the music’s graceful pulse. They like to use poetry from across the ages and hit another peak when they brought up son jarocho champion and poet Zenen Zeferino to deliver a defiant, characteristically eloquent freestyle. As they romped their way through some snazzy Veracruz party polyrhythms, he alluded to how Mexico is just as much or even more of a melting pot than the United States. The implication was that this intelligence ought to trump the demagoguery seeping from the bowels of the White House.

The group brought the show full circle at the end, Zula’s voice receding from a fullscale wail to a tender balminess. The concluding concert of this year’s Celebrate Mexico Now festival is a free show this Sunday, Oct 22 at 3 PM at the Queens Museum in Crotona Park with cinematic music by violinist Carlo Nicolau along with post-industrial projections by video artist Vanessa Garcia Lembo. And the next show at the Lincoln Center atrium space on Broadway north of 62nd St. is tonight, Oct 20 at 7:30 with oldschool salsa dura band Avenida B.

Celebrating Resistance and Triumph Over Tyranny at Lincoln Center

For three years now, Lincoln Center has been partnering with Manhattan’s  Maxine Greene High School for Imaginative Inquiry in an annual celebration of freedom fighters from across the decades. Inspired by Howard Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States, Thursday night’s annual performance featured “a stellar cast,” as Lincoln Center’s Viviana Benitez put it, playing some powerfully relevant music and reading insightful, inspiring, sometimes incendiary works by activists and authors from the sixteenth century to the present day.

Brianna Thomas raised the bar dauntingly high with the Civil Rights-era Sam Cooke hit A Change Is Gonna Come, guitarist Marvin Sewell playing bottleneck style on the intro for a ringing, rustic, deep blues feel. “I go downtown, and somebody’s always telling me, don’t hang around,” Thomas intoned somberly over Sewell’s terse icepick soul chords. In an era when Eric Garner was murdered because he got too close to a new luxury condo building, that resounded just as mightily as it did in Birmingham in 1964. She picked it up again with a ferociously gritty insistence, the audience adding a final, spontaneous “Yeah!” at the very end.

Later in the performance the duo played a hauntingly hazy, utterly Lynchian take of Strange Fruit. Thomas’ slow, surreal swoops and dives raised the macabre factor through the roof: If there’s any one song for Halloween month, 2017, this was it.

In between, a parade of speakers brought to life a series of fiery condemnations of tyrants and oppression, and widely diverse opinions on how to get rid of them. Staceyann Chin bookended all this with an understatedly sardonic excerpt from Bartolome de las Casas’ grisly account of early conquistadorial genocide, closing with a rousing Marge Piercy piece on how to build a grassroots movement.

Shantel French matter-of-factly voiced Henry George’s insight into how poverty is criminalized, but is actually a form of discrimination. Michael Ealy’s most memorable moment onstage was his emphatic delivery of the irony and ironclad logic in Jermain Wesley Loguen’s famous letter to the slaveowner he escaped during the Civil War: ‘You say you raised me as you raised your own children…did you raise them for the whipping post?”

Geoffrey Arend read Eugene Debs’ address for his 1918 sedition sentencing, optimism in the face of a prison sentence and a corrupt system doomed to collapse  Laura Gomez voiced the anguish and indignity of a longtime resident of Vieques, Puerto Rico who’d seen his neighbors harassed and killed by drunken marines and errant bombs dropped in practice runs (this was in 1979, before the island was rendered uninhabitable by the same depleted uranium dropped on Afghanistan and Iraq). Considering that the President of the United States has castigated the people of this disaster-stricken part of the world for being a drain on the Federal budget, this packed a real wallop. We can only hope this latest incident helps the wheels of impeachment move a little faster.

Brian Jones read from a witheringly cynical pre-Emancipation Frederick Douglass speech on what the Fourth of July means to a slave, and also Martin Luther King’s emphatically commonsensical analysis of the racism and injustice inherent in the Vietnam War draft. Aasif Mandvi brought out all the black humor in Brooklyn College professor Moustafa Bayoumi’s account of being besieged by off-campus rightwing nutjobs. And joined by incisive, puristically bluesy guitarist Giancarlo Castillo, songwriter Ani Cordero sang a venomous take of Dylan’s Masters of War and an understatedly passionate, articulate version of Lydia Mendoza’s 1934 border ballad Mal Hombre, sad testimony to the fact that Mexican immigrants have been demonized long before Trump.

The next free performance at Lincoln Center’s Broadway atrium space just north of 62nd St. is on Oct 19 at 7:30 PM featuring artsy Mexican trip-hop band Ampsersan. Getting to the space a little early is a good way to make sure you get a seat, since these events tend to sell out.

A Blue Note Stand and a Tour From Perennially Fiery Latin Jazz Icon Eddie Palmieri           

At this point in his career, latin jazz pianist Eddie Palmieri has nothing left to prove. Is he a NEA Jazz Master yet? If not, let’s get those wheels in motion before Trump and his minions get rid of the NEA altogether. In the meantime, Palmieri has just released a new album, Sabiduria (“wisdom” in Spanish), his first since 2006, streaming at Bandcamp. He’s celebrating that, and his eightieth birthday, with a week at the Blue Note leading a septet starting tonight, Oct 10 through the 15th, with sets at 8 and 10:30 PM. You can get in for thirty bucks – and if you’re not in New York, you can catch him on US tour right afterward if you’re in the right place.

The core of the band on the new album is Joe Locke on vibes, Luques Curtis on bass, Anthony Carrillo on bongos and cowbell, Little Johnny Rivero on congas and Luisito Quintero on timbales, with a long list of special guests – as usual, everybody wants to play with the guy.

It opens with the aptly titled Cuerdas Y Tumbao, a mighty largescale take on a classic, whirlingly celebratory charanga sound. After the string section develops some pretty otherworldly textures, there’s an Alfredo de la Fe violin solo and then a chuggingly energetic one that Palmieri builds to a pretty far-out interlude himself, grinningly half-masked behind the orchestra.

Palmieri famously wanted to be a percussionist but switched to the piano because the competition wasn’t so intense, and the rest is history. That backstory vividly informs Wise Bata Blues, with its punchy, tumbling rhythmic riffage and a similarly kinetic, dancing exchange of solos from trumpet and alto sax, the bandleader choosing his spots with a tongue-in-cheek suspense and a lefthand that hasn’t lost any power over the decades.

Marcus Miller’s snappy bass kicks off the album’s title track, a bizarrely catchy retro 70s mashup of latin soul and psychedelic rock, fueled by Ronnie Cuber’s deliciously acidic baritone sax and David Spinozza’s sunbaked guitar riffage over Palmieri’s dancing incisions. Then the band flips the script with the serpentine guaguanco groove of La Cancha, Locke’s wryly chosen spots contrasting with de la Fe’s stark, insistent solo as the charanga blaze caches fire.

Donald Harrison’s modal sax spirals uneasily in Augustine Parish, a bracingly salsafied blues, up to a hypnotic streetcorner interlude from the percussion crew. Then Palmieri goes solo with Life, a pensively energetic, neoromantically-tinged prelude. The group follows that with the slinky, noir-tinged Samba Do Suenho, Locke’s lingering lines contrasting with Palmieri’s gritty drive – it might be the album’s best track.

Spinal Volt rises from a balmy intro to a blaze of brass and and an energetic exchange of horn solos throughout the band. The Uprising switches back and forth between a casual vocal-and-percussion descarga and a mighty anthem that brings to mind McCoy Tyner’s 70s catalog, with dueling saxes to wind it up.

The steady, Monk-like Coast to Coast slowly brings the sun from behind the clouds, Palmieri and Harrison leading the charge down and then back from a trippy tropical bass-and-percussion break. Driven by Curtis and the bandleader’s relentless attack, the mighty blues shuffle Locked In is the album’s  hardest-hitting number. It winds up with the epic Jibarita Y Su Son, shifting from a  thicket of percussion to a classic salsa dura groove lit up with a fast-forward history of Afro-Cuban beats from the percussion. It’s inspiring to say the least to see a guy Palmieri’s age putting on as wild a party as this one with a group which also includes drummers Bernard “Pretty” Purdie and Obed Calvaire, percussionists Xavier Rivera, Iwao Sado and Camilo Molina, saxophonists Louis Fouché and Jeremy Powell, and trumpeters John Walsh and Jonathan Powell.

Ladama Keep the Heat Simmering at Last Weekend’s Hot Pepper Festival in Brooklyn

Last weekend at the annual chile pepper festival at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, high-energy pan-latin band Ladama were charged with the thankless task of following Red Baraat , whose  brass-fueled bhangra vindaloo opened the festivities. That Ladama could hold their own, and hold the crowd gathered out of the sun and away from the long lines of chile heads in line waiting for a fix, attests to how refreshingly unpredictable and fun this group is.

Frontwoman/guitarist Sara Lucas gave that away during soundcheck. “Baile la cumbia,” she grinned, and although it wasn’t until later in their set that they hit a slinky cumbia groove, the party started pretty much right from the first bouncy beats of their opening tropical acoustic pop number. The mostly-female band’s not-so-secret weapon is Mafer Bandola, whose axe is the spiky Venezuelan bandola llanera. Throughout the show, she played with flash and fire and a purposeful focus: fast as her fingers are, she doesn’t waste notes. And she varied her textures, sometimes with a bachata-like ring, other times flicking her way through with a staccato attack, as if she was playing a mandolin. When she finally would cut loose with a furious flurry of tremolo-picking, or a slide up or down the scale, the effect was breathtaking.

The women in the band have contrasting voices that blend intriguingly. Lucas has a bright, soaring delivery, while drummer Lara Klaus – who finally emerged from behind the kit to take over lead vocals on a muted, suspenseful number – has a lower, calmer voice. Percussionist Daniela Serna comes across as the troublemaker in the band – taking a turn out in front, she rapped her way through the boisterously irrepressible Porro Maracatu, a rapidfire mashup of Brazilian rainforest rhythmic riffs and reggaeton from the band’s brand-new debut album. She also took a hypnotically rumbling solo on Colombian tambor alegre drum during a long, psychedelic take of the vamping, bossa-tinged Confesion as Lucas’ vocalese sailed overhead.

Bassist Pat Swoboda shifted elegantly from a funky pulse to starker, bowed lines, switching to Fender on one of the night’s most propulsive, Bahian-flavored numbers. Trombonist Alex Asher and trumpeter Andrew McGovern spiced a handful of the song with some rousing, punchy charts. The sardonic anger of Sin Ataduras (No Bandages) contrasted with the serpentine, joyous Cumbia Brasileira; given plenty of time onstage, the group jammed out intros and outros and left room for brief, tantalizing solos from throughout the band. Ladama’s current US tour continues:

10/7-8/2017- Shakori Hills Festival– Pittsboro, NC
10/20/2017- Columbus Theater– Providence, RI
10/24-25/2017- Dartmouth University– Hanover, NH
11/2-3/2017- Tedx Charlottesville– Charlottesville, VA

As far as hot pepper is concerned, the available samples – the ones with healthy ingredients, anyway – were a disappointment. Most of the sauces didn’t raise any real red flags – other than Hell’s Kitchen’s deliciously spiced Cinnamon Ghost Punch, that is. The westside Manhattan boutique’s sweet Rockin’ Rasta habanero sauce wasn’t quite as hot but just as flavorful and left most of the out-of-state contenders in the dirt. 

Psychedelic Peruvian Legends Los Wemblers Make a Historic Appearance in Red Hook on the 16th

A landmark event in New York music history is happening this Oct 16 at 9 PM at the Pioneer Arts Center in Red Hook, where the brain trust of Brooklyn hotspot Barbes have booked an extremely rare US show by Peruvian psychedelic cumbia legends Los Wemblers de Iquitos. Powerhouse singer Carolina Oliveros’ trippy tropicalia band Combo Chimbita – who mash up cumbia, salsa, chamame and a whole bunch of other south of the border styles – open the night. Cover is $25.

Even on their home turf, Los Wemblers had pretty much dropped out of sight until the past few years. It’s probably safe to say that if Olivier Conan and Vincent Douglas hadn’t started Chicha Libre, who brought the wild, surreal psychedelic cumbias of the 1960s and 70s out of the Amazonian jungle for the first time, staging this concert anywhere outside of a Peruvian expat community would have been absurd. But thanks in large part to their band – and Barbes Records’ two Roots of Chicha historical compilations – this trippy, intoxicatingly danceable music isn’t an obscure niche genre anymore. Maybe, as Conan once boasted, cumbia really is going to take over the world.

This family band of six guys from an isolated Amazonian oil boomtown, most of them in their sixties and seventies, played a wildly vigorous recent show that kept a mix of sweaty kids and curious oldsters on their feet for the better part of three hours. As one of the night’s emcees emphasized, Los Wemblers distinguish themselves from their innumerable countrymen who from the late 60s into the 80s mashed up American surf music, psychedelic rock, indigenous folk themes, sounds from Cuba to Argentina and pretty much all points in between.  But where so many of those bands went soft when synthesizers got popular, Los Wemblers sound exactly like they did in their hometown of Iquitos in 1969 – except louder.

The band’s patriarch, guitarist Salomon Sanchez sadly didn’t live to see the band’s resurgence, but his five sons did and now comprise most of the group. The star of the night was guitarist Alberto Sanchez, who played most of two long sets with his eyes closed, the trace of a smile on his face as his fast fingers fueled a magically clanging, twangy, undulating tropical time machine.

Behind him, the band’s two percussionists laid down a slinky, irresistible groove that boomed and rattled off the space’s bare walls to the point that there was an oscillation between the clave click of the woodblock and the thump of the congas, which raised the psychedelic factor several notches. Together they ran through a surreal mashup of snaky cumbia, sprightly Pervuian folk themes, twangy surf tunes, a couple of strikingly stark, minor-key, Cuban-tinged numbers, and many of their hits, segueing into one after another with hardly a single break.

The best one of the night was Sonido Amazonico, which they played twice. The first time around, they did the haunting, phantasmagorical “national anthem of chicha” as a sprawling ten-minute jam, a creepy cocktail of Satie-esque passing tones, like a warped tarantella to counter the effects of a lysergic spider bite. The second time around they hit it harder and more directly, like the original vinyl single, the guitarist capping off his solo with a sizzling, spiraling flight upward, then hitting his wah pedal and leaving it wide open, a murky pool of sound mingling with the echoey, cantering beats. What frontman/percussionist Jair Sanchez left no doubt about was that it was their song to mess with, notwithstanding that Lima band Los Mirlos‘ version was the bigger hit, and that Chicha Libre’s cover is what pretty much jumpstarted the Brooklyn cumbia cult.

Another hit the crowd got to twice was the careening, aptly gritty La Danza Del Petrolero – and happily, unlike the popular Los Mirlos cover, the guitar was in tune this time. The rest of the set was a fascinating look at how psychedelic cumbias are just as diverse as American psychedelic rock. Without blinking an eye, the band made their way expertly through a couple of bright, cheery vamps that more than hinted at Veracruz folk tunes, eventually hit a brooding, Cuban-flavored number, made cumbia out of a stately, dramatic tango anthem, sped up, slowed down and took a couple of frantically pulsing detours toward merengue.

One of the night’s best numbers was also the most ornate and ominously elegant – but no less danceable. Devious references to the Ventures, Duke Ellington and the Richard Strauss theme from 2001: A Space Odyssey bubbled to the surface. By the time the old guys finally called it quits, it was almost midnight. Fresh off their first ever European tour, they’re reputedly every bit as incendiary as they were this time out. The Pioneer Works show ought to be at the top of the bucket list of every New Yorker who’s into psychedelic sounds.

Joan Soriano Brings a Classic, Classy Dominican Bachata Party to Lincoln Center

This past evening was a slinky feast of chiming, shimmering guitar overtones and dance beats that ran the gamut of music from the Caribbean and beyond. Lincoln Center’s Jordana Leigh described her mission as bringing “The height of quality art”  to the series of free shows at the atrium space on Broadway just north of 62nd, and she wasn’t kidding. Dominican bachata star Joan Soriano is such an interesting, incisive guitarist that it was hard to sit and chill with a beer instead of joining the twirling circles of dancers out on the floor.

Are Soriano’s fans all snappy dressers? From the looks of this crowd, guys done out in ties and white shirts, women in red or blue dresses, they could school pretty much any posse of dancers in this city, fashion-wise.

The star of the documentary El Duque De la Bachata fronts a first-rate band with rhythm guitar, guiro, punchy six-string bass and a nimble bongo player who also delivered a subtly boomy dancefloor thud (hard to imagine, but just try) on double-headed tambora. As they brought the guitar up in the mix to open the show, it sounded as if the rhythm player was using an accordion pedal, his playing was that crisp and resonant. Soriano was even faster on his big acoustic-electric, opening with a cheery two-chord vamp. Finally we got some of the deliciously sliding bass that got so popular in bachata twenty years ago

Soriano’s songs tackle the battle of the sexes: there were come-ons, and boudoir vamps, and lots of laments. They did a four-chord doo-wop vamp with a big sputtering crescendo early on, then a slinky, jazzily pensive bolero-tinged ballad that built to an impassioned peak where Soriano kept it going with his spiky broken chords as the rhythm shifted toward classic Afro-Cuban salsa.

They opened the next one with a Bollywood riff and this is where the night really started to cook: some sweet rat-a-tat from the bongos on the turnaround, bittersweet minor-key changes to mirror the angst of the lyrics.

He took a familiar oldschool soul riff and tremolo-picked furiously like Dick Dale. The songs weren’t all just two-chord vamps, either, unexpected minor changes leaping in all over the place. The rhythm player took over lead vocals on the night’s most angst-fueled, biting number, the crowd singing the chorus back at the stage. Later Soriano gave his moodiest, most subtly compelling vocal to a catchy but downcast number that was basically classic Jamaican rocksteady with a bachata beat. 

When so much of bachata has been polluted by cheesy, formulaic Disney autotune radio pop, Soriano is a breath of fresh air straight off the Caribbean. Or, as the show built steam, more like a friendly hurricane. The next show at the atrium is this Oct 19 at 7:30 PM with hypnotic, kinetic female-fronted Mexican downtempo-trip-hop/folk-pop band Ampersan as part of Celebrate Mexico Now month. If there ever was a time to celebrate Spanish-language music, or Mexico, or the Dominican Republic, that time is now.