By the Editors
- February 7 - 12: Kris Davis residency at the Stone. Davis comes to the Stone on the heels of her latest release, Duopoly. In keeping with that record’s theme, each night will feature a new duet, with Davis on piano alongside the likes of Jen Shyu, Michael Formanek, Julian Lage, Johnathan Blake, and Ingrid Laubrock. The exception is the Tuesday, January 7 show, when the Kris Davis Trio—Davis joined by Stephan Crump on bass and Eric McPherson on drums—will perform.
- February 9: Noah Haidu at Birdland. Pianist and composer Haidu is releasing his third album, Infinite Distances on Cellar Live Records, February 15. While we at the Rail tend towards the margins, this album is one of the strongest, most satisfying examples of straight-ahead modern jazz making we’ve heard in the past year. Catch a preview of this swinging, incandescent, smart music, then bring home the disc.
- February 11: Loren Connors, Isobel Sollenberger, and Steve Dalachinsky at ISSUE Project Room. An evening of sonic addition: sui generis experimental guitarist Loren Connors starts off the night with a solo set. He’ll then be joined in duet by Bardo Pond’s Isobel Sollenberger on flute. Finally, the Rail’s own Steve Dalachinsky completes the trio for a closing set blending music and poetry.
- February 10, 16 & 22 - 23: The Jazz Gallery: The Jazz Gallery is already one of the places where on any given night you can catch the best jazz musicians around. These three gigs are particularly special: David Virelles is becoming one of the most creative musicians on the scene, right before our very eyes; Ches Smith/Craig Taborn/Mat Maneri produced The Bell, one of the finest recordings of jazz and improvised music in 2016; and the two night stand of Henry Threadgill, Vijay Iyer, and Daphnis Prieto is a major event.
- February 18: Harriet Tubman at the Stone. No, that Harriet Tubman; the trio of guitarist Brandon Ross, bassist Melvin Gibbs, and drummer J.T. Lewis. Their upcoming release, Araminta (February 24, Sunnyside), has been delivering a much-needed ass-kicking this winter through the cans and the stereo speaker. Muscle, clear-eyes, and finely directed fury can’t lose, especially when trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith and vocalist Alicia Hall Moran are up front.
- February 20: Lasse Marhaug and C. Spencer Yeh at Swiss Institute Contemporary Art. Prolific Norwegian musician Lasse Marhaug—a stalwart of the Norwegian noise and experimental scene, his many collaborations include work with Okkyung Lee, Paal Nilsson-Love, and Sunn O)))—joins Brooklyn’s C. Spencer Yeh, a stalwart in his own right, and no stranger to experimentation, at the Swiss Institute. Expect an evening of sound straining at the bounds of the comprehensible.
- February 23 - 26: The Music of Dexter Gordon: A Celebration, at JALC’s Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola. Long, Tall Dexter was the epitome of the artistry of the modern jazz musician: swinging, lyrical, witty, hip. An unlikely movie star, he was much loved and irreplaceable. This tribute will off music from his unforgettable Homecoming and Sophisticated Giant albums; the first two nights will be anchored by drummer Louis Hayes, who played on Homecoming, while the second half of the gig has drummer Eric McPherson in the band, that will feature tenor player Abraham Burton, and trumpeter Josh Evans. Here’s an example, with different musicians, of the Dexter’s enduring legacy:
- February 23 - 25: The Necks 30th Anniversary at ISSUE Project Room:. Australia’s the Necks celebrate their thirty-year anniversary with three consecutive evenings at ISSUE. The first performance, on Thursday the 23rd, will feature solo sets by each member—Chris Abrahams, Lloyd Swanton, and Tony Buck—and conclude with the band performing as a group. The show on Friday the 24th is billed as a “standalone performance,” and Saturday the 25th closes the run with a durational performance beginning at 4 p.m. and set to feature special guests.
- February 24: Noura Mint Seymali with dj.henri at (le) poisson rouge. The World Music Institute’s ongoing Desert Blues series brings Mauritania’s Noura Mint Seymali to (le) poisson rouge. Seymali’s latest record Arbina opens with the title track, a driving groove wound around a scuzzy electric bass that sounds like either an egg or your brain frying on a desert rock. Seymali is a star in her home country and a master of the ardine, a 9-string harp traditionally played by women. dj.henri will spin records before the show.
- February 25: For Bruce Langhorne at Brooklyn Music School. Legendary session guitarist Bruce Langhorne has performed with the likes of Bob Dylan, Odetta, Joan Baez, and Richard and Mimi Baez Fariña—his contributions to the latter’s Reflections in a Crystal Wind are especially memorable. Tonight’s show pays tribute to Langhorne, with performances by Dylan Aycock, Loren Connors, Steve Gunn, and more, and coincides with the release of The Hired Hands: A Tribute to Bruce Langhorne on Scissor Tail Records. All proceeds go to Langhorne.
- February 28 - March 5: Craig Taborn at the Village Vanguard. If you don’t catch Tabor earlier in the month at the Jazz Gallery, he’s got a week at the Vanguard, leading Chris Speed, Chris Lightcap, and Dave King. This ensemble is on his new ECM album, Daylight Ghosts (February 10), a layered and engrossing blend of abstraction and hip rhythms. Focussed and incisive on the record, the music will likely catch fire live.