Mark Gross Quartet + Strings
“Gross is a new and powerful alto sax player who is a Cannonball type player. As you may presume … funky is his flavor. He…shows his modern modality which is reflected in his sound.” Takao Ogawa Swing Journal, Japan (Preach Daddy)
“As record concepts go, ‘Riddle of the Sphinx’ is one of the most clever to come down the pike…Mark Gross is a sax man deserving wider attention who is blessed with a rich, pure tone…Clearly one of the orders of the day for jazz album projects is the conceptual approach….he has successfully plotted and delivered this course, arriving at a package that is fresh, original, and served up by a cohesive band of fine players. Could we ask for anything more?” Willard Jenkins regular contributor to Jazz Times, Downbeat, and Jazz Report Magazine (Riddle of the Sphinx)
Gross recently signed and recorded his latest recording ‘Blackside’ for his new record label JAZZ LEGACY PRODUCTIONS (JLP).
“This music is movin’ and groovin’ with historic elegance and euphoric relevance. I am proud to say these are the young ‘Giants I Walk With’.” Jimmy Heath jazz legend (Blackside)
His consistently professional musicianship has led to live and recorded efforts with many of his fellow pacesetters in jazz music. Mark has toured the world with the Mark Gross Quartet, Buster Williams ‘Something More’ Quartet, Delfeayo Marsalis, Dizzy Gillespie Big Band, Philip Harper, Nat Adderley, Dave Holland, Mulgrew Miller, Nicholas Payton, Dizzy Gillespie, Nancy Wilson, James Moody, Jimmy Heath, John Lee, Village Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, Tom Harrell Big Band, Duke Ellington Orchestra, Frank Foster and the Loud Minority, Charles Mingus Big Band, Freddie Hubbard, Donald Harrison, Mark Whitfield, Joe Dukes, Captain Jack McDuff, Joe Chambers, Neal Smith, Cyrus Chestnut, Regina Carter, Lionel Hampton, Stephon Harris, Walter Booker, Jimmy Cobb, Don Braden, Vincent Gardner, Lenora ‘Zenzalai’ Helm, Marlon Saunders, SEPIA, Jann Parker to name a few. His professional relationships with these musicians and others have been long lasting and farreaching.
Mark has performed on Broadway several times, as well. He performed in ‘FIVE GUYS NAMED MOE’ (19921993) based on the music of Louis Jordan. ‘KAT AND THE KINGS’ (19992000). This musical explores the joyous sounds that were born out of oppression during the 1950’s in Cape Town, South Africa; APARTHEID. This is a rollicking rock’ n’roll musical. Mark has also added to the exciting musical that showcased music of the same title, ‘SWING’ (20002001). Mark has also appeared in ‘Malcolm X’ (1992), Spike Lee’s major motion film. Mark also was the lead alto saxophonist wityh the Jazz at Lincoln All Stars in the Broadway musical ‘AFTER MIDNIGHT’ (20132014). Mark Gross was also a musician featured in the season 4 of ‘Boardwalk Empire’ (2013). Mark will also appear in the film ‘ANNIE’ (2014), to be released December 19, 2014.
Mark credits his prolific sound to the rich appreciation for Gospel music that resounded through his parent’s Baltimore home. Mark’s father was the Pastor of his hometown church Mt. Zion C.O.G.I.C. up until his passing February 1, 2007. After developing his interests in classical music at the Baltimore School for the Arts, Mark studied four years at Berklee College of Music and got his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Music Performance. Two of Berklee’s best professors, Joe Viola and Bill Pierce, help fine tune Mark’s musicianship. Upon his graduation in 1988, Mark Gross began his professional musical caravan in JAZZ.
Georgia Mancio & Alan Broadbent
Songbook is the exquisite collaboration between double Grammy-winning pianist/composer/arranger Alan Broadbent (Diana Krall, Charlie Haden, Natalie Cole) and award-winning European vocalist/lyricist Georgia Mancio (Bobby McFerrin, Ian Shaw, ReVoice! Festival).
Alan and Georgia began performing together in 2013, co-writing in 2014 and in 2017 released their album of originals, Songbook, marking Alan’s 70th birthday and the first time his music has been heard entirely with words. Their sold-out headline at world-renowned Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club was described as “unequivocally one of the gigs of the year” (Jazzwise) with subsequent performances including Gateshead International Jazz Festival (UK), Birdland Jazz Club (Germany) and Krakow Jazz Festival (Poland) and the forthcoming Rochester International Jazz Festival (US).
Through journeys and resting places, childhood and old age; from bebop to brooding ballads and bossa novas: Alan’s sophisticated melodies and peerless arranger’s ear find their perfect match in Georgia’s superbly crafted lyrics of both beauty and bite. Already feted as “one of the most formidable songwriting partnerships of the 21st century” (Jazz Views), they honour the lineage of the great jazz writers whilst thematically and musically setting the new standards of the future.
Dayramir Gonzales Quartet
Born and raised in Havana, Cuba, pianist Dayramir (DY-ruh-meer) Gonzalez has come into his own as a New York City based artist/composer and bold musical force with his bountiful U.S. debut “THE GRAND CONCOURSE” (March 2nd, 2018, Machat Records). This album dazzles as an expressive showcase of the energetic Dayramir’s immense talent and sweeping musical vision. An internationally praised pianist and composer, he’s been hailed for his ‘monster technique’ and prolific creative range which melds rock, pop, jazz and Afro-Cuban stylings.
Dayramir’s knack for weaving a mosaic of both traditional and cutting-edge inspirations is not solely tethered to his daring blend of genres. The vibrant THE GRAND CONCOURSE embraces the pulse and mystique of New York City, as well as the allure of early 20th Century Cuban sonic leanings and the cultural roots and myths of sensually fused Yoruba religious elements (Cuban-centric Yoruba beliefs identify both natural and spiritual characteristics as part of its foundation) elevated by Dayramir’s 21st Century precision.
Dayramir’s journey may have begun in Cuba, but there’s been no shortage of mileposts lighting his diverse path. Born in the humble Havana neighborhood of Cerro, during what is referred to in Cuba as “the special period” known as one of the toughest economic times in the country’s history, Dayramir’s life centered on music.
His father was Afro-Cuban jazz trumpeter, Fabian Gonzalez, a driving force and inspiration as Dayramir discovered the piano at the age of 8. He would eventually be accepted into Cuba’s famed National High School for the Arts (ENA). Nurtured by noted singer and percussionist Oscar Valdes (from the legendary band Irakere), the young prodigy was selected at 16 to become an original member and pianist for Diakara, another seminal band founded by Valdes.
Later, while in his third year of high school, Dayramir would be recruited by Cuban legend Giraldo Piloto to join Klimax, helping to shape the sound of that renowned group. Accruing such an impressive list of credits, he began to excel in festival competitions as well. In 2005 he won first place in Havana’s JoJazz festival in the composition category, winning a record deal with Cuba’s national label Colibri. He recorded his first album, released in Cuba in 2007, and titled “Habana enTRANCE,” displaying his skills as artist, bandleader, and composer. The album would go on to win three Cubadisco Awards, considered the Grammys of Cuba.
Dayramir was accepted into Havana’s prestigious Instituto Superior de Arte (ISA) where he strengthened his burgeoning composition skills under the tutelage of master Juan Pinera. Next, he was awarded a musical scholarship to Boston’s revered Berklee College of Music in the U.S., becoming the first Cuban national to receive Berklee’s coveted full Presidential Scholarship. Dayramir graduated Summa Cum Laude in 2013, showered with an array of accolades while enrolled: He was signed to Berklee’s Jazz Revelation Records and included on their acclaimed compilation album, as well as being selected as one of their top 5 pianists in their annual Piano Gala. In 2012, he was called “a rising star in the Latin jazz world,” by Carnegie Hall and personally selected by Chucho Valdes to represent the young generation of Cuban Jazz at Carnegie Hall’s “Voices of Latin America” series, chronicled in the Wall Street Journal, which featured music icons Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Danilo Perez, Egberto Gismonti and Valdes himself. He then received the Wayne Shorter Award for Most Outstanding Composer of the Year upon graduation.
Dayramir moved to New York City soon after, where he strived to not only further his musical career, but to become part of the “incredible flow and vibe” of a city he always dreamed about as a boy.
“Even with all my accomplishments it was an adjustment,” he admits. “I had to shake the tree that bears the fruit of success. No one hands you anything in New York. It’s either roll up your sleeves and show me or get the hell in line,” he says. The determined artist endured the scuffs and staggered start-ups that every aspiring musician encounters in the world’s musical epicenter, but he was also determined to “give back” for what he’s gained in the process.
Dayramir is the co-founder of The Art School of Contemporary Performance and Creativity, based in the Bronx, providing musical education to city elementary and high school kids with higher musical aspirations, themselves. The enterprising artist modeled the curriculum after the extensive and enlightening musical programs he benefited from in his native Cuba. “We focus on piano, composition and music theory – emphasizing discipline and the acquisition of an earned knowledge base. I find it very rewarding if we can launch even a handful of kids on the road to finding their own musical destiny.”
Fully aware that “THE GRAND CONCOURSE” is his first introduction to most U.S. fans, the animated musical powerhouse welcomes the challenge of inviting new listeners into his world. “I told my wife when I decided to make this album that I have so much inside to offer as a pianist and composer, I want everyone to hear it,” he says. “It was a real group effort, paring 23 songs down to the ones I decided to record, and then gathering friends and fellow musicians and a choir and the orchestral talent and all the other elements to become part of my vision. I’m humbled and thankful that I’ve reached a place in my life where it all can be heard.”
Geoffrey Keezer Trio
With his highly regarded discography, unique compositions, and acclaimed performances in a variety of configurations, multiple GRAMMY®-nominated pianist Geoffrey Keezer commands the attention typically reserved for the living legends of jazz. A native of Eau Claire, Wisconsin, Keezer was playing in jazz clubs as a teenager, holding down the piano chair for Art Blakey at age 18, and touring in the company of Ray Brown, Joshua Redman, Art Famer, Benny Golson and Barbara Hendricks in his 20s. More recently he has toured with Wayne Shorter, Dianne Reeves, David Sanborn, Chris Botti, Sting, Joe Locke and Christian McBride; produced and arranged three GRAMMY®-nominated recordings with vocalist Denise Donatelli, and released a series of albums drawing influences from Hawaiian, Okinawan and Afro-Peruvian folk traditions. Geoffrey’s 2013 solo piano release, Heart of the Piano (Motema Records), seeks to redefine solo jazz piano as a personal and interactive showcase of melody, energy and groove, while his upcoming album “On My Way To You” is a stunning new set of music featuring his working trio with the addition of guest vocalist Gillian Margot.
Geoffrey’s compositions have been commissioned by the Mainly Mozart Festival, Art of Elán ensemble, Saint Joseph Ballet, Zeltsman Marimba Festival, Carnegie Hall Jazz Orchestra and Scottish National Jazz Orchestra. His music can be heard in the films “What Happens in Vegas” and “Inhale”, and in numerous TV shows including “The Young and the Restless” (CBS)”, “Parks and Recreation” (NBC), “House of Lies” (Showtime), “Casual” (Hulu Original).
Time Magazine wrote, “Geoffrey has more than enough virtuosity and sheer musical wit and intelligence to weave all of his apparently disparate strands of influence into an original and compelling whole”, and pop icon Sting said “In the universe of piano players that I have been exposed to over the years, Geoffrey has proved himself to be not only a superb technician and improviser, but also above and beyond this, a composer and conceptualist who can maintain the overall line and the DNA of the song in everything he plays. A musician’s musician.”
Donald Vega Trio
In celebration of the Jamaican jazz icon, Monty Alexander, pianist Donald Vega puts together a hardswinging compilation of Monty’s great, early compositions. With Respect To Monty features an all-star lineup of Anthony Wilson (guitar), Hassan Shakur (bass) and Lewis Nash (drums)…” In celebration of the Jamaican jazz icon, Monty Alexander, pianist Donald Vega puts together a hard-swinging compilation of Monty’s great, early compositions.
Since his debut on Resonance Records, Spiritual Nature (2012), Vega is entirely his own man, completely in command of his material. As the late, great Mulgrew Miller’s replacement in the Ron Carter Trio, Vega has big shoes to fill and does so admirably. His wide appreciation of piano maestros is spotlighted with this new release that includes seven original Monty Alexander masterpieces.
Much like Monty, Donald approaches the piano with technical prowess, yet with a sense of playfulness and light spirit. Both men share a warm touch to the instrument – melodic and free. The trio of Vega, Shakur and Nash have an intimate working relationship. Shakur’s bass is a solid anchor, while Nash’s colorful, rhythmic drumming is chameleon-like, adapting effortlessly to each piece. Add to that the imagination, depth and precision playing of guitar virtuoso Anthony Wilson – and you have a winning combination. From thoughtful, slow ballads to bouncy uptempo originals, they cover the bases.
Vega smiles, “My heart is in the swing. No matter what style I play, the goal is always to make it feel good.” Vega continues, The way that Monty plays and writes seems to come from a place of what feels good to him too. At least in the tunes we selected, he likes the lighter, happier keys. There’s room to breathe on solos. He’s got an incredible imagination; great ears; great chops; and a killer left hand.”
Resonance Records President George Klabin explains, “The whole challenge was to find a pianist who was willing to do this project and who would fit the style of Monty’s music. Monty, I just want to say you’ve touched my life. You’ve given me a great deal of happiness. I hope that this music will give back what you’ve given to the world.”
“When you grow up in Cleveland, Ohio, playing in a Polish polka band, you learn to think fast on your feet”, says Ken Peplowski, who played his first pro engagement when he was still in elementary school. “From my first time performing in public, I knew I wanted to play music for a living.”
Ken, and his trumpet-playing brother Ted, made many local radio and TV appearances and played for Polish dances and weddings virtually every weekend all through high-school. “That’s where I learned to improvise, ‘fake’ songs, learn about chord changes, etc.- it’s exactly like learning to swim by being thrown into the water!”
By the time Ken was in his early teens, he was experimenting with jazz by playing in the school “stage” bands, and also by jamming with many of the local jazz musicians. “By the time I hit high school, I was teaching at the local music store, playing in our family band, and playing jazz gigs around town while still getting up early every day for school.”
After a year of college, Ken joined the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra under the direction of Buddy Morrow. “Buddy heard me with my quartet at a Cleveland jazz festival along with Teddy Wilson’s trio and the Dorsey band, and made an offer right then and there for me to not only play lead alto, but to have a feature spot on the clarinet with the rhythm section. It was a great ‘road-school’ – we learned the discipline that goes with playing one-nighters every day for 48 weeks out of the year, and Buddy was a great, very generous bandleader.”
Peplowski met Sonny Stitt while on the road with the Dorsey band, and studied with him. “He was, and is, an inspiration to all of of us who make a living ‘on the road’ – I’ve never heard anybody play with such amazing consistency as Sonny, through all kinds of settings.”
In 1980, Ken moved to New York City,and was soon playing in all kinds of settings, from Dixieland to avant-garde jazz. “Everything’s a learning experience in jazz music – there’s always an element of the unpredictable.” In 1984, Benny Goodman came out of retirement and put together a new band, hiring Ken on tenor saxophone.
Peplowski signed with Concord Records, under the tutelage of Carl Jefferson, the founder and president, and recorded close to 20 albums as a leader, including “The Natural Touch” in 1992 which won Best Jazz Record of the Year by the Prises Deutschen Schallplatten Kritiken, and “The Other Portrait”, recorded in Sophia Bulgaria with the symphony orchestra and highlighting Ken’s classical side. He also recorded two records on the Nagel Heyer label,”Lost In The Stars” and “Easy To Remember”, the latter of which features Bobby Short on his last recording. “I loved Bobby Short’s approach to the American songbook, and we’d talked about doing a record together for a while – I’m glad we got this one ‘in the can.’
“What’s in the future? “Who knows? I love all kinds of music, andI’d like to find more oppurtunities to bridge the gaps between different musical styles – I consider myself an interpreter of material – if something interests me, I try to put my own spin on it, without thinking or worrying about playing in any particular style. Basically, I like a challenge, I’m a sucker for a good melody, and I love playing for audiences, big or small.”
And he has certainly achieved these goals, be it in small clubs, the Hollywood Bowl (where he played a sold-out concert), headlining in Las Vegas, the Newport Jazz Festival, pops concerts, European festivals and clubs, or at home in NYC, doing everything from playing on the soundtracks to Woody Allen movies, guest soloing on records (his more interesting recent ones were Marianne Faithfull and Cuban vocalist Isaac Delgado) to taking on the role of music director for interactive French and Italian cookbooks (“Menus And Music”).
The litany of musicians Ken has collaborated with includes: Mel Torme, Leon Redbone, Charlie Byrd, Peggy Lee, George Shearing, Madonna, Hank Jones, Dave Frishberg, Rosemary Clooney, Tom Harrell, James Moody, Cedar Walton, Houston Person, Steve Allen, Bill Charlap, Woody Allen, Marianne Faithfull, Isaac Delgado & Erich Kunzel. (“Although not necessarily in that order,” says Ken).
Peplowski also does many workshops for students of all ages- “My goal is to get the students to learn how to teach themselves, and to learn how to bring out their own best qualities; after all, jazz is about individuality-first you learn the rules, then you break them. I would like to think of myself as a lifelong student!”
Ken Peplowski is a Buffet-Crampon artist, and plays the R-13 clarinet,with a Portnoy mouthpiece and Van Doren German-cut reeds. He also plays a Yamaha tenor sax and a Berg Larsen mouthpiece.
Ken Peplowski has recorded approximately 50 CDs as a soloist, and close to 400 as a sideman – some of the artists he’s performed/recorded with include Charlie Byrd, Mel Torme, Rosemary Clooney, Erich Kunzel and the Cincinnati Pops, Hank Jones, Peggy Lee, Bill Charlap, Woody Allen, Benny Goodman, and Madonna. He travels at least half of every year, playing clubs, concert halls, colleges, and pops concerts. He has headlined the Hollywood Bowl, Carnegie Hall, the Blue Note, and Dizzy’s Club amongst many other venues. Ken’s CDs on the Capri label, “Noir Blue”, “In Search Of”, and “Maybe September” were released to great critical acclaim and massive airplay. He has recorded music as diverse as Italian and French folk songs, avant-garde jazz, pop, and classical music; he recorded the Darius Milhaud Clarinet Concerto with an orchestra in Sofia, Bulgaria, and was a featured soloist (playing Mozart) in 2015 at the Siletz Bay Music Festival in Oregon, where he will be premiering a new concerto in 2016, written for him by Dick Hyman. Ken was the musical director of the Oregon Festival Of American Music (OFAM) for eight years, and is a longtime performer/consultant to The Jazz Cruise, where he was elected into the Jazz Cruise Hall Of Fame in 2013. He resides in New York City with his wife, dog, and whatever children happen to be passing through.
OLD LYME INN
85 Lyme Street
Old Lyme, Connecticut 06371
At The Show
Doors at 7:30pm for cocktails and seating
Shows begin at 8:30pm
unless otherwise advertised
Pre-show dinner reservations available at
The Old Lyme Inn
(food is not served at the club, full bar service available)
No unauthorized audio or video recording is permitted during performance. This includes cell phones. Photos restricted to first set per artist request.
Enjoy overnight discounts with your tickets
VOTED BEST LIVE JAZZ BY CT MAGAZINE 2014 AND 2015! Come check out why.....
TS Monk Sextet
Donald Vega Trio
Ravi Coltrane Quartet
Big Chief Donald Harrison
Bucky Pizarelli | Russell Malone | Ed Laub
Ken Kitchings | SideDoor Jazz
Feb 27, 2015 | see full article
Nov 16, 2014 | see full article
May 7, 2014 | see full article
November 14, 2013 | see full article
September 26, 2013 | see full article
September 17, 2013 | see full article
MAY 9, 2013 | see full article
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June 21, 2013 | see full article
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May 13 2013 | see full article
Jan 30, 2016 | see full article
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NEWPORT JAZZ FESTIVAL
Founded in 1954, the Newport Jazz Festival® was the first annual jazz festival in America. It has been host to numerous legendary performances by some of the world’s leading established and emerging artists.
VISIT NEWPORT JAZZ FESTIVAL
Garde Arts Center
Performing arts theater presenting Broadway shows, opera, film and other events. New London, Connecticut.
VISIT THE OASIS ROOM
Established in 1994, JazzReach is a nationally recognized New York City-based not-for-profit organization dedicated to the promotion, performance, creation and teaching of jazz music.
The Artists Collective
The Artists Collective is a cultural institution serving the Greater Hartford region, providing year-round professional training in dance, music, drama, visual and martial arts emphasizing the arts and culture of the African Diaspora.
The Hartt School of Music
The Hartt School is the comprehensive performing arts conservatory of the University of Hartford. Hartt offers innovative degree programs in music, dance, and theatre.
Newport Festivals Foundation
To continue the Newport Jazz Festival® as it has been since 1954 in the presentation of the greatest jazz performers who follow the traditions of New Orleans, swing, bebop and modal as the core and heart of jazz music.
Innovators of the finest musical instrument and mic stands for 35 years, The Music People! Inc. has been one of the nation’s leading suppliers of microphones and pro audio equipment.
The Sidedoor jazz club is the realisation of a long cherished dream. Ken Kitchings has always been a true fan of jazz music and brought many great artists to The Garde Theatre in New London, CT during his time there.
In 2011 Ken and his wife Chris bought the beautiful, but sadly neglected, Old Lyme Inn and put their hearts and souls into bringing its former glory to life. Once the inn became an established part of the community, Ken set his sights on an unused “side door” space attached to the inn, visualizing the perfect jazz venue: Intimate, welcoming, elegant and a quality, great sounding room that the very best jazz artists would be happy to play in!
On May 10th, 2013 its door and stage was opened by none other than the venerable George Wein and his Newport All Star band, cutting the ribbon and giving his blessing to an awestruck Ken Kitchings! An incredible gala night opening to be remembered – setting the standard and placing The Sidedoor firmly on the jazz venue map!
PHOTO: DOLORES MAURISU, KEN KITCHINGS
“Thank you for treating us so well. I’m happy that The Side Door brings quality, art and celebration to the community, thank you for inviting me to be a part of the magic! Sending love and wishing you health and joy, thank you. Benny”~ Benny Green 4/18/14
“This is the real deal! You’re right in the cross hairs of the NY and Boston music scene… This is every bit as great as playing the Vanguard!”~ Kenny Werner
This is the best thing to happen to the Connecticut shoreline since the Baldwin Bridge!~ Robin Whitney, Side Door VIP
Intimate room, good bar service and superb jazz band! A great place to go after dinner on the weekend in Old Lyme or Essex near the CT shore.~ TripAdvisor User: Glenn C
very excited to see this has opened – just what we need in this area!!~ Facebook User: Carrie Leber
As shepherded by Ken Kitchings – who owns the Old Lyme Inn with his wife, Christine, and is a booking force at the Garde Arts Center – the SideDoor will be an intimate venue dedicated to showcasing the finest touring jazz musicians as they negotiate the I-95 corridor.~ RICK KOSTER, The Day
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