This popular afternoon concert series continues in December with saxophonist Greg Abate, pianist Tommy Goodman, jazz/blues guitarist Ron Kraemer and a swinging holiday jazz jam session.
(Sarasota, Florida) The Jazz Club of Sarasota’s “Jazz at Two” 2014-2015 concert series continues in December with ace saxophonist Greg Abate, in performance with pianist Michael Royal (December 5); the straight-ahead jazz sounds of the Tommy Goodman Quintet (December 12); a swinging holiday Jazz Jam Session hosted by the Jerry Eckert Trio (December 19); and a jazz/blues performance by guitarist and vocalist Ron Kraemer and his quartet (December 26). The series, which was founded in 2001, showcases the region’s top jazz performers on Fridays, 2-4 p.m., at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Sarasota, 3975 Fruitville Road, Sarasota. Tickets are $8 for Jazz Club members and $12 for non-members. A portion of ticket sales is directed to the Jazz Club’s scholarship program. For more information, call 941-366-1552 or visit www.jazzclubsarasota.org.
The Jazz Club of Sarasota’s December Jazz at Two series opens with a performance of selections from the Great American Songbook, plus a few original compositions by saxophonist, flutist and composer Greg Abate, Friday, December 5, 2 p.m. Hailed by The Jazz Messenger as “an absolute powerhouse” and “one of the most exciting players around,” Greg Abate has played lead alto for the Ray Charles Orchestra and also played tenor sax with the revised Artie Shaw Orchestra under the leadership of Dick Johnson. Abate later ventured out as a post-hard bop soloist performing at jazz festivals, societies and clubs throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe. Pianist and composer Michael Royal accompanies Abate for this performance. Royal has performed at major jazz venues around the world, and with such acclaimed jazz and pop artists as Clifford Jordan, George Morrow, John La Porta, The Count Basie Orchestra, Ira Sullivan and Mark Murphy.
The series continues on Friday, December 12, 2 p.m., with the Tommy Goodman Quintet. Pianist, conductor and arranger Tommy Goodman has been associated with a number of Broadway musicals and with such great names as Cole Porter, Josh Logan, Lena Horne, Sammy Davis, Jr., and Louis Armstrong. Goodman’s compositions have been performed at Carnegie Hall and at the Juilliard and Eastman schools of music. Goodman will be joined by Bill Carmichael on sax and clarinet, Dominic Mancini on bass, Johnny Moore on drums and Greg Nielsen on trombone, for an afternoon of straight-ahead jazz featuring favorites from the Great American Songbook as well as some of Goodman’s own original compositions.
Next up is a “Holiday Jazz Jam Session,” with the Jerry Eckert Trio, Friday, December 19, 2 p.m. Area jazz enthusiasts are invited to enjoy the fun as this popular trio, comprised of pianist Jerry Eckert, drummer Lenny Balistreri and bassist Bruce Wallace, invites other area jazz musicians and vocalists to join them on stage for an afternoon of swinging holiday jazz.
December’s last Jazz at Two concert mixes it up with the jazz and blues sounds of Ron Kraemer and his quartet, Friday, December 26, 2 p.m. Ron Kraemer is a noted blues, jazz and swing guitarist who has been hailed as one of the “swingin’est players” on the scene and who attracts an enthusiastic following wherever he performs. Kraemer will be handling guitar and vocal duties, as drummer Michael Finley, upright bassist Joe Porter and keyboardist Robbie Rose join him for a rousing afternoon of toe-tapping jazz and soulful blues.
Dave Walrath, president of the Jazz Club of Sarasota, urges audiences to come enjoy the sounds of December’s eclectic and talented array of musicians. “We’ve decked the halls of the UU church with some of the best jazz in Sarasota!”
For more information about the Jazz Club of Sarasota, call 941-366-1552, or visit www.jazzclubsarasota.org
About the Jazz Club of Sarasota
The Jazz Club of Sarasota’s mission is to promote, preserve, and educate people about jazz, the original American art form. Founded in 1980 by the late Hal Davis, the club presents ongoing concert series, events, lectures and the annual Sarasota Jazz Festival.