Jazz Setlist, Feb. 7-13: Neither Heid Nor Hare, Joshua Redman, Ralph Peterson, D.C. Jazz Loft
Thursday, Feb. 7
Andrew Hare is The Melodic Drummer. That's the name of his always fascinating blog and book, but more to the point, it describes his approach to the instrument. Hare looks to build arrangements, accompaniments, and solos with the structure and phrasing that we usually associate with melody. And he does it without sacrificing rhythmic power, an impressive compound. Hare doesn't often play as a leader (he tends to be busy teaching at D.C.'s Levine School of Music), though he's a popular sideman; at the moment, though, he's got a nice co-leadership gig happening with organist Bill Heid. They call it "Neither Heid Nor Hare"—"I can't resist a good pun," he says—and include the city's most incisive sax player, Lyle Link. The music is straightahead, bluesy, and perhaps most importantly, raunchy. You'll like it. Neither Heid Nor Hare perform at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. at Twins Jazz, 1344 U St. NW. $10.
Photo: Amy K. Bormet
Friday, Feb. 8
There's certainly a lot of melody flowing through Joshua Redman's tenor sax playing, enough that it's usually the component I mention first when I talk about him. But he's not so one-dimensional. Further listening reveals how tight Redman's grip on the beat is; he likes a muscular, hard-swinging rhythm section, and even when creating melodies he clings to that rhythm like a coat of paint. Redman, then, is the heir to the Sonny Rollins saxophone tradition, with his muscular swagger and unshakable swing, and his influence on the music is still steadily growing. He's one of those musicians you simply have to see. Joshua Redman performs at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. at Blues Alley, 1073 Wisconsin Ave. NW. $40.
Saturday, Feb. 9
In the jazz resurgence of the '80s, if bandleaders weren't calling Jeff "Tain" Watts for a drumming gig, they were calling Ralph Peterson. And Tain was employed for specific purposes—his head-spinning rhythmic shifts—meaning that Peterson was the real go-to of the era. He was in his twenties then; now 50, he's only refined his sound in the intervening years. In practical terms, that means he's gone from one of the swingingest drummers of his generation to one of the swingingest you've ever heard. You never knew that the mere tap-tap of the ride cymbal could contain such multitudes, but under Peterson's sticks it's absolutely killing. Put him in a band and watch them groove the place to the ground. Ralph Peterson performs at 8:30 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. at Bohemian Caverns, 2001 11th St. NW. $18.
Sunday, Feb. 10
Is it a second Sunday? Why, yes it is! That means it's CapitalBop Jazz Loft time, and the February edition is a scorcher. There's a Caribbean theme, which means that D.C.'s two major island representatives will be holding court. I speak, of course, of trombonist Reginald Cyntje—now preparing for an ambitious cycle of tone poems called The Love Album—and steelpan man Victor Provost, the unique stylist whom City Paper named 2012's Jazz Artist of the Year. Cyntje's and Provost's bands will both perform from their current repertoire (look for pieces from The Love Album from Cyntje). But they don't complete the evening's program: Quincy Phillips, the irrepressible drummer for The Young Lions (here in D.C.) and trumpeter Roy Hargrove (nationally and internationally), heads up his own unit as well. The Jazz Loft begins at 7 p.m. at Chez Billy, 3815 Georgia Avenue NW. $15 (suggested donation).