Tonight, Get Your Smoker On
It is always nice to see John "The Smoker" Kocur again. Now teaching at NoVa, Kocur keeps busy with work and life in northern Virginia, making his occasional D.C. performances a special treat. Especially in this case, when the alto saxophonist is in front of a new quartet. Six-(nylon-)string ace Cristian Perez is the one holdover from the quintet that recorded last year's Fortitude album (whose songs, along with those of 2009's The Smoker, nonetheless form much of the band's set). The new blood includes bassist Charlie Himel and the explosive, imaginative drummer Isabelle De Leon. That said, Amy Bormet, Kocur's former pianist who now resides in Los Angeles, is in town and will be putting in a special guest appearance. The band is adding new material to its set of previously released tunes, making it an exciting excursion for local jazz fans. The John Kocur Quartet performs at 8 and 10 p.m. at Twins Jazz, 1344 U Street NW. $10.