Whether you have an appreciation for the epic, lulling melodies of Miles Davis; the soul-bending, scat singing of Ella Fitzgerald; or have yet to discover your hero in this American-rooted genre, the city has many secret corners resonating with the vibrant, airy whispers of timeless American jazz. And one week a year, the city attracts musicians and aficionados from around the country and the world to unite and celebrate the current trends in Jazz. The University of Louisville 2014 Jazz Fest runs from February 27th through March 1st. These free concerts take place on the Belknap Campus School of Music, in the Margaret Comstock Hall, starting at 8pm.
Thursday Feb 27th – Bruno Mangueira, jazz and bossa nova guitarist/composer from Brazil, will share his works for guitar, jazz ensembles, and orchestra.
Friday Feb 28th – Christian McBride, jazz bassist and three-time Grammy Award winner, will be performing with his trio, in addition to performing and directing his compositions and arrangements with the University Jazz Ensemble 1.
Saturday March 1st – Sean Jones, trumpeter and composer, will perform his poignant and expressive love songs with the Jazz Ensemble and the Faculty Jazz Ensemble.
But after Jazz Fest has come and gone, the city’s local talent still echo the melodious fragments of an American history not lost. New jazz-seekers can get their fix nearly every night of the week, whether it is for a perfect romantic date night, a casual meeting for drinks with friends, or an escape of solitary reflection. You might even discover your own jazz hero.
Monkey Wrench – Jazz Jam on Tuesdays at 8pm (1025 Barret Ave) free
Decca – “The Buzzard” every Monday night in the cellar, from 8pm – 11pm. (812 E Market St) free
Nachbar – Jacob Duncan and the band every Wednesday night, 10pm (969 Charles St) free
Eddie Merlots – The Bobby Falk Group, every Friday from 7 - 11 and Saturday from 8 – 12 (455 S 4th St # 102) free
Comedy Caravan – Don Krekel Orchestra every third Monday of the month 7:15 – 9:15pm (1250 Bardstown Road 40204) $10
Stevie Rays – The Culligan Men Band on Wednesdays starting at 9 pm (230 E Main) no cover
Volare – Carly Johnson and Craig Wagner every Friday night from 8 – 11 (2300 Frankfort Ave) free
Varanese – The Jeff Sherman Trio every Friday and Saturday night from 6:30 – 10 (2106 Frankfort Ave) free
St. Charles’ Exchange – Carly Johnson and Craig Wagner every Wednesday night at 6 (113 S 7th) free
Sake Blue Japanese Bistro – Craig Wagner, Todd Hildreth, and Mike Hyman every Tuesday night from 6:30 – 9:30 (9326 cedar center way) free
Blu Italian grill – Dave Clark Jazz Trio for Sunday Brunch from 10:30 am to 2pm (280 W Jefferson) brunch buffet is $22.95 a person
Photo: Shutterstock / Ozger Aybike Sarikaya