On Stage

William Paterson Jazz Room Series

Click image for details.

Inaugurated in the spring of 1978, the Jazz Room Series at William Paterson's Shea Center is the longest-running campus-based jazz concert series in the nation. With a tradition of encompassing the complete spectrum of jazz from New Orleans to the avant-garde, it features world-class professionals and William Paterson student ensembles. There are three series of concerts each year, including the six-concert Fall and Spring Jazz Room Series, and the weeklong Summer Jazz Room held the third week of July. 

The Jazz Room has received over two decades of continuous grant support from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, as well as numerous grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation. The series has been featured on national and metropolitan-area media, including recorded broadcasts and live CD recording sessions. The Jazz Room Series is directly connected to the William Paterson Jazz Studies Program. Unique among college and university programs, the Jazz Studies program is one of the few in the nation with an emphasis on small-group playing, improvisation, and a genuine commitment to the jazz tradition. Founded by music faculty member Martin Krivin and joined by trumpeter/arranger Thad Jones in 1973, the program was led by bassist Rufus Reid for twenty years, then by the great jazz pianists James Williams, Mulgrew Miller, and most recently Bill Charlap, who accepted the position in fall 2015. The program is co-led and coordinated by David Demsey. .

This season's featured artists include vocalist Karrin Allyson, saxophone virtuoso Gary Smulyan, Sprit of Life horn ensemble, and saxophonist Steve Wilson. Click on the image above for details.

Live Jazz Every Tues & Thurs 7-10 pm
Tavern on George
361 George St. New Brunswick

Click image to learn more.

New Brunswick Jazz Project is a non-profit organization dedicated to presenting world class jazz performances in downtown New Brunswick & other Central Jersey venues. Since its inception in 2010 NBJP has gone from presenting two jazz performances a month, to offering FREE year around shows, four nights every week. The Jazz Project has successfully fostered a supportive environment for regular live jazz performance in New Brunswick and has presented more than 700 events featuring over 1000 acclaimed national and international jazz leaders, sidemen and special guests, including among many others: Arturo O’Farrill, John Lee, Ed Cherry, Dave Stryker, Akiko Tsuruga, Roseanna Vitro, Mimi Jones, Jerry Weldon, Rudy Royston, Virginia Mayhew, Luis Perdomo, Dezron Douglas, Joe Magnarelli, Ralph Peterson, Steve Williams, Kenny Davis, Tia Fuller, Orrin Evans, Jared Gold, Tim Ries, Victor Lewis, Conrad Herwig, and Ravi Coltrane.

NBJP also regularly partners with the New Brunswick Public Schools and the Hub Teen Center to provide after-school enrichment programming in the form of jazz performances with student participation and talk backs.

300x150_DaveGrusin_web_TDMoody17 (2)
James Moody Jazz Festival

Click image for details.

This year’s program presents a unique bill of genre-crossing collaborative concerts that reflects both musical form and its force for and response to social change. The stellar lineup includes vocal powerhouses starting with Dee Dee Bridgewater joined by New Jersey-based pianist Bill Charlap (Nov 3), followed by Lisa Fischer in a special performance with Gullah band Ranky Tanky (Nov 9), the multifaceted Cuban legend Omara Portuondo (Nov 10) on her Farewell Tour, 10-time GRAMMY Award-winning a cappella group Take 6 in a unique pairing with tap dancer Hillary-Marie(Nov 11), Gladys Knight and New Orleans pianist/vocalist Davell Crawford (Nov 12), and the spirit of Newark’s own Sarah Vaughan at the 12th annual SASSY Awards (Nov 19). Other highlights include: NEA Jazz Master and South African cultural icon Abdullah Ibrahim making his NJPAC debut in an intimate performance with his Trio (Nov 12); and explorations of jazz’s impact on Musical Theater and Film with the production of Sound of (Black) Music reimagining of Rogers & Hammerstein’s classic (Nov 16) as well as tribute concerts to prolific film composer Dave Grusin (Nov 17) and to Disney and its iconic tunes from the past 100 years (Nov 17). "Probably my favorite quote about performing is from Cannonball Adderley: 'I give the audience 50% of what they want to hear, and 50% of what I think they need to hear,' " says NJPAC Jazz Advisor Christian McBride, who helped curate the Festival schedule. "As an artist, I think that's a smart balance. Whatever your favorite kind of music is, you'll hear it at some point in this festival."

Complete Festival details can be found at NJPAC.org/jazz.

Celebrate the Middlesex County Jazz Festival Debut September 28 through October 1st. Enjoy great jazz and experience the communities of New Brunswick, Woodbridge, Edison, Perth Amboy and Metuchen with their great music, food, and friendliness. 

 The idea of a Middlesex County wide jazz festival developed when the leaders of musical events in each of the 5 towns realized that each of the towns produces live musical events including jazz. This common experience of neighboring towns and our love of jazz music was the seed which led to a cooperative dialogue and agreement to join to create this cross-town event. 

New Brunswick Jazz Project has been producing jazz in New Brunswick twice a week for the last 13 years. Woodbridge presents concerts of all types for its residents every evening during the summer, including jazz. Perth Amboy presents a variety of concerts along its harbor. Metuchen Jazz presents a jazz event once a month. Edison has a strong jazz program in its high schools. So, why not bring all the towns together and make a Jazz Festival? 

 New Brunswick Jazz Project, with its experience in jazz festival production agreed to lead the development of the Middlesex County Jazz Festival and, with input from each of the 5 towns, submitted a grant application to Middlesex County Board of Commissioners for MCJF. The MCJF planning team thanks Middlesex County Board of County Commissioners for a Grant Award from the Middlesex County Cultural and Arts Trust Fund which is being shared equally among the 5 towns to fund the talented musicians who will perform, starting the evening of September 28 through the afternoon of October 1, 2023.

 For details and artist lineup visit https://middlesexcountyjazzfestival.org

Jazz Currents & Education
Global Jazz 

RSS The Free Jazz Collective
  • Steve Lehman with Orchestre National de Jazz – Ex Machina (Pi Recordings, 2023)
    By Troy Dostert A relentlessly innovative saxophonist who must always face the challenge of doing something he hasn’t already accomplished, Steve Lehman once again breaks new ground on his latest, Ex Machina, a big-band effort that makes superb use of electronics to augment the composer’s vision. Joined by the Orchestre National de Jazz, Lehman relishes […]

Jazz at Lincoln Center


RSS Jazz Guitar Education
  • Top 12 Distortion Pedals In 2023 - Guitar Gear Review
    Distortion pedals are essential tools for guitarists seeking to shape and enhance their tone. In this guide with YouTube video demos, we'll explore the 12 best distortion pedals available today (sound, build quality, specifications, pros, and cons), each offering its unique sonic character and versatility. Whether you crave the warmth of vintage overdrive, fuzz or […]
  • Dominant 7 Chord Extensions - Infographic With Guitar Neck Diagrams
    This brief guitar theory lesson explains what is a dominant 7 chord and the possible extensions (natural and altered) thanks to a printable infographic containing two neck diagrams.
Reviews & CD Picks
ridl stds
The Jim Ridl Trio - Standards Live

Released 2022, this is a live recording of standards and  originals with Jim Ridl piano, Tim Lekan bass, Bob Shomo drums.
Bill O'Connell Latin Jazz

This ensemble embraces a broad stylistic swath of jazz, Latin and Brazilian idioms and experiments with  intimate to large groups. 
Bill O’Connell – piano and Fender Rhodes, Lincoln Goines – bass, Robby Ameen – drums with special guests Randy Brecker – flugelhorn, Craig Handy – alto sax, Conrad Herwig – trombone, Andrea Brachfeld – flute, and Dan Carillo – guitar.

Steve LaSpina - A Change in the Weather

This is bassist, Steve LaSpina’s 12th album as a leader, and explores some of his old tunes, as well as new works. It gives the listener a rare opportunity to experience how original compositions in jazz develop after decades of live performance. PERSONNEL: Steve LaSpina - bass, Joel Frahm - tenor & soprano saxophone, Luis Perdomo - piano, and Eric McPherson - drums.

Reggie Quinerly New York Nowhere

Drummer, Reggie Quinerly, offers his latest album as a fond good-bye as he relocates to Los Angeles.  The quintet of trumpeter Antoniene Drye, tenor saxophonist John Ellis, pianist John Chin, and bassist Sean Conly,  recorded their seven tracks together in one room, old school.

Arturo O'Farrill - Four Questions

Four Questions is a 2020 album by Arturo O'Farrill and the Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra. It won the 2021 Grammy Award for Best Latin Jazz Album.  Label: Zoho Music

Andy Fusco - Remembrance

Veteran alto man Andy Fusco has appeared on many sessions over the years including his work with the Buddy Rich big band and sideman duties with the likes of Walt Weiskopf and drummer Steve Smith. Bravo to Steeplechase Records who have given him the opportunity to record an album a year with this being his fifth release.

George Coleman in Baltimore

Previously Unreleased Live Tenor Sax Giant George Coleman from The Ballroom in Baltimore,1971

Matt Aronoff
Morning Song
Composer: Matt Aronoff (b. 1980)
Label: Adhyâropa Records
Performers: Matt Aronoff (bass), Jason Rigby (tenor sax), Yago Vazquez (Frender Rhodes), Henry Cole (drums)
Helping Hands
unnamed (2)

Ken Peplowski Fund Raiser Wrap-up

Downbeat Magazine called Ken Peplowski "brilliantly entertaining" and his fans around the world agree. Ken is as at home on the concert stage as he is an intimate jazz club. Wherever you have seen him, he has given each of us tremendous pleasure with his masterful clarinet and saxophone playing and his warm, funny personality.

A dear friend and renowned jazz guitarist, Frank Vignola, created a Go Fund Me Campaign to help Ken that is now completed with over $125,ooo raised. Ken thanks everyone who contributed and we feel happy that he is on the road to recovery.