Jazz in Kentucky: Upcoming shows from Brad Linde’s Team Players, Pat Metheny, and Chris Schlarb

In local news, there’s some solid music coming up on the calendar.

I’ve got three shows to tell you about.


Brad Linde’s Team Players in Lexington on Tuesday, July 22nd at Natasha’s Bistro & Bar and in Louisville on Wednesday, July 23rd at Dreamland.

Brad LindeThe quartet of saxophonists Brad Linde and Billy Wolfe, guitarist Aaron Quinn, and drummer Deric Dickens have their feet planted dead center of the modern jazz scene.  That perfect mix of post-bop structure and free improv activity means it’ll be show where a typical Jazz sound will undergo sudden changes in tempo and direction, either taking sharp turns at unusual angles or simply shedding its form in a mass sonic dispersal.  Or, said differently, it’s music that will switch between the familiar and the strange, challenging and fun, both.  The quartet is currently touring in support of their new album, Draft.

They’ll be playing at Natasha’s Bistro & Bar in Lexington on Tuesday, 7/22/14, and then the following night, Wednesday, they’ll be at Dreamland on 7/23/14.  Natasha’s has a solid history of hosting jazz shows, and Dreamland appears to be a re-purposed venue, expanding out from more than just movies.   Colin Stetson performed there recently, and definitely seems like a viable option for touring jazz artists to make a Louisville stop.

The Natasha’s Lexington show starts at 8pm.  Tickets are $6.

The Dreamland Louisville opens the doors at 7pm.  Tickets are $7.

Find out more about the artists and venues by following the links attached to their names above.


Pat Metheny Unity Group in Louisville on Sunday, July 27th at Kentucky Country Day School Theater

Pat MethenyWidely considered one of the all-time great guitarists, Pat Metheny & his Unity Group bring their jazz-pop fusion to Louisville in support of their new album, Kin.  While generally known for his sometimes too-syrupy brand of jazz fusion in the eighties, Metheny has, in fact, expanded the breadth of his creative range far outside that too-small characterization.  A memorable recording with Ornette Coleman, also one on the John Zorn Book of Angels project, his solo mechanized Rube-Goldberg project, Orchestration, as well as his collaboration with modern great, Brad Melhdau all serve of evidence that Metheny’s creative development didn’t end decades ago.

His new album, Kin, is a pretty strong effort, and while it expresses itself different from recordings of the past, it still has many of the trademark Metheny characteristics.  You’re going to get your thick melodies, there’s going to be plenty of dramatic surges of intensity, and there will be a pop music lightness to all of it.  These are good things, and live, it’s going to translate even better than on the recorded medium.

As one might expect of a musician of Metheny’s caliber, his Unity Group is comprised of Jazz all-stars, with Chris Potter on woodwinds, Antonio Sanchez on drums, Ben Williams on bass, and multi-instrumentalist Giulio Carmassi.  They’re touring in support of their new album, Kin.

The show is being held in Louisville on 7.27.14 at the Kentucky Country Day School Theater. which has also hosted jazz shows featuring Laurence Hobgood and Ernie Watts.

Doors open at 7pm, show starts at 8pm.  Tickets range between $55 – $65.


Chris Schlarb in Owensboro on Tuesday, July 29th at Daviess County Public Library

Chris Schlarb tour photoGuitarist Chris Schlarb is touring in support of his new album Making the Saint. Half of the I Heart Lung free improv duo, Schlarb made his mark on the scene with the increasingly complex Psychic Temple project, which incorporated live and pre-recorded music in a majestic pastiche of artists, instruments, and genres, and included collaborations with an all-star cast from jazz, rock, metal, and classical fields. Now he’s stepping back. While secluding himself in middle-of-nowhere California, locked in a century-old cabin with just his guitars, some electronic effects and recording equipment, Schlarb laid down an EP of new music. This guitar-centered ambient recording doesn’t do anything to harm his reputation as an artist who transcends genre classification. Music that should appeal to fans of Brian Eno’s ambient work or the guitar-dreaminess of Roy Montgomery, Schlarb offers up much of the odd serenity and warped imagery that informed previous recordings, but where before they were elements of a larger whole, on his current project, he immerses himself into the heart of it all.

Expect to be taken along for that same ride.

Schlarb will be stopping in Kentucky at the Daviess County Public Library (Owensboro, KY) on Tuesday, 7/29/14, with the show scheduled to start at 6:30.

Here’s a LINK to the library site, where you can find more details.

For those of you unable to make the Owensboro gig, he’s playing the night previous in Cincinnati and the subsequent night he’s got a show up in Indianapolis. Here’s a LINK to Chris Schlarb’s site, for additional information.

And here’s a LINK to Schlarb’s Bandcamp page, where you listen to & purchase his new album, released on the Asthmatic Kitty label. And not for nothing, also check out both of his Psychic Temple recordings… it’s some of the most amazing music that’s come out over the last handful of years.


And, yes, I’m still attempting to keep my Notes From The Holler site relevant.  Subscribe so you don’t miss out on the infrequent times I post show announcements and reviews there.  Eventually I’ll move all of my Jazz in Kentucky posts off Bird is the Worm and keep it separate on Notes From The Holler.  Eventually.