Category: Upcoming shows

Dan Loomis: Jobs Trials

Dan Loomis: Jobs Trials

Tomorrow night at 8:00pm, I’m performing Dan Loomis’ Jobs Trials at Ibeam in Brooklyn.

This music is based on the bible’s Book of Job. There are great musicians performing alongside with me. A wonderful singer out on the scene from Korea, Songyi Jeon, great guitarist, Jeff Miles, Nathan Ellman-Bell on drums (where did this guy come from? Awesome!), the all inspiring leader,composer and bassist, Dan Loomis and yours truly on voice.
Howard Fishman is our narrator and there will be some beautiful artwork by Sean Gallagher.

This is going to be epic!

Ten Days Till Carnegie Hall

Ten Days Till Carnegie Hall

I still can’t believe that in 10 days I will be on stage at Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall singing. Ok, I have been blessed before and I have sung at Carnegie Hall in 2015 and 2014 but you see, it still blows me away every time I think about it.

I have had my struggles with health especially close to performance time. Last year, it was a miracle that I sang a concert. I was so sick that I could barely talk two days before. Some how I managed to get through it but got laryngitis two days after (but hey, that’s ok! – I did it)

This year, I am having some of the worst allergies and I am mildly freaked out by the possibility of getting laryngitis from the post nasal nastiness that allergies bring on.

So I am praying to all the gods, getting lots of rest and hoping that the voice will dominate rather than the allergy.

Here’s to optimistic wishing!

I Am Playing Carnegie Hall!

I Am Playing Carnegie Hall!

The title says it all folks. I am playing Carnegie Hall on March 25th, 8:00pm at the Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall.

Can I tell you that I’m excited? I am excited!! I hope you buy a ticket cause it’s going to be a blast!

See you in two weeks!

Buy tickets here

Shows To Check Out Before 2014 Ends!

Shows To Check Out Before 2014 Ends!

We are coming into our last two weeks of 2014 (holy crap!) There are some great performances that I highly recommend you all to go see.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014 8:30pm

Jesse Stacken‘s Helleborus CD Release Concert
Jesse Stacken – piano and compositions
Tony Malaby – saxophone
Sean Conly – bass
Tom Rainey – drums

Cornelia Street Café
29 Cornelia Street
New York, NY 10014
212-989-9319

This show will be wonderful. Look at that line up! Jesse is a fabulous pianist who writes wonderful compositions. If you have a chance, check out his website here.

Friday, December 19, 2014, 7:30pm

Lyra Faculty perform at Tenri
Mu Phi Epsilon Founders’ Day Recital

Tenri Cultural Institute
43 W 13th St, New York, NY 10011

Akiko Sasaki – piano
Marc Szammer – violin
Andrew Janss – cello

This performance is going to be awesome. This trio will be performing the monstrous Rachmaninoff Élégiaque Trio No. 2, Op.9. (Akiko did a run through for me at my place many months ago. I thought my piano was going to fall apart!) A must see!

Saturday, December 20, 2014, 9:00pm

Jacob Sacks Quintet

Jacob Sacks – piano, compositions
Jacob Garchik – trombone
Ben Gerstein – trombone
Thomas Morgan – bass
Dan Weiss – drums

Cornelia Street Café
29 Cornelia Street
New York, NY 10014
212-989-9319

I am totally bummed that I won’t be seeing this quintet on Saturday (holiday travel *sigh*) This quintet has been around for as long as I have been in NYC. This is a special group and should be experienced by everyone! Go check it out.

Friday and Saturday, December 26 and 27, 9:00pm

Open Loose

Tony Malaby – tenor saxophone
Mark Helias – bass
Tom Rainey – drums

Cornelia Street Café
29 Cornelia Street
New York, NY 10014
212-989-9319

Look at the line up! Enough said…

Sunday,December 28th,2014, 7:00pm

Ras Moshe-Reeds & Flute
Kyoko Kitamura-Voice
Joe Gallant-Bass
Reuben Radding-Bass
Sean Conly-Bass

(8:30pm-Steve Gauci-Ken Filiano-Yoni Kretzmer-Michael Wimberly)

Why Not Jazz Room
14 Christopher St. NYC

For you free improvising jazz folk out there, this performance will be up your alley. With three bass players in the band, it’s gonna get deep. Check out the next band after Ras’ project. (I worked with Michael Wimberly this past semester up in Vermont and he is awesome!)

Tuesday, December 30, 2014, 8:30pm

Tom Rainey Trio

Tom Rainey – drums
Mary Halvorson – guitar
Ingrid Laubrock – tenor saxophone

Cornelia Street Café
29 Cornelia Street
New York, NY 10014
212-989-9319

Tom Rainey is one of my favorite drummers and musician and Mary and Ingrid are superb. Go and check it out.

Ok, that’s all folks. I hope to catch one of these before I go on holidays and I hope you check some of them out too. These performances are not to be missed.

Enjoy the music and happy holidays!!

December’s Artist Feature: Dana Lyn

December’s Artist Feature: Dana Lyn

Once again, I have dropped the ball and didn’t quite make my November artist feature. However, I have managed to put together this month’s feature on the amazingly talented violinist, pianist, and composer Dana Lyn. I have known Dana for over a decade and for a short period we were also housemates. (Dana taught me how to truly appreciate vegetarian soup!) I have seen and heard incredible music whenever Dana is involved.

Dana moved to NYC in 2000 and has gone through some interesting transformations during her 15 years here. When I met Dana, I knew her only as an Irish fiddler, which was her main focus until about 2007. After that, Dana began performing music by Bach, writing string arrangements for various music groups, and composing string quartets and other original music. Dana’s vast artistic versatility has made her an incredible force in the NYC music scene.

Dana’s main current musical project is her band, Mother Octopus, which performs Dana’s original compositions. This band has been in existence since 2011 under other names such as Yeti Camp and Aqualude but the members have always been cellist Clara Kennedy, guitarist Kyle Sanna, drummer Vinnie Sperrazza and multi-wind instrumentalist Mike McGinnis. Another important project is her duo with Kyle Sanna. A new recording of this duo will be coming out in the near future following their debut recording called, “The Hare Said a Prayer to the Rainbow and Followed the Fox Down the Hole” (2011). This last CD is a wonderful listen and a top pick for my husband. Another recording worth mentioning is “Bach Reformed” by Dana and Rob Moose (who plays tenor guitar and mandolin on it). The repertoire comes from J.S. Bach’s Suites for Unaccompanied Cello and the Sonatas and Partitas for Violin Solo, with the material arranged as duets.

Dana also has a project with actor Vincent D’Onofrio called “Slim Bone Head Volt”. This work is based on D’Onofrio’s journal entries which Dana creates music for. This duo will be releasing their first recording on March 3, 2015.

The string quartet Brooklyn Rider commissioned Dana to compose a work called “Maintenance Music” for their Brooklyn Rider Almanac. Dana also wrote eight string quintet arrangements of traditional Irish fiddle music for the Apple Hill Quartet which has a recording due out next year.

One more thing to mention is that this past summer Dana was musical director of Family Album, a musical by the Tony award winning team Stew and Heidi Rodewald.

You can see Dana perform with Mother Octopus Sunday, December 14th, 8:00pm at the Firehouse Space in Brooklyn. She will also be at The Living Room with Matt Kanelos on December 17 ay 8:00pm. Slim Bone 7ead Volt will be at Joe’s Pub on December 20 at 7:00pm to close out Dana’s performances for the year. If you have the opportunity to check out Dana’s performances, I recommend that you go and see all the shows to really experience the breadth of Dana’s musical talent. You will not be disappointed.

June’s Artist Feature: Benjamin Scheuer

June’s Artist Feature: Benjamin Scheuer

This month’s artist feature is the remarkable and talented song-writer, guitarist, singer and actor Benjamin Scheuer. I have known Ben for more than a decade and seen this wonderful musician grow into the amazing talent that he is now.

Ben is a foodie. It is guaranteed that if Ben hosts a party, there will be incredible food to be had. When Ben came to my child’s first birthday party I was in disbelief watching Ben continuously eating the fish tacos I had set out that day. I take that as a compliment.

Ben has a remarkable story and it feels challenging to try and tell it in a few paragraphs.

Originally from Westchester, NY Ben settled himself in NYC in 2005 and by then had already recorded with his bands, The Capability and Call the Cops. Soon there after he recorded with his other band Escapist Papers (2006) and collaborated with fellow songwriter and bassist Geoff Kraly in Lady Clown (2007).

In 2007 Ben wrote an original musical with librettist Zoe Samuel called “Jihad!: The Musical” that premiered at the Fringe Festival in Glasgow followed by the premiere in London in 2010. Also, in that summer, Ben was invited to be part of the Johnny Mercer Songwriter’s Workshop. Things were going strong and Ben was continuing his artistic pursuits until the unexpected happened. In 2011 Ben was diagnosed with stage 4 Hodgkins Lymphoma. He underwent six months of chemotherapy and as of now I am so happy to say, is cancer free. During and after cancer treatment Ben began to record his sophomore recording with Escapist Papers called “The Bridge”. A video was made for the track, “The Lion” (which yours truly sang additional vocals for) has received four international awards for best video. You can view this amazing video here.

Ben was invited to be part of Lincoln Center’s “Songbook Series” (Broadway’s Future) in January 2012. During this experience Ben realized that a story needed to be told. In the following year, Ben was invited to the Goodspeed Theater and there he met director Sean Daniels. Sean and Ben began to develop Ben’s storybook and has now become the musical called “The Lion.”

Ben performed the early draft of “The Lion” (which at the time was still called, “The Bridge”) at the Fringe Festival in 2013 and received the Best Lyrics award for “The Bridge” and in the same year was awarded the ASCAP Foundation’s Cole Porter Award for Song Writing. (On top of being a great song writer, Ben is an incredibly generous individual; he donated the funds from his award to the Leukemia Lymphoma Society).

You can see Ben perform his new musical “The Lion” at the Manhattan Theater Club now until July 13th. Tickets are only $30 and I urge all of you to see this moving and wonderful performance. During cancer treatments, photographer Riya Lerner did a weekly documentation of Ben’s journey along with Ben’s journal entries and created a book with graphic designer, Lia Strasser called “Between Two Spaces” which will be available at www.BetweenTwoSpaces.com. All sales will be donated to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

Benjamin Scheuer is earnest, charming, fun loving person whose generosity is moving and humbling. He is a musical force to be reckoned with and I am so honored to call him a colleague and friend. Go see The Lion everyone. You will not be disappointed.

May’s Artist Feature: Jacob Sacks

May’s Artist Feature: Jacob Sacks

Pianist, composer and educator Jacob Sacks is this month’s artist feature. I have known Jacob for more than 15 years, and performed and collaborated with him almost from the start. He is an artist with integrity, honesty and deep artistry. From the very first time I heard him perform, I knew he was special. Jacob is an adventurous, free spirit with a deep knowledge, love, and respect for improvising and creative expression.

We’ve shared countless meals at my home, his home, on the road, and everywhere else. Jacob a foodie and an awesome baker who, lucky for my husband, me and my son, loves to share his creations (cookie bars ring a bell, Chris – Ha!). Birthdays are always a treat when you know Jacob Sacks is baking the cake! Jacob’s favorite Korean dish is a dry anchovy side dish called “mulchi” (sounds unappetizing but guaranteed delicious when prepared correctly). Jacob discovered this particular dish while having a home cooked meal from my mom.

Jacob arrived in NYC in 1996, starting out as a student at the Manhattan School of Music. Since that time, he has been known around town and elsewhere as a badass pianist and improviser. Jacob is a long-time member of multiple bands such as Eivind Opsvik’s Over Seas, Dan Weiss Trio, David Binney band, Ohad Tolmar Quintet, the late Paul Motian ensemble, my E-String Toy Band and our long time duo collaboration. Jacob is on numerous recordings (too many to mention) and is regularly performing on the NYC creative music scene.

We’ve made three duo albums together, Soulmates (2002), Imagination (2008), and one which will come out this fall. Jacob and I are also both on a collective quintet album called 4inObjects (2006). Of course, my long time collaboration with Jacob has truly been a highlight throughout my musical life. Playing with Jacob has made me into a better musician and artist.

Another wonderful side to Jacob’s musical skills is that he is an amazing teacher. I am always blown away by how clearly he presents musical concepts to young musicians and how he can get the students to explore and try out something that may feel new and unfamiliar. Jacob’s knowledge of the jazz tradition is kind of awesome and I feel like a student myself when he is talking about recordings, musical style and jazz musicians throughout history.

Jacob and I will be performing on Wednesday, May 28th, at Carnegie Hall and he will also be performing with his trio, Dan Weiss on drums and Thomas Morgan on bass in the second half of the program. If you are in NYC, come and see this rare performance on one of the world’s most reputable stages.

On a more personal note, Jacob is my best friend. A kind, warm and generous individual that gives everything he’s got to his friends and music. I look forward to many more years of fun filled, crazy music with Jacob Sacks and of course, lots of his home-made birthday cake!

See you at Carnegie Hall!

April’s Artist Feature: Khabu Doug Young

April’s Artist Feature: Khabu Doug Young

This month’s artist feature is an amazing musician and creative improviser. Khabu Doug Young is a guitarist extraordinaire and a superb ukulele player. I have known Khabu for about 13 years and worked with him for almost 10 years. Khabu and I have shared the stage and the classroom many times over the years and it has always been both a wonderful learning experience and a fulfilling artistic one.

Khabu is also a real foodie. He is extra lucky because his lovely Venetian wife is an incredible cook (and singer!) Khabu is pretty darn good in the kitchen also. Khabu loves kimchi, which puts him in my good books. We share a love for the Venetian dish Bigoi in Salsa, a pasta dish made with onions and anchovies which I love to make (thank you Elena!)

Khabu has been playing music in NYC for almost 20 years and over the past 12 years he has added ukulele to his performances. He has been involved in projects like his band, My Russian Dragon (this band pre-dates his NYC arrival) with Art Lande, Dwight Kilian, Bruce Williamson and other special guest band members Shane Endsley, Mark Miller and Paul McCandless; SLOG with Brian Drye, Greg Joseph and the late Bob Bowen; and his duo with multi-instrumentalist, Kurt Reber. Currently Khabu continues to perform with Art Lande and now has a duo project with vocalist, Elena Camerin; is a member of The E-String Band (my toy instrument band); and his newest band with Bruce Williamson, Mike McGinnis and Harris Eisenstadt. Khabu also does a monthly show with yours truly and Elena Camerin.

Khabu is a unique music educator and I have learned so much by working with him over the years. Here’s why: I have rarely met anyone as good as Khabu is at teaching students to really express themselves without conscious judgement or ego interfering. Regardless of the skill level, he just has that knack for getting people to open up and discover something about their own spontaneity that they had been overlooking. That’s why when we taught classes together, I always came away having learned a lot myself.

You can check out Khabu’s latest project this coming Friday, April 11, 7:00pm at Brooklyn Conservatory of Music. Here is the listing.

It is an incredible thing when you meet someone who is as open minded and free spirited in the way Khabu is. I love that he is so willing to go and take any type of musical adventure with you. I feel privileged to play music with Khabu and I hope that you take the opportunity to discover this wonderful musician.

Looking forward to playing with you next month Bhu!

Jazz For The Family This Sunday

Jazz For The Family This Sunday

My monthly performance at my neighborhood cafe is happening this Sunday at 4:00pm. Lark Cafe is a bright space where families can come and enjoy lunch, brunch, coffee, beer, donuts, ice cream and pie all while listening to yours truly and my friends, Elena Camerin on voice and Khabu Young on baritone guitar (not sure what a baritone guitar is, come by on Sunday and find out).

Here are the details:

Sunday, November 17
4:00pm (one set only)
Lark Cafe
1007 Church Ave
Ditmas Park, Brooklyn

$5 per person

Jazz For The Family Today

Jazz For The Family Today

I am doing my first jazz gig where I can bring my son and not worry how late its going to go. I am doing a gig with my good friends Khabu (ukulele) and Mike McGinnis (bass clarinet) at Lark Cafe (1007 Church Ave, Brooklyn, NY), 4:00pm.
Lark is very child friendly with a little hang out room for the family (that’s where we’ll be playing). Toys for the kids and donuts and beer for the grown ups! This is also one of the only shows that I will exclusively sing jazz standards (something I haven’t done in years).
This is going to be fun.

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