653 Chenery Street
in San Francisco's Glen Park neighborhood

1-415-586-3733
[email protected]

Open to walk-in trade and browsing
Tuesday to Sunday
noon to six

 

Live Streams Every Friday and Saturday at 7:30pm, and more!

View them on our Facebook page or YouTube channel

Sunday, December 3rd – 5pm
Holiday party for student jazz musicians hosted by SFCM’s RJAM program

We’re always pleased when we can  host the talented youth who are enrolled in the Roots, Jazz and American Music undergraduate degree program at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Tonight, it’s their end of the semester holiday party. Food, drink and music!

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Check out our calendar!

Ok, we promise that for 2024, we’ll do a B&B wall calendar again! Some will remember the spectacular calendars featuring store photog Angie Bennett’s concert pix produced for three years running in the late ’00s… But this here post is just to encourage you to check our “Events Calendar” linked in the navigation bar above, which link is reproduced here for your clicking convenience! Big fun ahead always!  

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Yes! Believe your five senses–
shows for in-store audiences
resumed in mid-June 2021,
and continue apace

Bird & Beckett’s events open to the public have been back since mid-June 2021. Mask up if you’re inclined, and do come in! (Not vaxxed? Please get vaxxed and be safer!) Jazz, poetry & more live in the shop and live streamed Come to 653 Chenery if you’re in town! Doors open at 7:20 for our 7:30 shows. $20 cover for trios and quartets $25 for quintets, $30 for sextets, etc. Cash at the door please! BYOB and BYOglass, and pack out what you pack in! Please feel free to wear a mask in the shop. We trust the science and its processes, and we trust SF’s DPH to keep us up to date on best practices! Advised best practices as of early September 2021: Wear a mask indoors around people! Sure you’re vaccinated and even if you contract the virus it’s unlikely to make you sick in any severe…

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O Pioneers of the Cosmostream! We’ve been vaccinating you against the plague of boredom and the scourge of demagoguery with live streamed events twice a week and more since March 2020, when it all came down!

Hungry to hear some of Bird & Beckett’s past live streams? On the home page you can scroll down to read the individual posts for the shows we’ve mounted in the past several months, a hint of what’s gone down since the pandemic lock-down began. In more amazing times, it would take you right back to the very first show of the current period, back on March 12, 2020, but that beautiful skein is no longer quite so easily accessed. Still, the evidence is there for those who dig. The March 12, 2020 show that signaled the shift was a Thursday evening performance by New York saxophonists Jessica and Tony Jones, both alumni of the Berkeley High jazz program, with NYC bassist Stomu Takeishi and local hero Deszon X. Claiborne on drums. The quartet’s booking for the night before at the Backroom over in Berkeley had been cancelled. A few…

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Saturday, December 2nd – 7:30pm
John Calloway’s Fall to Winter Musings

John Calloway has been very busy with his project delving into the intersection between his Filipino and African American roots, particularly the juncture when his grandfather as one of the Buffalo Soldiers deployed to the Philippines.  Tonight, he’ll range freely over the musical territory that he’s built a career on. $20 cover charge. BYOB. Reservations, call 415-586-3733.

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Friday, December 1st – 8:30-10pm
REOTREO PLUS ONE
Kazuto Sato joins the
Robinson – Evangelista – Ochs trio
for one special night of music

REOTREO PLUS ONE Donald Robinson, drums Karl Evangelista, guitar Larry Ochs, reeds plus Kazuto Sato, bass Robinson, Evangelista and Ochs tonight invite the inspiring bassist and long-time Jazzman Kazuto Sato to join their free-jazz band. REOTREO has its roots in the three and a half decades-long association of percussionist Robinson and reed player Ochs, who have collaborated in free and structured improvisation in a duo format privately and publicly since the early 1990s, when they first began working together in saxophonist Glenn Spearman’s Double Trio. The Double Trio released three lps between 1993 and 1996. In 1994, the two colleagues joined with bassist Lisle Ellis in the trio What We Live, which released seven lps between 1994 and 2002. In 1997, Robinson joined with Ochs’ long-standing (since 1977) band, ROVA Saxophone Quartet to record their revivication of John Coltrane’s Ascension. From 2000 to 2010, Ochs and Robinson joined with Scott Amendola…

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Friday, December 1st – 6-8pm
Noel Jewkes Quartet

Noel Jewkes, reeds Randy Vincent, guitar Chris Amberger, bass Josh Setala, drums $20 adult cover charge Under 12 free Teens and music students, $5-10 sliding scale read an insightful article on Noel from SF Classical Voice at this link. Noel Jewkes has long been known as Dr.  Legato by his legion of admirers and praised as a disciple in his playing of Pres, the President, Lester Young, so dubbed by Lady Day. He’s been an acknowledged master of the art of swing on tenor saxophone and all manner of reeds for six decades. For this Bird & Beckett date, he’s assembled a beautiful band that spans generations — right down to the young drummer John Setala, just now finishing up his B.Mus. degree in the San Francisco Conservatory of Music’s Roots, Jazz and American Music program, and already turning heads in the local professional jazz scene..    Bassist Chris Amberger…

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Thursday, November 30th – 7pm
Artist Keith Ferris and writer Lea Smith present
Muni Is My Ride

“If there’s anything we’ve learned about life on Muni, it’s that the interesting stuff happens along the journey, not at the destination. From the nuances of operating a bus on city streets to the small details of our rides and fellow riders, Keith Ferris and Lia Smith have captured the urban humanity within each Muni experience that knits us together.”  —Eugenia Chien and Tara Ramroop, Muni Diaries co-founders. Join artist Keith Ferris and writer Lia Smith, who collaborated to produce Muni is My Ride, just published by Ithuriel’s Spear Press. Also on hand will be Muni operators David Banbury, Mike Gonzalez and Primo Rivera to share some of their stories. Keith and Lia — in his sketches and her profiles based on interviews with Muni personnel and riders alike — show a familiar feature of the urban scene in the kind of subtle detail that expands our perception of a…

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The Shows: November 30th to December 3rd
Thurs. 11/30 at 7pm Muni Is My Ride
Friday 12/1 at 6pm Noel Jewkes Quartet
Friday 12/1 at 8:30pm REOTREO PLUS ONE
Saturday 12/2 at 7:30pm John Calloway’s Fall to Winter Musings
Sunday 12/3 at 5pm SFCM’s RJAM Program Holiday Party

” More fun than you can shake a stick at! Grab a plane to SFO and hop BART to the shop. Or better yet, check in at your hotel first, and ride a Muni bus or streetcar out to the bookshop. The J-Church, running from the Embarcadero out to Balboa Park, near City College, is a lovely ride, and the Muni operator can surely let you know when you’ve reached your destination in Glen Park. Muni is always the thing when you’re bopping around Frisco! Adults! For our concerts, if you bring a twenty and something to sip, you’ll generally be fine! You can call to inquire about a reservation – 415-586-3733. Feel free to do so! Sometimes necessary, often not. It all depends. We stream most of our shows, complete or in parts, so check out the video screen at the top of this web page and you’ll have…

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Sunday, November 26th – 4:30pm
The Cottontails

Karina Denike, vocals Tom Griesser, clarinet and sax Michael MacIntosh, piano Vic Wong, guitar Joe Kyle, Jr., bass Carson Messer, drums $25-35 sliding scale for adults, cash please! Kids under 12 free; teens and music students $5-10 sliding scale Jump jazz, rhythm & blues! The spirit of the ’40s & ’50s with deeper roots and fresh as a daisy! A Thanksgiving tradition at Bird & Beckett. Do come!

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Saturday, November 25th – 7:30pm
Sa!
Devotional poetry of Kabir and Mirabai
as sung by Jonathan Richman

India’s great poet of devotion and love, Mirabai, widowed at a young age, dedicated her life upon her husband’s death to the worship of Krishna. It was a decision that led her parents-in-law to evict her from their home. She spent the rest of her life traveling from village to village, singing and dancing to celebrate her love of Krishna. The rapturous lyrics she wrote enthralled worshipers then and continue to be sung in India today. Kabir, an illiterate weaver, celebrated both Indian and Muslim spirituality while criticizing each religion’s blinkered believers. His clear-eyed expression, his wit and the continued relevance of his cutting insights led to a body of poetry that resonates still. Mirabai and Kabir have enchanted their devotees and fascinated their admirers for five centuries, Jonathan Richman among them. On tambura, Nicole Montalbano accompanies Jonathan as he plays his guitar and sings poems left to us by…

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Friday, November 24th – 8:30-10pm
The New Squatoolas

Jim Peterson, saxes Scott Foster, guitar Joe Kyle, Jr., bass Larry Vann, drums $20 cover charge, byob A Thanksgiving tradition at Bird & Beckett! The New Squatoolas play jazz, blues & R&B with a deep New Orleans groove. Not to be missed!!

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Friday, November 24th – 6-8pm
Tony Johnson Quartet

Bob Kenmotsu, tenor saxophone Keith Saunders, piano Eric Markowitz, bass Tony Johnson, drums Classic, swingin’ jazz from four master practitioners of the art! Tony Johnson has been on the scene since 1960, and has never stopped. His bandmates are a generation or two younger, with three to four decades apiece in the business, playing at a high level all along the way. Kids welcome! Give them a taste of America’s great art form in a friendly setting. Under 12, free. Pay ten for the teenagers in your care. Adults? $20 will get it! Teens & music students on your own, $5-10 sliding scale. We like to pay the musicians (in fact, we make a point of doing so), and do that with solid support from our audiences and neighborhood donors. Be in that number, when the saints coming marching in! Byob. See you at Bird & Beckett!

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Wednesday, November 22nd – 7pm
The Vince Lateano Trio

A rare weeknight sighting of our favorite jazz trio! Vince Lateano is one of the gems of Telegraph Hill, a treasure since he first settled into North Beach back in the mid-1960s! For a long stretch he was the house drummer at Pearl’s on Columbus, but his history in these parts stretches far on both sides of that decade-plus tenure. Come to Bird & Beckett and enjoy a swingin’ cat who’s always enjoying the music and his bandstand colleagues. The enjoyment is contagious! Here’s a taste of what’s in store for you!

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Tuesday, November 21st – 7pm
A Reading for Palestine

Please join us for an urgent reading in support of the Palestinian people, organized by the poet Deema K. Shehabi. Deema will read beside her colleagues Zeina Hashem Beck, Aracelis Girmay, Nathalie Khankan and Priscilla Wathington, with instrumental interludes by bassist Marcus Shelby. Deema K. Shehabi is a Palestinian-American poet, writer and editor. She is the author of Thirteen Departures from the Moon and co-editor with Beau Beausoleil of Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here, for which she received a Northern California Book Award. She’s also co-author of Diaspo/Renga with Marilyn Hacker and winner of the Nazim Hikmet poetry competition in 2018. Deema’s work has appeared widely in literary magazines and anthologies, and her work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize several times. For more information, please visit her website at Deema K. Shehabi. Zeina Hashem Beck is a Lebanese poet. Her poetry collection, O (Penguin Books, 2022) won the 2023 George Ellenbogen Poetry Award. She’s also…

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Thanksgiving-adjacent events, Tuesday to Sunday!

    Tuesday, 11/21, 7pm: A reading for Palestine, organized by Deema Shehabi – gratis     Wednesday, 11/22, 7pm: The Vince Lateano Trio, Ben Stolorow, piano Peter Barshay, bass Vince Lateano, drums $20 adult cover charge, byob all ages; kids under 12 free teens/music students $5-10 sliding scale Friday, 11/24, two shows: 6pm: The Tony Johnson Quartet, jazz – $20 8:30pm: The New Squatoolas, New Orleans jazz, funk and R&B – $20      Saturday, 11/26: Jonathan Richman, voice and guitar, plumbs the devotional poetry of Kabir and Mirabai, with Nicole Montalbano on tambura – $30       Sunday, 11/25, 4:30pm: The Cottontails jump jazz & blues – $25-35 sliding scale     All ages; byob     For the Jonathan Richman event, plan on paying for your seat at 5pm day of the show and enter between 7 and 7:15pm. The doors will be closed between 6 and 7 so that we…

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Round up of events
Friday, November 17th, two shows – bebop at 6pm and boogie woogie & blues at 8:30pm
Saturday, Nov. 18 – Brian Melvin Quartet
Sunday Nov. 19th – Vince Lateano Trio

Friday 11/17, 6-8pm jazz in the bookshop the happy hour show Guitarist Scott Foster leads a quartet with trumpeter Henry Hung, bassist Ollie Dudek and drummer Omar Aran, sampling generously from the music of Bud Powell, with nods, of course, to Bird & Diz & Monk & Miles & more bebop & bop adjacent giants! byob. $20 donation per adult requested; students $10; children free. no reservations necessary. Friday 11/17, 8:30-10:00pm the late show Solo boogie woogie and blues piano from Frank Muschalle, touring for 30 years out of his home in Germany, counted among the most sought-after blues & boogie-woogie pianists working today. He has played concerts all over Europe, Paraguay, Bolivia, the United States and North Africa, and has put out fourteen cds with a variety of musicians including Carey Bell, Jean-Pierre Bertrand, Nappy Brown, Jimmy Coe, Herb Hardesty, Red Holloway, Stephan Holstein, Bob Margolin, Jimmy McCracklin, Louisiana…

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Thursday, November 16th – 7:30pm
Walker Talks
Walker Brents III on Hannah Arendt
a voice with relevance to these times

Hanna Arendt escaped a short period of Nazi captivity to work for refugees in Paris until Paris fell. After finding her way to the U.S.A. she taught generations of students at the New School for Social Research in New York City. She worked hard to express for us her understanding of what was novel about the crimes that characterized the late 20th Century. Her phrase “the banality of evil” is more than a soundbite. She formulated notions of the nature of power, of action, of promise, of thinking—each one a crystallization around an arc of creative writing that has no peer. We are her legacy, as democratic citizens finding our way through a world gone mad. What’s going on in San Francisco even as the APEC conference takes place? Talks like this, in the voice of one who thinks out loud. Walker Brents III talks, every month (with a summer…

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Monday, November 13th – 7pm
On Zoom: VirtualPoets
hosted by Kim Shuck
Featured poets Zara Jamshed and KR Morrison
plus open mic

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84350265713?pwd=eE84V3BYdWxiSFBHNHhmdUt1WTUzdz09 Meeting ID: 843 5026 5713 Passcode: 244211 The featured poets this time out are K.R. Morrison and Zara Jamshed. An open mic follows.  Kim Shuck hosts. Since the pandemic, K.R. Morrison has been searching for mermaids in a sea town in Southern California, often returning to the Bay Area for her poetry nests and to play drums for two all-female fronted rock bands – Harriot and Unicröne. Morrison is a Pushcart Nominee for her poem, “Her Altar” and still enjoys readings and podcasts for Cauldrons, her first poetry collection published by Paper Press. Alongside years spent as a writer, activist, and musician, K.R. spent 17 years as a sea captain for the teens – using creative writing and books, she worked with countless students at Galileo High School in San Francisco, earning the name “Mama Mo” with many who left her classroom armed with writing and tools for healing.…

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Sunday, November 12th – 8pm
INSECT LIFE

. . . Sometimes words just get in the way…

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Sunday, November 12th – 5-7pm
America’s favorite honky tonk band!
The Seducers!

Mitch Polzak –  lead guitar & vocals Hank Maninger – bass guitar & vocals Joe Goldmark – pedal steel guitar Paul Revelli – drums You’ll find the Seducers playing songs of longin’ and lovin’ at Bird & Beckett on the second Sunday of every other month —  January, March, May, July, September & November, the odd numbered ones… Twangtastic tunes and gorgeous convergence in honky tonk heaven. Every second Sunday of the year, you’ll find sin & redemption, mourning and celebration in an Americana vein… December 10th, Maurice Tani & the American bass player Mike Anderson…February 11th, Jim Campilongo & Sam Reider… There’s so much more than just jazz at Bird & Beckett, though we do love our jazz more than you know… Join us! BYOB and a twenty for the band. That’ll git it!  

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November 9th to 12th
Ben Esposito, Eric Shifrin, Marina Albero…
Trevor Watts / Jamie Harris / Karl Evangelista / Lisa Mezzacappa…INSECT LIFE: Ben Goldberg, Ben Davis, Gerald Cleaver, Raffi Garabedian & Danny Lubin-Laden… Howard Wiley, Luis Peralta & Isaac Coyle (with Ben Esposito)… Garry Williams & Carl Herder (with Eric Shifrin)… Josh Setala & Billy Edwards (with Marina Albero)… plus, The Seducers!

An immense amount of amazing jazz the weekend of 11/9-12, a packed roster of fantastic, well-traveled musicians of all ages, and a honky tonk band beyond compare to wrap it all up in a glittering package! Kicking it all off on Thursday, 11/9 at 7:30pm, the young drummer Ben Esposito brings the esteemed saxophonist Howard Wiley, the sharp & fantastic young bassist Isaac Coyle and the amazing emerging pianist Luis Peralta. You might want to call for a reservation for this one… 415-586-3733. Bring twenty for the cover and something to sip. Jazz is thirsty work! Under 21? Bring soda pop! Students, pay what you can afford. Five or ten bucks will do it for you, and you can use venmo. What’s not to like about that? For most of our shows, a twenty dollar bill is the starting point, sometimes a bit more for larger ensembles, ________________________ Two shows…

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Saturday, November 11th – 7:30-9:30pm
Trevor Watts + Jamie Harris
with Karl Evangelista and Lisa Mezzacappa

Trevor Watts, saxophone Karl Evangelista, guitar Lisa Mezzacappa, bass Jamie Watts, percussion $20 cover charge (cash or venmo at the door, please). BYOB Reservations, call 415-586-3733 Legendary English saxophonist Trevor Watts (Spontaneous Music Ensemble, Amalgam, Moiré Music) and his frequent collaborator, percussionist Jamie Harris, visit the Bay Area for a special evening of free improvisation and avant-garde jazz. Joining them at Bird & Beckett are local firebrand Karl Evangelista (guitar) and multitalented bassist Lisa Mezzacappa. In the 1960s, the English saxophonist Trevor Watts permanently expanded the parameters of jazz, co-founding Spontaneous Music Ensemble and leading the equally groundbreaking Amalgam. In the early 1980s, Watts formed the first of several ensembles under the Moire Music banner, blending rhythms from Africa and Asia with jazz-steeped virtuosity, and performing on six continents. With a quarter century of collaboration under their belts, Watts’ duo with percussionist Jamie Harris distills 60 years of Watts’ immersion…

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Friday, November 10th – 8:30-10pm
The Josh Setala Dream Trio
featuring pianist Marina Albero

Marina Albero, piano Billy Edwards, bass Josh Setala, drums Pianist Marina Albero is the toast of the Seattle jazz scene — drummer/trio leader Josh Setala’s hometown. To gain her participation in this concert is a tribute to Josh’s abilities and, for him, a dream scenario. Bassist Billy Edwards adds a brilliant dimension. Expect an intensely engaging and enjoyable evening  of jazz! Marina was born in Barcelona and toured as a child on stages all around the world with her family, picking up whatever instrument they needed her to play, performing Iberian and early music, creating new shows wherever they went. She studied in Barcelona’s Conservatory (El Bruc) and later in La Havana (ISA), where she finished her classical piano studies with the great professor and pianist Mrs. Teresa Junco. She’s never stopped exploring, delving into jazz, flamenco, early music, Andalusie, classical Indian, Latin son & Latin jazz. $20 cover charge…

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Friday, November 10th – 6-8pm
Eric & the In Crowd
play jazz for you!

Good times! That’s why they call it Happy Hour! Eric Shifrin, piano Carl Herder, bass Garry Williams, drums As seen on tv and at your finer estabishments! BYOB and a twenty for the band! No reservations necessary. All ages welcome.

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Thursday, November 9th – 7:30-9:30pm
The Ben Esposito Quartet
featuring saxophonist Howard Wiley
with guest vocalist Tiffany Austin

Howard Wiley, tenor saxophone Luis Peralta, piano Isaac Coyle, bass Ben Esposito, drums with special guest Tiffany Austin

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Sunday, November 5th – 5-8pm
Urban School Bebop Combo + Student Jam Session

Scott Foster sends in the terrific Urban School Bebop Combo  to show what they’re made of. The ensemble will play a 45-minute set and then take part in a jam session hosted by the Keith Saunders Trio (Ollie Dudek, bass, and Tony Johnson, drums). The jam session is open to students coming from all directions, so take this opportunity to share the stage with top emerging talent and high level professionals with decades in the business. Adults, bring a twenty if you can afford it to help us pay the professionals in the trio leading the jam session, and to help us pay a small honorarium to each of the students in the featured combo. As a guitarist, composer and bandleader, Scott Foster has been a cornerstone of Bird & Beckett’s jazz programming for 21 years, holding down a 3rd Fridays residency, and is the Performing Arts Chair at Urban,…

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Saturday, November 4th – 7:30-9:30pm
in flitters: 49 Bits From B*ck*tt
Noertker’s Moxie

Celebrate the release of a new Noertker’s Moxie CD—in flitters (49 bits from B*ck*tt)—with bassist/composer Bill Noertker and his cohorts, woodwindist Annelise Zamula, pianist Brett Carson, and drummer Eli Knowles. During the dark days of the Covid-19 pandemic, as a way of staying sane, bassist Bill Noertker began composing strange and repetitious little ditties. As he re-read Samuel Beckett’s Watt—a book whose enigmas had long intrigued him—he saw the similarities between his compositions and Beckett’s absurdist novel. He was compelled to create a sonic universe that paralleled Watt. The result is in flitters, a suite of 49 short and whimsical pieces brought to life by the brilliant members of his long-standing ensemble Noertker’s Moxie. Byob and a twenty for the band!    

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Friday, November 3rd – 8:30-10pm
Grant Levin / Gaea Schell Duo
piano + flute

Two great San Francisco-based jazz artists unite for two sets of flute & piano duo work. $15 cover charge (cash or Venmo at the door, please), byob. An intimate and thrilling evening of music guaranteed. Gaea Schell’s new album “In Your Own Sweet Way” (Saphu Records, 2023) prominently features her flute work and vocals alongside the piano chops that have made her an important contributor to contemporary jazz. She  made her California debut as a twice-featured performer at the San Jose Jazz Festival and has been performing professionally and internationally in diverse contexts all along the way. Recently, work on flute with Cuban son groups has captured her devoted attention. Her experience includes everything from teaching elementary school flute choirs, trio to quartet to orchestral performance. Notable artists she has shared the stage with include Nancy King, John Stowell, Albert ‘Tootie’ Heath, Clare Fischer Big Band, PJ Perry, Marcus Shelby,…

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Friday, November 3rd – 6-8pm
have guitar, will travel!
From NYC:
Amanda Monaco Quartet

“A cliché-free, inventive player who doesn’t neatly fit into any of the usual modes of contemporary jazz guitar playing.” —Jazz Times. Amanda Monaco, guitar. Jason Gillenwater, tenor sax. Lisa Mezzacappa, bass. Jeff Davis, drums. $20 suggested (cash or Venmo at the door, please). BYOB. Acclaimed guitarist Amanda Monaco is traveling from NYC out to the west coast with drummer Jeff Davis to perform with Bay Area-based musicians Jason Gillenwater (saxophones) and Lisa Mezzacappa (bass). Friends and musical colleagues for over 25 years, the quartet’s reunion will be celebrated on November 3rd at Bird & Beckett.  Here’s an original composition from her 2017 Posi-Tone Records release, Glitter, with Lauren Sevian on bari sax, Gary Versace on organ and Matt Wilson on drums: Amanda Monaco – Dry Clean Only  Details here: https://www.posi-tone.com/artist_monaco/artist_monaco.html Get the complete picture from Amanda’s website: https://amandamonaco.com/about/ As for critical acclaim: “Monaco’s guitar playing is well within the modernist…

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Cease Fire

Ceasefire

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Bird & Beckett Cultural Legacy Project
653 Chenery Street
San Francisco, CA 94131

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The Bird & Beckett Cultural Legacy Project

Our events are put on under the umbrella of the nonprofit Bird & Beckett Cultural Legacy Project (the "BBCLP"). That's how we fund our ambitious schedule of 300 or so concerts and literary events every year.

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The Independent Musicians Alliance

Gigging musicians! You have nothing to lose but your lack of a collective voice to achieve fair wages for your work!
The IMA can be a conduit for you, if you join in to make it work.

https://www.independentmusiciansalliance.org/

Read more here - Andy Gilbert's Feb 25 article about the IMA from KQED's site