Monday, August 16 – 7:30 pm
Ed Cherry / Bob Kenmotsu Trio
live in the book shop
Guitarist Ed Cherry is in town briefly and comes into Bird & Beckett with his long-time colleague, the tenor saxophonist Bob Kenmotsu for two sets of trio work, with Eric Markowitz on bass. Ed and Bob traveled together in the 80s and 90s out of NYC in the band of R&B vocalist Ruth Brown, cementing a friendship that brings us this date. Call for reservations – 415-586-3733; limited seating. $20 cash cover charge; proof of vaccination and masks required; BYOB.
Ed Cherry moved to New York from New Haven, Connecticut in 1978 to play guitar with Dizzy Gillespie from 1978 to 1992 performing in Gillespie’s quartet and big band, and with Diz’s United Nation Orchestra, which recorded the 1989 Grammy Award-winning lp, “Live at Royal Festival Hall,” for Enja Records. Ed was with Gillespie’s group in San Francisco for an SFJAZZ date in 1991 on a bill opened by saxophonist Mel Martin’s Big Band — here’s a clip from Gillespie joining the Martin band for a take on Manteca that night, with Vince Lateano and John Santos in the band. Diz died in 1993, and in the same year Ed released his first recording as a leader, “First Take” (Groovin’ High). Also in 1993, Ed recorded with Paquito D’Rivera’s small group which recorded “Havana Cafe” (Chesky Records). During this period, Ed worked with composer/saxophonist Henry Threadgill for two years and recorded three cds with Threadgill’s Very Very Circus group.
In 1995, Cherry released his second project as a solo artist, entitled “A Second Look” (Groovin’ High Records). During that same period, he worked with Hammond organist John Patton, recording three critically acclaimed cds with Patton’s quartet – “Blue Planet Man,” “Minor Swing” and “This One’s for Jah” (DIW). From 1997 to 1998, Cherry worked in Roy Hargrove’s Latin jazz band, Crisol, which performed in Havana. During this same period, he also worked with baritone saxophonist, Hamiett Bluiett, recording Bluiett’s cd ‘With Eyes Wide Open’ on Justin Time records. In 2001, Cherry toured Europe for the first time with his own group. He also released his cd, “The Spirit Speaks,” on Justin Time, inspired by the great jazz organist Jimmy Smith with whom he had also recently worked.
Ed was asked to perform at the Vodaphone Madarao Jazz festival in 2002 in Madarao Japan with his quartet featuring trumpeter Jon Faddis, and a few years later, he was touring with Dr. Lonnie Smith, recording the critically acclaimed cd, “In The Beginning” on Pilgrimage Records in 2012.
Ed released “It’s All Good” on Posi-Tone Records in 2012, which stayed in the JazzWeek charts for 3 months. His second recording for the label was “Soul Tree” (2016 ) featuring Kyle Koehler on Hammond B3 organ and drummer Anwar Marshall.
Here’s some beautiful recent trio work by Ed in NYC.
Ed works nationally and internationally in concert, workshop and jazz clubs settings.
Saxophonist Bob Kenmotsu, who we’re lucky enough to feature frequently on the Bird & Beckett stage, was born in Stockton and moved to New York in his 20s, where he began working as a free-lance jazz saxophonist. While in New York, Bob was a member of the Jack McDuff organ combo and Ruth Brown’s band, alongside Ed Cherry. During his New York years, he recorded “The Spark” with Billy Hart and Ira Coleman, and “Bronx Tale,” with Pat Martino and Jack McDuff. Bob also played on Pat Martino’s “Nightwings” with Bill Stewart and Marc Johnson. While living back east, Bob received a New Jersey Arts Commission Grant for composition.
Bob went to Japan in 1994 on a Japan/US Fellowship cultural exchange grant, and lived there until 1997. While in Japan, he played steadily in clubs, concerts and festivals, and toured the country several times.
In 1997, Bob returned to the US, this time to the San Francisco Bay Area, and recorded “Looking at Air,” with Bill Stewart, Essiet Okun Essiet and Joel Weiskopf.
Bob now lives in Berkeley, working jazz clubs and concerts on the West Coast. His recording,”Reunion” (2002), features Bob Corwin, piano; Danny Flahive, bass; and Ron Marabuto, drums.
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.
The BBCLP is a 501(c)(3) non-profit...
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