There are plenty of reasons to come down to Bird & Beckett!
We sell books and records six days a week, open Tuesday to Sunday from noon to six.
And then there are the shows — ten of them in the two weeks between the Joe McKinley Quartet date on the 16th and the weekend of the 22nd to the 24th. You’ll find a double bill of the Tony Johnson Quartet and the Lew Tabackin Trio on Friday (9/22), the Noel Jewkes Quartet Saturday evening (9/23) and a Colombian jazz/folkloric outfit from Queens, Balsa de Fuego, on Sunday (9/24) brought to us by vibes player Dan Neville, and a jam session following… a rich vein of jazz, for sure.
A full weekend follows to close out September–peek at our events calendar for a glimpse of those shows!
Seating starts about 15 minutes before showtime, and you’ll generally be alright if you byob and a twenty for the band… call for more information or reservations – 415-586-3733.
Here’s a roundup of the ten events from September 16 to September 24:
The Joe McKinley Quartet
Saturday 9/16 at 7:30pm – $20 cover / byob
OG jazz veterans reprise their date from last July, with Charlie McCarthy on saxophone, Sam Cady on piano and the younger cat Alexey Berlind on drums. Despite the odds, these four musicians show that San Francisco and environs have qualities that can make a departure to other markets out of the question; not, you understand, that they probably haven’t all ruefully considered the idea! Fabulous players steeped in our local culture and contributing so much to it! If only they could rest here in San Francisco for eternity… read on to discover why the eternity part isn’t so viable!
Writer Beth Winegarner presents her book,
San Franciscoâ€™s Forgotten Cemeteries: A Buried History
Sunday 9/17 at 3pm
In the early 20th Century, the city relocated more than 150,000 graves to the nearby town of Colma to make way for a rapidly growing population. But an estimated fifty to sixty thousand burials were quietly built over and forgotten, only to resurface every time a new building project began.Â Beth Winegarner digs up the story, in conversation with Courtney Minick, of “Here Lies a Story.” Here’s a linkÂ to a great article about Beth & her book by Glen Park journalist Bonnee Waldstein.
The Vince Lateano Trio
Sunday 9/17 at 5pm – $20 suggested/byob
Vince arrived in San Francisco from Sacramento in 1965 and was the house drummer at Pearl’s throughout the 1990s until Pearl closed it in 2003. He’s long been at the center of the San Francisco jazz scene, and has a residency leading his trio with bassist Peter Barshay and pianist Ben Stolorow at Bird & Beckett on the third Sunday of each month. Mark your calendar, too, for the last Sunday of each month, when the trio hosts a jam session, also at 5pm. or the Sunday 5pm shows, we ask that you help pay the musicians, noting that a twenty is pretty much what it takes, if you can possibly afford it. Pay what you can, and bring something to sip if you think all this art and culture might make you thirsty!
The Ron Jackson Trio
Wednesday 9/20 at 7:30pm – $20 cover charge/byob
Ron Jackson, seven string guitarist touring out of NYC, returns for a trio date with Essiet Okon Essiet on bass and Sylvia Cuenca on drums. Sylvia grew up in San Jose, and had her first professional gig at Jazz at Pearl’s, when Pearl’s was an after hours basement club onÂ Jackson Street in Chinatown under the Great Eastern Restaurant. She’s been based in New York several decades, played four years with Joe Henderson and eleven with Clark Terry and continues apace. But she maintains a base now in the Bay Area as well, and has made Bird & Beckett the beneficiary of many a great visit by New York talent. As for Essiet, also New York based and bi-coastal, his has been a storied career including a run with Art Blakey in the last iteration of the Jazz Messengers.
Walker Brents III on Friedrich Schiller:
Schiller’s Democratic Aesthetic
Thursday 9/21 at 7:30pm
Schiller’s thoughts bring us through a cosmos of art-wisdom that encompasses Kant, the French Revolution, Rousseau and many other places, times, and place-names. Sometimes placeless places of no-name as well. Liquifying our aesthetic inklings and energizing our aesthetic intuitions. This is much more simple and profound than it may seem like at first. Schiller’s concepts are mythical, sublime and humble, all at one moment of whole perception. I offer it to you.
The Tony Johnson Quartet
Friday 9/22 at 5:30pm
Drummer Tony Johnson swam ashore from Australia in 1959 and hit North Beach swingin’. The singer Bev Kelly led a date at the Coffee Gallery in October 1960 with Pony Poindexter on saxophone, Flip Nunez on piano, Johnny Allen on bass and Tony, himself, on drums, recorded by Wally Heider, produced by Orrin Keepnews and released by Riverside Records as “Bev Kelly, Live at the Coffee Gallery.” Here’s a taste. Tony leads a date at Bird & Beckett on the third Friday of each month, this time out with his quartet featuring Bob Kenmotsu on saxophone, Keith Saunders on piano and Eric Markowitz on bass.
The Lew Tabackin Trio
Friday 9/22 at 9pm
Lew Tabackin, a NY-based veteran saxophonist/flutist, will be flying in from Tokyo and tuning up here before heading down to play the Monterey Jazz Festival on Sunday. Once again, bassist Essiet Okon Essiet and drummer Sylvia Cuenca will round out the trio!
The Noel Jewkes Quartet on Saturday 9/23
Noel Jewkes, saxophones
Grant Levin, piano
Chris Amberger, bass
Josh Setala, drums
Balsa de Fuego on Sunday 9/24 at 2pm
Raquel Baena – vocals/trombone
Dan Neville – Vibraphone/Marimba
Justin Flynn – Saxophones
AndrÃ©s Fonseca – Drums
Juan SebastiÃ¡n Monsalve – Bass Guitar
â€œBalsa de Fuegoâ€ gathers the Caribbean Cumbia; the Joropo from the Colombo-Venezuelan plains; the Currulao from the Colombo-Ecuadorian Pacific coast; and the jazz from North America.
This new project lead by Colombian composer Juan Sebastian Monsalve (known as one of the precursors of the New Colombian Music with his band Curupira) assembles a diverse range of musicians from the New York music scene, achieving a powerful contemporary sound with strong roots in tradition.
& the Vince Lateano-led jam session on Sunday 9/24 at 5pm
And put this October date on your calendar:
Friday, October 13th – 9-11pm
Jeong Lim Yang’s Zodiac Trio
~Santiago Leibson, piano~
~Jeong Lim Yang, bass~
~Mark Ferber, drums~
plays selected compositions from
Mary Lou Williams’ Zodiac Suite
and other compositions by the legendary pianist
Friday 10/13 from 9-11pm at Bird & Beckett – $20 / byob
(for reservations, call 415-586-3733)
Also, note that The Center for New Music will present the Jeong Lim Yang Trio, on tour from New York City, in a full performance of the Zodiac Suite — recently recorded and released as “Zodiac Suite: Reassured” (Fresh Sound, 2022) — at 55 Taylor Street in downtown San Francisco on Saturday 10/14 at 7:30pm:Â ticket information here
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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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.
Read more here - Andy Gilbert's Feb 25 article about the IMA from KQED's site