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Keepin’ the Beat this Week with CL Smooth and Suttle, Comedy by Joe Clair & Friends

CL Smooth Unplugged, Suttle, Joe Clair and Friends at Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club, Jan 2017Wednesday (1/11) CL Smooth (aka Corey Penn) is a hip hop artist from New Rochelle, NY. He is best known as the vocal half of the hip hop duo Pete Rock & CL Smooth. Extolled for incorporating the influences of soul and jazz with apt philosophical lyricism, CL Smooth’s debut, Mecca and the Soul Brother, was released with Pete Rock in 1992. The album included the timeless classic, “T. R. O. Y. – They Reminisce Over You.” His unplugged set is currently wowing audiences; it featuring a live band as the backdrop as CL Smooth performs his classic and new hit music. Use Discount Code CLBBJ and take 50% OFF your tickets to see CL Smooth Unplugged! The show starts at 8pm.

Friday (1/13) DC area band Suttle formed as Suttle Thoughts in 1994. At the beginning of 2016, they became Suttle. Over the last 23 years they have made a name for themselves performing in the DMV and touring through in Dallas, Miami, and Cancun, just to name a few places. Suttle has opened for the iconic Isley Brothers at the DAR Constitution Hall and has performed with national recording artist Algebra Blessett. Suttle has played at the annual H Street Festival for the last four years as well as the Safeway Battle of the Barbeque. The group has had the pleasure of performing on WUSA 9 for a good cause – Autism Awareness Society, and Suttle is very proud to have been requested to play at the tribute to the legendary Godfather of Go-Go, Chuck Brown, at the historical Howard Theater. Suttle continues to push forward and shows no signs of letting up! Catch their show at 8pm.

Saturday (1/14) Joe Clair & Friends are back at it for two big shows! The featured comedians this month are the very funny Rallo Boykins, Esau McGraw, and Ali Siddiq. The house band, Sound of the City, will add the musical touch. Host, comedian, radio personality and on-air veteran Joe Clair is no stranger when it comes to Washington, D.C. This native of Seat Pleasant, MD is the current host of WPGC’s Joe Clair Morning Show, taking the morning airwaves by storm and making the drive to work much more enjoyable for listeners across the DMV. He is proud graduate of Morgan State University where he pledged Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity and graduated as a psychology major but found his passion for comedy, music and communications. Clair got his start on HBO’s famed Def Comedy Jam before gaining national notoriety as host of BET’s famed show Rap City, where he introduced the world to hip-hop and rap superstars and was most notably known as the last person to interview hip-hop icon Notorious B.I.G. The comedy shows begin at 7pm and 10pm.

Don’t miss our upcoming special events! Valentine’s Day week will bring some wonderful shows our way, to the tune of Deniece Williams, Syleena Johnson, Jeff Bradshaw, and The Spinners. The great Dionne Warwick will sing for us to celebrate the 4th anniversary of Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club on Wednesday, March 1st. As always, there is much more to explore, so do check out our Music Calendar for more info and to pick up your tickets.

Thanks for your ongoing support of great entertainment in downtown Bethesda. We look forward to seeing you soon!

 

Rick Brown

Rockin’ into Thanksgiving Week: Daryl Davis, Rare Essence, Davy Knowles, Mousey Thompson & The James Brown Experience, and A Gospel According to Jazz

Daryl Davis, Rare Essence, Davy Knowles, Mousey Thompson and the James Brown Experience, and A Gospel According to Jazz at Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club, November 2016Tuesday (11/22) Get ready for the holiday with Daryl Davis Presents: Rockin’ into Thanksgiving! Come to dance or just sit back and enjoy as Daryl and the band provide an evening good old rock ‘n’ roll, rockabilly, blues, boogie woogie and some country music thrown into the mix, too. Show host and piano master Daryl Davis graduated from Howard University with a degree in jazz. He was mentored by legendary pianists Pinetop Perkins and Johnnie Johnson. He has worked with Elvis Presley’s Jordanaires, Chuck Berry, The Legendary Blues Band, Percy Sledge, Jerry Lee Lewis, The Coasters, The Platters, The Drifters, and many others. A very special guest, 92-year-old jokester Helen “Ma” Dillon, will open the show. She’s guaranteed to get your motor running, even when your starter is broken! The show starts at 8pm.

Wednesday (11/23) Rare Essence has long been one of the city’s most popular and enduring Go-Go bands. Formed by four students at a Southeast Washington Catholic school during the mid-’70s, the band was kept on track by several no-nonsense moms and mentored by the late Godfather of Go-Go, Chuck Brown. They have performed with Run DMC, LL Cool J, Doug E. Fresh, Biz Markie, Ice Cube, Heavy D and the Boyz, Wu Tang Clan, Redman and Method Man, French Montana, Scarface, TLC, Eric B and Rakim, YoYo, Shabba Ranks, and KRS-1, not to mention Chuck Brown, Trouble Funk, The Junk Yard Band, and EU. Come out and chant along to hits like “Lock It,” “One On One,” “Hey Buddy Buddy,” and the ever popular “Overnight Scenario.” The party starts at 8pm.

Thursday (11/24) HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Friday (11/25) Chicago-based Davy Knowles is at it again with a new album, Three Miles from Avalon. Dripping with classic blues riffs and intricate guitar work, this is exactly what we have come to expect from the former Back Door Slam frontperson, an artist who has not one, but two Top Three Billboard Blues Chart albums. Three Miles from Avalon does not disappoint. Knowles co-produced and recorded the album in his base of operations, Chicago, with friend Anthony Gravino. “Never Gonna Be the Same” sounds like Knowles stretched the south side of Chicago all the way down to the bayou. “Oxford MS” is a story song of violence and torment that pushes this album from amazing to astronomically amazing. Come in, get out of the bustle of Black Friday, enjoy the live show, and take in some new tunes! The concert begins at 8pm.

Saturday (11/26) Mousey Thompson & The James Brown Experience is an all-star ensemble that faithfully performs the most popular songs by one of greatest music legends of our time. This outstanding band is led by accomplished drummer and DC native Robert “Mousey” Thompson, who performed with James Brown from 1993 until his passing in 2006. Thompson has also performed with other renowned musical performers including Wilson Pickett, Lloyd Price, and Peaches & Herb. The band performs James Brown’s biggest hits including “Papa’s Got A Brand New Bag,” “I Got You (I Feel Good),” “It’s A Man’s Man’s Man’s World”, “Cold Sweat,” and so many more. Don’t miss this celebration of The Godfather of Soul! The band will get started at 8pm.

Sunday (11/27) Come one, come all, come hear A Gospel According to Jazz! From his early days in Memphis where he played in his father’s church choir, Grammy Award-winning saxophonist Kirk Whalum drew inspiration from the rich musical traditions of that city, including gospel, R&B, blues, and jazz. He received a scholarship to attend music school at Texas Southern University, where he formed a band in 1979 and began playing shows on the local club circuit. Whalum released A Gospel According to Jazz, Chapter 1 in 1998. Of his 5th annual A Gospel According to Jazz Christmas season tour, Kirk says, “This is the most unique holiday celebration you never knew you had to experience for yourself… Keiko Matsui and Norman Brown, Sheléa, Kirk & Kevin Whalum and John Stoddart?! …There’s no joy like spending the holidays with family and great music. So you bring the family, we’ll take care of the rest!” The evening’s two shows begin at 5:30pm and 8pm.

Keep a lookout on our Music Calendar for more great events like Maggie Rose with The Morrison Brothers and A Drag Salute to Motown Twisted, plus lots of holiday shows like Redd Brothers’ Christmas, Landau Murphy Jr. Holiday Show, A Smooth & Funky Christmas 2, and Christmas with Cassandra Wilson!

Here at Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club, we are thankful for all of you. Thanks for coming out to meet friends, share dinner and drinks, and to enjoy the shows. We appreciate celebrating great entertainment in downtown Bethesda, and it is wonderful to share that passion with you! Have a great Thanksgiving, and we look forward to seeing you soon.

 

Rick Brown

A Saturday Night Soul Spring Fling and an Eclectic Week
with King Soul, Texas Chainsaw Horns, Be’la Dona, and More!

blog 3-28-16Monday (3/28) It’s all about Country Music tonight at BBJ! Ruthie Logsdon, DC music scene staple and nationally-known songwriter and recording artist is bringing her high energy “Wrangler Twang” to our stage. Now celebrating 25 years of national touring, Americana radio charting, national television appearances, and 6 albums, this live wire vocalist, along with her band, Ruthie & The Wranglers, has racked up 30 Washington Area Music Awards (WAMMIES). Host and boogie-woogie piano master Daryl Davis has worked with Elvis Presley’s Jordanaires, Chuck Berry, The Legendary Blues Band, Percy Sledge, Jerry Lee Lewis, The Coasters, The Platters, The Drifters, and many others. Admission is FREE with $10 minimum food and beverage per guest. Door open at 5:30pm and the music starts at 7:30pm.

Tuesday (3/29) The Grainger Jam is back! If you’re a singer or musician, come on out and jam with bassist Gary Grainger, drummer Greg Grainger, and their world-class musician friends. The Grainger Jam is a great time whether you join the band onstage or just come out and enjoy the music. We offer free admission for AFM Union member card holders (must present Union Card and valid picture ID at door). Start time is 8pm.

Wednesday (3/30) We’ve got a musical mashup you’re going to love! Sunflare is a Latin/Caribbean jazz group that specializes in giving the clave twist to classic and contemporary R&B. To put it simply, they like to say “R&B = rice and beans!” Joining them will be smooth jazz outfit and special guests, The Craig Alston Syndicate. The music starts at 8pm.

Thursday (3/31) Skip Mahoney and the Casuals are still performing for adoring fans and sellout crowds after more than 40 years in the business. We are so pleased to have them perform at BBJ. Skip Mahoney and The Casuals were formed in 1965 at a house party in Washington, DC. The original members of the group are Roger Chapman, George Norris, and Skip Mahoney. The other original member is Billy Jones, who was later replaced by current member Morris “Spunky” Cobb. In 1973, “I Need Your Love” and “Your Funny Moods” were local hits, but didn’t receive national attention. The release of their Land of Love album in 1976 propelled the group into the national limelight, producing several chartbusting songs that have stood the test of time. Land of Love remains a trademark album for connoisseurs of falsetto based soul music of the mid 70’s. Join us for the concert at 8pm.

Friday (4/1) Strong, talented, ambitious, and beautiful… all perfect words to describe Be’la Dona. Washington, DC is the birthplace of this exciting and diverse all-female band. They call the music they make “Sensual Crank,” and the style commands attention. The unique sound of Be’la Dona flows through rock, R&B, Gospel, pop, jazz and of course their
hometown music, Go-Go. Fans and critics alike are taking note – Just a few of the accolades for Be’la Dona include the 2009 WKYS GO-GO Award for Best Upcoming Band, 2009 WAMA Award nomination for Best R&B Band, and the 2010 WAMA Award for Best Urban Contemporary Duo or Group and Instrumentalist of the Year. This will be a party!! The show gets crankin’ at 8pm.

Saturday (4/2) It’s a heavyweight matchup for the Soul Spring Fling – King Soul meets The Texas Chainsaw Horns! Eight piece all-star group King Soul has been leaving DC area audiences delirious for eight years with its electrifying brand of Southern rhythm & blues. King Soul’s members include vocalist Tom Clifford, guitarist/vocalist Jake Flack (Rhodes Tavern Troubadours), bassist/vocalist Mark Noone (Slickee Boys), drummer Ben Holmes (Queen Ida), organist Arif Durrani (Jr. Cline & the Recliners), baritone saxophonist Chris Watling (Grandsons, Lloyd Price), tenor saxophonist Matt Rippetoe (Funk Ark, Thievery Corporation), and trumpeter Vince McCool (J Street Jumpers, Uptown Rhythm Kings). The Texas Chainsaw Horns come armed with a dozen members, including a 5-piece horn section. Fans of the funky sounds of Tower of Power will love the Texas Chainsaw Horns, as will everyone who can’t resist a dance groove. The Texas Chainsaw Horns include vocalists Jeff Watson (Downtown) and Rena Ray, guitarist/vocalist Mickey Way, Scott Thorne on bass, Eli Gonzalez on tenor sax, Scott Weinhold, tenor sax, Steve Ticknor, baritone sax, Ken McGee, trumpet, Tony Murtha – trumpet, Josh Howell, congas, and Bobby Fagel on drums. Don’t miss this great night of old school rockin’ soul! The bands start at 8pm.

Sunday (4/3) End your weekend with the fabulous Eddie Jones and the Young Bucks. The group was formed in 1955, under the direction of Earl Simpson and turned over to Eddie Jones in 1970, formerly of the Legendary Orioles. The band members have played with groups including Harold Melvin and the Blues Notes, Ike and Tina Turner, The Legendary Orioles, Black Heat, Chuck Brown and the Soul Searchers, and a host of other top notch groups. The voices of Earl and Eddie Jones take you back to the days of Sam Cooke and Marvin Gaye. The Young Bucks have the reputation for being a top Oldie-but-Goodie, Doo-Wop, and R&B group in the area, having played on the South Lawn of the White House, for several Caucus, Senatorial, and Congressional affairs, and even for a few Inaugurations. Their new CD, For Lovers Only, has top sales in the DC Area. Come out and enjoy the classic sounds! The show begins at 8pm.

Mark your calendars now for these great events coming soon: Bobby Brooks Wilson, son of the legendary Jackie Wilson on Friday April 8th, two shows by Syleena Johnson on Saturday, April 9th, and Snarky Puppy will perform two shows on Monday, May 2nd. Join us for Mother’s Day with The Rat Pack Together Again on Sunday, May 8th. Visit our Music Calendar for details and all upcoming events.

Thanks, as always, for supporting great music in downtown Bethesda. We’ll see you soon!

 

Rick Brown

A Week of New and Legendary Talent: The Chuck Brown Band,
DC Soul Legends, Bilal, and Celebrating the Music of David Bowie

The Vocal Workshop Showcase (CANCELLED), The Grainger Jam, Voices of Hope, David Bowie Tribute, The Chuck Brown Band, Bilal, Sir Joe Quarterman + Hardway Connection at Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club January 2016Monday (1/25) Due to continuing weather conditions, tonight’s Vocal Workshop Showcase performances with The Chris Grasso Trio have been cancelled.

Tuesday (1/26) It’s time once again for The Grainger Jam! If you’re a musician or a singer, come out on Tuesday nights and jam with bassist Gary Grainger, drummer Greg Grainger, and their world-class musician friends. Hosted by Brandon Combs and friends, it’s a great time whether you take the stage or just come out and enjoy some incredible music. Start time is 8pm.

Wednesday (1/27) The Voices of Hope – Music Ministry that CRANKS! Come out and help them celebrate the release of their new recording, Hymns of Hope. The group got together as a praise team for the Inauguration Service for Community of Hope AME on Easter Sunday 2006. The Voices of Hope have sung for President Bill Clinton, Rev. Jesse Jackson, Rev. Al Sharpton, the Celebration of Life for the Godfather of Go-Go, Chuck Brown, and they performed at the DC opening of The Color Purple. You’ll enjoy their fresh outlook on traditional hymns of old with innovative rap lyrics and Go-Go style instrumentation. The CD release party starts at 8pm.

Thursday (1/28) Please join us for Let’s Dance: A Tribute to the Music of David Bowie. Few artists have made a mark in popular music and culture as indelible as David Robert Jones, known worldwide as the one and only David Bowie. From the early days of “Space Oddity” into the dramatic, performance art era of Aladdin Sane and Ziggy Stardust, through to the brilliant Blackstar, released just two days before his passing, Bowie remained timeless and transcended pop music. Some of the DMV’s finest musicians have come together to cut through the hits of The Starman himself, demonstrating just how versatile his compositions were and always will be. Our celebration of the life and work of this legendary artist begins at 8pm.

Friday (1/29) The Chuck Brown Band toured the world with the Godfather of Go-Go, and the group is keeping the legacy alive! Come out and hear all your Chuck Brown and Go-Go favorites, plus their new music – including songs from the final Chuck Brown album, Beautiful Life. New and old fans know that this band is dedicated to the heartbeat of the DMV: Go-Go. Every show still starts with “Wind Me Up Chuck” and doesn’t stop until the dance floor is empty.  Sho Yo’ Right! The party gets crankin’ at 8pm.

Saturday (1/30) Bilal is one of a kind, and we are proud to bring him to our stage! If there was one R&B artist for whom the neo-soul categorization seemed limiting, it was Philadelphia native Bilal. Classically trained and capable of singing opera in seven languages, his recordings are wholly modern and creative. Grenique’s Black Butterfly, a 1999 release on Motown, was the first major album to feature Bilal’s vocals. The following year, he established a deep connection to hip-hop by appearing on Common’s Like Water for Chocolate and Guru’s Jazzmatazz album. His debut solo album, 1st Born Second, reached the Top Ten of Billboard’s R&B albums chart. His latest, In Another Life, is a collaboration with producer and multi-instrumentalist Adrian Younge. Bilal’s concert begins at 8pm.

Sunday (1/31) We’ve got some DC Soul Legends in the house: Sir Joe Quarterman + The Hardway Connection! Joe Quarterman was nicknamed “Sir Joe” as lead singer of a teenage vocal group The Knights. In the 1960s, he performed on trumpet and vocals for The El Corols, who backed legendary performers touring DC such as Stevie Wonder, Ray Charles, Otis Redding, Dionne Warwick, Gladys Knight & The Pips, and many more. His own band, Sir Joe Quarterman & Free Soul released “(I Got) So Much Trouble In My Mind” in 1972, which became his signature hit song. The Hardway Connection, inspired by influential and legendary rhythm and blues artists, evoke feelings of nostalgia and an undeniable compulsion to dance! They have opened for artists including Johnny Taylor, Harvey Scales, Toni Terry, Chuck Brown, and Little Sonny Warner. They placed first in the 11th Annual National Blues Talent Competition and performed on the 16th Annual W. C. Handy Blues Awards Show, both in Memphis. They are currently working on a new album. The DC Soul Legends show starts at 7:30.

It may be winter, but we’ve always got warmth, great food and drink, and fantastic entertainment at Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club! Check our Music Calendar for more upcoming shows.

Thanks for keeping great music alive, and we’ll see you soon.

 

Rick Brown

 

R&B, Go-Go, Vocals & Vibes – A Great Eclectic Weekend at Bethesda Blues & Jazz!

Miriamm Wright, Chuck Brown Band, Chris Grasso Trio, Lena Seikaly, Chuck Redd, Daryl Davis feat. Sam Miller at Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club October 2015Thursday (10/1) R&B singer Miriamm will present a great concert for a great cause. A fantastic vocalist who has shared the stage with the likes of Aretha Franklin and Will Downing, she is also the founder of the Edith P. Wright Breast Cancer Foundation. The show will be an evening of solid entertainment and a powerful performance to honor breast cancer survivors. Miriamm, who hit the big screen portraying the role of background singer to Etta James (Beyonce’ Knowles) in the feature film Cadillac Records (Sony Music Films) and toured as Peaches, one half of the classic R&B duo Peaches & Herb, has released 3 CDs. Miriamm…Live! @ Blues Alley was recorded in an effort to promote breast cancer awareness, as well as to celebrate the music of the late R&B singer, Minnie Riperton. Join us for this special event at 8pm.

Friday (10/2) we welcome back The Chuck Brown Band! The band that toured the world with the Godfather of Go-Go carries the torch and keeps the beat alive. The band continues to keep the legacy alive by performing all your Chuck Brown and Go-Go favorites, and by creating new music including three new songs on the final Chuck Brown album, Beautiful Life. With the addition of Frank Sirius on guitar and vocals, the rest of the band is intact, including Chuck’s daughter KK, the Horny Horns, Kenny “Kwickfoot” Gross, Mighty Moe Hagans, Karlston “Ice” Ross, Sweet Cherie Agurs, and Marcus Young. Every show still starts with “Wind Me Up Chuck,” and doesn’t stop until the dance floor is empty. The party starts at 8pm!

Sunday (10/4) begins a four-concert series hosted by The Chris Grasso Trio and featuring pairings of DC’s top jazz vocalists and instrumentalists. Kicking things off in style will be this fabulous combo: featured vocalist Lena Seikaly and renowned vibraphonist Chuck Redd, along with Chris Grasso (piano), Tommy Cecil (bass) and Quincy Phillips (drums).  Chuck Redd began performing internationally at the age of 21 when he joined the trio of legendary guitarist Charlie Byrd. He’s appeared worldwide on both drums and vibes Dizzy Gillespie, Mel Tormé, Herb Ellis, and many more greats. Lena Seikaly has quickly joined the ranks of the city’s most in-demand vocalists. She’s been an artist in residence at Strathmore and has performed at the city’s top venues from Blues Alley to The Kennedy Center. Chris Grasso is a Washington, D.C.-based jazz pianist who specializes in working with standout vocalists. Showtime 7:30. Remember there is always free parking on Sundays at Cheltenham garage.

Monday (10/5) It’s Customer Appreciation Night! Every Monday boogie-woogie piano master Daryl Davis features a different excellent artist – This time we’ll have Sam “Muleman” Miller. Sam Miller is a guitarist and vocalist known for his driving blues and rock ’n’ roll. Formerly with the ‘50s oldies band Big Cam & the Lifters, Sam excites audiences on his own all over the Baltimore/Columbia, MD area. There’s no cover and there’s half off select bottles of wine! 7:30pm.

Tuesday (10/6) and every Tuesday night – Come out for The JAM featuring Gary Grainger and Friends. Gary Grainger and his brother Greg Grainger head up the third season of the most popular and powerful jam session in the Maryland/Northern Virginia region. Calling all players and singers… Show up and show ‘em what you got! Free admission for AFM Union Member Card Holders (Must present Union Card and valid picture ID at door.). The music starts at 8pm!

Other upcoming shows include The Tom Principato Band, Fred Wesley & the New JB’s, Bobby Caldwell, Donnie, Art Sherrod Jr., Tito Puente Jr., Maria Muldaur, El DeBarge, Maggie Rose, and many more.

Keeping music alive in downtown Bethesda… Hope to see you here soon.

Rick Brown