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Non-Stop Entertainment featuring Holiday Jazz! The Landau Murphy, Jr. Holiday Show, Redd Christmas, Dionne Farris, Joe Clair, A Smooth & Funky Christmas 2, and VMA’s Big Band Christmas

Virginia Music Adventures, Redd Christmas, Dionne Farris, Landau Murphy Jr, Joe Clair, Big NY & the Smooth Jazz All Starts at Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club, December 2016Monday (12/12) Kick off your week with Virginia Music Adventures‘ award-winning all-star youth ensembles as they present A Big Band Christmas! Ring in the holiday season with tomorrow’s stars. Now in its 13th year, the Virginia Music Adventures Annual Holiday Show has become a tradition in the DC Metro area. Four youth ensembles plus new a cappella vocal jazz ensemble will perform holiday favorites and some fresh musical choices including movements from Duke Ellington’s “Nutcracker Suite,” Bing Crosby’s rendition of “Jingle Bells” with the Andrews Sisters, and Ella Fitzgerald’s “I’ve Got My Love to Keep Me Warm” among other classic hits.” Virginia Music Adventures (VMA) provides comprehensive jazz music instruction combined with performance and travel opportunities to school age musicians. Through local, national, and international community service and travel, VMA encourages its students to develop empathy and respect toward other cultures. This holiday performance begins at 7:30pm.

Wednesday (12/14) There may be a lot to be said for a white Christmas, but internationally-known drummer and vibraphonist Chuck Redd brings us his own take on the season with Redd Christmas! Chuck began recording and touring the globe when he joined the Charlie Byrd Trio at the age of 21. To his credit are 25 European tours and six tours of Japan, with the Barney Kessel Trio, Ken Peplowski and the Benny Goodman Tribute Orchestra, Terry Gibbs, and Conte Candoli. He served as Artist-In-Residence at The Smithsonian Jazz Café in Washington, DC from 2004-2008 and is a featured soloist annually at The Oregon Festival of American Music, The W.C. Handy Music Festival, The Newport Beach Jazz Party, The West Texas Jazz Party, The North Carolina Jazz Festival, and The Roswell Jazz Festival. Jazz Times has praised Redd’s playing describing his vibes work as “Exquisite!” and The Washington Post admired his “melodic sparkle.” The Redd Christmas show begins at 8pm.

Thursday (12/15) Come out to this fantastic night of music with a soulful sensation! Have you heard this may be the last time you see this artist billed as “Dionne Farris?” Officially speaking, it’s “Dionne.” The Grammy nominated singer you know and love has dropped her last name as an artist. “I’m taking it back to the root,” she says, “to a time before the formalities of “Dionne Farris” when I was simply, Dionne. That’s who created everything the fans love.” Dionne began singing in elementary school and in the early 1990s, she performed as the vocalist on hip hop group Arrested Development’s hit single, “Tennessee.” She rose to fame with the release of her 1994 debut album, Wild Seed – Wild Flower, featuring the single, “I Know.” She was nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance in 1996. Revelation, her new 7-song album with 60-page mini book, is a reflection on, dedication to, and a celebration of the late, great music icon, Prince. Dionne was Prince’s muse for The Truth album; he penned the song “Dionne” to her. Use Discount Code DIONNEBBJ for 50% off your tickets! The concert begins at 8pm.

Friday (12/16) Join us for the Landau Murphy, Jr. Holiday Show! Landau Eugene Murphy Jr., the dreadlocked classic crooner and runaway season six winner of NBC TV’s America’s Got Talent, has toured across the country to sold-out audiences while maintaining his home and roots in his beloved West Virginia. His debut CD, That’s Life, on Columbia Records hit #1 on the Billboard Jazz charts and was produced by Grammy winner Steve Tyrell. Murphy’s follow-up, Christmas Made for Two, was a benefit fundraising vehicle for The Children’s Home Society of West Virginia, one of many Mountain State charities Landau has supported generously with his time and talent. His book, From Washing Cars to Hollywood Star, became an Amazon #1 best-seller and Reader’s Favorite Award winner. His Landau Live in Washington DC was actually recorded right here at Bethesda Blues and Jazz! Joining the show will be special guest Maiya Sykes of NBC’s The Voice and music sensation Postmodern Jukebox. The Landau Murphy, Jr. Holiday Show starts at 8pm.

Saturday (12/17) Don’t miss Joe Clair & Friends! Joe Clair is back with two big shows featuring comedians Jon Laster, Wil Sylvince, and The Fat Doctor. 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. So get ready to laugh, Bethesda! The shows start at 7pm and 10pm. Seating begins at 5pm and 9:30pm.

Sunday (12/18) Back by popular demand… Big NY and the Smooth Jazz All-Stars will take to the stage to give us A Smooth & Funky Christmas 2! A larger-than-life showman, Christian “Big New York” de Mesones is the creator of “Big New York & the Smooth Jazz All-Stars”, a uniquely collaborative effort highlighting both the hottest smooth jazz musicians in the DMV as well as Billboard-charting guest artists. Ronald Jackson from smoothjazzride.com wrote, “Witnessing the extraordinary talents of Big New York was as astounding and moving as an earthquake!!!” Guests can always expect a very entertaining performance as Christian combines smooth, sophisticated grooves with flavors of old school R&B and Latin Jazz. This musical combination will be evident in the Smooth & Funky Christmas set lists, which will include new arrangements of holiday favorites, interspersed with hits from the All- Stars, and crowd-pleasing covers. The All-Stars for this event are Willie Bradley on trumpet, David Bach on piano, Drew Davidsen on guitar, Elliot Levine on Hammond organ and synthesizer, the triple-sax attack of Rob Maletick, Eddie Baccus, Jr., and  Danny Kusz; Swiss Chris on drums, and Curtis McCain and Jesus Gonzalez  on percussion. Making her debut at BBJ is guest vocalist Lindsey Webster. This special Christmas performance begins at 7:30pm.

It’s so exciting to be in the midst of the holiday season with so many great events. We’ve got even more coming up including Christmas with Cassandra Wilson, the 3rd Annual Urban Soul Holiday Show with Secret Society, Soul Crackers Holiday Party, Auld TWANG Syne with Ruthie & the Wranglers and The Thrillbillys, New Year’s Eve with Doc Scantlin & his Imperial Palms Orchestra. Visit our Music Calendar for more info and tickets to all our upcoming events.

We look forward to seeing you soon for dinner and a holiday show!

 

Rick Brown

We’ve Got America’s Favorites! American Idol’s Haley Reinhart, America’s Got Talent Winner Eugene Murphy, Jr. Sings for WV Flood Relief,
Party Music, and Pageantry

The Vocal Workshop, Haley Reinhart, Landau Eugene Murphy, Jr., I&I Riddim, Star Pageantry International 2016, Miss Intercontinental United States at Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club 2016Wednesday (7/20) Don’t miss the next performance of The Vocal Workshop! The Vocal Workshop, under the direction of Chris Grasso, is an eight-week program designed to guide aspiring vocalists in their journey towards becoming jazz singers. The Workshop offers high-quality instruction in the art of jazz singing, in a setting with other vocalists who share the same goals. This showcase will feature the current singers performing some great music, accompanied by Chris Grasso on piano, Zack Pride on bass, and Ele Rubenstein on drums. You are invited to come out and enjoy the performances for only $10, good for either or both sets. Join us at 7pm, and you are welcome to stay for the 9pm show.

Thursday (7/21) We’ve got the incredible Haley Reinhart! Since placing #3 on FOX’s American Idol in 2011, Haley Reinhart has had over 50 million views on YouTube. She was originally signed with Interscope Records, but then went on to perform with Scott Bradlee’s Post Modern Jukebox. With that group, her cover of Elvis Presley’s “Can’t Help Falling in Love” was used in an Extra Gum commercial and became a viral sensation. Her latest solo release, Better, debuted at #22 on the Billboard’s Independent Album Chart. Accompanying her will be Dave Damiani & The No Vacancy Orchestra, who are in constant rotation on XM 71 Siriusly Sinatra and radio stations all over the country. They have done music for POLO – Ralph Lauren, CBS – Vegas, SINATRA 100, Marriott Corporation, FOX, ABC’s Sonoran Living, and many more. The show begins at 8pm.

Friday (7/22) When Landau Eugene Murphy Jr. showed up to audition for NBC TV’s America’s Got Talent in 2010, he was singing to pass the time while grinding out a living washing cars in his hometown of Logan, WV (population 3,000). Wowing the judges with his back story of homelessness and determination to succeed for his family, coupled with interpretations of classics from Cole Porter, Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra and others, Landau walked away with the million dollar grand prize in front of 14 million weekly viewers. In response to the devastating flooding in his home state of West Virginia, Murphy, Jr. is teaming up with Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club for a special benefit concert in conjunction with the Red Cross of West Virginia. A portion of each ticket sold will go directly to flood relief efforts to aid the thousands of residents affected by what has been called “once in a thousand years flooding.” The Landau Rebuild West Virginia Flood Relief Benefit Concert begins at 8pm.

Saturday (7/23) Prepare for an electrifying journey to the Caribbean with I&I Riddim! The name captures the spirit of this band’s music: “Riddim” is reggae’s irresistible upbeat dance rhythm, and “I&I” expresses Bob Marley’s “One Love” equality for all people. I&I Riddim thrills audiences with an arsenal of favorite reggae standards, the best modern reggae, and a few reggae-style pop-rock and calypso/soca tunes. I&I Riddim is known for its exciting performance style and has shared the stage with some of the reggae greats including Bunny Wailer and Junior Marvin both from Bob Marley’s Wailers. This award-winning Washington, DC band is well-equipped to transform any stage into a true Caribbean party experience. The reggae sounds get grooving at 8pm.

Sunday (7/24) The first Star Pageantry International 2016 pageant will be held in conjunction with the Miss Intercontinental United States pageant on our stage. The vision of Star Pageantry International is driven by the potential and capacity of a variety of women and men, even those who may have been excluded by other systems. This includes individuals where their opportunities have been hindered due to age or life circumstances. They look for leaders who are ambitious and very savvy, and ready to take on responsibilities focusing on changing the world. Each year, the Miss Intercontinental pageant works to provide a fair environment where young women compete not with each other, but against themselves as they are encouraged to identify goals, overcome roadblocks, and obtain success through preparation, organization, and self-discipline. Doors open at 3pm and the pageantry begins at 4pm. Tickets are available here.

Who’s coming soon to Bethesda Blues & Jazz Supper Club? We’ve got Jazz Meets Korea, Molly Ringwald, The Chuck Brown Band, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Jon B., Kenny Lattimore, tributes to The Beach Boys, Merle Haggard, and Gladys Knight & the Pips, and so much more. Keep up to date by visiting our Music Calendar anytime for the latest.

We’re looking forward to seeing you here soon. Thanks for sharing your summer fun with us here at BBJ!

 

Rick Brown

Witness World-Renowned Drummer Peter Erskine, Catch a Groove with Chopteeth and Suttle, Rock Out with Johnny Castle, and Laugh Out Loud with Joe Clair

Omrao Brown, Daryl Davis Presents Johnny Castle, Suttle, Peter Erskine with Dave Damiani and the No Vacancy Orchestra, Chopteeth, Joe Clair at Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club, July 2016Monday (7/11) Omrao Brown – WPFW Private Event

Tuesday (7/12) DC-area icon Johnny Castle is the bad boy every mother warned their daughters about and the teenage boy’s definition of cool. He is the bassist, vocalist, and bandleader of The Thrillbillys as well as a member of the famed blues band, The Nighthawks.  Over the last 40 years he has worked with top area bands including Bill Kirchen’s Too Much Fun, Switchblade, Tex Rubinowitz & The Bad Boys, and many others.  Well-versed in American Roots music, he has played Blues, Bluegrass, Honky Tonk, Swing, Texas Swing, Rockabilly, R&B, Rock ’n’ Roll, and Funk. Johnny was a recipient, along with his fellow Nighthawks, of the 2011 Blues Foundation award for acoustic CD of the year. 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. The show starts at 8pm.

Wednesday (7/13) Formed in 1994, the members of Suttle Thoughts have made a name for the band coast to coast over the last 23 years. They have performed in Dallas Texas, Miami, Florida, Cancun, Puerto Rico and all across the DMV. They’ve opened for national recording artists including The Isley Brothers at DAR Constitution Hall, and they’ve backed Jay Holiday, Anthony David and a host of others. Locally, they are regular performers at the annual H Street Festival and they were requested to perform at the historical Howard Theatre at a tribute for the legendary Godfather of Go-Go, Chuck Brown. The band has been playing at the Historical Takoma Station every Friday for the last ten years, the longest tenure for any Go-Go band at any area venue. In the beginning of 2016, “Suttle Thoughts” became “Suttle.” Look out for a new music release this summer! This show will get the party started at 8pm.

Thursday (7/14) Come one, come all, come check out the great Peter Erskine! Peter Erskine is one of the most recorded drummers in history. He has been performing professionally since the age of six and is the only drummer ever to play in the group Weather Report. The two-time Grammy winner has recorded with Steely Dan, Diana Krall, Randy & Michael Brecker, Kate Bush, Maynard Ferguson, Gordon Goodwin, Joe Henderson, Stan Kenton, Joni Mitchell, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Andrea Bocelli, Stanley Jordan, and Rod Stewart just to name a few. Dave Damiani & The No Vacancy Orchestra is in constant rotation on XM 71 Siriusly Sinatra and radio stations all over the country. This summer, they have been accompanying a series of amazing artists and making Thursdays swing at Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club! Showtime is 8pm.

Friday (7/15) The core of the Chopteeth sound is Afrobeat: a big-band funk invented by Fela Kuti in 1970’s Nigeria. Afrobeat is a spicy stew of modern jazz, Yoruba tribal music and burning, James Brown-inspired rhythms. Chopteeth’s sets feature original compositions along with updates of African dance classics, all while remaining true to the spirit of the music and its message. Band members step to the mic to serve up lyrics in a total of seven different languages. Since 2007, the members of the Washington Area Music Association have selected Chopteeth for a total of fourteen Wammie Awards, including Artist of the Year, Debut CD of the Year, World Music CD (twice) and World Music Group (for the last eight years in a row).This 12-piece Afrofunk orchestra explores the common groove between the funkiest, most hip-shakin’ West African and American popular music on the planet. Catch the groove at 8pm.

Saturday (7/16) Come out for a night of LMFAO with our #1 Comedian/Host Joe Clair! If you know him from the WPGC 95.5 Joe Clair Morning Show or if you’ve ever seen his live show, you know #thefunnydontstop! He’s got two big shows in store, so get ready, Bethesda! Seating begins at 5pm for the 7pm show and at 9:30 for the 10pm show.

Upcoming shows: America’s Got Talent winner Landau Murphy, Jr. sings in support of West Virginia flood relief, virtuoso drummer Cindy Blackman Santana performs, and 80’s film star, now singer Molly Ringwald teams up with Dave Damiani and the No Vacancy Orchestra for a night of wonderful jazz. Check our Music Calendar for these and many more excellent events!

Big thanks to every one of you for coming out and supporting great performances here in downtown Bethesda. We’ll see you soon!

 

Rick Brown

 

 

Celebrating Frank Sinatra, Luther Vandross, the Holidays, & Great Performances

BBJ Weekly Concerts: Cathy Ponton King, Gary Grainger, Luther-Re-Lives, Rhythm Bandits, Sinatra's 100th Birthday w/ Landau Eugene Murphy Jr, Sahara Dance, Drew Gibson, Devon SprouleMonday (12/7) We are thrilled to present singer, guitarist, and bandleader Cathy Ponton King. She has been a respected stalwart of the blues on the DC music scene since the 1970s. She is the most prominent woman who is keeping the blues alive and well in the metropolitan area. Come see why she has been highly regarded by blues legends on the order of Muddy Waters and Albert King, and why her popularity just keeps rising. Hosting once again will be boogie-woogie piano master Daryl Davis, who has worked with Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis Presley’s Jordanaires, Chuck Berry, Percy Sledge, The Coasters, The Platters, The Drifters, and many others. Come out and enjoy this Customer Appreciation Night with no cover charge, ½ off select bottles of wine, and get your dance on, too! The show starts at 7:30pm.

Tuesday (12/8) Tuesday is time for THE JAM with Gary Grainger & Friends! Now in its third amazing season, THE JAM is your chance to come out and perform live with some of the best musicians anywhere. Bring your singing voice and/or instrument and we’ll provide the backup. We can’t wait to see YOU rule our stage. We start at 8pm.

Thursday (12/10) We’ve got a tribute to the great Luther Vandross… holiday style! Please join us for the Luther Re-Lives Holiday Concert with Smooth Wardlaw. William “Smooth” Wardlaw embodies the sound and style of Luther and wraps it up with his own distinctive flavor. He is a fantastic entertainer who talks, laughs, bears a striking resemblance to, and yes, SINGS like Luther. His full 8-piece band Las Vegas style show with all the lights, choreography, and costume changes pulls out all the stops! The concert begins at 7:30pm.

Friday (12/11) You are cordially invited to a night of refreshments, music, and holiday cheer at The Montgomery County Sentinel Newspaper Party. Come out and enjoy drinks, food and music courtesy of The Rhythm Bandits Band – featuring the honorable District Judge John Moffett on guitar and harmonica along with Michael Lofgren of the famous Lofgren Brothers. The celebration will recognize the best in local Montgomery County government as six local civic leaders are honored with the second annual “Excellence in Government” award. Dress business casual. Drinks and dining at 5:30; ceremony at 7:30.

Saturday (12/12) We are proud to present to you our Frank Sinatra’s 100th Birthday Celebration starring Columbia Records artist and America’s Got Talent winner Landau Eugene Murphy Jr. and his Big Band! Fans of The Chairman of the Board will be treated to an extraordinary musical celebration honoring a legendary life and iconic career. Murphy will be saluting Sinatra and performing his timeless classics including “I’ve Got You Under My Skin,” “New York, New York,” “Fly Me To The Moon,” “Come Fly With Me,” and “My Way.” The crooner will also bring Sinatra-style holiday cheer with classics from his album, Christmas Made for Two. Landau recorded his first ever live concert DVD, Landau Live in Washington D.C. at Bethesda Blues and Jazz, at our venue in January of this year. Signed copies will be available after the performance during a special after-show meet-and-greet. The celebration begins at 8pm.

Sunday (12/13) Allow yourself to be swept away by the romantic allure of a dance for the ages with the Golden Era Sahara Dance Salon: A Vintage Belly Dance Brunch! From 1,001 Arabian Nights to present day, belly dance (raqs sharqi) continues to captivate audiences with timeless beauty and elegance. This unique event will feature live Middle Eastern music from Saltanah and Sahara Tabla, Raqs Sahara, Sahara Dance performance companies, faculty solos, and special guest, Na’la! Join us from 12:30-2:30pm.

Sunday evening, we will feature singer-songwriter Drew Gibson with special guest Devon Sproule. Drew Gibson’s music is reminiscent of American Primitivism riding on influence from the American days of country-blues and the singer-songwriters of the recent past. The finger-style guitarist has garnered attention from USA Today, The Washington Post, and Americana Magazine. His recently released his third effort is entitled 1532. Devon Sproule is a Canadian/American musician living in rural Virginia, raised on eco-villages near Kingston, Ontario and Louisa, Virginia. Devon Sproule’s music celebrates human complication in the language of nature. It is “North American music with weirdo roots.” Since 2007, her recordings have been released by Tin Angel Records, based in Coventry, England. The show starts at 8pm.

Check our Music Calendar for all of our upcoming performances including more of our excellent and eclectic holiday lineup. Thanks so much for helping to keep great music alive in downtown Bethesda. We’ll see you soon!

Rick Brown