Stanford Jazz Festival 17 June – 6 Aug

Ron Lee | May 30th, 2016 | Leave a Comment »

13220884_10153677355031378_4510861908241489767_nStanford Jazz Festival along with the Stanford Jazz Workshop has been bringing fine jazz to audiernces for over three decades. Musicians come to teach and play each year. There is a full lineup at Jazz vocalist Dianne Reeves opens up the season on 18 June. There are several performances by the students and faculty of Stanford Jazz Workshop.  The festival closes with the Stanford Jazz Workshop All Star Jam.

KCSM is proud to be a media sponsor of Stanford Jazz Festival and keep an eye out for our hosts.

Etienne Charles – KCSM Jazz on the Hill – 4 June Sat

Ron Lee | May 30th, 2016 | Leave a Comment »

bamboocropTrumpeter Etienne Charles grew up in Trinidad and his music reflects the Afro Carribean sounds of the islands. He studied at Floriday State University with jazz pianist Marcus Roberts. He did his graduate work at Juliard in NY and now teaches jazz trumpet at Michigan State university wherehe is the assistant professor of jazz trumpet. He has released 4 albums under his own label, Culture Shock Music. He was recognized by a Guggenhiem fellowship and won the Carribean Heritage Trailblazer award for his contributions to the music of the Carribean nations.

Last summer he performed the debut of his San Jose suite at San Jose Jazz summer fest who commisioned the work. The album will release in early June. There is a nice writeup on his previous album Creole Soul in his bio on his web site at

On June 4th Etienne will be one of the headliner performers at KCSM Jazz on the HIll on June 4th. Come join us. It will be a wonderful day of jazz.


Julian Lage @ Healdsburg Jazz – Friday 03 June 2016

Fred Witt | May 26th, 2016 | Leave a Comment »

16_05_15_KCSM_JLageJulian Lage, of Santa Rosa is a “young” acoustic guitar performer just under 30, but already with 15 years performing.  He was identified early as a prodigy, and had performed at the Grammy Awards at 13.  A lot of his work could sound like fusion or contemporary jazz.  Julian performs in multiple groups, has 7 releases out already, and has been nominated for a Grammy.   Try a few pieces here for yourself; “Freight Train,” and “233 Butler.”

Visit the 18th Healdsburg Jazz Festival in June between the 3rd & the 12th, and click this site for their full list of artists.

“Harmonica Charlie” Musselwhite @ KCSM Jazz On The Hill – Saturday 04 June 2016

Fred Witt | May 25th, 2016 | Leave a Comment »

16_05_24_KCSM_CMusselwhiteOur country’s Blues singer-harmonica player, Charlie Musselwhite will be “on the hill” on Saturday June 4, at the KCSM free Saturday concert, Jazz On The Hill.  Charlie was featured as a KCSM special program last month on May 6.  Click here to see the review we wrote then of Charlie & his work.

You can get a couple of pieces here by Charlie to listen to: a fun stage piece, “Blues in A” and a really cool blues number for the ages, “Mississippi Beat Part I.”

Visit the KCSM 2016 Jazz On The Hill festival Saturday June 4th for the show by Charlie Musselewhite, and the day’s full lineup of artists.  See also our summary of singer-saxophone player singer Grace Kelly for Saturday’s concert.

Grace Kelly @ KCSM Jazz On The Hill – Saturday 04 June 2016

Fred Witt | May 23rd, 2016 | Leave a Comment »

16_05_21_KCSM_GKellySinger-Saxophone player Grace Kelly will be on stage Saturday afternoon at KCSM’s free summer concert in San Mateo, on the college grounds.  She is from Wellesley, Massachusetts.  While a young performer, Grace already has quite a few years credited on stage, quite a few awards (and quite a few releases as well).

Kelly’s music style is versatile, now mod (and maybe mood), sometimes retro, and then clear & lyrical.  A great number of her performance numbers are vocals or saxophone instrumentals.  For some samples try here “Blues For Harry Bosch,” a “new” retro arrangement on sax with great melody, “Trying To Figure It Out,” a clear, melodic vocal from her 2016 release, “Ready, Set, Stay,”  a band stage vocal, and “Nuages,” a moody 2012 festival instrumental.

Visit the KCSM 2016 Jazz On The Hill (JOTH) festival Saturday June 4th for the show by Grace Kelly, and the day’s full lineup of artists.  Click here for the lineup.  Click here for the blog general notice on JOTH.

Healdsburg Jazz Festival 3-12 June 2016

Ron Lee | May 22nd, 2016 | Leave a Comment »

For nine days jazz fans from all over take over the town of Healdsburg in the Sonoma County wine region. Healdburg Jazz Fesival mixes great jazz with the food and atmosphere of the small town life of Healdburg. Concert venues take place downtown and on the grounds of several local vineyards. It is a great way to spend a week in Sonoma wine country.

The festival opens with the Julian Lage Trio and two concerts honoring drummer Billy Hart. Sunday is the blue brunch at Sonoma Cutrer Vinyard with Lady Bianca. Music continues every night of the week and finshes with the Marcus Shelby orchestra with Beyond the Blues and New Orleans on the Green.

KCSM is proud to be a media sponsor of the Healdsburg Jazz Festival. Festival details are on their web site at

SF Cole Porter Society – Cole Porter 125th birthday party 3 June

Ron Lee | May 22nd, 2016 | Leave a Comment »

For the 125th birthday of Cole Porter the Cole Porter Society will be presenting “Les Ambassadeurs” Cole Porter in Paris. The show was written by Cole Porter in 1928 before he was famous. It was performed once in a Paris nightclub of the same name. The show was “lost” till 2014 when new information came to light and the show was reassembled from the Waring archives in NYC. You can read the New York Times article on how they found the show at

Noah Griffin and the Cole Porter Society will be performing this revue at the newly remodeled Herbst Theatre in San Francisco. You can find out more and buy tickets at

KCSM 2016 Jazz on the Hill 4 June 2016

Ron Lee | May 17th, 2016 | Leave a Comment »

header_joth2016Come join KCSM at the 2016 Jazz on the Hill free concert! On Sat June 4th the party will be at the College of San Mateo campus. We will have food for sale, arts and crafts and lots of fun. The music kicks off at 11am with SF Jazz High School All-Stars combo. Headliners this year are Etienne Charles, Grace Kelly, Lynne Arriale, Charnee Wade, Charlie Musselwhite. The show will close with the superb San Francisco Latin Jazz Youth Essemble. There are more details at the Jazz on the Hill website at

125th Birthday of Cole Porter – SF Cole Porter Society ! – Fri 03 June 2016

Fred Witt | May 13th, 2016 | Leave a Comment »

16_05_14_KCSM_CPSocietyNo one in the world of American popular music elevated the level of musical discourse to the extent Cole Albert Porter did. The first choice of recording artists from Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald and Tony Bennett, The Cole Porter Society presents “Cole Porter in Paris, The Lost Songs.” You will experience 18 songs never before heard in San Francisco from “Les Ambassadeurs,” performed only three times in the past 86 years.

According to musical theater historian Ken Bloom, who unearthed the treasures, the Lost Songs provide a glimpse of the composer on the precipice of success. “It’s typical Porter on the way to becoming great Porter. You can see everything that’s going to come in just a year or two.”

Join the ensemble of the Bay Area’s stellar artists including Grammy nominated Desiree Goyette, cabaret favorites Amanda King and Deborah Winters, opera and light opera stars Michael Dailey and Martin Bell, along with 16 year old singing prodigy Sofia Perozzi. Accompanying the vocalists will be society pianist Peter Mintun and Grammy Award winner Laurence Hobgood.

Try here a fun, off-the-track Porter song, “Miss Otis Regrets.”

Musical Theater expert Charles Troy will present a pre-program multimedia presentation on Cole Porter in Paris.  New York based musical theater historian, playwright and producer, Ken Bloom, will direct.

All proceeds benefit The Cole Porter Society’s mission to bring The Great American Songbook to our schools, elevating the musical literacy of our young people.

Ernestine, Sarah, Thad – Saturday 14 May 2016

Fred Witt | May 13th, 2016 | Leave a Comment »

Some of our 20th century jazz heroes – singer Ernestine Anderson & Sarah Vaughan, and trumpeter Thad Jones, here for you to hear !!

16_05_10_KCSM_EAndersonSinger Ernestine Anderson

Ernestine, from Texas was a long-term blues & jazz singer.  She grew up in a musical family and was showing up in family sing-alongs as a toddler.  Her voice started at good & just kept getting better, and she was off on her ~70-year career.  Her singing was much admired and before she was 30 she was hearlded as a great and compared to Sarah Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald, and Billie Holliday.  Try a couple of her songs here, “Never Make Your Move Too Soon” and “All Blues.”  Popular albums of hers are “Swings The Penthouse”  and “I Love Being Here With You.”

16_05_10_KCSM_SVaughanSinger Sarah Vaughan

Sassy Sarah Vaughan with Sonny & Mel.  Come check in Saturday with Sonny & Mel for 4 hours on the 20th century jazz singing great, Sarah Vaughan.  For many of her works, the listener is treated to a voice coming from the rarefied atmosphere of time’s greatest singing jazz talent.  While Sarah’s piano & vocal talents are great, the best part is heart & soul she projects through the song into the performance.   Despite Sarah’s wide performance the key for many isn’t necessarily the variety, but rather picking their favorite style & theme, and listening to her voice through that slice of her music.  Try a classic here by her, “Misty.”  A nice album by Sarah is “Live At Rosy’s.”

16_05_10_KCSM_TJonesTrumpeter Thad Jones

Thad Jones, from Michigan was a 20th century trumpeter.  He performed for many years with the Count Basie Orchestra.  His music material and playing were similar to Thelonious Monk, Tim Hagans, and Richard Boone.  Calling back from the past, Jones’ work is smooth stuff.  Here are two of his most popular numbers for you to try: “Middelheim 1973” and “April In Paris.”  A great album with Jones is “All My Yesterdays” giving mintage music from 1966 in NYC.

Join Sonny, Mel, Dick, and Kathleen between 10 am and 6 pm Saturday May 14 for an afternoon of song and trumpet stories about jazz & blues stars.