By Steve Weinstein
By Devon Maloney
By Tessa Stuart
By Alison Flowers
By Albert Samaha
By Jesse Jarnow
By Eric Tsetsi
By Raillan Brooks
'BAM RHYTHM & BLUES FESTIVAL AT METROTECH'
AUGUST 12 Roy Hargrove and RH Factor
'HARLEM MEER PERFORMANCE FESTIVAL'
JUNE 20: Dave Valentin
JULY 11: Cynthia Scott
JULY 25: Cecilia Coleman Sextet
'HUDSON RIVER FESTIVAL'
JULY 20 Luciana Souza (World Financial Center Plaza): The singer's got a knack for having her art songs do their job with little or no preciousnessa feat right there. On the new Neruda she uses Catalan composer Federico Mompou's piano motifs as a springboard to cozy melodies, but it's the Chilean master's imagery and philosophy that helps explain the scope of Souza's spectrum. With Lila Downs.
JULY 29 Cecil Taylor (Castle Clinton National Monument): The maestro's big band raised the roof at Iridium a few weeks ago. Now the 75-year-old pianist tries to fill the New York harbor with the splashing of his time-tested abstractions. He remains fierce: The most vital and clever playing of any recent Taylor show has come from the bandleader himself.
AUGUST 11 Roy Hargrove and RH Factor (Rockefeller Park)
'JAZZ IN JULY'
92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Avenue, 212.415.5500, 92y.org
JULY 20 'Jazz in July 20th Birthday Bash'
JULY 21 'Blues After Dark'
JULY 22 'Saxophone City: In Memory of Benny Carter'
JULY 27 'If Bix Played Gershwin and Bessie Sang Berlin'
JULY 28 'Dick and Derek's Annual Piano Party'
JULY 29 'Stride Monster: Fats Waller Turns 100':See the pianist's wily mix of blues and bounce for a perfect example of genius wrapped in hokum. The jazz world celebrates plenty of centennials these days, but if entrepreneurs truly want to fill seats, they'll go long on Waller. His music's joy is contagious. Dick Hyman, along with pals Wycliffe Gordon, Kenny Davern, and Eddie Locke (among others) tip their collective hat.
Various venues, 212.501.1390, festivalproductions.net
JUNE 15-26:Some years it's inspired, some years it's rote. The '04 edition's curatorial spin is marked by a smart balance of jazz, world, and funk that stretches from the mercurial trios of pianist Bill Charlap and guitarist John Scofield to the love cry of Ornette Coleman's alto sax, to the whomping groove of George Clinton and earth mama blues of Abbey Lincoln. And its varied venues take you all over town.
'LINCOLN CENTER OUT OF DOORS'
AUGUST 10 'Jazz Takes Flight': Sonny Rollins: (Damrosch Park Bandshell): An oceanic sound and frightening energy level keep aficionados (meaning anyone with ears and a heart) sprawled around the Damrosch Park Bandshell when Newk steps up to the plate for these annual visits. Sometimes the music is godly, sometimes it's merely gorgeous. Always, because of a stature based on a lifetime of inspired improv, it's an event.
AUGUST 12 'Jazzmobile Presents': Melba Joyce and Ensemble (North Plaza)
AUGUST 13 'Noche Caliente': Plena Libre+Alfredo De La Fé and the Dancing Jazz Project (Damrosch Park Bandshell)
AUGUST 14 'Happy Birthday Jazzmobile!': Heath Brothers+Dr. Billy Taylor (Damrosch Park Bandshell)
AUGUST 16 'Baritone Saxophone Band Pays Tribute to Gerry Mulligan' (North Plaza)
AUGUST 22 Tin Hat Trio (North Plaza)
AUGUST 24 Na'rimbo (North Plaza)
AUGUST 27 Agatsuma (North Plaza)
AUGUST 30 Chick Corea (Damrosch Park Bandshell)
'MIDSUMMER NIGHT SWING'
June 10-July 16, Josie Robertson Plaza, Columbus Ave and 64th Street, 212.875.5766, lincolncenter.org
JUNE 10 George Gee's Swingin' Big Band
JUNE 16 Big Bad Voodoo Daddy
JUNE 17 Harbor Latin Big Band
JUNE 18 Deacon John's Jump Blues
JUNE 19 Avantango
JUNE 22 Ed Polcer and the Magic of Swing Street
JUNE 29 Tiempo Libre
JULY 1 Roomful of Blues
JULY 3 Uptown Horns' Soul Shingaling Revue
JULY 6 Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra: Wynton's crew has scope on its side: In the last few months they've put a spin on the canons of both Ornette Coleman and Count Basie. Groove-wise, they're seldom without lift-off, and on these warm summer evening shows, the context of community feeds their collective spirit. Pay attention to the brass sectionit's loaded with hot tickets.
JULY 7 Western Caravan With Thirsty Dave
JULY 13 Harry James Orchestra
JULY 15 Royal Crown Revue
JULY 16 Illinois Jacquet and His Big Band
'NINTH VISION FESTIVAL'
The Center, 268 Mulberry Street, 212.696.6681, visionfestival.org
MAY 25-31:This annual gathering of musicians, dancers, and poets has become the flagship affair for New York's left-leaning improvisers. If you're well-versed in spontaneous combustion and fluent in your loftspeak, it's likely you're on the bill. 150 artists are slated for the bash, and this year's master stroke is the reunion of the Revolutionary Ensemble, with violinist Leroy Jenkins, bassist Sirone, and percussionist Jerome Cooper. Also booked are Kidd Jordan, Blood Ulmer, Joe McPhee, Barre Phillips, Butch Morris, and Khan Jamal.
MAY 25 James 'Blood' Ulmer+Khan Jamal Quintet+Marshall Allen and the Sun Ra Arkestra+Gus Solomons Jr.