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ART ON THE WALLS

Sunday
Jan 23
6:00PM  SHOW & TELL
Mark Mitton, host

Katrin Sigurdardottir John Horton Conway Gareth Conway
Show & Tell image

Mark Mitton, a magician who is fascinated by how we see the world, speaks with intriguing people who make things.

Artist Katrin Sigurdardottir's installations have been seen in museums around the world. Her new works 'Boiseries' are featured at the Metropolitan Museum of Art through March 6th. Playing with illusion, reality, and point-of-view in provocative ways, her art provides a multi-sensory exchange between an individual and a site or object.

John Horton Conway, one of the world's greatest living mathematicians, is Professor of Mathematics at Princeton University. He might be best known for his 'Game of Life'. One of the most popular lectures in the history of Princeton University is his 8-part series 'Thinking about Math (and Many Other Things)'.

Proving that the apple does not fall far from the tree, 9-year old Gareth Conway will recite the first 200 digits of π at lightning speed.

Please join us for an unusual evening that will inspire and delight.

$10.00 cover plus one drink minimum.

8:30PM  JANE IRA BLOOM QUARTET
Jane Ira Bloom, soprano sax, live electronics;  Dawn Clement, piano;  Mark Helias, bass;  Bobby Previte, drums
Jane Ira Bloom Quartet image
Soprano saxophonist/ composer Jane Ira Bloom celebrates the release of her latest CD “Wingwalker” (OTL140) bringing her quartet to Cornelia Street Café for the first time. Whether adventuring into interior or outer space in her music, Bloom continues to navigate her unique musical path with creative abandon. Wingwalker, her 14th album as leader reunites Bloom with long-time bandmates Dawn Clement on piano, bassist Mark Helias, and drummer Bobby Previte. After two years since her last release “Mental Weather,” Bloom brought the band together in June 2010 to record a suite of originals at Avatar Studios in NYC. From the groove inspired “Life on Cloud 8” to the spare simplicity of “Adjusting to Midnight,” Jane has journeyed further into jazz dimensions without a safety net.

"An alchemist's mix of catalytic creativity, pure poetic expression and unalloyed vitality, Bloom's music is a cache of sonic gold." - Owen McNally, Hartford Courant

“Bloom and Clement's chemistry is magical, especially when they fly formation" - J. Hunter, All About Jazz
 Cover $10 (includes one house drink)   ww.janeirabloom.com

Monday
Jan 24
6:00PM  JOHN FISCHER & FRIENDS
Angelo Verga, host

John Fischer
John Fischer & Friends image
John Fischer's collection of poems Love Condition, followed by a concert Music for Imaginary Movies with John at the keyboard joined by other fine musicians.

Born in Belgium in 1930, John Fischer emigrated to America in the 1940's and settled in New York. In the 1970's, during the Loft Jazz era, John ran a performance and gallery known as 'Environ', which featured many well-known dance theatre and emerging jazz artists. He is also the leader of the group, 'Interface', playing keyboard with many notable American jazz musicians. John Fischer recently performed at the Berlin Philharmonie celebrating the Loft Jazz performance spaces. Westdeutsches Rundfunk (WDR), featured the INTERface Ensemble, commissioned original compositions and sponsored joint art and music concerts (The Loft, Wuppertal). John Fischer has performed in Russia, Lithuania, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Holland, Belgium and France. At home, John performs regularly at Cornelia Street Cafe in New York City.


 Cover $7 (includes one house drink)

8:30PM  21ST CENTURY SCHIZOID MUSIC PRESENTS:MARTA & THE OTHER SHORE
Frank J Oteri, Host

Marta Topferova, voice, guitar,cuatro;  Ben Monder , electric guitar
21st Century Schizoid Music Presents:Marta & The Other Shore image
Marta Topferova is one of the finest singers and songwriters of her generation. She grew up singing classical and folk music in choruses for eight years, both in her native Czech Republic and the United States. Marta learned fluent Spanish during her adolescence, and evolved to be an accomplished performer and composer of Latin American music. She has toured the US, Canada, Europe, Argentina and Thailand. Her five releases to date include "Trova" (2009 World Village), "Flor Nocturna" (2006 World Village), "La Marea" (2005 World Village), "Sueño Verde" (2003 Circular Moves) and "Homage to Homeland" (2002 self-produced). As a steady creative force on the New York music scene, Marta has had the pleasure to collaborate with some of the most in-demand musicians including violinist Jenny Scheinman, harpist Edmar Castañeda, guitarist Ben Monder and drummer Adam Cruz. Her new project of original songs in English, “The Other Shore”, is expected to be released in 2011, and promises to be a great addition to Marta's musical offering!

"Topferova sings with an elegant longing in her voice" -- New York Times
 Cover $10 (includes one house drink)   www.matatopferova.com www.myspace.com/martatopferova

10:00PM  21ST CENTURY SCHIZOID MUSIC PRESENTS:MARTA TOPFEROVA:TROVA
Frank J Oteri, Host

Marta Topferova, voice, cuatro, maracas;  Aaron Halva, tres, vocals;  Pedro Giraudo, bass, vocals;  Neil Ochoa , percussion
21st Century Schizoid Music Presents:Marta Topferova:Trova image
Marta Topferova is one of the finest singers and songwriters of her generation. She grew up singing classical and folk music in choruses for eight years, both in her native Czech Republic and the United States. Marta learned fluent Spanish during her adolescence, and evolved to be an accomplished performer and composer of Latin American music. She has toured the US, Canada, Europe, Argentina and Thailand. Her five releases to date include "Trova" (2009 World Village), "Flor Nocturna" (2006 World Village), "La Marea" (2005 World Village), "Sueño Verde" (2003 Circular Moves) and "Homage to Homeland" (2002 self-produced). As a steady creative force on the New York music scene, Marta has had the pleasure to collaborate with some of the most in-demand musicians including violinist Jenny Scheinman, harpist Edmar Castañeda, guitarist Ben Monder and drummer Adam Cruz. Her new project of original songs in English, “The Other Shore”, is expected to be released in 2011, and promises to be a great addition to Marta's musical offering!

"Topferova sings with an elegant longing in her voice" -- New York Times
 Cover $10 (includes one house drink)   www.martatopferova.com www.myspace.com/martatopferova

Tuesday
Jan 25
6:00PM  GRADUATE POETS SERIES
Abba Belgrave and Jimin Seo, hosts

TBA
Graduate Poets Series image
Natalie Eilbert recently received her MFA in poetry from Columbia University. She is the recipient of the 2010 Linda Corrente Poetry Prize, awarded by Columbia, and was the finalist for Copper Nickel's 2010 poetry contest. Her work has appeared in, or is forthcoming from Colorado Review, Copper Nickel, DIAGRAM, Boxcar Poetry Review, et al. She lives in Brooklyn.

Robin Richardson is a poet and illustrator currently living in New York while pursuing her MFA in poetry at Sarah Lawrence. Her first full-length collection of poems if forthcoming with Insomniac Press. Her work has been featured in Misunderstandings Magazine,the Puritan, the Pilot Project, Filling Station, CV2, TTQ, All Rights Reserved, Dandelion, and the Berkeley Poetry Review.

Her art has been shown at The Alphonse Berber Gallery. She has also been featured in Computer Arts Magazine as one of Twenty Worldwide up-and-coming illustrators.

Andrew James Weatherhead holds a degree in Neuroscience from NYU and is currently an MFA candidate in poetry at the New School for Social Research. His poems have been published or are forthcoming from Juked, The Scrambler, and Monkey Bicycle. He is also a contributing writer for the culture blog Thought Catalog and the literature blog HTMLGIANT. He is originally from Chicago.

Eric Weinstein is the winner of the 2010 New Michigan Press/DIAGRAM chapbook competition for his collection, Vivisection, due out November 1st. His poetry has recently appeared or is forthcoming in Best New Poets 2009, Cincinnati Review, Colorado Review, Massachusetts Review, and Third Coast. He is an MFA candidate at New York University.

$7 admission includes a drink

8:30PM  KIRK NUROCK, SOLO JAZZ PIANIST
Kirk Nurock, piano
Kirk Nurock orchestrated for Leonard Bernstein, Dizzy Gillespie and Meredith Monk, composed a work for 2O voices and 3 canines which he conducted at Carnegie Hall, and won a scholarship at age 16, awarded by Duke Ellington. But when he sits down to a piano, strange universes collide. Nurock deconstructs standards and jazz classics through a highly personal post-modernism. Keyboard Magazine called him "joyously iconoclastic" and the Village Voice said “Nurock is a composer-pianist who has always defied categorization.” Come hear why!!

"Mr. Nurock has unique credentials." New York Times
 Cover $10 (includes one house drink)   http://kirknurock.blogspot.com

STREAMING LINK: www.youtube.com/user/KNurock1

KIRK NUROCK, SOLO JAZZ PIANIST  image
Wednesday Jan 26
6:00PM  PERFECT SENSE
Alissa Heyman and Hila Ratzabi, Hosts

Perfect Sense image
$7 admission includes a drink
8:30PM  "MIKE + RUTHY FOLK CITY":THE WIYOS
Formed in New York City during the summer of 2002, The Wiyos took their name from the toughest gang to prowl the streets of old New York (The Why’os, circa 1890). They have spent eight years touring extensively in the USA, Canada, France, The Netherlands and The United Kingdom. They were featured in the BBC television documentary, “Folk America – Hollerers, Stompers and Old-Time Ramblers”. In 2009 The Wiyos were hand picked by Bob Dylan to tour for seven weeks as the opener of the Bob Dylan Show, with Willie Nelson and John Mellencamp. Their 2009 release, Broken Land Bell, sat in the top 20 of the AMA charts for 14 weeks. The Wiyos unique charisma transcends typical social boundaries. They appeal to everyone from young hipsters to seasoned music connoisseurs. They have emerged as a hallmark band in the resurgence of traditional American music over the past decade.
 Cover $15 (includes one house drink)   www.thewiyos.com
Thursday
Jan 27
6:00PM  HYDROGEN JUKEBOX
Brant Lyon, host

ELLIA BISKER STACY ROCK
HYDROGEN JUKEBOX image
Poetry-Music Reading Series with the Hydro Juke improv band, The Ne'er-do-wells.

Open mic-sign up (arrive early to make the list).

Hydro Juke welcomes back for 2011 THE NE'ERDOWELLS, rockin' the stage with Open Mic Poets and this month's two fabulous featured acts, ELLIA BISKER and STACY ROCK.

ELLIA BISKER of Sweet Soubrette, whose dark, edgy songwriting has earned her an ASAP Plus Award for 2009/10, and who Bust Magazine describes as “Brooklyn’s fishnet-clad femme fatale,” celebrates the release of her second album, Days and Nights, this month, following Sweet Soubrette’s first, Siren Song (2008), which received critical praise and high rotation on national college radio and Time Out NY called “at once sweet and sassy, celebrating reckless behavior with a charmed wink.” Ellia’s poetry, fiction, and essays have been published in a variety of online and print magazines. “Poetic lyrics and a nostalgic indie style, with vocals that waver between song and spoken word.” – am New York. www.sweetsoubrette.com

STACY ROCK sings, writes songs, plays keyboards, and acts. Her music had been compared to a baffling variety of artists including Tom Waits, Feist, Jeff Buckley, Regina Spektor, Stevie Nicks, and even Queen. She’s played hundreds of shows touring the U.S. with her debut album, One Way Home. Two time winner of the ACAP Plus Award, and erstwhile piano player for NYC’s Monkey Bar, Gabriel Levitt of Brooklyn’s Jezebel Music calls her live performances “unequivocally enchanting.” She holds a B.A. in acting from Boston University and has studied at the Royal Academy of dramatic Arts in London. She has strutted the boards in The Voice of America Theatre, Boston Playwrights Theatre and many other venues, and has starred in several films, including the indie hit, Murder Party. stacyrock.com.

"POEMusic exploded on the tongue."

$ 7 includes a drink
 Cover $7   www.hydrogenjukeboxonline.com www.theneerdowells.com

8:30PM  BECCA STEVENS BAND
Liam Robinson, accordion, piano, voice);  Jordan Perlson, drums, percussion;  Chris Tordini, bass, voice;  Becca Stevens, voice, guitar, uke, charango, compositions
Becca Stevens Band image
Hailed by The New York Times as a “best-kept secret” with an “impressively absorbing” debut album, Becca Stevens has established herself as a singer/songwriter of enormous talent. Her songs expand and blur the boundaries of folk, jazz, and pop while engaging the the listener through keen poetic observation, rich musical language, and beguiling singing. In February 2011 the Becca Stevens Band will be celebrating the release of their second album, on Sunnyside Records. Other exciting collaborations for 2011 include touring with drummer/composer Eric Harland and his all star band, as well as a Carnegie Hall debut in March as the featured singer premiering a new work with pianist Brad Mehldau. This will be the last performance of Mehldau's season-long residency of new original works commissioned by Carnegie.

"Fully satiating. That is the least I can say about a Becca Stevens listening experience. Her songwriting, voice, and lyrics are like a cool bubbling brook freshening the brine of all the music you've ever heard." ,Esperanza Spalding 2010
 Cover $10 (includes one house drink)   www.beccastevens.com www.myspace.com/beccastevens

10:00PM  REBECCA MARTIN BAND
Larry Grenadier, bass;  Bill McHenry, tenor sax;  Rebecca Martin, voice
Rebecca Martin Band image
As a singer-songwriter, Rebecca Martin enjoys a solid reputation among listeners and within the industry firmly built upon her instantly recognizable voice and numerous albums of original songs. Almost as notable as Martin’s singing and songwriting is her creative way in organizing sessions and live performances with some of the best musicians in music today. But as strong as Martin is at crafting her own songs, her intimate take on standards is as unique.The Guardian commented, “….the young singer, Rebecca Martin, may even come to upstage Norah Jones and Madeleine Peyroux.” Martin’s eighth recording, with the enchanting title When I Was Long Ago (2010, Sunnyside Records), is a collection of eleven standards recorded in a most refreshing way. Recorded by legendary engineer James Farber and made at the Clubhouse Recording Studio in Rhinebeck, New York, everything was in place for the best possible results. The new album was released on August 31st, 2010 on Sunnyside Records.

"risky and daring... dreamy and impressionistic and hauntily swinging" - Will Layman

“Martin is able to let her emotions take control of her vocal chords. It is a talent that vocalists like Billie Holiday and only a handful of others possess. Martin's voice does not soar, but hovers hypnotically, barely above a whisper, like a dramatic monologue brought to life by a Shakespearean artiste in an epic tragedy. Her voice has wings, but is low-flying as it stirs the emotions of those who will give her an ear.” All About Jazz, 2010.
 Cover $10 (includes one house drink)   www.rebeccamartin.com/

Friday
Jan 28
6:00PM  DIALECT OF A SKIRT
Erica Miriam Fabri Robin Andre
Dialect of a Skirt  image
Dialect of a Skirt (Hanging Loose Press, 2009) was included on the list for: The Best Books of 2009 at About.com and made the Small Press Distribution Best-Sellers List for June 2010. Bob Holman wrote: “Move over, Poetry. Erica Miriam Fabri has entered the room: a first book, Dialect of a Skirt, is persona deluxe, post-feminist, playful, serious, adorable and untouchable simultaneously.” -Bob Holman, About.com’s Best Poetry Books of 2009 List

Erica Miriam Fabri is a poet & performer & the author of "Dialect of a Skirt." She performs solo & as the hybrid music & poetry duo "The Robin & the Lady Poet." She teaches writing & performance workshops at various colleges & universities. She lives in the bright, shiny & beautiful land of New York City.

Robin Andre is a Brooklyn-born singer-songwriter, performer and recording artist. He was signed to RCA records for his debut album “Paper Bag” and has recorded, performed and toured in 32 different countries world-wide with multi-platinum artists such as The Dave Matthews Band, The Fugees, Mariah Carey, Lil Flip and Inaya Day.
 Cover $7 (includes one house drink)

9:00PM & 10:30PM  GIRLS GONE MILD!
Rebecca Martin, voice, guitar;  Gretchen Parlato, voice, percussion;  Becca Stevens, voice, guitar, uke, charango, compositions;  Larry Grenadier, bass;  Chris Tordini, bass
Girls Gone Mild! image
Three of New York's finest songbirds come together on this rare evening to premiere their new trio "Girl's Gone Mild!". Inspired first by friendship and their urge for a relaxed day away from the city, "G.G.M!" was founded one late summer night when, after making a paella of clams and vegetables from her garden, Rebecca put her guitar over her knee and said, "Let's sing somethin'." The magic that occurred was destined to be shared with others. Tonight, accompanied by Chris Tordini and Larry Grenadier on double basses and Rebecca and Becca on stringed instruments, they will perform on each other's originals, some favorite standards, as well as new material that they have written together.

"Fully satiating. That is the least I can say about a Becca Stevens listening experience. Her songwriting, voice, and lyrics are like a cool bubbling brook freshening the brine of all the music you've ever heard." - Esperanza Spalding 2010

"risky and daring... dreamy and impressionistic and hauntily swinging" - Will Layman

"a singer with a deep, almost magical connection to the music.” – Herbie Hancock
 Cover $10 (includes one house drink)   www.beccastevens.com www.gretchenparlato.com

Saturday
Jan 29
6:00PM  DEBORAH LATZ: IN THE MOMENT
Deborah Latz, vocals;  Hendrik Meurkens, harmonica;  Yoshi Waki, bass
Deborah Latz: In The Moment image Photo by Todd Weinstein 2008
Deborah Latz 'Moment in the MOMENT' - an evening of bossa nova, samba, and jazz standards.

Deborah Latz is originally from Fairfield, California. Critics have called her “one of the finest balladeers” (Jazz Society Of Oregon), “undeniably unique” (jazzimprov.com), and (AllAboutJazz-NewYork) says, “Her free vocal line is clear and perfectly centered.” In Paris, France she has played with jazz piano luminary Alain Jean-Marie at 7 Lézards, Café Universel, Le Neuf Jazz Club, Atelier de la Main d’Or; in Tuscany, Italy at Jazz Club Il Paradosso and in NYC at Cornelia Street Cafe, Kitano, Sweet Rhythm, 55 Bar, The Cutting Room; in New Jersey at Trumpets Jazz Club; in Montreal, Canada at House of Jazz, and Quai des Brumes, among others. She received the “Best Actress Award” at the Jerzy Grotowski Theatre Festival in Poland for her one-woman performance of ‘Juliet’, and collected rave reviews in New York and Europe for ‘Travels With Ma Own Self’, the one-woman musical that she wrote, produced and most recently performed to adoring audiences at Cornelia Street Cafe. www.deborahlatz.com.

Hendrik Meurkens, originally from Hamburg, Germany is a virtuoso on both the chromatic harmonica and the vibraphone. Hendrik is the most important jazz harmonica player since Toots Thielemans. Meurkens' recordings and performances garner worldwide acclaim because the transcendent beauty of his music has universal appeal. Hendrik Meurkens’ profound involvement in both jazz and Brazilian music resulted in a very personal and instantly recognizable version of Samba Jazz. As a featured artist, he has recorded with (to name a few) Charlie Byrd, Jimmy Cobb, Ivan Lins, Monty Alexander, Claudio Roditi and Mundell Lowe, as well as backing such leading artists as Astrid Gilberto. www.hendrikmeurkens.com

Yoshi Waki comes to New York by way of Fukuoka, Japan where he began his career as a double bass player. He studied at Berklee College of Music, where he was given the Outstanding Performer Award. Yoshi toured for two years with the National Tour Company of Fosse, the Tony Award winning musical. He has appeared at noted venues such as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Blue Note, Knitting Factory and others. Among some of the luminaries Yoshi has performed with are George Benson, Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown, Gary Burton, Jimmy Cobb, Al Foster, Deborah Harry, Randy Johnston, Angelique Kidjo, Joe Lovano, and Suzanne Vega. www.yoshiwaki.net
 Cover $10 (includes one house drink)   www.deborahlatz.com www.hendrikmeurkens.com

9:00PM & 10:30PM  GERALD CLEAVER'S UNCLE JUNE
Gerald Cleaver, drums;  Andrew Bishop, reeds;  Mat Maneri, viola;  Tony Malaby, reeds;  Stacy Dillard, reeds;  Craig Taborn, piano, keyboards;  Javier Moreno, bass;  Ryan Macstaller, guitar;  Jean Carla Rodea, voice
Gerald Cleaver's Uncle June image
Drummer Gerald Cleaver Releases Be It As I See It, A Gripping Sound Collage Based On The Great Migration, on January 25 Eloquence and abstraction become blood brothers on Be It As I See It, the new disc by Gerald Cleaver’s Uncle June ensemble. The acclaimed NYC drummer proves himself an imaginative composer/arranger on a program that illustrates the breadth of his experimental interests, the depth of his historical perspective, and the impact of his Detroit upbringing. With frequent collaborators Craig Taborn, Tony Malaby, Mat Maneri, Drew Gress and Andrew Bishop building an ever-shifting soundscape around him, Cleaver displays the vitality of his reach, moving from rambunctious moments to genteel passages, with an insightful lyricism binding each approach. Here, on his fourth disc as a leader, the 47-year-old drummer’s poetic side is way out front.

“I’m trying to find new ways to express myself musically,” he says. “The AACM guys have always been a great example for me, and they still are. Braxton, Threadgill – they’re heroes of mine. And of course I’m thrilled to have had such a long relationship with Roscoe Mitchell – working with him changed my life. Melody, harmony, and form have always been super important to me.” Be It As I See It uses the 20th century’s Great Migration from the South to the North as a way to celebrate family and tout perseverance. Cleaver’s mom was born in Mississippi; she, her own mother, and her siblings moved north, joining her dad after he secured work with the Ford Motor Company. The drummer’s dad moved from lower Ohio to the Motor City by way of the U.S. Army/Air Corps. As the CD’s program unfolds, it parallels of the fortitude of African Americans who made the leap from rural to urban cultures. There’s no strict narrative per se; instead we get an engaging sprawl of musical episodes that reflect on Cleaver’s childhood.
 Cover $15 (includes one house drink)   www.myspace.com/geraldcleavermusic

Sunday
Jan 30
6:00PM  MANY MOUNTAINS MOVING, VOL. X
Jeff Lee & Tad Rutkopwski, editors

Erik Ipsen Minter Krotzer Mindy Lewis R.C. Ringer Renato Rosaldo Hal Sirowitz
Erik Ipsen is the treasurer of Urban Pathways, an organization that provides housing and services for the homeless. He lives just north of the Bronx with his wife and seven cats. He never played basketball.

Minter Krotzer was this summer a visiting fellow at the Moulin à Nef in Auvillar, France.

Co-host Jeffrey Ethan Lee's poetry book, identity papers (Ghost Road Press) was a Colorado Book Award finalist.

Mindy Lewis teaches writing workshops at The Writer’s Voice of the Westside YMCA, The Hudson Valley Writers' Center, and Brooklyn College.

R.C. Ringer received his MFA from Columbia University and began working in publishing. In 1985, after a chance meeting with J.D. Salinger did not change his life, R.C. Ringer entered the world of advertising and marketing agencies, where he is enjoying a very successful career.

Renato Rosaldo's first book of poetry (bilingual, English-Spanish), Prayer to Spider Woman/Rezo a la mujer araña, received an American Book Award in 2004. He teaches anthropology at NYU and is author of Culture and Truth.

Thaddeus Rutkowski is the author of the novels Roughhouse and Tetched, and the forthcoming Haywire (Starcherone Books). He teaches literature at City University of New York and fiction writing at the Writer’s Voice of the West Side YMCA.

Hal Sirowitz is the author of four books of poems, Mother Said, My Therapist Said (Crown/Random House), Father Said, and Before, During & After (Soft Skull Press). His work has been translated into nine languages, including Icelandic and Turkish. Awarded a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship and a New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship, Hal is a former Poet Laureate of Queens, New York.
 Cover $7 (includes one house drink)   http://www.mindylewis.com

8:30PM  GERALD CLEAVER'S UNCLE JUNE
Gerald Cleaver, drums;  Andrew Bishop, reeds;  Mat Maneri, viola;  Tony Malaby, reeds;  Stacy Dillard, reeds;  Craig Taborn, piano, keyboards;  Javier Moreno, bass;  Ryan Macstaller, guitar;  Jean Carla Rodea, voice
Gerald Cleaver's Uncle June image
Drummer Gerald Cleaver Releases Be It As I See It, A Gripping Sound Collage Based On The Great Migration, on January 25 Eloquence and abstraction become blood brothers on Be It As I See It, the new disc by Gerald Cleaver’s Uncle June ensemble. The acclaimed NYC drummer proves himself an imaginative composer/arranger on a program that illustrates the breadth of his experimental interests, the depth of his historical perspective, and the impact of his Detroit upbringing. With frequent collaborators Craig Taborn, Tony Malaby, Mat Maneri, Drew Gress and Andrew Bishop building an ever-shifting soundscape around him, Cleaver displays the vitality of his reach, moving from rambunctious moments to genteel passages, with an insightful lyricism binding each approach. Here, on his fourth disc as a leader, the 47-year-old drummer’s poetic side is way out front.

“I’m trying to find new ways to express myself musically,” he says. “The AACM guys have always been a great example for me, and they still are. Braxton, Threadgill – they’re heroes of mine. And of course I’m thrilled to have had such a long relationship with Roscoe Mitchell – working with him changed my life. Melody, harmony, and form have always been super important to me.” Be It As I See It uses the 20th century’s Great Migration from the South to the North as a way to celebrate family and tout perseverance. Cleaver’s mom was born in Mississippi; she, her own mother, and her siblings moved north, joining her dad after he secured work with the Ford Motor Company. The drummer’s dad moved from lower Ohio to the Motor City by way of the U.S. Army/Air Corps. As the CD’s program unfolds, it parallels of the fortitude of African Americans who made the leap from rural to urban cultures. There’s no strict narrative per se; instead we get an engaging sprawl of musical episodes that reflect on Cleaver’s childhood.
 Cover $10 (includes one house drink)   www.myspace.com/geraldcleavermusic

Drum kit donated by
CANOPUS DRUMS, Japan

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Cover is given where known
Many spoken words events are free
There is always a one-drink minimum per set; times are door opening times