A Nigh of Global Jazz

Oscar Peñas

7:30 pm Jan 6 - Brad Shepik and Balkan Peppers, http://www.bradshepik.com
Balkan Peppers is the Balkan, jazz/funk fusion brainchild of guitarist Brad Shepik and Rom percussionist Seido Salifoski- two musicians who have collaborated for 25 years, touring and recording with several Balkan infused groups including Yuri Yunakov's Wedding Band, Paradox Trio, and the Commuters. Balkan Peppers is their first project together featuring music co-written and arranged. Their music combines the joyful dance rhythms of the Balkans with virtuosic jazz improvisation and the grooving energy of funk. Brad Shepik is known for leading his own critically acclaimed jazz and world music bands (Brad Shepik Organ Trio, Human Activity Suite) and is a veteran of stellar jazz groups led by Joey Baron, Paul Motian, Charlie Haden, Carla Bley, Dave Douglas, Bob Brookmeyer. Seido Salifoski, a Roma born to a singer mother and a folk dancer father in Prilep, Macedonia, has played darbuka / dumbek and drums in Balkan and Middle Eastern style for 30 years. With his extensive experience playing Turkish, Greek, Balkan, and Middle Eastern percussion combined with flare of jazz from studying at Berklee College of Music in Boston, his unique virtuosity has set him apart from the pack worldwide. Balkan Peppers features Kenny Warren on trumpet (Slavic Soul Party) and Ethan Helm (alto saxophone) and Mike Verselli (keyboards).
“This beautiful collaboration, offers further evidence for Shepik as one of the most consistently creative and stimulating guitarist-composers on the scene today” Bill Milkowski, Jazz Times

9:30 pm Jan 6 - Uri Gurvich, http://www.urigurvich.com
Saxophonist and composer Uri Gurvich was named Jazz Player of the Year in his native Israel before relocating to the U.S. to study at Boston’s Berklee College of Music under Joe Lovano.
Now based in New York, Gurvich won great acclaim as a bandleader with his debut, The Storyteller, which was released on John Zorn’s label TZADIK and features some of the most prominent voices on the contemporary jazz scene: Leo Genovese, Peter Slavov, Francisco Mela and special guest Chris Cheek. All Music Guide called Gurvich “a major new voice in jazz.”
His second album, BabEl, features his quartet and Moroccan multi-instrumentalist Brahim Fribgane on oud and percussion. The Los Angeles Times wrote that the music “transcends borders,” placing Israeli, Yemenite, East European and North African music into a progressive jazz context.
Uri will be releasing his 3rd album in 2017 featuring his long-time quartet.

7:30 pm Jan 7 - Kevin Hays/ Gregoire Maret Duo
This special duo project brings together pianist Kevin Hays and harmonica Grégoire Maret.

Kevin Hays is internationally recognized as one of the premier jazz pianists of his generation. Many of his 15 recordings as leader have received critical acclaim from publications such as The New York Times, Downbeat Magazine and Jazz Times, as well as a “Coup de Coeur” from the Académie Charles Cros (France). A prolific sideman appearing on over 60 records, Hays’s long list of notable musical associations include records with Chris Potter, Joshua Redman, Nicholas Payton, and Al Foster. kevinhays.com

Gregoire Maret was the subject of Swiss filmmaker Frédéric Baillif's documentary Sideman, which won several awards. In 2005, Grégoire toured with the Pat Metheny Group, receiving a Grammy for Best Contemporary Jazz Album for their album The Way Up. He also won the Jazz Journalists Association ‘Player of the Year Award’. After his Grammy win, Maret embarked on a two-year tour with the worldclass bassist Marcus Miller and subsequently joined Herbie Hancock’s band. Other credits include performances with Youssn’Dour, Me' Shell Ndegeocello, Pete Seeger, David Sanborn, George Benson, and Cassandra Wilson, to name a few. gregoiremaret.com

9:30 pm Jan 7 - Oscar Peñas, https://oscarpenas.com
Peñas has performed at his hometown, Barcelona, Spain’s most important festivals. In his based town New York, he played his original composition, mostly as a leader along with outstanding jazz figures, as well as known jazz musicians such as Paquito D’ Rivera, Gil Golstein, Esperanza Spalding, Gregoire Maret, Ralph Alessi, and Jason Palmer. He has toured internationally with his own projects.
Prestigious performances include appearances at Jazz Plaza in Habana, Cuba, Duc des Lombard, Paris. In the USA at Kennedy Center, Atlas Performing Arts Center, Strathmore Performance Arts Center, BargeMusic, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Discover Jazz Festival, Old Town School of Folk Music in Chicago, Dizzy’s Club Coca Cola, Blue Note, 55 Bar, among others.
His new forthcoming project is a classical-jazz work that brought him back to Cuba to perform and live recorded his new suite “ Almadraba,” inspired by the eponymous fishing tradition from Andalucía. This was presented at the UNESCO historical landmark Teatro Martí in Old Habana, Cuba along with Frank Carlberg, piano and a chamber string orchestra, Solistas de la Habana, this pass November. The new release is expected to be on the street in September 2017.
"Spanish guitarist Oscar Peñas has attracted a wide variety of fans through his unique combination of classical, Spanish folk music and Brazilian grooves over an American jazz base.” – Mark Ruffin, SiriusXM, Real Jazz channel

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Oscar Peñas