Student Activities and Programs
Previous Jazz at the Rat Performances
Thursday, February 26
7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
While living in New York in 2007, vibraphonist James Westfall founded The Wee Trio which, as the San Francisco Chronicle wrote, "consists of jazzmen who grew up on rock 'n' roll and aren't afraid to play it." As a jazz artist, Westfall was accepted as the first vibraphonist in the history of The Thelonious Monk Institute, and performed with artists such as Herbie Hancock and Wayne Shorter. As a multi-genre instrumentalist, he also leads an electro rock band called Bionica, and also happens to play keytar. Whether performing with his solo projects or his experimental groups, Westfall "prides himself on continuing the tradition of breaking tradition."
A Tribute to Horace Silver
Thursday, March 12
7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Jesse McBride and The Next Generation will celebrate the musical legacy of the iconic pianist and hard bop pioneer who passed away in 2014 at the age of 85. Featuring Jesse McBride, piano; Derek Douget, tenor saxophone; Alfred Jordan, Jr., drums; Martin Masakowski, bass; Dominic Minix, guitar; and Ashlin Parker, trumpet.
Thursday, April 16
7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Rachel Brotman is a vocalist, composer, and pianist born and raised in New York. After years of performing and honing her unique vision in New Orleans, where she graduated from Tulane in 2009 with a music/Jazz Studies major, she returned to Brooklyn to lead her own band, drawing from soul and electronic influences with roots in jazz and improvisation. Bandcamp's Best describes her sound as a "beautiful vocal caress tiptoeing along subtle, strangely riveting melodies," while NPR declares that Brotman's voice "exudes a graceful simplicity."
The Bridge Trio
Thursday, April 23
7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
The Bridge Trio, consisting of drummer Joe Dyson, bassist Max Moran, and pianist Conun Pappas, has its roots deeply entrenched in the New Orleans jazz tradition. The young musicians first came together while students at the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts (NOCCA), under the direction of their mentor and former teacher, legendary clarinetist Alvin Batiste. Today, when not performing as the Bridge Trio, they are members of saxophone master Donald Harrison’s band, and are composers of innovative compositions in the "Nouveau Swing" style, a style of jazz created by Harrison that merges modern dance music with Afro-New Orleans traditional music.
A Tribute to Idris Muhammad
Thursday, October 16
7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
The Next Generation band, with special guests Herlin Riley (drums, Jazz at Lincoln Center) and Sam Williams (trombone, Big Sam's Funky Nation) will pay tribute to Idris Muhammad (pictured), the legendary New Orleans-born and internationally revered drummer who passed away this past July at the age of 74. From playing with early R&B and rock 'n roll greats in the 1950s, to becoming an in-demand jazz and soul session drummer and band leader in the 1960s and 1970s, to being sampled by scores of hip hop artists, Muhammad is, as described by WWOZ FM's George Ingmire, "on the Mount Rushmore of New Orleans drummers."
Ashlin Parker and Trumpet Mafia
Thursday, October 23
7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
Born in Charlotte, NC, the New Orleans-based trumpeter and educator has performed with local jazz favorites like Irvin Mayfield and the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra and Delfeayo Marsalis' Uptown Jazz Orchestra, as well as popular R&B and pop artists such as Aretha Franklin and Anthony Hamilton. His Trumpet Mafia pairs him with several of the best of his fellow trumpeters.
Thursday, November 13
7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
Acclaimed as the “Piano Prince of New Orleans,” Davell Crawford began playing at age 7 and has staked his claim amongst those musicians in the great New Orleans piano tradition. Drawing from a wide range of influences, from his deep gospel roots to jazz, rhythm and blues, and even country-western, the equally gifted vocalist and Big Easy Entertainment Award winner was described by writer John Sinclair as "one of the most incredibly talented musicians New Orleans has ever produced." My Gift to You, Crawford's latest CD, features guest appearances by Big Freedia and Dr. John.
"Women in Jazz" - co-sponsored by Newcomb College Institute
Thursday, March 27, 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Saxophonist Chelsea Baratz is a young band leader whose music follows in the footsteps of 1960’s soul jazz and the hard bop roots of her hometown of Pittsburgh. She's performed with artists such as The Roots, Soulive, Christian McBride, Roy Hargrove, DJ Logic, and Branford Marsalis, to name a few. She's also a current member of the Maurice Brown Effect.
Yolanda Windsay and Kelly Love Jones
Thursday, April 3, 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
As one of New Orleans' leading vocalists, Yolanda Windsay (pictured) regularly performs alongside her mother, the acclaimed Topsy Chapman, and her sister Jolynda Phillips in their vocal trio Solid Harmony, recently featured in the 2013 documentary Tradition Is a Temple: The Modern Masters of New Orleans. During her career, Windsay has shared the stage with legendary musicians such as Terence Blanchard, Betty Carter, Dr. John, Dizzy Gillespie, Leroy Jones, Max Roach, and many others. Kelly Love Jones is a singer/songwriter/guitarist who The Advocate described as "(embracing) the cultural richness of her native New Orleans in her unique mixture of reggae, soul and hip-hop."
Thursday, April 10, 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Touring and recording with superstar Beyoncé, and also as the assistant director of Esperanza Spalding's Radio Music Society, has put saxophonist Tia Fuller at the center of the pop music universe, reaching millions of listeners with her concise, beautifully crafted solos. On her own time, the 37-year-old is one the most important new instrumentalists in jazz, as a savvy bandleader, composer, and arranger who follows in the scorching footsteps of masters like Cannonball Adderley, Jackie McLean, and Kenny Garrett. She’s racked up an imposing range of credits, including Jon Faddis, Jimmy Heath, Gerald Wilson, and Nancy Wilson. Fuller is also a devoted educator, lecturing and presenting master classes at music institutions around the world.
Thursday, April 17, 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
A San Diego native and graduate of the prestigious Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz, vocalist Johnaye Kendrick has worked with many contemporary jazz legends, including Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock, Terence Blanchard, Danilo Perez, Christian McBride, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Ellis Marsalis, and Brian Blade. Kendrick was also featured on the Grammy-winning 2009 album by Irvin Mayfield and the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra, Book 1. When not touring with her own group, she serves as assistant professor of jazz voice at Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle. Trumpeter Nicholas Payton raved, "Johnaye has the potential to be a vocalist of the highest order; the likes of which we have seen seldom since the grande dames of the golden era of jazz roamed about the earth."
Thursday, October 24, 2013, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
Mike Clark gained worldwide recognition as one of America’s foremost jazz and funk drummers while playing with Herbie Hancock’s group in the early 1970’s. He first became known as a major innovator through his incisive playing on Hancock’s Thrust album, and Hancock once remarked, "the solo he played on Actual Proof is one of the best drum solos on any of my albums." Next to James Brown's drummer Clyde Stubblefield, Clark's beats with The Headhunters (most notably on "God Make Me Funky") are some of the most sampled in hip hop. While often referred to as the “Tony Williams of funk”, Mike considers himself a jazz drummer, and in fact has become one of the most vital to sit behind a set. He's performed with jazz greats such as Chet Baker, Tony Bennett, Wayne Shorter, Christian McBride, Bobby Hutcherson, Al Jarreau, and many more.
A Retrospective: The Music of the Wynton Marsalis Quintet
Thursday, November 14, 2013, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
Modern Piano Masters: The Music of Mulgrew Miller, George Duke, and Cedar Walton
Thursday, November 21, 2013, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
George Porter Jr.
Thursday, April 18, 2013, 6:00 - 8:00 p.m.
Bassist George Porter Jr. is a legend of New Orleans music and one of the founding fathers of funk music. As a co-founding member of The Meters, the influential band recently nominated for induction into the Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame, Porter recorded several albums in the 1960s and 1970s, toured with The Rolling Stones, performed with Paul McCartney, was a musical guest on Saturday Night Live, and has been sampled in countless hip hop recordings by artists from the Beastie Boys to Public Enemy. Still active as an in-demand studio musician and the bandleader of the Runnin’ Pardners, Porter continues to perform with the funky Meters and The Meter Men, among others, and at occasional, wildly popular original Meters reunion shows.
A Night of Big Bands
Thursday, April 25, 2013, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
Experience the big band sound of jazz and swing with the Tulane Big Band and The Next Generation Big Band, featuring arrangements by Jesse McBride and students in Tulane’s Jazz Studies program.
The Original Pinettes Brass Band
Thursday, October 4, 7:00 p.m.
The Original Pinettes, the world’s first all women’s brass band, was founded in New Orleans in 1991 and performs in the “funky, modern style” of New Orleans brass band music, influenced by R&B and hip hop. Led by snare drummer and original member Christie Jourdain, the band is a mainstay at New Orleans’ biggest festivals, including Jazz Fest, Essence Fest, and French Quarter Fest, and has also been featured on HBO’s Treme.
Kalamu ya Salaam
Thursday, October 25, 7:00 p.m.
Kalamu ya Salaam, a revered figure in New Orleans’ spoken word and literary communities, combines poetry with jazz, blues, and other forms of music. In addition to writing several books of poetry, founding the NOMMO Literary Society, and leading local creative writers’ workshops and poetry performance ensembles, Salaam has served as an editor and contributor for a number of respected cultural and music publications. His work includes the spoken word CD My Story, My Song (AFO Records).
Thursday, November 8, 7:00 p.m.
Trumpeter/vocalist Wendell Brunious began playing and performing in New Orleans by the time he was a teenager. Since then, he’s become of the city’s most revered jazz elders, and has led his own band, as well as performed with the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, and several other local modern, traditional, and brass band jazz artists.
New Orleans Afro-Cuban Connection
Thursday, November 29, 7:00 p.m.
Don't miss a special night of Latin jazz featuring an ensemble of New Orleans artists including Pat Casey, bass; Alexey Marti (pictured), percussion; Mike Watson, trombone; and other TBA special guests.
Thursday, February 2, 7:00 p.m
Banjo virtuoso Don Vappie is descended from a long line of New Orleans musicians that go back to the nineteenth century, including early jazz greats Papa John Joseph and Willie "Kaiser" Joseph. Vappie leads and tours with his Creole Jazz Serenaders, whose music incorporates the musical legacy of his own heritage of New Orleans Creole culture, a society that sprang from the mixture of French, Spanish, African and American Indian people with strong ties to the Caribbean islands. A frequent performer with Wynton Marsalis and Jazz at Lincoln Center, member of the Four String Banjo Hall of Fame, former member of the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, and recipient of the Louisiana Creole Society Award, Vappie also plays mandolin, guitar, tuba, bass violin, string bass, and is a vocalist as well.
Thursday, March 1, 7:00 p.m.
Since moving to New Orleans in 2002, saxophonist and composer Rex Gregory has performed with some of the city’s finest musicians, including Germaine Bazzle, Simon Lott, James Singleton, and many others. While he is a staple in the local jazz community, Gregory is equally comfortable expressing himself in other genres of music, much like the keyboard work he’s done for the rock band Bionica. He also recently released a CD of original compositions, An End to Oblivion.
Thursday, March 8, 7:00 p.m.
Steve McKie is one of the most influential forces in Philadelphia's rich, contemporary music scene. He has successfully made the transition from respected drummer, having shared the stage with Joss Stone,Common, Jazmine Sullivan, Robert Glasper, and many others, to pop and R&B producer for heavyweights such as Jill Scott, Estelle, John Legend and Bilal, while racking up scores of Gold records as he goes.
Thursday, March 29, 7:00 p.m.
Vocalist Stephanie Jordan is the fifth performer to emerge from a family of New Orleans bred musicians. The daughter of renowned saxophonist and educator Edward “Kidd” Jordan, Stephanie's lyrical style has been compared to that of Norah Jones and Cassandra Wilson. All About Jazz writes, “Her tone is crisp, perfect, but not in that polished way that sounds like an opera singer attempting jazz. She is more like a master of technique, yet with plenty of soul.”
Thursday, September 29, 7:00 p.m.
Saxophonist Roderick Paulin grew up in the New Orleans jazz tradition, beginning to study and play music while he was in the fourth grade. He soon became the youngest member of his father’s renowned group, the Doc Paulin Brass Band. In 1990, Kermit Ruffins invited Paulin to join the ReBirth Brass Band, a group that transformed traditional second-line and brass band music by incorporating urban, funk, hip-hop and other contemporary elements. He composed and arranged several tunes with ReBirth , and when the band toured with legendary James Brown saxophonist Maceo Parker, Paulin found his musical mentor. Since then, Paulin had led his own Big Easy Groovers and has worked with a range of pop and R&B artists from AfghanWhigs to Patti Labelle.
Thursday, October 6, 7:00 p.m.
Born in Woodstock, New York, Vicente Archer began his musical career on guitar at age sixteen. Primarily self-taught, he learned from his parents’ Wes Montgomery and George Benson records. While studying at Boston’s Northeastern University, he switched from guitar to acoustic bass. Soon after, New Orleans-based saxophone master Donald Harrison Jr. utilized his talents on Harrison’s Free to Be release on Impulse Records. Archer has since performed and toured with several modern jazz giants including Freddie Hubbard, Terence Blanchard, Stefon Harris, Kenny Garrett, Roy Haynes, the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis, Nicholas Payton and many others.
Thursday, November 10, 7:00 p.m.
When not teaching saxophone and jazz improvisation as the “Al Beletto Professor of Jazz Studies,” the multiple Grammy-nominated Petersen performs with Irvin Mayfield’s New Orleans Jazz Orchestra. In the past, he has played with legends such as J.J. Johnson, Johnny Griffin, Clifford Jordan, Lionel Hampton, Benny Goodman, Ella Fitzgerald, David Liebman, Ellis Marsalis, and several others. Petersen has also recorded with Kurt Elling, Ron Carter, Cedar Walton, Clark Terry, Art Farmer, and Ruth Brown, to name a few.
Thursday, November 17, 7:00 p.m.
Modern jazz drummer Reggie Quinerly was born and raised in Houston, Texas, and moved to New York City, the “jazz capital of the world,” for college. While there, he performed with Vincent Herring, Joe Lovano, Jason Moran, Jimmy Cobb and Lewis Nash, among many others. He is committed to the education of young people and has been affiliated with the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts’ “Jazz in Schools” project (NYC), “Redefinition: An Artistic Experiences” (Houston), and his own creation, the Substantive Discussion Arts Forum.
John Doheny and the Professors of Pleasure, featuring guest vocalist Colleen Savage
Thursday, February 3, 8:00 p.m.
John Doheny serves as a professor of practice in Tulane’s Jazz Studies program and also leads its faculty quintet, better known as the Professors of Pleasure. Before settling at Tulane, Doheny kept busy as a well-respected saxophonist in the Vancouver music scene, and also spent time touring with blues legend Albert Collins’ band. Colleen Savage, also an established Vancouver jazz artist, is a voice teacher and coach who continues to perform on concert stages and at major jazz festivals across Canada.
Thursday, February 10, 8:00 p.m.
Born into New Orleans’ legendary Brunious musical family, Mark Braud has been described by his peers and predecessors as one of the city’s most versatile young trumpeters. He has performed with artists as varied as the famed Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Blind Boys of Alabama, Nicholas Payton, Dr. Michael White, Harry Connick, Jr., and the Nashville Symphony, not to mention leading his own groups The New Orleans Jazz Giants and the Basin Street Brass Band. Influenced by the traditional jazz style of greats like Waldren “Frog” Joseph and Percy Humphrey, Braud continues to be an active player in the jazz scene, which he has been an integral part of since beginning his professional career at age fifteen.
Thursday, March 24, 8:00 p.m.
Currently a member of the popular Big Sam’s Funky Nation, trumpeter Andrew Baham has performed with everyone from contemporary jazz stalwarts Adonis Rose and Delfeayo Marsalis to the Soul Rebels Brass Band and Ellis Marsalis. Having played trumpet since age eleven and inspired by New Orleans marching bands, Baham is a graduate of the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (NOCCA) and was the first recipient of the Doc Cheatham Memorial Scholarship. He has released two albums with his own band, featuring “jazz with a progression into the future.”
This edition of Jazz at the Rat will also feature saxophonist Godwin Louis, formerly a member of the Grammy-nominated The Either/Orchestra and currently performing with the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz Ensemble.
AFO Records 50th Anniversary Tribute
Thursday, April 7, 8:00 p.m.
Musicians Max Moran, Joe Dyson, Rex Gregory, Godwin Louis, James Westfall, Andrew Baham and Jesse McBride pay tribute to the legendary AFO Records, founded in New Orleans in the 1950s by Harold Battiste. AFO Records was the first African American musician-owned and –operated record label in the United States.
The Music of Thelonious Monk
Thursday, September 23, 8:00 p.m.
Explore the genius works of Thelonious Sphere Monk, the highly inventive – and ambidextrous – jazz pianist and one of the century’s greatest American jazz composers. Both brilliant and “eccentric,” Monk has become “perhaps the most talked about and least understood artist in the history of jazz.” Featured musicians: Allen Dejan Jr., tenor saxophone; TBA, alto sax; Jasen Weaver, bass; Alfred Jordan, drums; Jesse McBride, piano; and Steven Lands, trumpet.
Jesse McBride presents The Next Generation, Featuring the music of Clyde Kerr Jr.
Thursday, September 30, 8:00 p.m.
New Orleans lost another of its jazz legends when trumpeter and music educator Clyde Kerr Jr. passed away at age 67 in early August. Whether performing with Dr. John, Aretha Franklin or Kidd Jordan’s Improvisational Arts Quintet, Kerr’s do-it-all approach was part traditional, part experimental – and all fearless. The Next Generation, a band of young New Orleans jazz musicians led by Tulane Jazz Studies instructor and pianist Jesse McBride, and founded by renowned jazz artist Harold Batiste, will keep Kerr’s spirit alive with an evening of Kerr compositions. Featured musicians: Jasen Weaver, bass; Alfred Jordan, drums; John Michael Bradford, trumpet; Alexey Marti, percussion; Douane Wamples, tenor saxophone; Jesse McBride, piano.
Saxophone Colossus: Cannonball and Coltrane
Thursday, October 7, 8:00 p.m.
Some of New Orleans’ most talented young saxophone players join Tulane Jazz Studies students and faculty for “Saxophone Colossus,” an evening devoted to the legacy of two of the most influential jazz saxophone heavyweights: hard-bop pioneer “Cannonball” Adderley and free jazz progenitor John Coltrane.
Tap Jam featuring Michela Lerman
Thursday, October 28, 8:00 p.m.
New York-based rhythm tap artist and one-woman percussion section Michela Lerman performs at a very special “Tap Jam” edition of Jazz at the Rat. From her first performance, at age 5, on Sesame Street, to being named one of the “20 hottest tap dancers under 20,” Lerman’s work is “dedicated to spreading the art of tap around the world.” Most recently, she was featured in the hit show Wonderland, an all tap show set to Stevie Wonder’s music; choreographed and directed Tapsploitation, a 1970s urban American-themed work which was commissioned by the American Tap Dance Foundation; and danced with Roy Hargrove at the Jazz Gallery and Village Vanguard.
Clyde Kerr Jr.
The Professors of Pleasure
For more information about Jazz at the Rat, contact 504-865-5728 or firstname.lastname@example.org.