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Benefit NJMH, Cape May Fest, Abyssinian Jazz Vespers

Special to AmNews | , Ron Scott | 11/1/2012, 12:06 p.m.

To carry on its many projects that promote jazz to Harlem and beyond, the National Jazz Museum in Harlem will present its fall benefit concert on Nov. 8 at 7:30 p.m. in El Teatro at El Museum del Barrio, 1230 Fifth Ave. at 104th Street in Manhattan.

The concert will feature the highly inventive jazz bassist for all seasons Christian McBride (artistic advisor of NJMH). The young pianist-composer who recently joined the museum as associate artistic advisor, Jonathan Batiste, will lead his exciting Stay Human Band.

Since arriving from New Orleans, Batiste has kept the city in standing ovation mode. The National Jazz Museum All-Star Big Band, led by conductor-saxophonist and NJMH Artistic Director Lorn Schoenberg, with special guest vocalist Janis Siegel, will also appear.

The National Jazz Museum in Harlem (104 E. 126th St.) has its eyes set on its new home, which will be located in the now-defunct 125 Mart on 125th Street across from the world-famous Apollo Theater.

Despite its new home on the horizon, continued fundraising is a necessity for its many free community programs, such as Harlem Speaks, a live interview series with writers, artists and noted musicians like Roy Haynes, Lou Donaldson and Jimmy Heath; Jazz for Curious Listeners, which explores the history of jazz through recordings and film; and live performances at various locations.

Tickets range in price from $250 to $40 for students. For more information, visit jazzmuseuminharlem.org or call 212-348-8300 ext. 106.

The little scenic town by the sea in the City of Cape May, N.J., will return to hosting a jazz festival under new management, but great jazz musicians will reign supreme over the city from Nov. 9-11 for the inaugural edition of the Exit 0 International Jazz Festival.

More than 100 internationally known musicians will perform more than 50 shows over the course of the festival, with performances taking place in intimate club venues and on the main stage of the Cape May Convention Hall during this three-day event.

Opening the festival on Friday at 8 and 10:15 p.m. will be Philadelphia native son and Grammy Award-winning jazz bassist Christian McBride and his quintet, Inside Straight. His live performances are rides of passion with movements of adventure.

Headlining the festival on the main stage at Convention Hall will be the Sun Goddess Tour starring the jazz pianist with funk Ramsey Lewis, a three-time Grammy Award-winner, and his electric band on Saturday at 7:30 and 9:30 p.m.

A very special and rare jazz session will take place on Saturday at noon when Chilean vocalist Claudia Acuna, who has made quite a name for herself in Gotham, performs with her quartet, followed by the 17-man strong Captain Black Big Band, led by jazz pianist Orrin Evans and featuring Nicholas Payton.

Club venues up and down Beach Avenue in Cape May will provide intimate settings throughout the three-day festival, including Boiler Room @ Congress Hall, Carney's, Carney's Other Room, Martini Beach, Sea Salt @ Ocean Club and Aleathea's @ Inn of Cape May. Performing in the clubs will be world-class artists like Nicholas Payton, Mark Murphy, Bobby Broom Deep Blue Organ Trio, the Pedrito Martinez Group, Henry Cole & Afrobeat Collective, Ben Williams & Sound Effect, the Stooges Brass Band, Antonio Sanchez Migration, Joe Krown Organ Trio, Marcus Strickland and more.