Claudia Acuna (Hollis King photo)

The Nat Adderley, Jr. Band will make their way to the sacred stage of Sista’s Place (456 Nostrand Avenue) on November 4. Fortunately, the arranger, pianist, and songwriter has dodged the disastrous fate of being categorized. Some refer to him as a jazz musician whose bands are saturated in jazz rhythms with a flair of soul and his performance dates with violinist Regina Carter and saxophonist Vincent Herring. But R&B and pop folks call attention to his many years as musical director for the incomparable song stylist Luther Vandross.  

Some of Adderley’s lyrics for the singer include “Stop to Love,” “Wait for Love,” and “Give Me the Reason.” Some of his many arrangements include “So Amazing,” “If Only for One Night,” and “Never Too Much.” His many projects keep him crossing a variety of genres, such as composing “The Wave” for Kirk Whalum, arranging Natalie Cole’s 1987 recording of “When I Fall In Love,” producing “Just Another Lonely Night” for Johnny Gill, arranging Aretha Franklin’s album Jump to It, producing Gloria Lynne’s album No Detour Ahead, and producing “That’s How Heartaches are Made” for the Temptations.

Adderley says his early influences were Chick Corea, John Coltrane, and Thelonious Monk. To be sure, from adolescence, his father cornetist Nat, Sr. and his uncle “Cannonball” mentored him. Today, he carries their love for soul jazz in the tradition of tunes like “Hummin’” and “Jive Samba,” all now standards penned by his father. The same can be said for his Vandross lyrics, which are now also standards on the R&B side. 

Adderley’s one-night stand at Sista’s Place will be an evening filled with rollicking excitement from genre to genre. 

Call 718-398-1766 for reservations.

The Village Vanguard (178–7th Avenue South), known for its long, steep staircase leading deep-down into its celebrated basement club, has maintained its beat generation hipness in Greenwich Village since Max Gordon opened it in 1935, when poets and writers called it home. Over time, the club transitioned from cabaret acts to comedy to folk music to jazz, which eventually became an exclusive relationship in 1957. That jazz relationship has only become stronger through the years. The club is now under the reign of Deborah Gordon after the passing of her mother, Lorraine Gordon, in 2018.  

Musicians with a varied vocabulary for interpreting their perspective on this music called jazz can often be found downstairs behind the Red Door. Tyshawn Sorey, one of this music’s dedicated explorers, who continues to crush genre barriers, will appear at the Village Vanguard from October 31–November 5.     

Sorey’s music speaks to an organic truth that can’t be contained in a genre cage. His performances, recordings, and compositions range from improvised solo percussion on the Lower Eastside to opera in Europe. In 2019, his song cycle for Josephine Baker, “Perle Noire: Meditations for Josephine,” was performed on the steps of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Sorey has recorded or performed with Anthony BraxtonMuhal Richard Abrams, Cory Smythe, Vijay IyerButch Morris, and Sylvie Courvoisier.

The drummer, multi-instrumentalist, and composer will be joined by the like-minds of piano virtuoso Aaron Diehl and bassist Harish Ragavan, who rejoice in pursuing boundless skies.

For tickets, visit the website or call 212-255-4037.

Claudia Acuna, the Chilean songstress, returns to Dizzy’s jazz club (60th Street and Columbus Circle) for one night only on November 2. She has a vocal instrument as soft as a good night kiss, joyful as a summer’s day, and swinging like any late jam session. Whether she sings in English or her native Spanish tongue, the results are the same: something mesmerizing.   

Acuna will be accompanied by pianist Pablo Vergara, bassist Carlos Henderson, drummer Yayo Serka, and special guest guitarist Dominique James (first set only). 

Since her early participation in those late steamy jam sessions at Smalls and Zinc Bar, she has been featured on various recordings with Avishai Cohen, Tom HarrellAntonio Hart, and Arturo O’Farrill. Her diverse experience as a featured singer and as a leader offers a repertoire drawing from her Latina roots, or interpreting a jazz standard from a South American perspective.

Her latest CD, “Duo,” released in 2022 (Ropeadope), may very well be her best offering to date.  The nine songs were recorded with the likes of Fred Hersch, Christian McBride, Kenny Barron, and Regina Carter. Seven of the songs come from composers hailing from Chile, Cuba, Argentina, and Mexico, and one from the great Chick Corea. The final track is Acuña’s original composition, and speaks of her relationship with Mother Earth: “…at the end of the day, we all walk alone, and we can discover our beauty when we see Earth and us as one.” 

This project was a long-time desire of hers to record a duets album of songs from her homeland, Chile.

What makes this recording so moving is Acuna’s emotional vocals interacting with each instrumentalist. These songs are more than just ballads—they embrace a spiritualness, a moving dance with Acuna, each musician and each instrument, from McBride’s bellowing bass to Barron’s understated melodies and the strings of Carter’s violin. They are heart-touching novellas. 

Where listeners are active participants, despite most of the songs being sung in Spanish, one can feel the lyrics vibrating.They are one with the music with the song! Some of these songs will come to life during her night at Dizzy’s.

For reservations, visit the website or 212-258-9595.

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