Ears wide open . . . Jason Kao Hwang/Edge, October 1st at Bop Shop Atrium
It's getting cooler, but the jazz is still hot ... Your Wednesday jazz listings

Another Exodus to Jazz is boarding with Ullysses S. Owens and his USO Project this Friday, October 3rd

Ulysses S. Owens at Exodus to JazzIt's time to take your next Exodus To Jazz, which is bringing in drummer Ulysses Owens Jr. and his USO Project this Friday, October 3, 2008, at the Clarion Riverside Hotel. You may have been impressed by his drumming as a sideman on the ETJ stage in performances with groups led by Victor Goines, Mulgrew Miller, Helen Sung, and Dr. Lonnie Smith (he played with the good Doctor during his appearance at this year's RIJF as well). In addition to his previous ETJ engagements and recent touring with Kurt Elling, Ulysses has performed with many other leaders including Mulgrew Miller, Wynton Marsalis, Chick Corea, Kenny Barron and Regina Carter.

Ulysses is leading a combo of other young lions (and a lioness).  Sullivan Fortner is a young pianist who, as Richard Ryan at AllAboutJazz.com writes about a gig Fortner played with the Billy Hart Quintet, “has a McCoy Tyner-like ability to fill the spaces behind a horn player's solo and then step forward with musical insights of his own.” Here is a video of Sullivan Fortner playing Just One of Those Things. Tim Green on saxophone is a 2007 graduate of the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz. Tim has performed with many jazz greats including Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Terrance Blanchard, Roy Hargrove, Wayne Shorter, Kenny Burrell, Gary Bartz, and Wynton Marsalis. Alicia Olatuja is a mezzo-soprano with a very smooth and textured voice, who won the National Association of Teachers of Singing competition for four consecutive years (in 2000 through 2003) and made her Carnegie Hall debut in the spring of 2005. Ben Williams returns to ETJ on bass following backing vocalist Denise Thimes. Winner of the International Society of Bassists jazz competition in 2005, Williams is among the best of the emerging bassists playing today and has performed with Wynton Marsalis, Terence Blanchard, Mulgrew Miller, Bobby Watson, Cyrus Chestnut, Bobby Watson, Winard Harper, Buster Williams and Wycliffe Gordon.

Your "Exodus to Jazz" will commence at the The Clarion Riverside Hotel in downtown Rochester with shows at 8:00 and 10:00 pm. Doors open at 7:00 PM.  Ticket are $25 reserved and $20 general admission. Advance Purchase your tickets through TicketWeb.com or email your ticket order.

Exodus to Jazz logo

But wait, there's more . . . . While he's in town for this gig, Owens will be participating a "prelude" to the upcoming Jazz for the Park benefit concert. Wilson Commencement Park invites its residents, their children and music students from the surrounding schools to join them as they celebrate Elling's appearance. The  event is co-sponsored by Wilson Commencement Park and Exodus to Jazz and will feature Owens, joined by guitarist Mel Henderson and organist Gerry Youngman of the nationally known group Paradigm Shift. The goal of this "Jazz in the Park" is to expose children to a young professional and the challenges in the music business, and to introduce them to the multi faceted face of jazz. It will take place at 3:30 pm on October 3rd at Wilson Commencement Park, 251 Joseph Avenue, Rochester, NY 14605. Contact JFTP for more details if you would like more details.


  • Check out Anna Reguero's article on USO in the D&C) Added image
  • This post was originally published on JazzRochester.


    Does Mel Henderson have Leprosy?
    If not, how come you didn't mention him as one of the ppl that Ulysses plays with frequently, and probably the guy responsible for USO even being known here in Rochester. Just a question.

    You're right, Mike. However, it was merely me focusing on the gig at hand. Mel is a friend and has a hand in bringing in a number of the great jazz performers we see here (and often plays with them) and he lays down some damn fine jazz himself (with Paradigm Shift and others who come to town). Oh, and he doesn't have leprosy....
    Thanks for keeping me on my toes.

    This is great... There are so many drummer lead groups out there right now. I just attened Neal Smith's "Live Recording" at Small's Jazz Club in NYC two weeks ago (August 23, 2009). It was out of this world. The band included Neal, Steve Wilson, Mark Whitfield, Eric Alexander, Mulgrew Miller and Dezron Douglas. This event was also reviewed and featured in the NY Times )...front page of the art section last Wednesday). You should bring Neal's band. Many know him from working with Rufus Reid, Tom Harrell, Cyrus Chestnut, Brian Lyncn and others. I have seen Neal's band many times within the past 10 years. He has great recordings out as a leader. Don't sleep on him... He is an amazing musician. He is very well-respected on the Jazz scene. His website is www.nealsmithjazz.com WInard Harper, Jeff Watts and Lewis Nash also lead their own bands. All of which are incredible. I would really like to see Neal's band on more festivals. He deserves it. His work proves it...


    The comments to this entry are closed.