It takes hustle and determination to make a living as a jazz musician these days, and nobody in the Bay Area embodies those qualities more than Marcus Shelby. The bassist, composer and arranger has steadily built a reputation as something of a West Coast version of Wynton Marsalis, writing acclaimed extended pieces, finding steady gigs for his large orchestra and doing valuable service as a jazz educator.
Shelby is all around this week, leading his 18-piece orchestra in performances of “Soul of the Movement,” his meditation on Martin Luther King Jr. Catch ‘em 1 p.m. Saturday in a free performance as part of the Yerba Buena Gardens Festival or 7:30 p.m. Sunday in a Stanford Jazz Festival performance at Dinkelspiel Auditorium. (Tickets $14 and $24)
Shelby will also join a cast of top-shelf Bay Area jazz artists — including Peter Apfelbaum, Lavay Smith, John Santos and Ray Obeido — in a fundraiser to help cover the medical bills of ailing saxophonist Dayna Stephens. It’s 8 p.m. Monday at Yoshi’s San Francisco, and tickets are $25 and $35.
Also worth noting on the Bay Area jazz scene this week:
- Bewitching San Francisco vocalist Madeline Eastman and pianist Randy Porter pair up for an 8 p.m. Wednesday show at Piedmont Piano Company in Oakland. $15
- Two of the top players on the Bay Area club jazz scene — organist Wil Blades and guitarist Scott Amendola — team up for a 9 p.m. Thursday show at Berkeley’s Starry Plough. $10
- Singer Claudia Acuna mixes solid jazz instincts with influences from her native Chile in a Stanford Jazz Festival show 8 p.m. Friday at Campbell Recital Hall. $30-$40
- Emerging vibraphone sensation Grant Milliken teams up with some talented contemporaries for an 8 p.m. Friday show at Berkley’s Jazzschool. $10
- Michael Franks, one of the most adept songwriters of the past few decades and a performer of wry, languid charm, performs at 8 and 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 7 and 9 p.m. Sunday at Yoshi’s Oakland. $22-$30
- Pianists Bill Charlap and Renee Rosnes demonstrate the nuances musical and personal harmony — they’re husband and wife — in a Stanford Jazz Festival show 8 p.m. Saturday at Dinkelspiel Auditorium $25-$40
- Jeff Chambers, one of the top jazz bassists playing today, anchors a trio featuring pianist Peter Horavath for a 4 p.m. Sunday show at Piedmont Piano Company in Oakland. $15
- Pianist Terry Disley pays tribute to two of the Bay Area’s greatest keyboard talents — Dave Brubeck and Vince Guaraldi — in a 1:30 p.m. show at the gorgeous Filoli estate near Woodside. $50-$60
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