Thursday, September 2, 2010

Jazz Under Former Brothels and Other Fall Highlights

Why is it Kansas City jazz clubs seem to thrive under former brothels?

When the building which today houses The Majestic was built in 1911, the first floor was a saloon and the top two floors a brothel. The lower level, where the jazz club now resides, was a Prohibition-era speakeasy.

And the 1888 building which today houses The Phoenix once featured a first floor saloon and second and third floor brothels.

The Phoenix is getting ready to celebrate 20 years as a jazz club beneath those one-time brothel floors. On Saturday, September 18th, from 2 to 10 p.m., they’re throwing a street party with bands, drinks and food. They suggest you bring a lawn chair. More details are on the poster at the left (a larger and more legible version of which should open if you click on the image).


The week prior, on Saturday, September 11th, I’ll be taking that lounge chair to Harmon Park at 7700 Mission Road for the first Prairie Village Jazz Festival. I know no more about it than what’s on their web site, here. But that lineup, headlining Eldar Djangirov and Karrin Allyson with the Kansas City Jazz Orchestra, looks stellar.


Having absolutely no relation to brothels (and probably embarrassed to be listed under the same headline), Johnson County Community College has announced six weeks of noon concerts in their Carlsen Center Recital Hall. The fall season includes:

Sept. 28: Jazz Disciples
  Gerald Dunn, alto saxophone
  Mike Warren, drums
  Tyrone Clark, bass
  Everett Freeman, piano

Oct. 5: Matt Otto Quartet
   Matt Otto, tenor saxophone
   Gerald Dunn, alto saxophone
   Jeff Harshbarger, bass
   Mike Warren, drums

Oct. 12: Steve Rigazzi Trio
   Steve Rigazzi, bass
   Paul Smith, piano
   Ray DeMarchi, drums

Oct. 19: Ervin Brown Quartet
   Ervin Brown, guitar
   Joe Cartwright, piano
   James Ward, bass
   Mike Warren, drums

Oct. 26: Gerald Spaits Quartet
   Gerald Spaits, bass
   Roger Wilder, piano
   Rod Fleeman, guitar
   Ray DeMarchi, drums
   (This one is in Polsky Theatre)

Nov. 2: Megan Birdsall Quartet
   Megan Birdsall, vocals
   Paul Smith, piano
   Bob Bowman, bass
   Matt Leifer, drums

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