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1. Jun. 2016

The Straight-Ahead Scene: Frankie's Jazz Club Highlights

In the lead up to the 2016 edition of the TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival, Coastal Jazz asked various members of the jazz "family" to share their thoughts about artists who will perform at the festival. Today, Cory Weeds, Coastal's Programming Manger of Clubs and Special Projects, shares his excitement for the many great artists performing at Frankie's Jazz Club during the Festival.

Jazz Festival is such a great time of year.  It brings with it so much excitement of all the great music that will be happening around the city for ten days and it brings out A LOT of arm chair quarterbacks with criticisms such as why there isn’t more of this or that, asking why is this group in a jazz festival etc. Well into my first year working for Coastal Jazz I now have a greater understanding about what’s involved in the booking of a festival of this magnitude.  You cannot deny the incredible diversity that exists within the Vancouver TD International Jazz Festival every year! Nor can you ignore how much local talent is included. Kudos to Ken Pickering.

If straight ahead jazz is your thing then Frankie’s Jazz Club is THE place to be during the festival this year.  So many great things happening at the club not to mention the return of the OFFICIAL nightly jam session from 11pm – 1.  

This year’s festival is a bit of a feature for the legendary drummer Lewis Nash.  Nash will be appearing at Frankie’s with two different groups.  First, with the unapologetically swinging pianist Larry Fuller.  This guy is incredible and it will be great to have him back in Vancouver.  Check him out here playing Clifford Brown’s Daahoud


Nash will also be appearing in a group led by Vancouver tenor saxophonist Steve Kaldestad.  Joining him will be local legend, pianist Renee Rosnes and bassist Neil Swainson.  Kaldestad will be celebrating the release of New York Afternoon recorded on Cellar Live a few years ago. It’s a wonderful CD. 

Kaldestadt record


The other feature event is a group that I’m a part of featuring New York trumpeter Terell Stafford.  We will be playing the music of the great Lee Morgan. Terell recorded a critically acclaimed album of Lee’s music last year called BrotherLEE Love.  I’m very honoured to share the stage with this man and its going to be a fiery night of music.  Check him out here with Mulgrew Miller!  


Scattered in between our big events is a big helping of wonderful local and Canadian talent.  June 26 sees tenor saxophonist André Leroux and his group grace the Frankie’s stage.

If you’re a fan of jazz guitar you do NOT want to miss Mike Rud Minatures on a bill with Triology.  Check out Mike here doing “You Have To Practice Slow”  He is an incredible talent. It will be great to have three of Canada’s premiere guitarists on the stage together. 

When I started at Coastal last August I snuck into Ken’s office and looked at his CD shelf.  On it was a CD by Amanda Tosoff called “Words.”  I took it and never returned it!  It’s an absolutely phenomenal piece of work.  I’m so thrilled that Amanda can come and present this music to Vancouver audiences.  Check out Daffodils. 

Rounding out the festival at Frankie’s this year is a vocalist that has been getting a lot of attention in the past several months.  Jaclyn Guillou will lead a group and you never know what to expect musically when Jaclyn hits the stage. She has so many projects on the go but I can assure you it will be fantastic!

So that’s the wrap on the Festival at Frankie’s. I’ll be there every night and looking forward to every single minute of it!




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