The Manhattan Transfer, Samara Joy, Miguel Zenón & More: The Week in Jazz

The Week in Jazz is your roundup of new and noteworthy stories from the jazz world. It’s a one-stop destination for the music news you need to know. Let’s take it from the top.



Black Cat Jazz Club Launches Go Fund Me Campaign: The Black Cat Jazz Club in downtown San Francisco has set up a Go Fund Me campaign to raise much-needed money after incurring $50,000 in losses and damages. The Black Cat was robbed for six hours on July 26, suffering substantial financial losses with the thieves running off with musical instruments, sound equipment, food, liquor and other valuable items. The venue had already been dealt a major blow after being shuttered for 18 months due to the COVID pandemic. Click here to donate to their Go Fund Me campaign.

Samara Joy Signs With Verve Records: Rising star vocalist Samara Joy has signed with Verve Records and will release her full-length debut for the label on September 16. Linger Awhile features her interpretations of beloved songs updated with a modern twist. The announcement coincides with the release of its first single, “Can’t Get Out of This Mood,” which you can listen to via the player below.

Registration for the 11th Annual Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition Now Open: The New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) has announced that registration for the 11th Annual Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition is now open to solo vocalists of all nationalities who are not signed to a major label. Singers will be judged on vocal quality, musicality, technique, performance, individuality, artistic interpretation and their ability to swing. The competition culminates in a star-studded performance on the iconic NJPAC stage. Register here before September 6.

Joel A. Martin on JAZZIZ Travel: Pianist/composer Joel A. Martin joined us to talk about his latest album, Jazzical Komitas – Passion of Fire on last week’s episode of JAZZIZ Travel. The record finds Martin applying the concepts of his trademarked Jazzical style of playing to the folk music of Armenia and the works of Armenian music legend Komitas Vardapet, among other composers. Listen to the podcast via the player below.

New and Upcoming Albums

Julius Rodriguez, Let Sound Tell All (Verve): Young jazz multi-instrumentalist Julius Rodriguez is a member of acclaimed NYC group Onyx Collective, has toured with ASAP Rocky and collaborated with members of Wu-Tang Clan. Let Sound Tell All marks his debut as a bandleader and is described via a press release as “a thoughtful realignment of tradition by a generation who hears disparate things fitting together in a way their elders can not.”

Peter Erskine Trio, Live in Italy (Fuzzy): Live in Italy captures Drummer Peter Erskine’s concert with his trio featuring Alan Pasqua on keys and Derek Oles on bass from November 20, 2021, at Camogli, Italy. The album documents their masterful interplay via cinematic original material written by each trio member, as well as new arrangements of standards and moving tribute to Chick Corea.

Sasha Berliner, Onyx (JMI): Onyx is vibraphonist Sahsa Berliner’s latest statement, presenting her vigorous, unabashedly avant-garde style to the fore. This is her sophomore album as a leader, following her impressive debut full-length Azalea, which was released in 2019. Find out more about Berliner’s latest album in our August 2022 digital issue.

Carlos Franzetti Trio, In the Wee Small Hours (Sunnyside): Pianist/composer/arranger Carlos Franzetti offers trio renditions of torch songs that brought optimism back to a generation that made it through the Second World War and the Korean War. In the Wee Small Hours was conceived and recorded during the pandemic and features David Finck on bass and Billy Drummond on drums.


Live Music and Festival News

Arturo O’Farrill and Afro Latin Jazz Alliance Present The Cuban Khaleeji Project: Pianist/composer Arturo O’Farrill and the nonprofit Afro Latin Jazz Alliance will host the North American premiere of The Cuban Khaleeji Project on August 19-21 at Little Island at Pier 55 in Hudson River Park. The project presents a rare intersection of Afro Cuban jazz and the music of the Middle East and North Africa. The performance will see the 18-piece Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra alongside special guests, including Ghazi Al-Mulaifi & Boom.Diwan, Ali Obaid, Yazz Ahmed, and Malika Zarra.

Miguel Zenón Tour: Pianist Miguel Zenón will be performing the music of his latest release, Música de las Américas, on an eleven-city tour kicking off August 11 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The tour will feature his longstanding quartet of pianist Luis Perdomo, bassist Hans Glawischnig, and drummer Henry Cole. Check out all upcoming dates here. Zenón’s new album will be released on August 26 via Miel Music and we included it in our list of ten albums released this month that you need to know about.

South Jersey Jazz Society Presents Pat Martino Live Celebration: The South Jersey Jazz Society has announced dates for its live celebration of the life and legacy of the much-missed guitarist Pat Martino, about a year after his passing. Performances will take place at this year’s Jazz @ The Point Festival, which runs on November 3-6 at various venues in Somers Point, New Jersey. Its lineup, to be announced soon, will feature musicians and jazz icons who have interacted with Martino throughout the guitarist’s illustrious career.

The Manhattan Transfer Announce New Album and Final Cross-Continental Tour: Legendary vocal group The Manhattan Transfer celebrate their 50th anniversary with a new album, Fifty, where they revisit some of their biggest hits with new arrangements and other classic songs. Fifty will be released on September 23 digitally and on October 21 on CD via Craft Recordings. In addition, the group has also announced that it will embark on its final extensive, cross-continental tour kicking off in Modesto, California, on October 7 with dates continuing through 2023. Check out all upcoming tour dates here.

San Jose Jazz Summer Fest Announces Jazz Beyond Stage Lineup: The San Jose Jazz Summer Fest has announced the lineup for its Jazz Beyond Stage, which puts a spotlight on artists pushing the edges of jazz. Co-curated by Tommy Aguilar of Universal Grammar, the lineup includes Peanut Butter Wolf, Natasha Diggs, Melanie Charles, ESTA Featuring Mack Keane, and others to be announced soon. This year’s Summer Jazz Fest will take place on August 12-14. Headliners include Charlie Wilson, Ledisi, Leela James, Durand Jones & The Indications, Keyond Harrold and many more.

Like this article?  Get more when you subscribe.

Join Our Newsletter
Join thousands of other jazz enthusiasts and get new music, artists, album, events and more delivered to your inbox.

The Authoritative Voice in Jazz