The best jazz shows this month in NYC

Wanna see some jazz? Check out our picks for the best jazz shows happening in New York City this month.
winter jazzfest
Photograph: Hollis King
By Time Out editors |
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Despite what folks in other cities might think, NYC remains the best place in the world for jazz. So many of the city’s best jazz clubs feature top talent every night of the week, and there’s no shortage of the best music venues to explore. Whether you’re looking for a romantic date idea, or flying solo, these shows won’t disappoint.

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to jazz in NYC

Best jazz shows this month in NYC

Pat Martino
Photograph: Courtesy the artist
Music, Jazz

Pat Martino Trio Plus Horns

Years ago, the big story about this Philly guitarist was his return to touring and recording after a brain aneurysm forced him to relearn guitar from scratch. These days, Martino's tale is of a veteran playing like the boy wonder he was in the late ’60s. His fretwork is its old incendiary self, and this week he's playing a series of trio-plus performances.

Music, Jazz

Jaleel Shaw

You may have caught altoist Shaw reeling off incisive choruses atop the rhythms of iconic drummer Roy Haynes. Catch the innovator at the helm of his own band tonight as he premieres his commission for his fellowship at the Jazz Gallery.

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Darius Jones
Photograph: Peter Gannushkin / downtownmusic.net
Music, Jazz

Darius Jones: For The People

A powerhouse saxophonist with an unusually focused perspective, Jones seems to conjure holy ghosts and prodigal sons with every solo. His full-bodied sound is shaped as much by deep soul as by dirty funk, as he pushes the horn at both ends of its scale. Here Jones performs a politically-informed program on the eve of the November midterm elections, examining American history in the context of power and violence throughout a collection of different compositions.

The Bad Plus
Photograph: Courtesy Shervin Lainez
Music, Jazz

The Bad Plus

This alt-jazz phenomenon made its name—and earned itself a few haters—interpreting favorites by Blondie, Nirvana and other rock icons, but has since aimed the spotlight on its striking, inventive postbop-gone-pop originals, tunes that handily demonstrate the group's uncommonly broad pool of influences. Experience the next chapter in the band's history here, with Orrin Evans taking over the piano bench in the recent absence of the idiosyncratic Ethan Iverson.

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Maria Schneider
Photograph: Dani Gurgel
Music, Jazz

Maria Schneider Orchestra

icon-location-pin Jazz Standard, Flatiron
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Maria Schneider has a handsome collection of Grammys, and the accolades are well deserved: This protégée of the late bandleading/arranging genius Gil Evans fronts the most polished modern jazz orchestra on the planet, a vehicle for her lush, intricate and refreshingly accessible works. Catch her at this annual Thanksgiving engagement.

Jason Moran & the Bandwagon
Photograph: Courtesy Clay Patrick McBride
Music, Jazz

Jason Moran and the Bandwagon

icon-location-pin Village Vanguard, West Village
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The polymathic piano great and his trusty triomates (bassist Tarus Mateen and drummer Nasheet Waits) show off their slyly engaging, historically-minded modernism during a week in the Village.

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John Scofield
Photograph courtesy of the artist
Music, Jazz

John Scofield Quartet

icon-location-pin Blue Note, Greenwich Village
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Known for his distinctive tone, funky inclinations and rapport with the jam-band crowd, this inventive guitarist shows no signs of slowing down even at 66 years of age. Both his most recent albums won Grammies: 2016's Country For Old Men, which interprets classic country melodies through his signature jazz-Americana fusion, and last year's stellar collab with Jack DeJohnette and John Medeski, Hudson. Expect similarly imaginative magic from this year's Combo 66, which commemorates his most recent birthday in the title.

Music, Jazz

Lee Ritenour

icon-location-pin Iridium, Midtown West
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If you've got a taste for silky-smooth jazz fusion of the commercially viable and radio-friendly variety, then this guitarist will need no introduction. Through his music and label-building entrepreneurship, he's an architect of the smooth-jazz sound—or a chief culprit, depending upon your perspective. We recommend sampling a gig or two—pop stylings have a particular value of their own.

More jazz shows coming up in NYC

Music, Jazz

Brand X

icon-location-pin Iridium, Midtown West
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Before Phil Collins launched into mainstream stardom in the ‘80s peddling synth-heavy pop hits, he was a bonafide drummer's drummer—a tastefully shuffling jaw-dropping shredder who cut his teeth blowing through 10-minute improvisational jams with this innovative fusion troupe. He might not be present at this showing, but founding members John Goodsall (guitar) And Percy Jones (bass) are keeping the funk alive-and-kicking four decades on.

Mike Stern
Photo: Sandrine Lee
Music, Jazz

Mike Stern Band

icon-location-pin Iridium, Midtown West
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The vocal guitar mainstay commands a funky unit for his annual New Year's run. Last year featured chopsy veterans including Dennis Chambers, whose sticking skills earned him a spot in 2001 in the Modern Drummer Hall of Fame, so expect a similarly stellar lineup this time around.

Looking for more concerts of every genre?

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