Our guide to the best of live jazz happening this weekend and in the week ahead.
Note: Because of the coronavirus outbreak and the state’s ban on gatherings of more than 500 people, many events have been canceled. As of press time, these were still scheduled to take place. Before heading out, visit the website of the performance space or organization for the latest updates.
JANE IRA BLOOM at Shapeshifter Lab (March 13, 7 p.m.). Bloom has written and performed sophisticated original music for ensembles of all sizes, but there’s nothing more directly rewarding than the sound of her soprano saxophone, which banters and curls but puts its point to you straight. She will bring a trio of trusted confidants — the bassist Mark Helias and the drummer Matt Wilson — for the group’s first performance at Brooklyn’s Shapeshifter Lab.
WILL CALHOUN’S TOTEM ENSEMBLE (March 16-18, 8 and 10:30 p.m.). Calhoun springs from a tradition that counts Tony Williams, Ginger Baker and Billy Cobham as founding fathers: powerhouse drummers whose roots in both rock and jazz laid the foundation for broader explorations. Calhoun made his name in the 1980s as a member of Living Colour, the famed funk-metal band behind “Cult of Personality,” but more recently he has focused on his own bandleading career. Next week Calhoun appears with a top-flight ensemble featuring Orrin Evans on piano and keyboards, Greg Osby on saxophone and Melvin Gibbs on bass. The guitarist Jean Paul Bourelly will appear as a special guest each night. On Monday, the guembri player Hassan Hakmoun will also be on hand; on Wednesday, the rapper Pharoahe Monch will sit in.
AL FOSTER, RON CARTER AND KEVIN HAYS at Smoke (March 12-15, 7 and 9 p.m.). Carter left Miles Davis’s employ for good at the end of the 1960s, after spending much of the decade as the linchpin of that famed trumpeter’s quintet — one of the most influential groups in jazz history. Soon after, Foster joined Davis’s electric band, and participated in a string of recordings that have not been as thoroughly canonized, but nonetheless left an indelible mark on American music. Foster and Carter have collaborated in a smattering of small bands in the past, most notably in a trio with Joe Henderson that was captured for his “State of the Tenor” albums. For this four-night run they are joined by the nimble pianist Kevin Hays.
WILLIAM HOOKER at Roulette (March 15, 8 p.m.). Hooker’s drum style, fired in the furnace of the downtown experimental scene of the 1980s and ’90s, is thunderous and unrelenting, but that doesn’t mean he lacks a taste for nuance. In recent years Hooker has focused on crafting large-scale, multimedia works, and here he presents the premiere of “TOUCH: Soul and Service,” a four-part suite that accompanies a film Hooker directed with the experimental artist Phill Niblock.
JOSH LAWRENCE AND LOST WORKS at Jazz Standard (March 18, 7:30 and 9:30 p.m.). A rising trumpeter with the raw talent to match his inquisitive instincts, Lawrence released a short EP last year featuring a three-part suite of tensile post-bop, inspired by the expressionist paintings of Wassily Kandinsky. At these shows he will perform that music with an ensemble of esteemed side musicians: Antonio Hart on alto saxophone, Robin Eubanks on trombone, Zaccai Curtis on piano, Luques Curtis on bass and Anwar Marshall on drums.
LOGAN RICHARDSON AND IMMANUEL WILKINS at the Jazz Gallery (March 13, 7:30 and 9:30 p.m.). Two young saxophonists of bright, perfervid attack and deep assurance, Richardson, 39, and Wilkins, 22, have a lot in common. But then they diverge: Richardson’s stock in trade is the bluesy smear, bending one keening note into another. Wilkins communicates differently — at a higher rate of notes per minute — peppering you with action before letting his tone disintegrate into a dry bawl. At the Gallery they will lead a quartet featuring Matt Brewer on bass and Marcus Gilmore on drums.