Ken Maiuri's Tuned In: Check out what’s happening musically this week in the Valley

  • Brickabrack

  • Darius Jones

  • Free Range Cats Audio—

  • Jean-Paul Bourelly

  • Orice Jenkins

  • Salvation Alley String Band

  • Wildcat O’Halloran

Published: 1/5/2017 1:18:30 PM

There are adventurous, non-mainstream jazz artists creating music, right now, and the people behind the Pioneer Valley Jazz Shares concert series are doing their part to spotlight them, right here.

This weekend the all-volunteer nonprofit organization brings two unique shows to The Parlor Room in Northampton. The Jean-Paul Bourelly/William Hooker Duo and its guitar-and-drums “Free Form Blues Conspiracy” takes the stage Friday at 7:30 p.m., and then the Darius Jones Trio (for which the alto saxophonist leader will be joined by bassist Adam Lane and drummer Jason Nazary) plays Saturday at 7:30 p.m.

Guitarist Bourelly spent his early years working with legends like Elvin Jones and Pharoah Sanders as well as newer experimental artists/composers like Henry Threadgill and Steve Coleman. More recently he formed the Stone Raiders, with Rolling Stones bassist Darryl Jones and Living Colour drummer Will Calhoun. Hooker, raised in New Britain, Connecticut, has put out more than 60 CDs as a leader, collaborating with such folks as William Parker, Thurston Moore and Roy Campbell.

Saxophonist Jones has a robust and gutsy tone and a catalog of striking and varied albums, like the trio tour-de-force “Big Gurl (Smell My Dream),” a quartet album “Book of Mæ’bul (Another Kind of Sunrise),” and most recently a cutting-edge collection called “The Oversoul Manual,” on which his compositions (titled not with words but with strings of symbols) are sung by an all-female, all-vocal quartet called The Elizabeth-Caroline Unit.

The Pioneer Valley Jazz Shares concert series is programmed by Glenn Siegel, who’s been bringing exciting performers to the area for decades via numerous acclaimed showcases (Magic Triangle Jazz Series, the Solos & Duos Series, A World of Piano).

For more info about this weekend’s shows, upcoming concerts in the series and how to become a Jazz Shares shareholder, visit

Free Range Cats will be joined by special guests (including bassist Dave Hayes) for a night of funky groovy tunes (and the occasional ballad) at Brew Practitioners in Florence Friday at 7 p.m.

Guitarist/vocalist Wildcat O’Halloran has been dedicated to the blues for decades, and back in September, his band released its 12th album, “That Boy Don’t Play No Blues.” O’Halloran and the gang appear at Fort Hill Brewery in Easthampton Saturday from 3 to 6 p.m.

The Valley’s smart-dressed country-pop act Salvation Alley String Band has a year-long quarterly residency lined up at the Luthiers Co-Op in Easthampton, and their first appearance will be Saturday at 9:30 p.m. The genre-free quartet Doomsday Ladies (featuring Tom Shread on lead vocals and Jim Frogameni on lead guitar) plays at 8 p.m., with country/folk duo One Part Luck starting off the night at 7 p.m.

Hartford-based vocalist and guitarist Orice Jenkins is the guest soloist with the Green Street Trio at the Northampton Jazz Workshop at City Sports Grille at Spare Time Northampton Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. Stick around and sign up for the open jam session from 8:30 to 10 p.m.

“Indie basement rock” trio Brickabrack put out one of my favorite local records late last year, the mini-album “Irrational Thoughts.” Evelyn Mandel’s frill-free vocals hearken back to the do-it-yourself heyday of the early ’90s and bands like Autoclave and Vomit Launch, Paul Preston’s punchy drums keep the energy up, and the eight electric songs have oomph in their arrangements — the Edge-like percussive guitar that bounces around “The One That Was Too Long, Pt. 1”; the layers of jangle and grime that pile up during “Patriot”; the heart-tugging violin that sneaks in at the end of “The Abe Vigoda Birthday Bash.”

Brickabrack plays live at the Fort Hill Brewery in Easthampton Thursday from 5 to 7 p.m. Wocky is the opening act.


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