Yoshi's Oakland: The Best Live Jazz in the East Bay
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Reviews & Ratings
Featured review from Hadley LoudenRed Velvet
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Larry and Krew were fabulous! I've been a fan for over 40 years and he's only gotten better. Unfortunately, the table service at Yoshis is so terrible - typically a 45 minute wait to receive a beverage and that's AFTER being forced to wait outside in the cold for 30 minutes - that it's becoming a substantial deterrent to seeing otherwise fantastic shows?!?!?
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My second time seeing Sara at a Yoshi's and she was excellent both times. She's got a beautiful, clear voice and interprets music in interesting ways. Her band really supplies wonderful arrangements for tunes ranging from Duke Ellington to Ben...continued
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It was a great way to spend Mother's Day. She is a performer that makes one feel like she is one's friend that has this amazing talent to sing and entertain. I had never been to Oakland Yoshi's and I found the venue very good for hearing singers...continued
August 9, 2014: Gail Jhonson Band
The dynamic, Gail Jhonson was recently honored with prestigious awards of merit by Black Women In Jazz. The First Lady of Jazz won in two categories: She was named “Best Black Female Jazz Composer/ Arranger/ Producer”, and “Best Pianist/Keyboardist.” In 2004, Keep The Music Playing, Gail Jhonson’s highly acclaimed debut contemporary jazz CD on her own (Philly The Kid Records), brought her into the international recording spotlight. Led by the hit singles “Heaven” and “Just For Kicks” the CD received strong support from the music industry. Gail stays quite busy as the music director, keyboardist and vocalist for smooth jazz super star guitarist and vocalist Norman Brown.
August 9, 2014: Tito Y Su Son de Cuba
Tito Gonzales spent his young life walkabout, picking up guitar licks around the rim of the sea thanks to a Cuban-run company that sent fisherman like him far and wide to find the catch. Fate had in store for him a different destiny, a rapid ascendance from cabbie to celebrity and star of the Cuban music scene. Now, with a new life in San Francisco and the songwriter’s freedom to experiment and story-tell, Tito, a consummate master of Cuban traditional music, brings a fresh sound to a lifetime of experience. His album, Al doblar la esquina (March 9, 2010), features a fresh take on classic Cuban son backed up by exile talent in his band, the “Son de Cuba.”
August 10, 2014: Eldar Trio
The New York Times described the New York based pianist and Grammy-nominated artist Eldar Djangirov as “a blend of musical intelligence, organizational savvy, enthusiasm and prowess that was all the more impressive for seeming so casual … an ebullient impressionist.” Dr. Billy Taylor said, “Eldar Djangirov’s playing shows brilliancy, complexity, and discipline… he’s serious about his music, he’s thoughtful about what he does.” Jazz Times said, “Maybe he made a pact with Lucifer to be the greatest pianist ever.”
August 10, 2014: Erimaj
From the abstract mind of world-renowned drummer/producer Jamire Williams, ERIMAJ is a progressive new band stirring up the scene. Spearheaded by the collaborative writing style of Williams and Corey King, The New York Times describes their sound as “…properly new, part of something larger, and still unnamed.” Having a transcending live experience and an experimental attitude towards the art form, this performance lineup will also include guitarist Matthew Stevens and singer/songwriter Alan Hampton on bass. With their album Conflict Of A Man debuting at No. 1 on iTunes Jazz Top Chart in 2012, the unit has proven it’s a force to keep your eye on.
August 11, 2014: Steve Lucky & The Rhumba Bums With Carmen Getit
Sticking to his musical roots, Lucky formed his own band in New York City and toured Europe extensively until he moved to the San Francisco Bay Area in 1993. Culling the best of the Bay area’s musicians, Lucky started the Rhumba Bums in 1993 as a quintet but the band really took shape in ‘94 with the addition of Miss Carmen Getit. Steve Lucky & the Rhumba Bums have appeared on PBS, in the Bravo documentary This Joint Is Jumpin’! and on Good Morning America.
August 12, 2014: Donald Harrison Quintet
Born in New Orleans, Donald Harrison grew up in a home environment saturated with the city’s traditional music of brass bands, parades, modern jazz, R&B, funk, classical, world ethnic, and dance music. Harrison recorded, Quantum Leap in 2012 which musicians and critics agree is a next step for jazz. With quantum jazz Harrison has opened up new areas for time, harmony, and melody. The record also melds cutting edge jazz with New Orleans funk – connecting the past with the present with jazz music that transcends boundaries.
August 13, 2014: Dave Weckl Acoustic Band
Dave Weckl, Modern Drummer’s Hall of Famer and among the top 25 drummers of all time, launches his first band, tour and recording in over a decade. With Makoto Ozone on piano and keys, Tom Kennedy/bass and Gary Meek/saxes the Dave Weckl Acoustic Band is charged with riveting chemistry, ebullient communication and rare telepathy that engages audiences to their rapt delight.
August 14, 2014: Jeffery Broussard & The Creole Cowboys
One of the most influential accordionists and vocalists in modern Zydeco music, Jeffery Broussard continues to be one of the genre’s most dynamic performers. He has continually been an innovator, beginning his career with traditional Creole Zydeco music playing drums in his father’s band, Delton Broussard & The Lawtell Playboys, then moving on to develop the nouveau sound in Zydeco Force, now returning to the more traditional sound with his own band, Jeffery Broussard and The Creole Cowboys.
August 15, 2014: Lagos Roots
Fronted by Geoffrey Omadhebo (Sonny Okosuns, One World), this 15-piece afrobeat orchestra brings it back, straight to 1970’s West Africa. Lagos Roots presents a version of unfiltered, deeply-grooved Nigerian/ WestCoast Afrobeat that follows a direct path to the beginnings of the genre. The band’s performances feature a healthy blend of Fela Kuti & Africa 70 classic repertoire with Omadhebo’s own politically charged compositions, and in classical afrobeat fashion, the music speaks for itself, offering audiences a sharp reminder of the ability of live music to capture a political and historical message and spin it back to the public in a contemporary and provocatively musical way.
August 16-17, 2014: Bobby Hutcherson Quintet
Bobby Hutcherson epitomizes the modern jazz vibraphonist, and helped modernize his instrument by redefining what could be done with it— sonically, technically, melodically, and emotionally and in the process, became one of the defining voices of Blue Note’s glorious and classic 1960s roster. Today, Hutcherson tours a quartet consisting of some of the top sidemen in jazz music, in addition to appearing as a special guest with renowned artists such as Herbie Hancock, Joey DeFrancesco, and McCoy Tyner.
August 18, 2014: Chris Cain
Chris Cain’s jazz-tinged, blues soaked guitar and deep, warm vocals have the maturity and authenticity of bluesmen many years his senior. His expressive style is the result of a lifetime of study and the relentless pursuit of music mastery. His passion and intensity are a blend of his mother’s Greek ancestry and his father’s soulful black heritage. The combination of his blues upbringing and his jazz studies melded to form the searing guitar style that sets Chris Cain apart and has moved him to the top ranks of the blues music scene
August 19, 2014: Hot Club of SF
The Hot Club of San Francisco is an ensemble of accomplished and versatile musicians celebrating the music of Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli’s pioneering Hot Club de France. The ensemble borrows the all-string instrumentation of violin, bass and guitars from the original Hot Club, but breathes new life into the music with innovative arrangements of classic tunes and original compositions from the group’s superb lead guitarist Paul Mehling.
August 20, 2014: John Jorgenson Quintet
Music virtuoso John Jorgenson, known for his blistering guitar licks and mastery of a broad musical palette, has earned a reputation as a world-class musician and guitarist who’s collaborated with the likes of Elton John, Bonnie Raitt, Luciano Pavarotti and Bob Dylan. The quintet is comprised of Jorgenson (acoustic guitar, bouzouki, clarinet, vocals), Jason Anick (jazz violin), Jon Jarvis (piano), Simon Planting (bass) and Rick Reed (percussion) and are preparing the release of their new (and most ambitious) recording yet, Returning, in 2014.
August 21, 2014: Zigaboo Modeliste & The New Aahkesstra
Joseph “Zigaboo” Modeliste is a master drummer, rhythm innovator, percussionist, and New Orleans legend. The most highly-acclaimed drummer ever to hail from the Crescent City, Ziggy’s creativity has been a wellspring of funk influence for three decades, inspiring many hip hop tracks. His innovative work as a member of internationally-acclaimed R&B group, The Meters, and side work with artists like Keith Richards, Robert Palmer and Dr. John have garnered him unparalleled respect among musicians and fans.
August 22, 2014: Howard Hewett Band
According to one Rolling Stone writer, Howard Hewett is the premier vocalist in the post-Marvin Gaye era of romantic pop. Like Gaye, Howard Hewett soars to new heights and seduces his audience. It is no wonder Howard Hewett is responsible for selling some ten million records; his voice is irresistible.
August 23-24, 2014: Ottmar Liebert and Luna Negra
Guitarist Ottmar Liebert’s incredible global success on a musical level often seems like a simple outgrowth of his cultural background and powerful wanderlust in his formative years. He began playing guitar at 11, and traveled extensively intent on fully absorbing each musical tradition he encountered. Liebert has since become one of the most successful instrumental artists of the past decade, thrilling audiences throughout the world and releasing a catalog of classic recordings.
August 25, 2014: Maria Muldaur
Maria Muldaur is best known world-wide for her 1974 mega-hit “Midnight at the Oasis,” which received several Grammy nominations, and enshrined her forever in the hearts of Baby Boomers everywhere; but despite her considerable pop music success, her 50-year career could best be described a long and adventurous odyssey through the various forms of American roots music. Maria’s toured extensively worldwide and has recorded 40 solo albums covering gospel, R&B, jazz and big band (not to mention several award-winning children’s albums), before settling comfortably into her favorite idiom, the blues, in recent years.
August 26, 2014: Tony Saunders
Son of legendary musician Merl Saunders, Tony Saunders’ life has been a musical adventure. His passion for the bass guitar began while sitting in on recording sessions with musicians Anthony Davis, who played with Walter Hawkins, and Lee Miles of Miles Davis fame. He’s played and recorded with an astounding list of great musical talents, including Eric Clapton, David Crosby, Joe Sample, Chaka Khan, Ringo Starr, Bo Diddley, The Hawkins Family, and many others.
August 27, 2014: A.J. Croce
From his debut as a jazz influenced blues-based artist to his evolution into a pop music iconoclast, singer-songwriter A.J. Croce, the son of Jim Croce, has traveled a circuitous musical road. A loyal and appreciative audience and glowing press from Rolling Stone to The New York Times confirms the appeal of A.J’s genre-spanning music, with seven of his albums positioned in various radio charts including Top 40, AAA, Americana, College, and Jazz. An ivory-searing New Orleans piano style established an essential juju, but his exploratory pop gems revealed a spectrum of influences from art rock to Americana and beyond.
August 28, 2014: Charlie Musselwhite
Charles “Charlie” Douglas Musselwhite is an American electric blues harmonica player and bandleader, one of the non-black bluesmen who came to prominence in the early 1960s. Though he has often been identified as a “white bluesman”, he claims Native American heritage. Musselwhite was reportedly the inspiration for Dan Aykroyd‘s character in The Blues Brothers.
August 29, 2014: House of Floyd
House of Floyd is San Francisco’s immersive Pink Floyd tribute band. Built around the jam-based interpretations and engulfing sound effects and visuals that made Pink Floyd’s live sets so popular, House of Floyd delivers serious musical magic: stellar musicians, the legendary films and tape effects, surround sound, atmospheric lighting, lasers, fog, and all that hypnotic Floyd. Early show features Dark Side of the Moon in full, and the later spotlights Wish You Were Here.
August 30, 2014: Afro Cuban Jazz Project
Direct from Cuba, via the United States, Josiel Perez’s AC Jazz Project, is a who’s who of former members of some of Cuba’s best jazz and dance bands (Piloto Y Klimax, Haila, Maraca, NG La Banda, Arturo Sandoval, Grupo Afrocuba, and Orquesta Reve). They throw down some serious timba, Cuba’s hottest dance music, in addition to what most people recognize as contemporary Afro-Cuban Jazz.
August 31, 2014: Mark Curry
Many people have stated that Oakland native Mark Curry is possibly comedy’s best kept secret and undoubtedly one of the funniest comedians in the world. Mark Curry’s first role was in the film Talkin’ Dirty After Dark, alongside Martin Lawrence in 1991. In 1992, Curry got his big break as the star of hit television series Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper, where he played the lead role of Mark Cooper, an NBA player-turned-substitute teacher/gym coach. The show spanned five seasons on ABC.
Schedule is current at time of publication, but subject to change without notice.
About the Ticket Supplier: Yoshi's OaklandYoshi's began in 1973 as a small, North Berkeley sushi bar owned by a trio of struggling students with plenty of dreams. Its founder and namesake, Yoshie Akiba, orphaned during World War II, came to the U.S. to study fine arts, dance and dance therapy. She opened Yoshi's Japanese Restaurant with her two best friends Kaz Kajimura, a journalist and carpenter, and Hiroyuki Hori, a painter and Japanese cook. The original North-Berkeley, 25-seat restaurant quickly became successful and by 1977 the three partners moved to a larger space on Claremont Avenue in Oakland and began introducing live music in their restaurant. Over the next 20 years, Yoshi's built itself into one of the world's most respected jazz venues and won a reputation as the Bay Area's premier location for people who were looking for great food and the best jazz. Yoshi's has hosted legendary jazz greats such as Betty Carter, Max Roach, Dizzy Gillespie, Joe Williams, Diana Krall, Branford Marsalis, McCoy Tyner, Harry Connick Jr. and Oscar Peterson among hundreds of others.
In 1997, Yoshi's was invited by the Port of Oakland to relocate to Jack London Square as part of a plan to revitalize the area. Together with Morimoto Architects, Yoshi's built an award-winning 330-seat jazz club with a state-of-the-art sound system and design. Occupying 17,000 square feet in the heart of Jack London Square, the club is in it's tenth year in that location which has become one of the East Bay's greatest destinations. The restaurant and lounge have a combined capacity of 220. In 1998 Peter Williams was hired as the club's artistic director. Under his leadership, the club has continued to present the finest in jazz music, as well as world music, blues, neo-soul, latin jazz and afro-cuban music. In fall of 2006, Kajimura decided that it was time to elevate the menu to the quality of the jazz by recruiting Executive Chef Shotaro 'Sho' Kamio, one of the Bay Area's top chefs to make the change. Chef Kamio (formerly of Ozumo) brought a whole new generation of modern Japanese cuisine to Yoshi's, which instantly put it on the map as a destination to dine in addition to the best place to hear great live music.