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Moment's Notice: Festive Jazz Picks for Aug. 27 through Sept. 2

Welcome to Moment’s Notice, WRTI’s weekly digest of jazz listings in the Philadelphia area. It will launch as an email newsletter in September, so be sure to sign up now!

Spotlight: The Sam Harris Birthday Celebration - Tuesday, Notsolatin Jazz Series

A versatile anchor on the local scene, bassist Sam Harris celebrates his birthday the way you’d expect — on the gig. Harris (not to be confused with the other jazz musician named Sam Harris, who plays piano) originally hails from Toledo, Ohio, and has been a crucial part of the ecosystem in Pittsburgh as well as Philadelphia. He holds two degrees from the Boyer College of Music and Dance at Temple: a bachelor’s in Jazz Performance and a master’s in Classical Performance. This concert at the Notsolatin Jazz Series will find him in two distinct settings: Glerá, a band with saxophonists Dylan Band and Josh Lee, guitarist Elijah Cole and drummer Wayne Smith Jr.; and Black Buttafly, the neo-soul moniker of singer-songwriter and keyboardist Kayla Childs, which also features Nazir Ebo on drums.

Aug. 29 at 7 p.m., Notsolatin Jazz Series, 1440 W. Ritner Street, $10 suggested donation.

Josh Lee and the Extended Family - Sunday, Notsolatin Jazz Series

Perhaps you already know Josh Lee as the host of Jazz Through the Night at WRTI, Saturdays from 2 to 6 a.m. and Sundays from Midnight to 6 a.m. You should also know him as a baritone saxophonist, in the Count Basie Orchestra and elsewhere, and as the leader of the Extended Family, a little big band with pre-modern flair. The band appears Sunday on the Notsobigband Concert Series — part of the Notsolatin extended universe, with Lee very much on home turf.

Aug. 27 at 7 p.m., Notsolatin Jazz Series, 1440 W. Ritner Street, $10 suggested donation.

The Bell Family Band - Thursday, South Jazz Kitchen

Poogie Bell, born Charles Bell, Jr. in Pittsburgh, is a precise and powerful drummer best known for holding it down with Marcus Miller (among dozens of others). Poogie’s son, Winston, is a saxophonist, vocalist and producer who has been steadily raising his own profile. They bring the funk together as the Bell Family Band, presented by the Unscripted Jazz Series.

Aug. 31 at 7 and 9 p.m., Aug. 18 at 7 and 9:30 p.m., South Jazz Kitchen, 600 N. Broad Street, $55 to $75; purchase tickets.

Composer and trumpeter Etienne Charles, whose <em>San Juan Hill: A New York Story</em> inaugurates the newly renovated David Geffen Hall.
Lawrence Sumulong
Courtesy of Lincoln Center
Composer and trumpeter Etienne Charles.

Etienne Charles - Thursday, Atlantic City

A vibrant trumpeter, bandleader and composer originally from Trinidad, Etienne Charles has been making moves of late: last fall he helped break in the New York Philharmonic’s new David Geffen Hall with his San Juan Hill: A New York Story. He won’t have quite so grand a stage at the free Chicken Bone Beach Jazz Series, but he’ll bring the same purpose and exuberance; Yocontalie Quartet plays an opening set.

Aug. 31 at 7 p.m., Kennedy Plaza Stage, Atlantic City, NJ, free.

Ari Hoenig Trio - Friday and Saturday, Chris’ Jazz Cafe

Drummer-bandleader Ari Hoenig forged his reputation on the New York scene, but he’s a true Philly cat, and always a returning hero at Chris’ Jazz Cafe. He appears this week with the same crackerjack trio heard on a fine recent album, Golden Treasures; it features the Israeli piano virtuoso Gadi Lehavi and a stalwart bassist, Ben Tiberio.

Sept. 1 and 2 at 7:30 and 9:30 p.m., Chris’ Jazz Cafe, 1421 Sansom Street, $25-$100, with dinner packages; purchase tickets.

Nate Chinen has been writing about music for more than 25 years. He spent a dozen of them working as a critic for The New York Times, and helmed a long-running column for JazzTimes. As Editorial Director at WRTI, he oversees a range of classical and jazz coverage, and contributes regularly to NPR.