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Lafayette Gilchrist is 'Undaunted,' while Aaron Diehl hits his stride

Welcome to Moment’s Notice, WRTI’s regular guide to the Philadelphia jazz scene. We’re here to tip you off to the best shows during the week ahead. Sign up now to receive this service in your inbox every week. And if you want to let us know about a show on the horizon, or share any other feedback, drop us a line!


Spotlight: Lafayette Gilchrist Sextet — Friday, Chris’ Jazz Cafe

Rhythm is a whole-body experience in Lafayette Gilchrist’s music, whether it’s expressed in hard-bop or head-nod terms. A pianist rooted in Baltimore and Washington, D.C., he packs a lot of knockabout groove into his new album Undaunted, drawing on go-go and gospel music alike. The album has received generous acclaim, and Gilchrist is now taking its message on the road. He’ll roll up to Chris’ Jazz Cafe this week with tenor saxophonist Shaquim Muldrow, trombonist Christian Hizon, bassist Jeff Reed, percussionist Kevin Pinder and drummer Eric Kennedy — excellent partners for his brand of rugged enlightenment.

Feb. 16 at 7:30 and 9:30 p.m., Chris’ Jazz Cafe, 1421 Sansom Street, $25, $80 and $100, with dinner packages; purchase tickets.

Aaron Diehl — Wednesday, Perelman Theater

The last time pianist Aaron Diehl appeared in these parts, it was with The Philadelphia Orchestra, in a concert featuring his orchestration of Mary Lou Williams’ Zodiac Suite. He later released an excellent album of that piece, a manifestation of his commitment to jazz history and renewal. Diehl brings a similar mission to this Philadelphia Chamber Music Society recital, a program of ragtime and Harlem stride by Jelly Roll Morton, Scott Joplin and others. (It’ll be Valentine’s Day, so keep fingers crossed for Fats Waller’s “I Can’t Give You Anything But Love.”)

Feb. 14 at 7:30 p.m., Perelman Theater, Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, 300 South Broad Street, $30; tickets and information

Courtesy of the artist

Anaïs Reno with the Pete Malinverni Trio — Wednesday, Chris’ Jazz Cafe

A jazz singer with a warmly assured style beyond her years, Anaïs Reno, now all of 20, has been steadily gaining ground on the scene. She released an album of Billy Strayhorn songs with pianist Emmet Cohen a couple of years ago, and has a new one, At PizzaExpress Live - in London, due out on Friday. Expect her to preview some of that material, like “Lover Man,” at this Valentine’s Day gig with the Pete Malinverni Trio.

Feb. 14 at 7:30 and 9:30 p.m., Chris’ Jazz Cafe, 1421 Sansom Street, $40, $95 and $115, with dinner packages; purchase tickets.

Alphonso Horne & the Gotham Kings — Friday through Sunday, South Jazz Kitchen

With the Gotham Kings, virtuoso trumpeter Alphonso Horne borrows a page from early New Orleans icons like King Oliver and His Creole Jazz Band. The group’s high-stepping rhythms, bustling polyphony and vocal hijinks never fail to raise the spirits — especially, one would presume, during a weekend engagement that falls mere days after Mardi Gras.

Feb. 16 and 17 at 7 and 9:30 p.m., Feb. 18 at 6 and 8:30 p.m., South Jazz Kitchen, 600 North Broad Street, $30 to $35; purchase tickets.

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Courtesy of the artist

Takuya Kuroda — Saturday, Solar Myth

A couple of weeks ago, First Word Records put out a 10th anniversary vinyl reissue of Takuya Kuroda’s Rising Son, which neatly synthesized the neo-soul legacy of his most obvious trumpet precursor, Roy Hargrove. Kuroda has since released a few more persuasive albums, earning acclaim as well as a sizable following; this show sold out well in advance, so your best bet will be to join the waitlist (or to hang at the bar and hope to catch a vibe).

Feb 17 at 8 p.m., Solar Myth, 1131 South Broad Street, sold out; more information.

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.