Pianist Michael Wolfe is known for his free-wheeling musical views and unrestrained playing based on a wide variety of world music influences. His new band reflects his musical philosophy with an all-star lineup featuring top names such as the highly-regarded newcomer saxophonist Sonny Fortune. A flexible rhythm section is comprised of John B. Williams on bass, Victor Jones on drums and Badal Roy on tabla.
Michael Wolfe will perform at the Jazz Kitchen Friday, Nov. 15
Wolfe, former bandleader for the Arsenio Hall Show, is on a national tour and he talked to NUVO before his concert in Burlington, Vt. NUVO: Has your musical focus shifted over the past two years? Wolfe: I don"t know if it"s shifted, I feel like I am out here mixing elements. To me the blending of these cultures is what I think I set out to do when I started out with this band. I think the intensity of the performance and the relationship with the audience is changing and getting closer. The audience knows what I am doing now. NUVO: Do you think you are getting a younger audience because you are appealing to a younger demographic? Wolfe: When I did this music I did it a hundred percent because it excited me internally. I think what has happened, when I started out at 19 years old, I was always impressed that we did a lot of college concerts with famous people like Steve McQueen and Marlon Brando there and all classes and nationalities. I think there is a new audience for the music that I am playing. It"s not just a regular jazz audience, but I think we are being accepted by all the audiences. Indianapolis audiences will be able to enjoy the exciting performance of Michael Wolfe at the Jazz Kitchen Friday, Nov. 15 for two non-smoking shows at 8:30 and 10:30 p.m. Jazz happenings Get organized behind some hip sounds to plan the upcoming holidays. There"s an abundance of venues in Indy for jazz this week. The Jazz Kitchen will welcome the articulate tenor saxophone work of Rob Dixon"s Quartet Saturday, Nov. 16 at 8:30 and 10:30 p.m. The award-winning Frank Glover Quartet with Claude Sifferlen plays every Monday from 7:30 to 10:30 p.m. Cathy Morris and her Brazilian Lounge Band perform every Wednesday from 6 to 9 p.m. If you are looking to get your dance groove on, then check out the acid jazz, funk groove of the smoking 7 Pleasures from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. The Chatterbox brings back Monika Herzig"s Acoustic Project Friday, Nov. 15 followed on Saturday, Nov. 16 by Keni Washington & Omniverse. Music sets both nights run 10:30 p.m. to 2 a.m. The Jazz Cooker now features the solo piano jazz of Steve Ball every Friday and Saturday, 7 to 10 p.m. Midtown Grill features solo jazz pianist Dave Hepler on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday 7 to 10 p.m. Ruth"s Chris Steakhouse downtown has guitarist Bill Lancton"s Group playing for "Sizzling Steaks & Jazz" Sunday, Nov. 17, 7 to 10 p.m. New jazz venue the Fountain Lounge at the corner of West 30th Street and Dr. Martin Luther King Street features jazz every Wednesday, with Greg Bacon on the bandstand Nov. 13 at 8 p.m. Lulu"s at the Fashion Mall will have Conga Jazz performing Thursday, Nov. 14, 8 to 11:30 p.m. Sullivan"s Steakhouse showcases the trio Friday and Saturday, Nov. 15 and 16, of Claude Sifferlen, piano, Joe Deal, bass, and Kevin Johnson, drums. The Elbow Room"s Sunday Jazz Brunch has the soft jazz sounds of Tom Sullivan on guitar and Duncan Putnam on bass playing 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. For some awesome, free blueberry beignets, show up between 10 and 11 a.m. at the Elbow Room on Sundays. The Fountain Square Theatre has the Tim Brickley Band playing Friday, Nov. 15 for swing dancing from 8:30 to 11:30 p.m. Chuck Workman is the producer/host of the Sunday Morning Jazz Show at 107.9 WTPI.