Rock, jazz, and R&B rub shoulders this spring at The Iridium, with headlining sets from Dave Matthews Band guitarist Tim Reynolds, James Brown collaborator Pee Wee Ellis, blues master Lucky Peterson, post-bop pianist Junko Onishi, and many more. In addition, the club’s trademark Les Paul Mondays series–which features the late guitar giant’s trio with a different special guest each week–will continue with Muscle Shoals legend Dan Penn, prolific guitarist Richie Kotzen, and others. Here are just a few of the March/April standouts:
Mar 31 – Tim Reynolds: Tim Reynolds may be best known as lead guitarist for the Dave Matthews Band and as one-half of the acoustic Dave Matthews-Tim Reynolds duo, but he’s also kept up a steady and acclaimed solo career spanning more than thirty-five years. With a masterful command of melody and timing and the uncanny ability to improvise on virtually any instrument he touches, Reynolds is a technically brilliant, yet emotionally honest performer.
Apr 1-3 – Charles Tolliver Big Band: Self-taught trumpeter Charles Tolliver began his professional career playing with the saxophone giant Jackie Mclean and has since recorded/performed with such renowned artists as Roy Haynes, Hank Mobley, Willie Bobo, Horace Silver, McCoy Tyner, Sonny Rollins, Booker Ervin, Gary Bartz, Herbie Hancock, and many more. He earned a Grammy nomination for his last studio set, ‘With Love,’ which was released on Blue Note.
Apr 8-9 – Junko Onishi Trio Feat. James Carter, Dwayne Burno, and Gregory Hutchinson: Post-bop Japanese pianist Junko Onishi studied at Berklee before moving to New York City, where she played with Joe Henderson, Betty Carter, Kenny Garrett, and Mingus Dynasty. Like Tolliver, she performed with Jackie McLean and recorded several albums as a bandleader for Blue Note.
Apr 18 – Dan Penn w/ The Les Paul Trio: Dan Penn helped shape the development of southern soul music with his legendary songwriting, musicianship and production. Penn’s early co-writing collaborations with Spooner Oldham included “I’m Your Puppet,” which became a hit in 1965 for James & Bobby Purify, and “It Tears Me Up,” performed so memorably by Percy Sledge. Penn also co-wrote “Do Right Woman, Do Right Man,” which Aretha Franklin turned into a soul classic, “Dark End of the Street,” stunningly recorded by James Carr, “Cry Like a Baby,” written for the Box Tops, and “A Woman Left Lonely,” chosen by Janis Joplin for her classic album ‘Pearl.’
Apr 28-30 – Pee Wee Ellis, Larry Willis, & Christian McBride: Saxophonist Pee Wee Ellis played with the James Brown Revue from 1965 to 1969. While with Brown he arranged and co-wrote hits like “Cold Sweat” and “Say It Loud – I’m Black and I’m Proud.” He’ll be joined by pianist Larry Willis, who performed for seven years as keyboardist for Blood, Sweat & Tears, and bassist Christian McBride, who’s worked with everyone from Chick Corea and Herbie Hancock to Sting and Carly Simon.
Also appearing at The Iridium in April are Danny Aiello, Carolyn Leonhart, Ed Palermo Big Band, Samuel Blais Quartet, Vox.Syndrome, T.K. Blue, The Manhattan Experiment, Terese Genecco & Her Little Big Band, Steve Swallow, Ohad Talmor & Adam Nussbaum, and more.
About The Iridium:
Deemed “hallowed ground” by iconic guitarist Steve Miller, The Iridium stage has played a part in launching the careers of countless artists, though it may now be known best as Les Paul’s second home. The late guitarist performed at The Iridium weekly for more than 12 years until his passing in 2009. Today, the Les Paul trio continues on in his honor, performing Monday nights with guests that have included guitar gods like Steve Miller, Jeff Beck, and Zakk Wylde, as well as many others.
For a complete calendar of events at the Iridium in April, visit: