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From a PJ Perry Talk to a Noah Becker Jam There’s Enough Jazz Happening To Make You Wish You Could Be in Two Places at Once

August 13, 2009

Jazz fans on the Island have a lot to choose from over the next few days. Here’s a quick rundown.

Noah Becker's birthday party jam on Tuesday night features some of the best players in these parts, including vocalist Emily Braden.

Noah Becker's birthday party jam on Tuesday night features a host of great players.

If you are in the Qualicum area this weekend, be sure to make your way to The Qualicum Beach Community Hall on Saturday afternoon to hear PJ Perry talk about his life in music ($10 – 2-3:30pm) and to The Old School House to hear Don Thompson present a “Words and Music” workshop in which he will discuss his approach to playing and composing ($10- 4:30- 6pm).

On Saturday evening at the Qualicum Beach Community Hall, Phil Dwyer’s top level college students present their windup concert following their week-long jazz camp. These are some of the best young players in Canada and the US and are well worth hearing ($10 – 7:30 pm).

All three of the above events are part of the Phil Dwyer Jazz Festival, which winds up on Sunday with the Jazz in the Garden concert in Milner Gardens (see related story).

In Victoria on Saturday night at Hermann’s you can catch drummer Kelby MacNayr performing with pianist George McFetridge and bassist Joey Smith. Tickets are $10 at the door.

On Tuesday night, also at Hermann’s, saxophonist Noah Becker celebrates his birthday with a powerhouse jam session featuring some of the best players in these parts, including vocalists Emily Braden and Kia Kadiri, drummer Josh Dixon, bassist Sean Drabitt, pianist Brent Jarvis, and, Becker promises, lots of other great musical guests ($10 at the door).

In Mill Bay, also on Tuesday night, Pat Selman’s Church Mice productions presents the PJ Perry Trio, featuring Tony Genge on piano and Ken Lister on bass. This one gets underway at 7pm at Sylvan United Church and will be a wonderful opportunity to hear a Canadian jazz legend in the intimate and acoustically rich setting that Sylvan United offers. ($15/$20 at the door).

Let’s see, the Perry gig starts at 7pm and the Becker bash runs from 8pm to midnight, meaning that while you can’t be in two places at once, you could hear Perry, drive down the Malahat, and arrive fashionably late for the Becker show…

– Rick Gibbs

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