14 pop, rock and jazz concerts to discover in New York this weekend
CHRIS BECK QUINTETTE at Smalls (May 17, 7:30 p.m. and 9 p.m.). Mr. Beck, seasoned drummer, is about to release “The Journey”, his first album as a leader. This recording has a lot of lateral reach: there’s gospel-tinged ballad, standard bebop, and clever reworking of Wayne Shorter’s mid-1960s classics (it covers “Mahjong” and incorporates a new melody into the structure of the song. “Nefertiti”). Mr. Beck celebrates the new record at this show, with Stacy Dillard on tenor saxophone, Anthony Wonsey on piano and Eric Wheeler on bass – all of whom performed on the record – as well as Giveton Gelin on trumpet.
ANTHONY COLEMAN AND ELLERY ESKELIN at the Greenwich House School of Music (May 11 at 7:30 p.m.). Mr. Coleman, a pianist, draws his inspiration largely from Jewish folk music, free jazz and Western minimalism, among others. He plays with both an initiation into abstraction and intense intensity. Mr. Eskelin is a tenor saxophonist with delicate chirping and gentle persuasion; listen to his lyricism, then for its rich variegation of tone. At this concert, Mr. Coleman and Mr. Eskelin will perform solo sets.
ROMÃN FILIÃ at the Jazz Gallery (May 11, 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.). Alto saxophonist originally from Cuba, Mr. FiliÃº is not often heard as a leader. On the excellent new album “Neighborhoods”, his first in six years, he guides a septet through original compositions of playful elasticity and crisp clarity: Music is applied and specific with easy human flow. He will play tunes from “Quarteria” – which were originally written for a commission from the Jazz Gallery in 2014 – with a group consisting of MarÃa Grand on tenor saxophone, Adam O’Farrill on trumpet, Sam Harris on piano, Rashaan Carter on bass, Craig Weinrib on drums and Yusnier Sanchez on percussion.
EDDIE HENDERSON’S QUINTET at Smoke (May 11 to 13, 7, 9 and 10:30 p.m.). A veteran trumpeter whose skillful feel and sumptuous sound made him a central figure in the jazz-funk and hard-bop worlds of the 1970s, Mr. Henderson has a very good new album, “Be Cool”, on Smoke Sessions, the label associated with this chic neighborhood club. Mr. Henderson appears here with alto saxophonist Donald Harrison, bassist Essiet Okon Essiet and drummer Mike Clark – all of whom feature on the album – and pianist Peter Zak.
VIJAY IYER SEXTET at Village Vanguard (May 15-20, 8:30 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.). Mr. Iyer’s sextet provides a resonant vessel for his heady, hot-blooded compositions; the band’s debut album, “Far From Over”, was one of the best of last year. The group includes trumpeter Graham Haynes, alto saxophonist Steve Lehman, tenor saxophonist Mark Shim, bassist Stephan Crump and drummer Tyshawn Sorey. For the first four nights of this race, Jeremy Dutton replaces Mr. Sorey.