The Thursday Night Jazz at Reverie series continues this week (December 1) with the Joe Mayo Quartet (9 pm). This band features four youngish veterans who keep busy with a number of metro ensembles as sidemen and as leaders– saxophonist Joe Mayo, guitarist Zacc Harris, bassist Chris Bates, and drummer Pete James Johnson.
Saxophonist Joe Mayo has performed all over the world for Carnival Cruise Lines and on tour with the hot British indie rock group, Friendly Fires. He can evoke the pure understated sound of Paul Desmond in one song — and then channel Junior Walker or Clarence Clemmons on the next tune! Locally he leads his own quartet, performs with the Twin Cities Latin Jazz Orchestra, Adam Meckler, and jazz/R&B band Wild Honey, and co-leads President Flow and Really Big Shoe. A native of Connecticut, Joe earned degrees at the University of Massachusetts and SUNY Purchase, and studied with saxophonists Adam Kolker, Ralph Lalama, Eric Alexander and Seamus Blake, and with trumpeter Scott Wendholt. Over the past year Joe has appeared in leading and supporting roles throughout the Twin Cities at Jazz Central, the Black Dog, Reverie, Studio Z and more.
Guitarist Zacc Harris is a California native who received his college training at Southern Illinois University. Since arriving in the Twin Cities about ten years ago, he has led a weekly gig with his Zacc Harris Trio at the Riverview Wine Bar, and also leads his Quartet, the Atlantis Quartet, Vital Organ, the Zacc Harris Group, and American Reverie; performs with Dean Granros’ Tall Tales and the Adam Meckler Quintet; is frequently on stage with Brandon Wozniak and Babatunde Lea; and teaches at Hamline University as well as private guitar lessons. He’s also curated the Jazz at Studio Z series for five seasons.
Bassist Chris Bates is one of the busiest musicians in the metro, performing with the Atlantis Quartet, Red Planet, Framework, How Birds Work, Tall Tales, Bill Simenson Orchestra, Adam Meckler Orchestra, and many other cutting edge ensembles. In the past few years he has stepped out front as leader of the Good Vibes Trio, Red Five, and the trio Inventions and Dimensions; he also curates a monthly improvisation series at Jazz Central, one Wednesday night per month. Chris studied at the University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire and later with Anthony Cox, was an original member of the Motion Poets, and a 1999 McKnight Composer Fellow.
Drummer Pete James Johnson is a Central Minnesota native and graduate of Minnesota State University at Moorhead who recently returned home after spending time working and studying for his Master’s Degree in Los Angeles. His credits include working with the Bob Mintzer Big Band, Russell Ferrante, Alan Pasqua, and Ambrose Akinmisure. In the Twin Cities he has led a number of ensembles including his trio, quartet, and the Basement Society, and has performed with Andrew Walesch, Adam Meckler, Nelson Devereaux, the Nexus Ensemble, Debbie Duncan, Pippi Ardennia, and more.
Thursday Night Jazz at Reverie is curated by Steve Kenny, and takes place weekly at 1931 Nicollet Ave South, just south of downtown Minneapolis. No cover; the series is supported in full by patron donations to the tip jar ($10 suggested). Full Thursday series schedule at www.thursdaynightjazzatreverie.info