George Cables Trio
Location: Raven Theater
Address: 115 North Street, Healdsburg
Time: 7:30 pm
Tickets: $15 General, $10 Students or Seniors (65+)
George Cables, the inimitable pianist dubbed “Mr. Beautiful” by altoist Art Pepper, has played an essential role in the Healdsburg Jazz Festival since the beginning. A creative foil for jazz’s most prodigious improvisers, including Dexter Gordon, Freddie Hubbard, Bobby Hutcherson and Joe Henderson, Cables combines unrelenting rhythmic drive and wry wit with a sparkling touch and evocative lyricism.
Given his lyrical phrasing, it’s no surprise that Cable is an inspired accompanist to singers, which makes his reunion with Shea Breaux Wells one of the festival’s highlights. A daring vocalist with a bright burnished sound, Wells recorded her latest album, “A Blind Date” right after her appearance at the 2008 festival. A thrilling album featuring Cables, bassist Cecil McBee, drummer Billy Hart, saxophonist Craig Handy and trumpeter David Weiss, “Blind Date” captures the volatile chemistry between Wells and some of jazz’s most powerful and expressive players.
There’s no talent letup for their reunion, with powerhouse bassist Peter Barshay and drummer Jaz Sawyer, who spent years touring with Abbey Lincoln, rounding out the rhythm section.
Christian Foley-Beining Quartet
German-born guitarist Christian Foley-Beining was inspired as a teenager by Wes Montgomery, and later studied with an impressive roster of guitar talent, including Joe Pass, Pat Metheny, Robben Ford and Larry Carlton. A fine composer and widely traveled clinician, he’s made a name for himself in the North Bay since settling in Sonoma.
He opens tonight’s double bill with a stellar band featuring veteran bassist Chris Amberger, drummer Lorca Hart and special guest Paul McCandless. A founding member of pioneering world-jazz ensemble Oregon, Paul McCandless is an expert oboist, a true rarity in jazz, who also plays English horn, soprano saxophone, bass clarinet, clarinet, and pennywhistle, among other instruments.