A Weekly Jazzonian Newsletter
December 11, 2017

...is a jazzonian e-newsletter published weekly unless the author is somehow incapacitated. It details the thriving jazz scene in Columbus, Georgia and the surrounding Chattahoochee Valley, written exclusively by
Rusty Taylor, the jester-singer for the vocal jazz band Southern Standard Time
Salutations Fellow Jazzonian,


My apologies for this week's condensed newsletter, but I have a cold, and I feel like I've been masticated and digested by a feral wolf and then defecated over an ominous promontory hanging precariously over a sheer 300 foot drop onto a pile of broken glass shards and rusted barbed wire. I'm sure many of you readers know that I am a quadriplegic unable to perform even the most rudimentary acts of daily living, and I've been at it a while... three decades... or six lusta. Back in 1986, during the incipience of my paralysis, I was told by the angels of the Shepherd Center, where I did my rehab in Atlanta, that respiratory anomalies were the number one cause of death for quadriplegics of my level... C/4 complete (which means that I permanently damaged my spinal cord at the 4th cervical vertebrae). All I know is that when I catch a cold that produces excess mucilage in my lungs, I have a hard time breathing... I sound like a raspy Darth Vader... especially when I lay down supine on my bed, and this makes it really hard to rest, to wit, my racing mind brings up hypnagogic hallucinations that keep me awake and motivated to simply breath, so I rest... a lot... and wait for the symptoms to abate.

Enjoy the newsletter...
Charlie Brown Christmas
Sponsored, in part, by the Columbus Jazz Society, A Charlie Brown Christmas, the Emmy® and Peabody award-winning story by Charles M. Schulz, has warmed the hearts of millions of fans since it first aired on television over fifty years ago. Now the classic animated television special comes to life in this faithful stage adaptation featuring all of your favorite characters and classic Vince Guaraldi score at the RiverCenter in historic downtown Columbus, GA. Join, Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Lucy, Linus, and the rest of the Peanuts gang as they mount a play, save a tree, and uncover the true meaning of Christmas. Three Shows:

  • December 18 @ 6:30 pm
  • December 19 @ 9:30 am
  • December 19 @ 11:30 am

Charlie Brown Christmas
Join us for “The Jazz Genius of A Charlie Brown Christmas,” with Jan Hyatt, jazz musician and founder of the Columbus Jazz Society, for a behind-the-scenes look at the jazz soundtrack of this beloved television special. What made the music of Vince Guaraldi so iconic in A Charlie Brown Christmas? How did Guaraldi win out over Dave Brubeck and some other very notable composers for the show? What would the score sound like if it were sax oriented instead of piano oriented? Come get a jazz insiders view and enjoy some coffee and dessert! Free admission. December 18 at the Bill Heard Theater beginning at 6:30 pm EDT.

Groovy Upcoming Events
  • Sunday, December 10, 17, 21-23 – David Ellington's Peanut Gallery Presents A Charlie Brown Christmas At Venkman's starting at 6 pm. Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • Monday and Tuesday, December 18 and 19 – check starting time – A Charlie Brown Christmas Live is sponsored in part by the Columbus Jazz Society. Click here. fo' mo' info.
  • Sunday, December 10 – Trio Deluxe at Venkman's starting at 12:30 pm EDT. Trio Deluxe plays jazz; the band members are Dan Coy - guitar; Andrea DeMarcus - vocals, bass; John Norris - drums.
  • Friday, December 15 – Atlanta Funk Society at Venkman's starting at 10 pm EDT. Atlanta Funk Society is a 12-piece Funk band from Atlanta, GA, playing classic hits from the '60s, '70s and '80s, including "Superbad" by James Brown, "Underdog" by Sly and The Family Stone, and "Whatcha Gonna Do For Me" by Chaka Kahn. Check out their website by clicking here.
  • Friday, December 22 – Southern Standard Time (my band) will play a vocal Christmas Jazz program for the third straight year at The Loft in downtown Columbus, GA. Free Admission, so if you are downtown from 7-9 pm, come on in from the cold, order a hot beverage, and listen to some groovy Christmas Tunes.
  • Friday, December 29 – Southern Standard Time (my band) will play vocal jazz at the Eighth and Rail in downtown Opelika, AL from 8 'til midnight Central Time.
  • Saturday, January 13 – The Tivon Pennicott Quartet at Venkman's starting at 7:30 pm EDT. Tivon Pennicott was born & raised in Marietta, Georgia in December of 1985. He began studying tenor saxophone in high school, garnering recognition early on as an outstanding soloist in the Lincoln Center's Essentially Ellington competition, as well as the Georgia All-state Jazz Band. In 2004, he relocated to Miami to study at the University of Miami, where he had the opportunity to perform alongside artists such as: Dave Liebman, Randy Brecker, and Maria Schneider. Visit Tivon's website by clicking here.
  • Sunday, January 14 – The Glenn Miller Orchestra begins playing at 3 pm at Spivey Hall in Morrow, Georgia. Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • Saturday, February 3 – The Afro Cuban All Stars at The Rialto Center for the Arts in Atlanta, the Afro-Cuban All Stars band begins at 8 pm EDT. Afro-Cuban All Stars is a Cuban band led by Juan de Marcos González. Their music is a mix of all the styles of Cuban music, including bolero, chachachá, salsa, son montuno, timba, guajira, danzón, rumba and abakua. To visit their website, click here.
  • Friday, February 9 – Diana Krall - Turn Up The Quiet World Tour At Atlanta Symphony Hall.
This Week at The Loft
Columbus, GA's Weekly Home for Jazz
Friday, December 8, 2017
7 - 9 pm EDT

This Friday, December 15 from 7-9 pm EDT, Six String Theory featuring local guitarist Neil Lucas.

Upcoming Schedule :

  • December 15 - Six String Theory featuring Neil Lucas
  • December 22 - Christmas Jazz with Southern Standard Time featuring Rusty Taylor
  • December 29 - MaJazz featuring Dr. Jackie Pickett

And coming in January is Kevin Vannoy, Chris Otts, and Solar Quintet (and a possible CD Release Party) so keep your eyes and ears open for the news, which will certainly be included in this e-rag.
A Rusty Taylor Christmas
Sponsored by the Isle of Misfit Toys
I am proud to announce that for the third year in a row, my band Southern Standard Time will be playing at The Loft on the Friday before Christmas, December 22 from 7-9 pm EDT, so if you dig a baritone voice crooning familiar seasonal tunes that nostalgically encourage adolescent dreams of hanging stockings filled with excessive sugary goodness, gaudily decorated Christmas trees, blinking lights, shimmering stars pouring nocturnal rays of Hope onto a silver landscape, trips to Grandma's house, and little elves dancing in outrageous tiny outfits that make you laugh out loud, then you will not want to miss this Yule Tide evening of jazz-influenced Christmas music. It will be a charming night filled with Love; all it needs is you, tapping your feet, nodding your head, and listening with a smile as you sip a steaming cup of holiday joy... marshmallows available on request.

Everybody is welcome, regardless of... well, regardless of anything that is not life threatening or just plain dickish. Come into one of the coziest venues on the planet and let the anxiety associated with trying to fulfill outrageous expectations dissipate into the atmosphere; relax as the superfluous anxiety you've been harboring within your soul since Black Friday eagerly escapes from your consciousness into the distant horizon then beyond the vast emptiness of space never to be terrestrially experienced ever again. The inner peace you will feel is its own reward.
Weekly Area Jams
Eighth and Rail
Every Tuesday 7 - 10 pm CT
The Eighth and Rail in historical downtown Opelika, Alabama is the venue for a wildly groovy weekly jazz jam as hosted by the Jane Drake Jazz Band. It's a cozy celebration of life that has become a buzzing collection of jazz-loving fanatics gathered together in a coterie of peaceful, fun-loving positive energy. I am downright proud as a peacock with enhanced LED-flashing feathers to participate in the jam on a regular basis, and I really love it! Proprietor Mike Patterson makes the wonderful sushi and Miss Tiffany keeps the affable atmosphere at a lovely level of emotive satisfaction. Plus... they serve an awesome cheesecake that'll make you wanna slap yourself so hard as to tell horrific knock-knock jokes to mimes. No lie. We have really talented musicians come in from the bi-state area: Auburn, Montgomery, Tuskegee, Columbus, LaGrange, Fort Valley, et al. The jam begins at 7 pm and ends at 10 pm CT. Hopefully, I'll see you there.

Eighth and Rail
Venkman's Jazz Jam
Every Tuesday starting at 8 pm ET
Venkman's is a nightclub in Atlanta, a venue that Joe Gransden uses for his weekly jazz jam. This is where the Who's Who of the Atlanta Jazz Scene come together to dazzle us mortals. It's free and starts at 8 pm ET. Fo' mo' info, click link below. I've participated in this jam a couple of times, and I love it as well. Joe Gransden always welcomes me with a smile that will melt antarctic glaciers in the middle of winter, which, oddly enough, is during June through August... when it's so hot and humid in middle Georgia that my toenails sweat. Nevertheless, Joe's band often includes keyboardist Kenny Banks (sometimes Kevin Bales), drummer Chris Burroughs and bassist Craig Shaw, and these cats kick it. When I find the transportation, I'm going.

Red Light Cafe Jazz Jam
Every Wed at 8 pm ET

I have not been to the weekly jazz jam at Red Light Cafe, but it is hosted by the Gordon Vernick Quartet, and I am a huge fan of Gordon's, so I'm planning to go soon, and when I do... Ha! I'm very likely to get excited. Fo' mo' info, click here.
Apache Cafe in Atlanta
Every Wed at 9:00 ET

Al Smith's Midtown Jam Session @Apache Cafe!  Contemporary Jazz , Soul, R&B vocalists jam Session. Featuring live band led by keyboardist Al Smith! Vocalists are invited to sign the list and jam with the band, musicians can sit in too... a must attend! Different Dj spinning on the back patio each week! SPECIAL GUEST HOST EVERY WEEK! Doors open at 9pm and list-sign up is at 9pm. Event admission, the day of, at the door, is CASH. Fo' mo' info, click here.
1048 Club in Montgomery
Every Sun at 9:30-12:30 CT

The 1048 Cafe is in Montgomery, AL. The weekly Jazz Jam led by Sam Williams, 9 pm CDT, $5 cover. I don't really know that much about it, but the 1048 has a jazz jam every Sunday from 9ish 'til whenever. Apparently the jam draws some incredible musicians. Fo' mo' info, click here.
Piccolo's Lounge, Auburn

It's not a jam, but the Piccolo lounge offers a comfortable, clubby environment. Leather club chairs, a cozy fireplace and comfy banquettes serve as a relaxing getaway. Enjoy a single malt scotch and relax and unwind from a hectic day or meet friends to hear live jazz every Friday and Saturday night, of non-home football game weekends. Fo' mo' info, click here.
A Little Lunch Music at Jule Collins Smith Museum, Auburn University
On Thursdays at Noon, make a lunch date with our region’s finest musicians. A Little Lunch Music is an informal, come-and-go performance presented by JCSM and coordinated by musician Patrick McCurry. You can sit in and listen to the entire performance, dine in the Museum Cafe from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. CT, browse the Museum Shop or explore the galleries.
  • November 2 - On Thursday, October 19, from noon to 1:00 pm, the series will present a free concert by Plains 2, featuring trombonist Matthew Wood and pianist Joshua Pifer.
  • November 9 - Clarinetist Patricia Crisp with pianist Beibei Lin
  • November 16 - pianist Vijay Venkatesh in collaboration with Emory Chamber Music Society of Atlanta
  • November 23 - No concert... it's Thanksgiving
  • November 30 - classical guitarist Kevin Manderville
  • December 7 - hornist William Shaffer with pianist Joshua Pifer
  • December 13 - The Auburn Music Club Singers

Jazz Association of Macon
We Promote Jazz in Macon
and Middle Georgia
Our purpose is to:
Encourage and support creation, presentation, and preservation of jazz music.
Support the creation of new audiences for jazz music.
Provide education and information about jazz.
Encourage young musicians to learn and appreciate jazz.
Develop a network among local and regional jazz advocates.
Increase awareness of jazz events and musicians in our community.

To read their blog, click here.
Area Musicians
Actually, this is a link to a page of my personal website, but it makes it much easier t maintain. It is a dynamic list of area musicians that will, hopefully, be continually updated until I can no longer do it. If you are a musician who is not listed or you are listed but with invalid info, please let me know, and I'll make the appropriate revisions. Thank you, and click here to visit the link.
High Museum of Art: Atlanta Jazz
Live jazz in the Robinson Atrium at the Atlanta High Museum of Art every 3rd Friday of the month. Fo' mo' info, click here .
On-line Radio
  • WCUG 88.5 Cougar Radio - Columbus State University.
  • KUNR 88.7 Reno, Nevada.
  • KNCJ 89.5 Reno, Nevado. (I listen to this station on Saturday evening from 9-1 a.m. ET to catch Saturday Night Jazz hosted by Scot Marshall and Dallas Smith.)
  • Saturday Night Jazz hosted by Scot Marshall and Dallas Smith (Columbus, GA native) - Scot and Dallas bring their rich musical experiences together in "Saturday Night Jazz" to feature music which ranges from the latest releases to jazz classics and occasional recordings by local artists, as well as announcements of upcoming local jazz events in the Reno-Tahoe area. "Saturday Night Jazz" is supported by the Reno Jazz Orchestra and For the Love of Jazz.The program airs every Saturday evening from 1pm-10pm Pacific Time.
  • WCLK 99.1 Atlanta's Jazz Station, Clark Atlanta University.
  • Adore Jazz - Adore Jazz makes listeners relax, feel, think and smile through listening to the finest vocal jazz.
  • WTSU 88.9 Troy State University - Ray Murray's Jazz Radio Show Saturday nights at 10 pm Central Time.
  • WVAS 90.7 Montgomery - Jazz, Blues, News, and views.
Christmas Music by Area Musicians

Some area musicians have recorded Christmas music. Simply click on the cover art, and the link will send you to a magical, virtual store where you can buy the music. If I've missed an area musician who has recorded Christmas music, let me know and I'll include it here. Support local musicians; otherwise, Santa will leave you coal in your stockings.
Pat Trudell
One Silent Night
Annie Sellick
Let's Make A Christmas Memory
Joe Gransden
I'll Be Home For Christmas

If you know of an area musician who has recorded a Christmas CD, please let me know. Thanks.