Friday February 14, 2025

08:00 PM - 10:00 pm

L.A.’s own Yellowjackets, boasting four decades of musical excellence, will headline and open this double-billing featuring two debuts!. Kurt Elling “The standout male vocalist of our time” (-The New York Times), reimagines Weather Report tunes with original band member Peter Erskine. Highlighting compositions by Wayne Shorter, Weather Report stands as the quintessential modern jazz group of the 1970s and 1980s.

Kurt Elling, singer/songwriter
Peter Erskine, drums

Russell Ferrante, piano, synthesizers
Bob Mintzer, woodwinds, electronic wind instruments
Will Kennedy, drums
Dane Alderson, bass

Kurt Elling
Kurt Elling is a two-time GRAMMY® Award-winner renowned for his signature sound and his inventive and individualized body of work-in-progress. With his one-of-a-kind brand of contemporary beat lyricism, vocalese brilliance and a rich variety of collaborations with fellow artists, the Chicago-based musician has extended the parameters of vocal jazz and enlarged its vocabulary. Elling’s reinvention of the sounds, styles, and stories that influenced him embraces a panoply of musical approaches. The New York Times rightly called Kurt Elling “the standout male jazz vocalist of our time.”

Hailed by The Guardian (UK) as “a kind of Sinatra with superpowers”, Elling has amassed international honors and accolades, including two GRAMMY® Awards (with 16 total nominations), two Dutch Edison Awards, a German Echo Award and the French Prix Billie Holiday. He regularly dominates the DownBeat Critics Poll (18 wins), the Readers Poll (15 wins), and the JazzTimes Readers Poll (8 wins). The Washington Post declared that “since the 1990’s, no singer in jazz has been as daring, dynamic or interesting as Kurt Elling.”

The Yellowjackets
Throughout their storied 35+ year history, the Yellowjackets have recorded 22 albums, received 17 GRAMMY® nominations – won 2 – performed countless sold-out tours, and enjoyed worldwide critical acclaim and commercial success.

The Yellowjackets formed in the late 1970’s as the backup band for guitarist Robben Ford. They recorded their first album together in 1980. Shortly after that recording, however, Ford decided to part ways and go in a different musical direction. As a result, the modern day Yellowjackets were formed — a trio with Russell Ferrante, Jimmy Haslip and Ricky Lawson. Since then, and with the addition of Bob Mintzer, the Yellowjackets have gained and maintained prominence as one of jazz’s most influential and loved groups.

Over the years the band has undergone numerous lineup changes. Never failing to rise to the inevitable challenges of adjustment, the Yellowjackets – Russell Ferrante, William Kennedy, Bob Mintzer – have maintained an extraordinarily high quality of musicianship that is the rival of many but a surprise to no one who knows and appreciates the band and their music.

The most recent addition to the band adds Australian bass player Dane Alderson in to the mix. With his exceptional rhythmic sensibility and natural disposition toward groove, Dane brings a new energy to the band and adds a youthful approach to the music.

The Yellowjackets newest album, “Raising Our Voice” was released on Mack Avenue Records in Fall 2018 and features special guest vocalist Luciana Souza.

Friday February 14, 2025

8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

All Ages

Cover: TBD

Peter Erskine & The Yellowjackets, Soka Performing Arts Center