Arguably the world's premier contemporary jazz orchestra, led by one of the most significant current figures in jazz, Marsalis and the JLCO will be celebrating the imminent 50th birthday of the New Orleans-born trumpet maestro and music director. The repertoire reportedly will be a retrospective of Marsalis's big-band work, which draws strongly on classic jazz, Ellingtoniana, and Crescent City tradition, as well as innovative projects such as the Pulitzer-winning Blood on the Fields. Besides Marsalis, JLCO features some of the premier jazz artists of our time, including clarinetist Victor Goines and trumpeter Marcus Printup, who are also among the JLCO folks backing Marsalis and Eric Clapton on their brand new Play the Blues, a spectacular, joyous collaboration of the blues in the context of New Orleans jazz. Clapton's unlikely to be lurking in the wings, but standards like "Just a Closer Walk with Thee" just might work their way into the set.
Sun., Oct. 2, 7 p.m., 2011