The APFJ Concert Series

A Place for Jazz does much more than put on its fall concert series.  APFJ also has a strong commitment to promoting music education through concerts, public workshops, school-based clinics, this website and general support of Jazz and its musicians.

One of our most important initiatives has been the annual APFJ scholarship for students pursuing a musical education at SUNY Schenectady, an initiative that goes back to our very beginnings. Scholarships are funded entirely from cash donations, the proceeds from food & beverage sales and proceeds from the 50/50 raffles. We are very proud of our scholarship awardees, who have achieved significant accomplishments and even found their careers as music educators and performers.  APFJ has awarded over $10,000 in scholarships to deserving students.

APFJ also contracts with many of its musicians to present jazz clinics and workshops in area schools and community organizations. In addition, APFJ has traditionally invited high school and middle school student jazz bands to perform at the intermissions of its concerts.

Since 1987, A Place for Jazz has been hosting a fall concert series at the Unitarian Universalist Society of Schenectady. There were no concerts in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2022, we moved to the Carl B. Taylor Auditorium at SUNY Schenectady Community College. To give you a flavor of the caliber of the artists we’ve brought in, here’s a list of them all. Unfortunately, there are a few gaps in the very early years (1987, 1988, 1991 and 1996). If any of you have old programs or posters, or a very good memory, we’d be thrilled if you can fill in any blanks. Please click here to send me whatever info you have.

2022: Ann Hampton Callaway (special spring concert); Steve Davis Sextet; Geoffrey Keezer Trio w/Gillian Margot; Joel Ross Quintet; Bobby Watson Quartet; Peg Delaney Big Band

2019: Nick Hetko, Rich Syracuse, Jeff Siegel (special spring concert); Steve Turre; Melissa Aldana; Benny Green; Veronica Swift; Phil Allen’s Concert Jazz Band

2018: Sharel Cassity Quintet; Warren Wolf Quartet; Cliff Brucker and Full Circle; Jazzmeia Horn; Anat Cohen Quartet

2017: Larry Willis Trio; Chembo Corniel Quintet; Jackie Ryan & Shelly Berg; Jeff Siegel Sextet; Don Byron Quartet

2016: Scott Hamilton Quartet; Steven Kroon Latin Jazz Sextet; Denise Donatelli; Joe Barna & Sketches of Influence; Christian Jacob Trio

2015: René Marie; Theo Hill Quartet; Manuel Valera and New Cuban Express; John Nazarenko Trio; Chris Potter Quartet

2014: Lou Donaldson; Clifton Anderson Quintet; George Garzone Quartet; Alexis Cole Quintet; John Menegon Quartet; Bria Skonberg Quintet

2013: Joe Magnarelli/Jerry WeldonJeff Hamilton TrioConrad HerwigCatherine RussellMichael-Louis Smith Quintet.

2012: Luca Ciarla Quartet (special spring concert); Tom HarrellMary StallingsDick HymanMichael Benedict’s BopitudePedrito Martinez.

2011: Houston Person (special spring concert); Terell Stafford Quintet with Dick OattsTia Fuller Quartet; Kenny Barron Trio; Sensemaya; Freddy Cole Quartet

2010: Lee Konitz Quartet; Mike Moreno Quintet; Jeanne O’Connor & Nat Phipps; Bruce Barth Trio; J.D Allen Trio; Hot Club of Detroit

2009: Eric Alexander Quintet featuring Steve Davis; Otmaro Ruiz Quartet; Tierney SuttonGene LudwigSteve Lambert Sextet

2008: Bill Charlap Trio; Lee Russo Quartet; Ben AllisonJoe LockeKarrin Allyson

2007: Mark MurphyJeb PattonGary SmulyanWycliffe GordonKeith Pray‘s Big Soul Ensemble

2006: Winard HarperGiacomo GatesChris FloryJohn Bunch Quartet; David “Fathead” Newman Quartet; Lee Shaw Trio + Jack Fragomeni.

2005: Gregg August Sextet; Dan Levinson and His Summa Cum Laude Orchestra; Hilton Ruiz Quintet; Roseanna VitroSteve Kuhn Trio.

2004: Phillip Manuel & Paul BollenbackRay Vega‘s Latin Quintet; New Jazz Composers OctetRandy Sandke/Harry Allen Quintet; Tim Collins Quartet

2003: Jeremy Pelt Sextet; Patti Wicks Trio; Brian Patneaude Quartet; Joan Stiles Quintet; Barbone Street Jazz Band

2002: Frank Vignola & Joe Ascione (The Frank & Joe Show); René MarieSteve WilsonLuis PerdomoKeith Pray Quintet

2001: Rebecca ParrisJane Bunnett and the Spirits of Havana; Darryl Hall Quartet; Ed Polcer and the Magic of Swing Street; Lee Shaw Trio

2000: Sumi TonookaOrrin Evans Trio; Warren Vaché Quartet; One for All;  Alex Torres & Los Reyes Latinos

1999: Art Baron and the Duke’s Men; Stanley Cowell Trio; Dena DeRose Trio; Quartet Indigo; Virginia Mayhew

1998: Kenny Davern Quartet with Bucky Pizzarelli; Sumi Tonooka; Jimmy Heath Quintet; Barry Harris; Brian Lynch with David Kikoski, Tony Reedus and Essiet Okon Essiest

1997: Nick Brignola; Jane Bunnett and the Spirits of Havana; Ken Peplowski; Frank Morgan Quartet; Bill Mays

1996: Peter Leitch/John Hicks; Terell Stafford; Stefon Harris; we’re missing two

1995: Joe Lovano; Bobby Sanabria; Madeline Eastman; BluesWing; Antonio Hart

1994: Jazz Voices; Gary Bartz Quartet; Dave McKenna/Dick Johnson; Houston Person/Etta Jones; Kenny Barron Trio; Orphan Newsboys

1993: James Williams/Billy Pierce; Paradise City Jazz Band; Tana/Reid; Papo Vasquez; Empire Jazz Orchestra

1992: Ronnie Wells; Claudio Roditi; Either Orchestra; Empire Jazz Orchestra Octet; Renee Rosnes Quartet

1991: Kenia (vocals) with Jay Anderson; Jimmy Owens; Tana/Reid; Peter Leitch Quartet; we’re missing one

1990: Gene Bertoncini, Harvie Swartz, Sheila Jordan; Ray Meriweather; Jeri Brown with Fred Hersch; Nick Brignola; Claudio Roditi with Jay Asby

1989: Jackie Cain & Roy Krall; Cecilia Smith Quartet; Orlando Marin Sextet; Dave Calarco Quintet

1988: we’re missing all five

1987: Lee Shaw Trio; Cecilia Smith (vibes); we’re missing three

The best of jazz in a space with great acoustics, no smoke, no clattering of glasses …
just great music in a place meant for listening.

This concert series is made possible in part by public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency.