The San Jose Winter Fest kicks off Wednesday with performances at a half-dozen venues spread around downtown San Jose. Highlights include hip-hop-friendly pianists Robert Glasper (Saturday) and Jose James (Friday), Hammond B3 organ dynamo Tony Monaco (Sunday) and rising star trumpeter Sean Jones (Saturday). Most artists will be teaching workshops as well as performing. Check with San Jose Jazz for the complete schedule.
Also worth noting on the Bay Area jazz scene this week:
- Master percussionist Zakir Hussain spends a week at SFJAZZ Center blending the Indian tabla with sounds ranging from Bela Fleck's banjo to Joshua Redman's sax. Tickets are sold out for all performances, but you can still get into the 7:30 p.m. Tuesday listening party with Hussain, from which you're guaranteed to exit more enlightened about the tabla and music in general. $5-$10
- I wouldn't dare predict what Bay Area guitar icnonclast Henry Kaiser and his friends will do when they take the stage at Yoshi's Oakland this week, and I'm even less inclined to try to put a label on it. But rest assured that when Kaiser -- whose put his stamp on everything from Miles Davis tunes to Norwegian folk music -- teams up with virtuoso bassist Michael Manring, sax and world music explorer Vinny Golia and others, it'll be creative, eclectic and brimming with energy. The group performs 8 p.m. Wednesday. Tickets are $19.
- Pianist, provocateur and musical mercenary for the elite of modern R&B Robert Glasper gets funky with his aptly named Experiment, 9 p.m. Thursday and Friday at New Parish in Oakland. $30-$35
- The SF Offside Festival offers fresh and invigorating takes on the jazz idiom, with powerhouse drummer Eric Garland's Hodge Podge Ensemble and Marcus Stephen's streetwise take on the organ trio. The show starts at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Red Poppy Art House. $10-$20
- Pianist Tammy Hall and her Hall Chamber Jazz Ensemble, incorporating harp and French horn, confound distinctions between jazz and classical music, 8 p.m. Friday at Berkeley's Jazzschool. $12-$15
- Pianist Jose James, who's kept one foot in DJ culture while establishing a daunting reputation in jazz, commits with his latest albums focusing on standards and Coltrane. He performs 8 p.m. Saturday at New Parish in Oakland. $17-$20
- Master bassist William Parker and nine like-minded cohorts offer fresh interpretations of the music of Duke Ellington, 8 p.m. Saturday at Bing Concert Hall on the Stanford University campus. $10-$56
- Megawattage vocalist Paula West does magic with the standards, 7 p.m. Sunday at Yoshi's Oakland. $30
- Bay Area prodigy Julian Lage, a guitar virtuoso whose style recalls influences ranging from Django to Metheny while retaining a distinctly personal stamp, takes the spotlight 8 p.m. Sunday at Freight & Salvage Coffeeehouse in Berkeley. $26.50-$28.50
- Violinst India Cooke and her ensemble, Cloud Shepherd (which includes a full-time theremin player!) blaze new trails for progressive jazz, 4:30 p.m. Sunday at Berkeley's Jazzschool. $12-$15
- Hotshot guitarist Oz Noy offers his own incendiary take on fusion, aided by drummer Dave Weckl, 6 and 8 p.m. Sunday at Yoshi's San Francisco. $16-$22
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