Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds
Nine-piece powerhouse band Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds will headline the first in the two-concert series Heartland Summit Jazz 2012, a collaboration between The Performing Arts Studio and Jazz In June, Inc. The concert is scheduled for 7:30 – 10:30 p.m. Thursday, March 15 at Meacham Auditorium in the Oklahoma Memorial Union on the University of Oklahoma campus, 900 Asp Ave., Norman. Tickets are $10 or $5 for students and are available online from TicketStorm.com, at the Norman Depot, 200 S. Jones, or at the door.
Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds puts a modern spin on classic soul. The band is led by Arleigh Kincheloe (Sister Sparrow), whose powerful voice and sly demeanor make for a spellbinding onstage presence. She is backed by the mighty force of The Dirty Birds, eight men – including Oklahoma bass-master Aidan Carroll – who masterfully lay down thundering grooves and soaring melodies. The band’s high energy and horn-fueled live performances have drawn comparisons to Amy Winehouse and Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings.
On Feb. 28, Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds released its newest album, Pound of Dirt. The album’s foundation is laid on “Make It Rain,” led by Kincheloe’s fast-paced crooning, heavyweight horns, and fiery harmonica breaks courtesy of Jackson Kincheloe, Arleigh’s brother and the leader of The Dirty Birds. The group subtly dips into an expansive array of styles on Pound of Dirt, channeling Winehouse’s gritty vocals on “Hollow Bones,” Jones’ meticulously tight grooves on “Too Much,” and studio experimentation akin to My Morning Jacket and Broken Social Scene on “Horse To Water.”
The band currently is on a 29-city tour that in addition to Norman’s Meacham Auditorium includes New York’s Bowery Ballroom, Levon Helm’s Midnight Ramble in Woodstock, N.Y., and SXSW
in Austin, Texas.
Cooking With John & Dave
Opening the March 15 show will be the unique sounds of local legends John Calvin and David Leach a.k.a. Cooking with John and Dave. The instrumental jazz duo, with a sound it calls Latin jazz hip-hop, takes influence from Ray Brown, John Coltrane, The Weather Report, The Bad Plus and old school hip-hop sensibilities.
The Performing Arts Studio, located in the historic Norman Santa Fe Depot, produces a variety of programs, including the Summer Breeze, Winter Wind and Sunday Jazz at the Depot concert series. Jazz in June’s annual three-day summer blues and jazz festival draws some 50,000 attendees. Jazz in June will announce its 2012 lineup in April.
The Heartland Summit Jazz series is made possible by support from the Norman Arts Council, Norman Chamber of Commerce, the Oklahoma Arts Council and Northeast Blanco Development Corp.