Many of the musicians from this year’s Blues Jazz Scenes 2024 festival will be performing at the New York club: who are they – Photos


Entering its second quarter century as committed as ever to pure jazz (All About Jazz),” SMOKE Jazz Club continues its 25th anniversary season with another month of today’s leading artists in jazz. June begins with a fan favorite and longtime friend of the club’s: trumpeter Nicholas Payton (May 29-June 2).

Returning to SMOKE is MacArthur Genius Vijay Iyer leading his Trio for five nights (June 5-9). Master trombonist Steve Turre celebrates the SMOKE Sessions release of his exciting new album, Saynas, which is surprisingly his first live recording in 50 years as a leader. For the complete June schedule and most updated calendar, please visit

Wed-Sun May 29-June 2 Nicholas Payton Trio
Nicholas Payton – trumpet, piano & keyboards
Peter Washington – bass
Kenny Washington – drums

Multi-instrumentalist Nicholas Payton reunites the trio—with bassist Peter Washington and drummer Kenny Washington—that recorded his acclaimed SMOKE Sessions live album Relaxin’ with Nick.
A multi-instrumental virtuoso from New Orleans, Payton is a master trumpeter (and pianist) who brings insight, inspiration, and passion to a wide spectrum of Black American Music. Over the years, he has recorded and performed with Wynton Marsalis, Dr. Michael White, Christian McBride, Joshua Redman, Roy Hargrove, Doc Cheatham, and Joe Henderson, among many others, and is widely considered one of the most important artists of our time. In a review, the Chicago Tribune states, “No descriptive label or category could be affixed to Payton’s solos, which were as brashly original as they were technically imposing.”

Nicholas Payton Trio Features Payton Mostly on Piano - The New York Times

Wed-Sun June 5-9 Vijay Iyer Trio
Vijay Iyer – piano
Harish Raghavan – bass
Jeremy Dutton – drums

Vijay Iyer was described as a “social conscience, multimedia collaborator, system builder, rhapsodist, historical thinker, and multicultural gateway” by The New York Times. He is also one of the most celebrated and renowned pianists and composers of the 21st century. He is the recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship, among many accolades, and was named Downbeat’s Jazz Artist of the Year four times in the last decade. He was called “an American treasure” by Minnesota Public Radio and has been praised by Pitchfork as “one of the best in the world at what he does.” His trio features bassist Harish Raghavan and drummer Jeremy Dutton.

Wed-Sun June 12-16 Eric Reed Quintet
Giveton Gellin – trumpet
John Beshay – tenor saxophone
Eric Reed – piano
Nick Jozwiak – bass
Ethan Kogan – drums

Pianist Eric Reed leads an exciting young quintet featuring trumpeter Giveton Gellin, saxophonist John Beshay, bassist Nick Jozwiak, and drummer Ethan Kogan. His latest album, Black, Brown, and Blue (SMOKE Sessions), celebrates the rich and diverse music of composers of color. Reed calls the work a personal milestone and “the culmination of my life thus far. I’m freer than I’ve ever been in my personal life, and I’m freer than I’ve ever been in my music. I’m accepting who I am. I love who I am. And as I continue to evolve – my artistry, my sexuality, and my overall humanity – my music will continue to become more and more personal.” A widely respected and popular musician and mentor, Reed first rose to fame with Wynton Marsalis and has performed with artists as varied as Jessye Norman, Quincy Jones, and Patti Labelle. His perpetually swinging and sophisticated style has made him one of the important ambassadors of the music.

Vijay Iyer

Wed-Sun June 19-23 Louis Hayes & The Cannonball Legacy Band
Jeremy Pelt – trumpet
Vincent Herring – alto saxophone
Rick Germanson – piano
Dezron Douglas – bass
Louis Hayes – drums

Living legend Louis Hayes returns with the incredible Cannonball Legacy Band with trumpeter Jeremy Pelt, also saxophonist Vincent Herring, pianist Rick Germanson, and bassist Dezron Douglas. “Hayes’ drumming is as superb and as youthful as ever.” writes All About Jazz. Born and raised in Detroit, Hayes moved to New York in 1956 to replace Arthur Taylor in the Horace Silver Quintet; he recorded five classic Blue Note albums with Silver before joining Cannonball Adderley in 1959 for an equally momentous six-year stint. The drummer’s remarkable career also includes extended stays with the legendary trios of Oscar Peterson and McCoy Tyner and, more recently, with this esteemed group, the Cannonball Legacy Band, which he co-founded.’

Drummer Louis Hayes pays tribute to hard-bop pioneer Horace Silver

Thu-Sun June 27-30 Steve Turre Sextet Sanyas Album Release
Steve Turre – trombone & shells
Nicholas Payton – trumpet
Ron Blake – saxophones
Christian Sands – piano
Buster Williams – bass
Lenny White – drums

Steve Turre, trombone master and innovating performer on seashells, celebrates the release of his exciting new album, Saynas (SMOKE Sessions, TBR 06.28.24) which is surprisingly his first live recording in 50 years as a leader. Its title was inspired by the brightly colored robes of the Sanyasi, Hindu monks who have renounced worldly goods and pursuits. It also happens to be Turre’s first recorded composition and first solo on Woody Shaw’s 1975 release The Moontrane. Downbeat says, “Few artists ‘own’ their instrument to the degree that trombonist Steve Turre does. Whether playing the music of Rahsaan Roland Kirk, performing as a member of the Saturday Night Live house band, or with one of his own units, his voice is distinctive and memorable.” He convenes an impressive and historic sextet for the occasion with music legends bassist Buster Williams and drummer Lenny White, joined by trumpeter Nicholas Payton, saxophonist and SNL band colleague Ron Blake, and pianist Christian Sands.

Steve Turre – Trombone and Shells

Related Post