The Uptown Swing Band has a new monthly gig, but unfortunately it’s not in the Beach. You’ll have to travel out to The Gallery Studio Café, 2877 Lakeshore Blvd. W. at Islington, to hear them.
The Gallery Studio Café is a small venue, so the Uptown Swing Band will be mixing things up a little. Rather than the usual big band format, the guys will be presenting a less formal show. The Gallery Studio Café has a beautiful grand piano in the room, so pianist Neil Gardiner will be the centre of smaller instrumental combos, featuring different soloists from the band each week. Over the coming months there will be guest vocalists featured as well.
The Uptown Swing Band begins its monthly gig at The Gallery Studio Café on January 11, and will be the featured artists on the second Wednesday of each month thereafter. They perform from 7:30 to 10:30 p.m. each night, and the cover is only $8. For more information call The Gallery Studio Café at 416-253-0285, or visit www.thegallerystudiocafe.ca.
For more information on the Uptown Swing Band, visit uptownswingband.com, and pick up the band’s latest CD Swing-O-Phonic while you’re at it. It contains some great selections from the band’s repertoire.

Beach entertainer Frank Wilks is having a special double CD release party for his latest recording, Frank Wilks Folk Unplugged II, at the Black Swan, 154 Danforth Ave. at Broadview, Jan. 13, beginning at 9:30 p.m. This is a great opportunity to hear Wilks  – who is also known for his White Buffalo Band, and Buffalo Springfield Revisited bands – in concert, and get a CD included, all for a cover price of $10.
For more information on Wilks visit his website at frankwilks.com.

Acoustic Harvest presents as its first concert of 2012 the intercultural group Jaffa Road, Jan. 21 at 8 p.m. Nominated for a 2010 Juno Award, Jaffa Road’s organic blend of Jewish music, Classical Arabic and Indian music, modern jazz, electronica, rock and pop makes them one of the most exciting and innovative groups in the growing world music genre. The band’s debut CD Sunplace was released in 2009, and has received critical praise and tons of airplay.
Jaffa Road consists of multilingual lead singer Aviva Chernick, Aaron Lightstone, who plays the oud, bassist Chris Gartner, woodwind player Sundar Viswanathan and percussionist Jeff Wilson. Together they create “a unique sonic landscape that takes listeners on a journey that is at once ancient and modern, acoustic and eletronic, sacred and secular.” For more information visit jaffaroad.com.
Tickets for Jaffa road are $20 for adults and $18 for seniors and students, and are available at the door. Acoustic Harvest is located in St. Nicholas Church, 1512 Kingston Rd., one block east of Warden. For more information call 416-264-2235, or visit www.acousticharvest.ca.

The Scarborough Philharmonic Orchestra presents a special concert by the Red Brass at Kingston Road United Church, Jan. 21 at 8 p.m.
The Red Brass is a dynamic brass quintet from the Toronto area founded in 2008 to explore musical styles from Classical to Fusion. Members are Andre Dublesten and Jonas Feldman, trumpets, Iris Krizmanic, French horn, Brad Dickson, trombone, and Wilfred Lee, bass trombone. The Red Brass has performed with the Scarborough Philharmonic Orchestra, the Niagara Symphony and the Canadian Opera Company. All but Lee are members of the Scarborough Philharmonic.
The evening’s program will include dances by Baroque composer Tielman Susato, Kerry Turner’s Casbah of Tetouan, dance by Wilke Renwick, Suite Americana by Enrique Crespo, and the world premiere of Toronto composer Bruno Degazio’s Indica, commissioned by The SPO Music Director Ron Royer especially for the Red Brass. The piece is “based on the complex rhythmic and melodic structures of North indian Classical music, combined with typically dramatic Western musical development,” explains Degazio.
Tickets for Red Brass are $20 for adults, $15 for seniors and $10 for students with ID. Children under 10 are free. Tickets are available at the door, or by calling 416-429-0007. Because there is not much parking around Kingston Road United Church free parking for this concert has been arranged at Adam Beck P.S. and Neil McNeil H.S. For more information visit spo.ca.

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