New York's soulfully improvising fusion trio Harriet Tubman have a turbulent vibe that recalls both Jimi Hendrix and '70s-era Miles Davis at their peaks. See them at Jazz Alley in January. Courtesy of MM Music Agency
Below, we've rounded up the biggest and best music events you need to know about this season, from Rick Steves' Europe: A Symphonic Journey to Mavis Staples to Death Cab for Cutie. You can also find a complete list of music shows in Seattle this winter on our EverOut Things To Do calendar, or check out the rest of our critics' picks from Seattle Art and Performance.


Classical



Sun Dec 8, Tues Dec 17 & Sun Dec 22

Seattle Men's Chorus: 'Tis The Season In a landmark holiday event, the Seattle Men's Chorus will perform dazzling tracks of the season, like their own revamped takes on "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree," "Festival Gloria," "Here We Come A-Caroling," and many more. (Benaroya Hall, $25—$81)


Tues Dec 10

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Beethoven's Piano Sonatas: Conjuring the Infinite The "unerringly sophisticated" pianist Jonathan Biss will perform his own exploratory program of Beethoven's piano sonatas. (UW Meany Studio Theater, 6 pm, free)

Pacific MusicWorks Underground: Glad (Baroque) Tidings Ring in the holiday season from multiple continents with the Pacific MusicWorks Underground House Band and acclaimed soprano Danielle Sampson as they perform Renaissance and Baroque Christmas carols from France, England, the Celtic countries, and colonial-era America. They will also have audience sing-alongs, their annual "Ugly Baby Jesus art extravaganza," and a wine tasting with local vineyards included in the ticket price. (Capitol Cider, 7 pm, $15/$25)


Wed Dec 11

Jonathan Biss: Celebrating Beethoven Part 2 The "unerringly sophisticated" pianist Jonathan Biss also happens to be a Beethoven expert, so he'll show off his expertise as he leads the audience through an exploration of Beethoven's piano sonatas in this two-night 250th birthday celebration for the composer. (Meany Center for the Performing Arts, 7:30 pm, $49)

That Which is Fundamental: Seth Parker Woods in Recital Critically acclaimed cellist Seth Parker Woods will perform a program that deeply explores the human condition, with compositions by Anton Lukoszevieze, Pelle Gudmundsen-Holmgreen, Vinko Globokar, Tonia Ko, Gustavo Tavares, and Julius Eastman, and featuring percussionist Bonnie Whiting. (Benaroya Hall, 7:30 pm, $35)


Thurs Dec 12

Fabio Frizzi: Frizzi 2 Fulci Among the horror-soundtrack and library-music cognoscenti, Italy's Fabio Frizzi stands among the greatest composers of these genres, which have experienced rejuvenated popularity in the last decade. From the '70s through the '90s, he collaborated often with horror-film director Lucio Fulci, who's regarded as one of the geniuses of cinematic gore. For this performance, Frizzi and his band will re-create the wide-ranging music he composed for Fulci's harrowing movies (e.g., Zombi 2, The Beyond, and Manhattan Baby) while images from them flash behind the players. Expect florid melodic flourishes, intensely suspenseful and chthonic passages, and pulse-pounding rhythms, as well as tales about Frizzi's experiences with the great filmmaker. DS (Fremont Abbey, 7:30 pm, $39/$40)


Dec 13–23

Northwest Boychoir's 41st Annual A Festival of Lessons & Carols For the 41st year, Northwest Boychoir will join with Vocalpoint! Seattle to present the story of the Nativity told through reading, choral arrangements, and audience-participation carols. (Various locations)


Sat Dec 14

Magical Strings: A Celtic Yuletide The Bouldings, a big, musical Northwest family, make up a Celtic string ensemble. This season, they will inspire some holiday craic with the help of the Tara Academy of Irish Dance, Dublin-born guitarist Colm MacCárthaigh, and other collaborators. (Town Hall, 7:30 pm, $12—$32)

Dec 20–22

Handel's Messiah Fun Fact: Even though people celebrate the virgin birth of Mr. Jesus with Handel's Messiah every Christmas, librettist Charles Jennens actually conceived of the piece as an Easter opera. That's because the last two-thirds of the composition cover the life, death, and resurrection of the Nazarene prophet. But traditions are hard to kick, and that "Hallelujah!" chorus still rules, as does the Seattle Symphony Chorale, who will surely be in rare form. RS (Benaroya Hall, $26—$90)


Thurs Dec 26

Yiruma: Nocturne Korean contemporary classical musician Yiruma will combine melodious Korean compositions with inspirational holiday pieces. (Benaroya Hall, 7:30 pm, $78—$138)


Dec 28–Jan 5

The Four Seasons An exploration of color and beauty, Vivaldi's masterwork The Four Seasons will be paired with the uptempo The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires by renowned Argentinian composer Astor Piazzolla. (Benaroya Hall, $26—$90)


Sun Dec 29

Corelli and the Splendor of the Baroque Considered to be the first celebrity violinist, 16th-century composer Arcangelo Corelli was revolutionary in his field. Some of his innovative pieces will be performed in a program alongside early Baroque treasures by Salamone Rossi, Isabelle Leonarda, and Heinrich Biber. (Benaroya Hall, 7—9 pm, $10—$48)


Tues Dec 31

New Year's Eve Gala: Charpentier If you don't want to spend New Year's Day puking into your own hands, consider spending the evening listening to the St. James Cathedral Cantorei and Chamber Orchestra bust out some heart-cracking Marc-Antoine Charpentier, including Te Deum and Messe de Minuit pour Noël. Dr. Paul Thornock will conduct the choir and Joseph Adam is on the pipes. RS (St. James Cathedral, 11 pm, $30)


Jan 9–11

Beethoven Emperor Concerto Beethoven's last and most audacious movement, his Fifth Piano Concerto—which is known as the Emperor and which was dedicated to his patron Archduke Rudolf—will be performed here following Mendelssohn's jubilant Italian Symphony. (Benaroya Hall, $24—$134)


Fri Jan 10

Beethoven & Franck This program will help you exercise all your midwinter feelings. Franck's Piano Quintet swings from high drama to spare, nostalgic meditations, the sonic equivalent of breaking up with someone in the depths of the monocloud season and feeling absolutely insane about that decision. Meanwhile, Beethoven's Quintet for Piano and Winds is the promise of spring on a suddenly bright day in late January, the crocus peeking out of the snow. And there's a dialogue between the clarinet and the bassoon at the end of the second movement that makes me swoon every time. RS (Benaroya Hall, 8 pm, $38)

Wed Jan 15

Itzhak Perlman Grammy- and Emmy-winning violin virtuoso Itzhak Perlman, who once played a concert at the White House to honor Queen Elizabeth II and who received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, will perform an evening set. (Benaroya Hall, 7:30 pm, $72—$142)


Jan 16–19

Thomas Zehetmair Beethoven Violin Concerto Soloist and conductor Thomas Zehetmair will team up with the Seattle Symphony to tackle Beethoven's immortal violin concerto. (Benaroya Hall, $24—$134)


Fri Jan 17 & Tues Jan 21

Rick Steves' Europe: A Symphonic Journey Rick Steves is my favorite travel writer/host. He's just so damn cheerful and enthusiastic in his public TV show, Rick Steves' Europe, without coming off as cheesy. Ok, maybe he does come off as cheesy, but in the most endearing way possible, as he encourages us to bypass tourist hotspots in favor of lesser-known gems, and to become immersed in local culture. He's kinda like a less crusty, less wry, less food-oriented Anthony Bourdain—and his show came first by more than a dozen years! In fact, he's been operating out of his Edmonds-based headquarters since 1976, where he also produces his guidebook series and a syndicated travel column, and opened a free travel info center and small-group tour program that takes 30,000 travelers to Europe annually. He even has an app: Rick Steves' Audio Europe. This collab with Seattle Symphony finds him playing musical tour guide, dipping into his far-reaching knowledge of European history and culture to set the context for selections in a program of 19th-century patriotic anthems by Romantic-era composers—Grieg, Smetana, Strauss, Elgar, Wagner and Verdi, with a Beethoven "Ode to Joy" finale. All of it is accompanied by a montage of video images from each country. LP (Benaroya Hall, $38—$103)


Jan 17–26

Seattle Chamber Music Society Winter Festival Hear pieces from a variety of composers at the Seattle Chamber Music Society's annual six-day winter program. This year's theme is centered on a celebration of Beethoven's 250th birthday. The first weekend of the festival will feature half of Beethoven's string quartets, performed by the Ehnes Quartet, with each of the first three concerts featuring one work from the three eras of his life and career as a composer. The second weekend will feature violin sonatas by Grieg and Mozart, piano trios by Schubert and Ravel, and both of Brahms' string quintets, along with concluding concerti by Johann Sebastian Bach. (Benaroya Hall)


Mon Jan 13 & Mon Jan 20

Indigo Mist Indigo Mist—featuring trumpeter Cuong Vu, pianist Richard Karpen, drummer Ted Poor, and electronics manipulator Juan Pampin, all UW faculty members—released a fascinating album in 2014, That the Days Go by and Never Come Again, that revels in bold improvisations and inventive covers of standards. On this night, they'll bust out a program of all-new, original music. DS (The Royal Room, $15)


Thurs Jan 23

Midori with Jean-Yves Thibaudet Classical pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet, whose music can be heard on soundtracks for films including Pride & Prejudice and Atonement, joins Grammy-winning violinist Midori for an all-Beethoven program in honor of the composer's 250th anniversary. (Meany Center for the Performing Arts, 7:30 pm, $75)

Jan 24–25

Italian Baroque The Seattle Symphony will take on the luxurious romance of the artists of the Italian Baroque, with music by Vivaldi and Locatelli. (Benaroya Hall, 8 pm, $25—$82)


Mon Jan 27

Art From Ashes Music of Remembrance will present a free community concert in honor of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, with a historical emphasis on the upcoming 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau. The program will feature music from the Terezín and Vilna ghettos, and selections by composers whose lives were impacted by Nazi persecution. (Benaroya Hall, 5:30 pm, free)


Wed Jan 29

Patricia Kopatchinskaja in Recital Violinist Patricia Kopatchinskaja will join with soprano Ah Young Hong to perform Gÿorgy Kurtág's lively Kafka Fragments, a collection of excerpts from Kafka's letters and diaries set to music. (Benaroya Hall, 7:30 pm, $75)


Thurs Jan 30 & Sat Feb 1

Shostakovich Violin Concerto No. 1 One of the best things about having Thomas Dausgaard as Seattle Symphony's music director is that we now get to watch him conduct the music of his Danish compatriot, Erik Nielsen, all the time. His Symphony No. 1 is a thrilling epic, full of intense moments that could score a viking raid. With Shostakovich's First Violin Concerto also on the menu, the Nielsen work will add some much needed excitement. The program also features Edvard Grieg's Peer Gynt Suite No. 1, Op. 46, which is one of those pieces of classical music you've heard a million times without knowing the name of it. Looney Tunes used the first movement, Morning Mood, extensively, so it's buried deep in your childhood brain. RS (Benaroya Hall, $24—$134)


Fri Jan 31

Thomas Hampson Song of America: Beyond Liberty Baritone Thomas Hampson will present "Song of America: Beyond Liberty," a pairing of music, poetry, rhetoric, and history that focuses on determining the role of core American values such as freedom and brotherhood and how they shape our culture. (Benaroya Hall, 8 pm, $27—$125)


Tues Feb 4

Orlando Consort: The Passion of Joan of Arc Carl Theodor Dreyer's silent film, La Passion de Jeanne d'Arc (1928), will be screened with a thematically accompanying performance by British early music vocal ensemble the Orlando Consort. (Meany Center for the Performing Arts, 7:30 pm, $55)


Wed Feb 5

Gidon Kremer in Recital World-renowned violinist Gidon Kremer will perform Mieczyslaw Weinberg's 24 Preludes for cello while the art of Lithuanian photographer Antanas Sutkus is projected on screen. (Benaroya Hall, 7:30 pm, $75)


Thurs Feb 6 & Sat Feb 8

Dvorák Symphony No. 8 Antonín Dvorák's Eighth Symphony, which plays with Czech pastoral themes, will be brought to life by world-renowned violinist Gidon Kremer, alongside pieces by Mieczysaw Weinberg and Dmitri Shostakovich. (Benaroya Hall, $24—$134)


Fri Feb 7

Dvorák Untuxed The Symphony's Untuxed series is great. They only play one piece, and the expectation is you just show up in jeans, or whatever you wear when you're just walking around picking up stuff at the grocery store. The iconic grandeur of Antonín Dvorák's New World Symphony—a piece you'll recognize from any number of movies and TV shows (from The Joy Luck Club to Ren & Stimpy)—is a perfect fit for this casual concert. RS (Benaroya Hall, 7 pm, $18—$60)

Sun Feb 9

Difficult Grace: Seth Parker Woods in Recital Critically acclaimed cellist Seth Parker Woods will perform a program inspired by Dudley Randall's poem "Primitives," with five world premieres of pieces by Nathalie Joachim, Pierre Alexandre Tremblay, Fredrick Gifford, Ryan Carter, and Freida Abtan, and one Seattle premiere by Monty Adkins. (Benaroya Hall, 6 pm, $35)

Fri Feb 14

Aizuri Quartet The award-winning Aizuri Quartet will make their Emerald City Music debut with a program for strings called "Songs and Echoes of Home." (415 Westlake, 8 pm, $10—$45)

Mon Feb 17

YUNDI·SONATA 2020 Piano Recital World Tour in Seattle Yundi, the youngest pianist to win the International Frédéric Chopin Piano Competition at the age of 18, is on tour across North America with a new set of recital performances. (Benaroya Hall, 8 pm, $79—$249)


Wed Feb 19

Terry Riley Minimalist composer Terry Riley will bring his unique compositions inspired by jazz and Indian classical music back to Seattle. (Benaroya Hall, 7:30 pm, $30—$45)


Fri Feb 21

Cathedral Organist Joseph Adam — 2020 Vierne Complete Organ Works Seattle Symphony's own Joseph Adams is a highly lauded organist, and will perform a recital here that will showcase his virtuosity and sterling technique, including Louis Vierne's Symphony No. 2 and the fourth book of Pièces de Fantaisie. (St. James Cathedral, 7:30—8:45 pm, $18)

Feb 21–22

DreamWorks Animation in Concert Relive all your favorite moments from Dreamworks animated films like Shrek, Madagascar, Kung Fu Panda, How to Train Your Dragon, and more as they are projected on the big screen, accompanied by live scores from the Seattle Symphony. (Benaroya Hall, $38—$103)


Feb 21–23

Brandi Carlile with the Seattle Symphony, The Secret Sisters The experience of listening to Brandi Carlile's 2018 album, By The Way, I Forgive You, is similar to that of listening to Carole King's Tapestry or Bob Dylan's Blood on the Tracks; it's a little bit country, a little bit rock and roll, and a lot of hard truths about the human race. Carlile's talents lie in her tone, a dusky alto that swims around confessions of heartbreak and lifelong efforts to love and be loved, with the deftness of a much more senior troubadour. She'll be joined in this performance of her recent works by the Seattle Symphony, with an opening set by Americana singer-songwriter duo the Secret Sisters. KS (Benaroya Hall)


Sat Feb 22

Wonder Women Celebrate the works of women composers like Boulanger, Beach, and Price in this performance of songs and stories of strong women throughout history. (Benaroya Hall, 11 am, $15—$25)


Tues Feb 25

Music of Today: DXARTS The University of Washington School of Music and DXARTS—Center for Digital Art and Experimental Media have partnered once again to co-sponsor Music of Today, a series that showcases the innovative new works and contemporary classics composed and initiated by faculty members and guest composers. (Katharyn Alvord Gerlich Theater, 7:30 pm, free)

Feb 27–29

Mozart Concerto for Two Pianos Mozart's Concerto for Two Pianos was originally played alongside his equally talented sister. This playful duet will be rekindled by composer, conductor, and pianist Ryan Wigglesworth with fellow pianist Marc-André Hamelin. (Benaroya Hall, $24—$134)


Fri Feb 28

[untitled] 2 I love the [untitled] series. The concert happens later in the evening (10 pm) in the lobby of Benaroya Hall. Some dress more casually for the event, others dress to the nines because they're the kind of people who do that. The people-watching is excellent, and the music is always cutting-edge and daring. At this iteration, the Seattle Symphony Orchestra and pianist Cristina Valdés will present the work of four contemporary Latin American composers, including world premieres from Carlos Sanchez-Gutierrez and Juan David Osorio. RS (Benaroya Hall, 10 pm, $18)


Sun March 1

Violins of Hope Music of Remembrance will present a concert featuring the Violins of Hope, a private collection of string instruments that belonged to Jews who played them before and during the Holocaust that have since been restored. This program will showcase music by composers lost to the Holocaust, with violinists Mikhail Shmidt, Natasha Bazhanov, Artur Girsky; violist Susan Gulkis Assadi, cellist Walter Gray, and clarinetist Laura DeLuca. (Benaroya Hall, 5:30 pm, $30—$55)


Thurs March 5

Chamber Singers & University Chorale The University of Washington Chamber Singers and University Chorale will present their spring quarter concert with popular music and classical selections. (Katharyn Alvord Gerlich Theater, 7:30 pm, $10)


March 6–7

Bach & Telemann Dmitry Sinkovsky, a conductor, countertenor, and violinist of the baroque variety, will perform notable works by Telemann and the Bach family. (Benaroya Hall, 8 pm, $25—$82)


March 7–8

Pacific MusicWorks: Genius Unbound Pacific MusicWorks will focus on the passionate body of violin work known as Stylus Fantasticus that originated in early 17th-century Italy with pieces by Austrian composers Biber and Schmelzer. (March 7: Benaroya Hall; March 8: Epiphany Parish, 2 pm, $35/$45)

Sun March 8

Celebrate Asia Seattle Symphony will perform its annual Celebrate Asia concert, which has celebrated the traditions of Seattle's Asian communities for 12 years now. This year's concert will feature the Asian American composer and pianist Conrad Tao. (Benaroya Hall, 4 pm, $33—$100)

Thurs March 12 & Sat March 14

Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 5 Tchaikovsky's intense Symphony No. 5 will be performed by the Symphony alongside Florence Price's fusion-heavy Second Violin Concerto and Prokofiev's whimsical First Symphony. (Benaroya Hall, $24—$134)


Fri March 13

Tchaikovsky Untuxed Hold onto your seat during the Symphony's take on Tchaikovsky's intense Symphony No. 5 during a special edition of "Untuxed," a low-key, no-intermission way to enjoy the Seattle Symphony without worrying about what the bourgeoisie will think of your hat and tails. (Benaroya Hall, 7 pm, $18—$60)

Sat March 14

Ars Longa de la Habana Cuban early music ensemble Ars Longa de la Habana plays pieces from Cuba's rich tradition of Renaissance and Baroque music. This concert will highlight works by Esteban Salas, who was the Music Director of the Cathedral of Santiago de Cuba from 1764 until his death in 1803. (Town Hall, 7:30—9:30 pm, $20—$45)

Choral Arts NW: Fauré Requiem Fauré, a French organist and composer who achieved fame at the end of the 19th century, first composed the Requiem in 1887. It is one of his few long works, and also one of his few religious works. The religious status of the Requiem is made strange by the fact that Fauré did not believe in God, despite being trained as a church organist and working as one for the L'église de la Madeleine (the Church of Madeleine). But from this godless man came the most God-filled music imaginable. I'm an atheist, but I do believe in the God in Fauré's Requiem. I have never felt Him present in a megachurch, but I have felt Him at home in each of this work's seven, utterly beautiful movements. CM (Plymouth Congregational Church, 8 pm, $24—$32)

Opera



Jan 11–25

Eugene Onegin This Seattle Opera production brings together the genius of two great Russians: Alexander Pushkin, who wrote the novel in verse, and Pyotr Tchaikovsky (The Nutcracker), who penned the score. It's a simple but moving and melancholy story of a young woman who falls in love with a cold-hearted nobleman, an encounter that tragically changes the course of their lives. (McCaw Hall, $35+)


Jan 30–Feb 9

Lowbrow Opera Collective presents: #adulting, the revival! Lowbrow Opera Collective will continue its mission of making opera accessible and fun to the laypeople of Seattle by reviving their original work, #adulting. The story follows four Craigslist-united roommates who share their first forays into the world of bills and affordable couches. (18th & Union, 7:30 pm, $15—$25)


Feb 22–March 7

Charlie Parker's 'Yardbird' Jazz icon Charlie Parker gets the operatic treatment in this Seattle Opera production of Yardbird, a journey through limbo by Parker, who struggles to complete his last masterpiece amidst a series of flashbacks that showcase the glorious heyday of iconic NYC jazz club Birdland, as well as the failures and victories of Parker's dynamic life. (McCaw Hall)


Jazz



Tues Dec 10

Charlie Hunter and Lucy Woodward Innovative writer and bandleader Charlie Hunter is widely considered an authority on (custom-made) seven- and eight-string guitar, and will showcase his practiced abilities in a live set with his frequent collaborator Lucy Woodward. (Jazz Alley, 7:30 pm, $31)

Kenny G with the Seattle Symphony Seattle son (and Franklin High graduate) Kenny G will return for a performance showcasing his smooth saxy jazz, which has managed to stay consistently popular since 1986. (Benaroya Hall, 7:30 pm, $42—$107)

Wed Dec 11

CeCe Winans CeCe Winans is the award-winning, best-selling, be-all, end-all of gospel music. Witness her wealth of knowledge and talent at this performance that will feature both her solo work and her duet pieces with her brother BeBe. (Edmonds Center for the Arts, 7:30 pm, $39—$74)

Fri Dec 13

Ezra Collective London jazz crew Ezra Collective has recently been credited by media sources as pioneering the new wave of UK-based jazz music by bringing in unique hip-hop and Afrobeat touches. (Barboza, 7 pm, $18/$20)

Kiki Valera & Cubaché Charles Mudede has said: "You can never go wrong with Kiki Valera, who performs one of the most vibrant, soulful, and infectious forms of music in the world, Cuban jazz." Valera will play along with other great musicians from Cubaché, including Pedro Vargas, Joe de Jesus, Steve Mostovo, Alfredo Polier, Javier Marú, and Dean Schmidt. (The Royal Room, 8—11:45 pm, $15/$18)

Mon Dec 16 & Sat Dec 21

The Music of A Charlie Brown Christmas Because the Royal Room does the music of Charlie Brown every year, every year I have to write this love poem to the core tune, "Christmastime Is Here (Instrumental)," of this masterpiece of American culture. It is, I think, one of the most beautiful pieces of jazz ever composed. Listening to it is like watching falling snow through a window. The room is warm, something is roasting in the oven, and outside, the flakes are falling faintly through the universe and upon the trees, the hedges, the water gutters, the telephone poles, and the rooftops of a thousand apartment buildings. This is where you want to be forever. This is Vince Guaraldi's "Christmastime Is Here (Instrumental)." It opens with a trembling bass, like someone coming out of the cold, stamping their feet, brushing the snow off their shoulders, hanging their winter coat, rubbing and blowing on numb fingers, and entering the living room where there is a window, watching the flakes falling faintly upon all the buildings and the living. CM (The Royal Room, $5/$10)


Dec 17–18

David Benoit Christmas Tribute to Charlie Brown with Sara Gazarek Explore the childlike spirit of Vince Guaraldi's score for A Charlie Brown Christmas with composer and jazz piano legend David Benoit and jazz vocalist Sara Gazarek. (Jazz Alley, 7:30 pm, $39)


Dec 19–22

Judy Collins Holidays & Hits Sublime folk icon Judy Collins will sing holiday favorites and share stories from her life at this seasonal show set. (Jazz Alley, 7:30 pm, $57)


Sat Dec 21

The Hot McGandhis Get down to "funky jazz and boogaloo tunes" from a quintet of seasoned Seattle musicians as they play standards from the 1960s to the present. (Triple Door MQ Stage, 8:30 pm, free)

Sat Dec 28

31st Anniversary Concert of Duke Ellington's Sacred Music This is the annual concert of Sacred Music by Duke Ellington. Ellington was, of course, the greatest and most creative figure of the big band era. He had, one could argue, three main musical projects: One was the production of dance-hall hits, two was the production of serious black music (music that would represent the 400-year history of African descendants in the world that was new to Europeans), and three was the production of pieces that expressed his religious/existential feelings. Tonight is devoted to the third, and in many ways the most profound of Ellington's projects. Anyone who has heard his composition "Come Sunday" instantly understands that Ellington felt God as something that's inside and not outside of (or remote from) the human experience. He was, in short, a Spinozist. And so was, for that matter, John Coltrane. The theology of Spinoza, a 17th century Dutch Jewish philosopher, has many features that agree with jazz spirituality. CM (Town Hall, 7:30 pm, $19—$48)

Dec 30–31

Poncho Sanchez Latin Jazz Band Playing two nights at Jazz Alley, the Poncho Sanchez Latin Jazz Band offer plenty of chances for you to shimmy and shake to their warm, slinky, percussive-fueled rhythms. Mexican American namesake Sanchez has been rapping, tapping, and slapping congas for crowds since he played his first ever set in the mid-1970s with renowned vibraphonist Cal Tjader, with whom he played until Tjader's death in 1982. Sanchez went on to release more than 30 albums as a solo conguero (backed by a full band that currently includes players on timbales, bass, trumpet, sax, trombone, bongos, and piano), and has built on his Latin-jazzy sound with elements of R&B, soul, cha-cha, and salsa music. He and his band perform three shows total: one on December 30, and two on New Year's Eve—an early dinner show and a second later show that includes a NYE countdown and after party. LP (Jazz Alley, 7:30 pm Fri, 8:45 and 11 pm Sat, $37—$201)


Tues Dec 31

New Year's Eve with Curtis Salgado Original Blues Brother Curtis Salgado will break out a solo performance of his lifetime of blues curation in honor of New Year's Eve. (Triple Door, 7 pm, 10:30 pm, $90—$125)

New Year's Eve: Pandemonium Melissa Madden Gray is the NYC-by-way-of-Australia actress, singer, and kamikaze/alt cabaret artist otherwise known as Meow Meow. She's gained a bit of acclaim in the U.S. via her collabs with Thomas M Lauderdale (of Portland's little big band orchestra, Pink Martini), and is worthy of your NYE attention; she has a deep, rich, slightly husky vocal quality and an elegant vibrato that soars or slinks over lush cabaret numbers. The subversive diva joins Seattle Symphony for this very special, not at all traditional but entirely cheerful program of "perfectly constructed mayhem and madness." The post-concert party includes a glass of champagne, another live performance, and dancing to the midnight countdown and beyond. LP (Benaroya Hall, 9 pm, $58—$156)

New Year's Party with Lushy If you want to usher in 2020 with a swanky swagger and classy clinks of cocktail glasses, head to the Musicquarium, where Seattle mainstays Lushy will commandeer the stage with aplomb. Fronted by the delightfully versatile vocalist/percussionist Annabella Kirby, Lushy possess a chameleonic charm, bringing sophisticated grooviness to rock, pop, bossa nova, exotica, and new wave with an array of originals and covers that can fill a dance floor. I recently caught Lushy at Vito's and they inspired a gaggle of middle-aged folks to bust vigorous moves. It was cute—and kind of shocking. DS (Triple Door MQ Stage, 8:30 pm, free)


Jan 14–19

An Evening with Chris Botti Amidst career high points like playing alongside Sting and Paul Simon, Grammy Award winner and pop-jazz performer Chris Botti will head back to Seattle with his trumpet and backing band for ballads, jazz, and Americana songbook standards. (Jazz Alley, 7:30 pm, 9:30 pm, $107—$131)


Thurs Jan 16

Mavis Staples You know the Staple Singers from their R&B, soul, funk, and gospel-fused hits ("Respect Yourself," "I'll Take You There"), so you're already familiar with the youngest sibling of the family vocal group, Mavis Staples; she's got that warm, deep, enveloping vocal quality that feels like a hug. Her sound has gotten some modern polish over her last several solo albums, three with Wilco primary Jeff Tweedy at the helm, another tapping the talents of indie folk singer-songwriter M. Ward. Her 14th and latest soulful, R&B outing, We Get By, finds her hitting the studio with Ben Harper, who wrote and produced the 11-track LP, and lends his husky tenor to the title track. LP (Edmonds Center for the Arts, 7:30—9:30 pm, $39—$74)


Jan 21–22

Harriet Tubman Improvised fusion attains several peaks in the dexterous hands and feet of New York's Harriet Tubman. Brandon Ross (guitar/banjo/vocal), Melvin Gibbs (electric bass), and J.T. Lewis (drums) have been jamming complexly and powerfully for the last 21 years, imbuing their technically brilliant pieces with fiery soulfulness. The show at Langston Hughes Performing Center I caught by Harriet Tubman earlier this year bowled over the crowd with telepathic interplay, rhythmic sorcery, and a turbulent vibe that recalled Jimi Hendrix and '70s-era Miles Davis at their peaks. DS (Jazz Alley, 7:30 pm, $33)


Jan 23–26

Steve Gadd Band with Kevin Hays, Jimmy Johnson, Michael Landau, and Walt Fowler Judged by his peers as one of the greatest drummers ever, Steve Gadd has played on a multitude of important records made by legions of legends, including Paul McCartney, Kate Bush, Paul Simon, and Steely Dan. Virtuoso fusion keyboardist Chick Corea said, "[Gadd] has brought orchestral and compositional thinking to the drum kit while at the same time having a great imagination and a great ability to swing." Steve Gadd Band's self-titled 2018 album is a poised, polished slice of jazz-funk that shows the drummer's not lost his nimble sorcery, even in his 70s. For these shows, Gadd's band will include Kevin Hays (keyboards), Michael Landau (guitar), Jimmy Johnson (bass), and Walt Fowler (trumpet/flugelhorn). DS (Jazz Alley, $41)


Jan 28–29

Juan de Marcos and the Afro-Cuban All Stars The Afro-Cuban All-Stars will introduce Seattle to the world of Cuban son with tres master Juan de Marcos and a rotating, multi-generational cast. (Triple Door, 7:30 pm, $40—$50)

Peter Bernstein, Larry Goldings, and Bill Stewart Peter Bernstein, Larry Goldings, and Bill Stewart make up a jazzy organ trio that has pumped out 11 studio albums both under various members' names and as a unit. Their latest album on the Pirouet label, Ramshackle Serenade, is their first studio session in 13 years, and will be pulled from heavily in this show. (Jazz Alley, 7:30 pm, $31)


Jan 30–Feb 2

War LA funk/soul ensemble War have split into two camps: One goes by the name the Lowrider Band, while original lead singer and keyboardist Lonnie Jordan has retained the War moniker. It's not an optimal state of affairs, but War's hit-laden 1970s catalog is so potent and redolent of greasily groovy good times and carefree summers (except for the ominous "Four Cornered Room," which I consider one of War's peaks) that you can be assured no matter which unit is playing them, they're going to transport you to a better, warmer place. So, great timing for War to do a four-night run in late January. DS (Jazz Alley, $61)


Sat Feb 1

Seattle Repertory Jazz Orchestra: Tribute to Billie Holiday Eternal inspiration, muse, and icon Billie Holiday will be served up a fitting tribute by Seattle chanteuse Jacqueline Tabor, in concert with the Seattle Repertory Jazz Orchestra. (Benaroya Hall, 3 pm, 7:30 pm, $50)


Feb 6–9

Westerlies Fest 2020 A highbrow brass quartet from New York via Seattle, the Westerlies perform their own music and interpret the works of important composers like György Ligeti, Duke Ellington, Béla Bartók, and Stephen Foster, as well as covering myriad traditionals. They have taken it upon themselves to helm a four-day music festival this autumn with each day boasting evening performances, day-time in-school concerts, and a weekend-long creative music workshop. (Various locations, 6:30—10 pm, $15—$40)


Sat Feb 8

Gregory Porter Gregory Porter's voice is a baritone that makes you feel right at home; as for his style of phrasing, it feels very familiar (Lou Rawls, Johnny Hartman, Nat King Cole), but it is also like nothing you have heard before. And this is why the greatness of Porter is not easy to describe. If you listen to him one way, he seems to be rooted deeply in the tradition of jazz song, but if you listen to him another way, you hear a big, warm, blue voice that moves about the music like some liberated balloon rising and falling in the wind. Porter is not conventional, yet he is, and for some reason he easily manages to be both without settling on one or the other. CM (Moore Theatre, 8 pm, $42—$53)

Feb 14–15

The Best of Quincy Jones The catalog of Seattle's favorite musical icon—well, maybe after Jimi Hendrix—presents a vastly enjoyable smörgåsbord of music for a symphony to plunder. Hell, you could build a long, rewarding program strictly around Q's output for film (In Cold Blood, The Hot Rock, In the Heat of the Night, etc.) and TV ("Sanford & Son Theme [The Streetbeater]" is a zenith of the latter medium). The guy may have worked with Michael Jackson and Frank Sinatra, and produced/conducted the aesthetically egregious "We Are the World," but Jones is also responsible for loads of sublimely soulful and funky compositions that have gone under the radar, despite his global fame. Let's hope his lesser-known works get some love from the Seattle Symphony and guests over these three nights. DS (Benaroya Hall, 8 pm, $35—$101)


Sun Feb 16

SRJO: Count Basie Meets Duke Ellington Revisit the legendary collaborations of the genre as the Seattle Repertory Jazz Orchestra performs pieces from the first meeting of the two greatest big bands in jazz history—the Count Basie and Duke Ellington orchestras. (Edmonds Center for the Arts, 7 pm)


Tues Feb 18

Kandace Springs Smooth alto songstress Kandace Springs has garnered acclaim for her Blue Note Records debut, Soul Eyes, which demonstrated her masterful ability to blend jazz, soul, and pop into one gorgeous and seemingly effortless sound. (Jazz Alley, 7:30 pm, $29)


Feb 20–22

Branford Marsalis Quartet The great saxophonist Branford Marsalis, who is a member of jazz's royal family (the Marsalises—Ellis, Wynton, Delfeayo), is famous for participating in Sting's only decent solo album, The Dream of the Blue Turtles, leading the band on Jay Leno's show in the mid-'90s, and working with DJ Premier on jazz/hiphop collaboration Buckshot LeFonque. He is less well known for the ribbons upon ribbons of beauty extracted from Igor Stravinsky's "Pastorale"—a piece on the album Romance for Saxophone. Branford Marsalis is also known for upsetting his more famous brother Wynton. Branford loves popular culture; Wynton hates it. CM (Triple Door, $60—$80)


Feb 20–23

David Sanborn Jazz Quintet "Saxman supreme" and six-time Grammy-winning David Sanborn has played with Stevie Wonder, David Bowie, Paul Simon, James Brown, Bruce Springsteen, Eric Clapton, and the Rolling Stones. (Jazz Alley, $41)


Feb 25–26

Kat Edmonson American vocalist Kat Edmonson makes what she refers to as "vintage pop," a genre blend of jazz and swing with traditional pop, chamber pop, '50s rock, blues, bossa nova, country-inflected pop, and folk music. (Jazz Alley, 7:30 pm, $29)


Thurs Feb 27

An Evening with Stanton Moore Moore is a giant of modern drumming who's been working out of New Orleans since co-founding one of that city's more popular jazz-funk ensembles, Galactic, and is also one of the key OGs in post-jazz rock outfit Garage A Trois, among a wide range of other gigs (including keeping beats on Street Sweeper Social Club's eponymous debut) and solo endeavors. On this date, he'll be with his trio, which includes B3 and Rhodes biggie and frequent collaborator Robert Walter (Greyboy Allstars), and guitarist Will Bernard. LP (Triple Door, 7:30 pm, $32—$40)


March 3–4

Omar Sosa and Yilian Cañizares: Aguas Grammy-nominated, Cuban-born pianist Omar Sosa will perform with violinist-vocalist Yilian Cañizares at this live set of their new collective work, Aguas, an album that pulls from the perspectives of two generations of Cuban artists living outside their homeland. (Jazz Alley, 7:30 pm, $31)


Thurs March 5

Bill Frisell: HARMONY Renowned Seattle-area jazz guitarist Bill Frisell is one of the music world's most reliable providers of sublime virtuosity in an almost subliminal manner. While he's sporadically enjoyed bursts of noisy bombast in his career (think of his stint in John Zorn's Naked City), Frisell's most at home picking out contemplative streams of plangent notes and chords that exude tranquil, complex beauty while covering much stylistic ground. DS (Moore Theatre, 7:30 pm, $39—$61)


March 5–8

Arturo Sandoval Much-decorated Cuban trumpeter and classical musician Arturo Sandoval was a founding member of the Grammy Award-winning Cuban jazz fusion group Irakere, and has spent decades developing his own solo work, including a full album that interprets the romantic bolero of Armando Manzanero. (Jazz Alley, $37)


Pop, Rock & Hiphop



Deck the Hall Ball
WaMu Theater, Tues Dec 10

Angel Olsen, Vagabon
Moore Theatre, Wed Dec 11

Mary Chapin Carpenter & Shawn Colvin: Together on Stage
Benaroya Hall, Wed Dec 11

Ladytron
Neptune Theatre, Thurs Dec 12

Ganja White Night, Boogie T, Jantsen, SubDocta
Showbox Sodo, Dec 12–13

Ryan Caraveo
The Showbox, Fri Dec 13

The Pineapple Thief with Gavin Harrison
Neumos, Sat Dec 14

Granger Smith, Earl Dibbles Jr
Showbox Sodo, Sun Dec 15

How The Grouch Stole Christmas feat. The Grouch, Murs, Danyiel
Neumos, Sun Dec 15

Cattle Decapitation, Atheist, Primitive Man, Author & Punisher, Vitriol
The Showbox, Tues Dec 17

A.C.E
Neptune Theatre, Wed Dec 18

deadmau5
WaMu Theater, Thurs Dec 19

AJJ, Amigo The Devil, Days N Daze, The Bridge City Sinners
Neumos, Fri Dec 20

Benjamin Gibbard, Johnathan Rice
Washington Hall, Fri Dec 20

Strangelove, Nite Wave, Rusholme Ruffians
The Showbox, Fri Dec 20

Tower of Power
Emerald Queen Casino, Fri Dec 20

Lost Kings, Martin Jensen
The Showbox, Sat Dec 21

Rezz, Peekaboo, Black Gummy
WaMu Theater, Sat Dec 21

The Bell Ringer
Moore Theatre, Sun Dec 22

Blind Boys of Alabama Holiday Show
Jazz Alley, Dec 26–29

The Black Tones
Neumos, Fri Dec 27

MxPx, Amber Pacific
The Showbox, Sat Dec 28

Straight No Chaser
McCaw Hall, Mon Dec 30

Artist Home 8th Annual NYE Celebration
Tractor Tavern, Tues Dec 31

New Year's Eve with The Motet
Neptune Theatre, Tues Dec 31

Thunderpussy, Bear Axe, Constant Lovers, Trash Fire
The Showbox, Tues Dec 31

U.S.E., Aqueduct, 52Kings
Sunset Tavern, Tues Dec 31

Beartooth & Motionless in White
Showbox Sodo, Sat Jan 4

Cashmere Cat
The Showbox, Sat Jan 4

Nada Surf, Apex Manor
Neptune Theatre, Tues Jan 14

Earthgang, Mick Jenkins
The Showbox, Thurs Jan 16

Big Head Todd and the Monsters, JD Simo
The Showbox, Fri Jan 17

Cold War Kids
Neptune Theatre, Jan 17–18

The Infamous Stringdusters, Yonder Mountain String Band
The Showbox, Sat Jan 18

JAUZ
WaMu Theater, Sat Jan 18

King Princess
Showbox Sodo, Sat Jan 18

Cursive, Cloud Nothings, Criteria
Neumos, Mon Jan 20

Amber Liu, Meg & Dia, Justice Carradine
The Showbox, Tues Jan 21

Rex Orange County
Paramount Theatre, Tues Jan 21

Midge Ure: Songs, Questions, and Answers Tour
Benaroya Hall, Wed Jan 22

Trippie Redd
Showbox Sodo, Wed Jan 22

Seventeen
ShoWare Center, Thurs Jan 23

Poppy
Neptune Theatre, Sat Jan 25

Thrice, mewithoutYou, Drug Church, Holy Fawn
Showbox Sodo, Sat Jan 25

Xavier Omär, Parisalexa
The Showbox, Sat Jan 25

Dermot Kennedy
Paramount Theatre, Sun Jan 26

Motion City Soundtrack
Neptune Theatre, Tues Jan 28

Michael Kiwanuka
The Showbox, Wed Jan 29

Radical Face
Neptune Theatre, Wed Jan 29

The New Pornographers, Diane Coffee
Neptune Theatre, Thurs Jan 30

Sinead O'Connor
Paramount Theatre, Tues Feb 4

SuperM: We Are The Future Live
ShoWare Center, Tues Feb 4

Loudon Wainwright III
Benaroya Hall, Wed Feb 5

Queensryche
Neptune Theatre, Wed Feb 5

Young Dolph & Key Glock
The Showbox, Wed Feb 5

Dark Star Orchestra
The Showbox, Thurs Feb 6

Dweezil Zappa
Neptune Theatre, Thurs Feb 6

American Authors, Magic Giant, Public
The Showbox, Sat Feb 8

Violent Femmes
Moore Theatre, Sun Feb 9

Bat for Lashes
Neptune Theatre, Mon Feb 10

The Marcus King Band
Neptune Theatre, Tues Feb 11

Sango, Savon
Neumos, Tues Feb 11

Wolf Parade, Land of Talk
The Showbox, Tues Feb 11

Noah Reid
Columbia City Theater, Wed Feb 12

Blake Shelton
Tacoma Dome, Fri Feb 14

Dr. Dog, Michael Nau
Neptune Theatre, Fri Feb 14

Mark & Maggie O'Connor
Katharyn Alvord Gerlich Theater, Fri Feb 14

Michael Bolton
Tulalip Resort Casino, Sat Feb 15

Metronomy
The Showbox, Mon Feb 17

Dashboard Confessional, Piebald
The Showbox, Tues Feb 18

The Glorious Sons
The Showbox, Wed Feb 19

Bone Thugs-N-Harmony
The Showbox, Fri Feb 21

Lane 8
Showbox Sodo, Fri Feb 21

Murder By Death
Neptune Theatre, Fri Feb 21

Atmosphere, The Lioness, Nikki Jean, Blimes & Gab, DJ Keezy
Showbox Sodo, Sat Feb 22

Tove Lo, ALMA
Showbox Sodo, Mon Feb 24

Death Cab for Cutie, The Black Tones
The Showbox, Feb 24–26

Raphael Saadiq
Neptune Theatre, Tues Feb 25

Ladysmith Black Mambazo
Neptune Theatre, Wed Feb 26

moe.
Neptune Theatre, Thurs Feb 27

Joshua Radin & Friends with Ben Kweller and William Fitzsimmons
Neptune Theatre, Fri Feb 28

Niyaz: The Fourth Light Project
Meany Center for the Performing Arts, Fri Feb 28

Echosmith
Neptune Theatre, Sun March 1

Saint Motel
The Showbox, Tues March 3

Best Coast, Mannequin Pussy
The Showbox, Wed March 4

Refused, METZ, Youth Code
The Showbox, Thurs March 5

Ásgeir
Neptune Theatre, Fri March 6

Matoma & Two Friends
Showbox Sodo, Fri March 6

Keane
The Showbox, Sat March 7

Hayley Kiyoko
Showbox Sodo, Sun March 8

Pup, Screaming Females, The Drew Thomson Foundation
Neptune Theatre, Mon March 9

The Lone Bellow, Early James
Neptune Theatre, Tues March 10

Marc E. Bassy, Gianni & Kyle
The Showbox, Tues March 10

A Bowie Celebration: The David Bowie Alumni Tour
Neptune Theatre, Thurs March 12

19th Annual More Music at the Moore
Moore Theatre, Fri March 13

The Fab Four — The Ultimate Tribute
Moore Theatre, Sat March 14

Grace Potter
The Showbox, Sat March 14

Leslie Odom Jr.
Neptune Theatre, Sun March 15