Stories » Double B.C. jazz festivals happily include; The Comet Is Coming and Loueke-Midon duo / KNKX: Seattle

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Double B.C. jazz festivals happily include; The Comet Is Coming and Loueke-Midon duo / KNKX: Seattle

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The double jazz festivals in Vancouver and Victoria, British Columbia later this month (June 21 through July 1) feature many wonderful modern jazz groups. Happily, a few of them will make the border crossing to entertain Seattle audiences. Others will require a passport. Tune in Saturday afternoon to hear a few of them on The New Cool.

Guitarist Lionel Loueke is sharing a bill with Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter and guitarist Raul Midón at the Victoria Jazz Festival June 21. You can catch them both at the Triple Door in Seattle Sunday night. Benin native Loueke is a member of Herbie Hancock's current band, and his trio brought down the house at the Royal Room last spring. A versitile player blending his expertise in African folk music with harmonic complexity and amazing technical prowess, you'll hear Loueke covering the Bee Gees on The New Cool Saturday afternoon. A little bird tells me both groups will play separately at the Triple Door, then team up for a collaboration encore.

The Comet Is Coming is coming to Seattle - take your time if you need to read that again - playing at Barboza June 20 and at the Vancouver festival the following night. By now, you know my admiration for the work of London-based saxophonist and composer Shabaka Hutchings in bands like Sons of Kemet, Melt Yourself Down, and his own Shabaka and the Ancestors. His rhythmic, restless, relentless playing is born in jazz but pointing to a nameless future genre sounding both ancient and futuristic.

Shabaka says, "I'm not trying to have the energy of someone in a suit standing stationary in front of a microphone giving a nice round sound, I'm trying to just spit out fire." The Comet Is Coming celebrates their new psychedelic-pop-rock-jazz release, Trust in the Lifeforce of the Deep Mystery, with "King Shabaka" joined by Danalogue the Conqueror (Dan Leavers) on keys and Betamax Killer (Max Hallett) behind the drums. Listen for the punchy, 80s vibe of "Summon the Fire" on the show this weekend, and catch these Brits while they're here next week!

Until then, stay tuned for the best in modern jazz with The New Cool every Saturday afternoon at 3 p.m. on 88.5 KNKX: Seattle, and streaming our two hours of fun world wide at