Saturday, November 17th – 7:30–10:00 pm
Kai Lyons Quartet
jazz club! when lights are low… every Saturday night

The Jazz Philanthropists Union presents…
at Bird & Beckett’s Saturday night jazz club! when lights are low…
November 17, 2018 – 7:30-10pm

Three young cats and a grizzled jazz veteran: The Kai Lyons Quartet

Kai Lyons, guitar
Parker Grant, piano
Robb Fisher, bass
Brandon Etzler, drums

This quartet has been working together weekly for the past three years at the Mystic Room, formerly called the Burritt Room, in San Francisco’s Union Square district.

Kai Lyons is a 24-year old jazz guitarist with characteristics not heard since Bruce Forman made the scene, so they say… he swings, he’s bluesy in the extreme and he’s open to many genres of music — Afro Cuban, for sure.  Growing up in the Excelsior District to the soundtrack of his dad wailing on blues harp, he was surrounded by music and community from an early age. The first graduate of Scott Cmiel’s acclaimed classical guitar program at SOTA, up the hill from Glen Park, Kai went on to William Paterson University (20 miles outside of NYC in the suburban wilds of New Jersey), where he enrolled in one of the nation’s most prestigious jazz programs, directed by pianist Mulgrew Miller, studying with Vincent Herring, Harold Mabern, Hal Galper and other renowned jazz greats. Since returning to the Bay Area in 2015, he’s traveled frequently to New York City, New Orleans and the Caribbean, always seeking to foster a more profound relationship with music. Kai has performed in the band of saxophonist Donald Harrison and drummer Mike Clark (who rocketed to fame with Herbie Hancock’s Headhunters quartet), he’s a Jazz Search West Semifinalist and he improvises regularly in San Francisco with award-winning organist Wil Blades.

San Francisco-born Brandon Etzler is one of the most sought-after jazz, funk and R&B drummers in the Bay Area Drawing on influences such as dis Muhammad, Elvin Jones, Bernard Purdie and Roy Haynes, Etiler has forged a unique, syncopated, yet melodic style of drumming. He has played and recorded with Will Bernard, Brian Coogan, Steppin and Lake Street Recording Artist and Grammy nominee Betty Joplin.

Parker Grant is a jazz pianist based in Oakland. A Bay Area native, he is an alumnus of the Frost School of Music in Miami. Parker has performed internationally in Europe and Asia, and has played alongside major jazz artists including Dave Douglas, Eric Harland and Miguel Zenon. Like his companions in the quartet, he can be heard several nights a week playing at the best jazz clubs in the Bay Area.

The “grizzled veteran” in the quartet, bassist Robb Fisher came to prominence in the mid-1970s working with Cal Tjader and Pancho Sanchez as well as Art Pepper, Carmen McCrae, Clare Fischer, Tania Maria and Anita O’Day. Locally, he’s worked extensively with the likes of Akira Tana, Eddie Marshall, Peter Horvath, Vince Lateano, Mark Levine, Mel Martin and George Cotsirilos. He holds forth monthly in the company of Bob Kenmotsu, Keith Saunders and Ron Marabuto comprising the North Berkeley Jazz Quartet at the Cheese Board, North Berkeley’s live music & pizza hotspot.