December 29th, 2014

Dear Friends:

For those of you who know me, you know that I consider myself to be a Buddhist.  One of my most cherished memories of the year was when we had a purification ritual performed at Mezzrow by my friend jazz pianist & Zen priest Jeremy Manasia.  A small brass Buddha was presented to us and became the club's Buddha.  After the ceremony we found a place for him in a windowsill where he sits serenely in meditative repose listening to all the great piano players.
Last night I noticed that a customer had placed his bag on the sill.  Normally I don’t mind if drinks or things are placed there – we’re a bar, not a monastery, so I didn’t say anything.  About ten minutes later I came back around and notice that the Buddha was gone!  I couldn’t believe it.  I searched around with a flashlight but to no avail.  I was stricken with dread.  This was definitely a bad omen – to have the club’s Buddha stolen.  I asked my bartender and waitress about it, who were equally shocked, but nobody had an answer.  But in my mind I heard a voice say, “the guy with the bag stole him”.
The guy with the bag was now sitting on the other side of the room.  He kind of had a glazed look in his eye.  I approached him gingerly; “sir, we’ve lost our little Buddha statue.  I noticed you had your bag there a few moments ago.  Did you see it or, perhaps, see anyone near it?”  He looked at me and said; “I don’t know anything about that.”  There was something in his eye and I knew he was lying.  “Are you sure?” I asked again.  “I don’t know anything about It.,” he reiterated.
Now I was really getting depressed.  I take omens very seriously and was trying to think about what karmic infraction I could have made to have such a cosmically serious event such as having the club’s Buddha stolen imposed apoun us.  I know I had yelled at my poor mother the day before – perhaps this was my punishment.  I went about my business in a dark mood cleaning up glasses and patrolling the club.
About 20 minutes later, the guy with the bag was now standing in a line for our restroom.  I walked past him and looked him in the eye as I passed.  He glanced at me.  Then, for some reason I don’t understand, I looked back at him and saw in his back pocket our Buddha!  It was just sticking out of his back pocket.  I turned back and grabbed it.  “Sir, what is this?!”.  He was stunned.  “Ok, just get out of the club”, I said angrily.  His face changed – “I’m sorry”, he stammered, “I’m so sorry…” My anger left me.  “Ok, no problem”, I said, “I’m just glad to get it back.”  Then the guy burst into tears!  Sobbing uncontrollably he began to say things like; “I love this club… I’m having a terrible time with my girlfriend…, etc.”.  I felt this guy’s pain and shame.  Realizing that I had to be a Buddha myself, I took a compassionate stance.  “Ok, ok”, I said placatingly, “All is forgiven.  Please don’t worry about it.”  At that, he turned around and left the club.
Kind of in shock, I placed the Buddha back in his place and Buddha went right back to his contemplative meditation.  I carefully examined the statue.  Was he smiling?  It seemed to me that there was a little grin on his beatific face.  The rest of the evening went smooth as silk...

My best wishes to you and your loved ones for the New Year.  I hope to see everyone at Smalls and Mezzrow.



The Mezzrow January Schedule is now available - check our site.
Monday - 12/29
Johnny O'Neal & Friends

Johnny O'Neal is a beloved master of the music garnering fans everywhere.  His amazing, Tatum-like piano skills are matched to his wonderful vocalizing and seriously swinging jazz feeling.  Johnny O'Neal is sure to leave you feeling joyful and enriched.  Never miss a chance to hear this artist.
    • Solo Piano Set @ 7 PM (no cover)
    • Duo Sets @ 9 PM & 10:30 PM
  • Tuesday - 12/30
    Seamus Blake & Dave Kikoski
  • Seamus Blake is one of the most popular voices of his generation on the tenor saxophone.  His robust tone is met with his fascinating ideas and original concept.  With him is the dynamic and powerful pianist David Kikoski.
  • Solo Set @ 7 PM (no cover)
    Duo Sets @ 8 PM & 9:30 PM

    Stick around for our "Polite" jam session starting @ 10:45 PM


  • Wednesday - 12/31
    NEW YEAR'S EVE with:
  • The Cyrille Aimee Trio
  • Celebrate the first New Year's Eve at Mezzrow with singer Cyrille Aimee and Michael Valeanu.  Tickets include 2 champagne toasts (one when you arrive and one at Midnight) as well as hors d'oeuvres and other snacks.  This is sure to be a fantastic evening of joyful singing and swinging.  

    This show is sold out in the Music Room.  There will be some limited space for walk-ins for our lounge.

  • Thursday - 1/1
    Spike Wilner & Paul Gill

    Pianist and proprietor plays the first show of the year to kick off the 2015 season at Mezzrow.  With him is the virtuostic Paul Gill on bass.

    • Duo Sets @ 9 PM & 10:30 PM
    • After Hours Solo Piano @ 11:30 PM
Friday - 1/2
Taylor Eigsti & Mark Turner

Taylor Eigsti is one of the most highly regarded pianists of his generation.  He has a powerful concept on the instrument with a modern outlook and genuine jazz feeling.  Joining him is the fascinating Mark Turner - a master, lyrical improvisor.

Saturday - 1/3
Taylor Eigsti & Mike Moreno

 Joining Taylor is the groovy and forward thinking Mike Moreno on guitar. 

Solo Set @ 7 PM

Duo sets @ 9 PM & 10:30 PM
After-hours Solo Piano @ 12 AM

Sunday - 1/4
Pasquale Grasso - Solo Guitar
  • Pasquale Grasso is a guitar virtuoso.  A classicist in the style of Art Tatum and Bud Powell but on guitar!
  •  Set @ 7 PM
    There is no music charge for this show.

Sunday - 1/5
The Chris Flory Trio
  • Guitarist Chris Flory is a master of lyricism and the American Song Book.  With him is the steadfast veteran Lee Hudson on bass and the highly tasteful and swinging Larry Ham on piano.

  • Duo sets @ 9 PM & 10:30 PM


(a selection of featured shows)

For our full schedule please go to

Monday - 12/29
Ilya Lushtak Trio

Sets at 7:30 PM & 9 PM
w. Ilya Lushtak - Guitar, Tyler Mitchell - Bass, Peter Van Nostrand - Drums

Ilya Lushtak is committed to swinging and the blues.  Come out and hear this fine guitarist.
Monday - 12/29
The Ari Hoenig Quartet

Sets at 10:30 PM & 12 AM
w. Tivon Pennicott - Tenor Sax, Eden Ladin - Piano, Noam Wiesenberg - Bass, Ari Hoenig - Drums 

Ari Hoenig is an amazing musician, drummer and bandleader.  Come by and see what all the fuss is about.
Tuesday - 12/30
Lucas Pino
No Net Nonet

Sets at 9:30 PM & 11 PM

This is a fantastic nine-piece group where everyone contributes material and excellent solos.  Don't miss!
Wednesday - 12/31
Smalls New Year's Eve with :
The SmallsLIVE ALLstars

 9 PM to late night... 
w. Lezlie Harrison - Vocalist, Lennie Cuje - Vibraphone, Spike Wilner - Piano, Jon Roche - Bass, Ned Goold - Tenor Sax, Joe Magnarelli - Trumpet, Clifford Barbaro - Drums

Celebrate the New Year at Smalls with the legendary Lennie Cuje (who also celebrates his birthday at midnight).  Seating is limited and it's a first come/first serve entry.
Thursday - 1/1
Santi Debriano Quartet
Sets at 9:30 PM & 11 PM
w. Ralph Lalama - Tenor Sax, Roni Ben Hur - Guitar, Santi Debriano - Bass, Tommy Cambell - Drums

Sant Debriano is a master bassist and longtime veteran of the jazz scene.  This all-star group is sure to hit hard.
Thursday - 1/1
"Round Midnight" With:
The Nick Hempton Band

Midnight to close
w.Nick Hempton - Alto Sax,  Dan Aran - Drums, Dave Baron - Bass, Tadataka Unno - Piano

Nick Hempton is a musician's musician.  Hard swinging and tasteful.  Stick around for this after-hours show.
Friday - 1/2
Dmitry Baevsky Quintet
Sets at 7:30 PM & 9 PM
$20 for this show
w.  Dmitry Baevsky - Alto Sax, Joe Magnarelli - Trumpet, Jeb Patton - Piano, David Wong - Bass, Joe Strasser - Drums

Dmitry Baevsky is a fluent improvisor with a gorgeous tone and abundant ideas.  This is a swinging hard-bop quintet that features the work of trumpet great Joe Magnarelli.
Friday, Saturday - 1/2-3
The John Marshall Quintet

Sets at 10:30 PM & 12 AM
$20 for this show
w. John Marshall - Trumpet, Grant Stewart - Tenor Sax, Tardo Hammer - Piano, David Wong - Bass, Phil Stewart - Drums 

John Marshall returns for his biannual engagement at Smalls with his "classic" quintet that features Tardo Hammer and Grant Stewart.
Saturday - 1/3
The Woody Witt/Larry Ham Quartet 

Sets at 7:30 PM & 9 PM
$20 for this show
w. Woody Witt - Tenor Sax, Larry Ham - Piano, Lee Hudson - Bass, Tom Melito - Drums

Woody Witt is a little heard tenor treasure and you shouldn't miss the chance to check him out.  Co-leading is the wonderful swinging Larry Ham on piano.
Sunday - 1/4
Joe Magnarelli Quartet

Sets at 10:30 PM to close
w. Joe Magnarelli - Trumpet, Anthony Wonsey - Piano, Mike Karn - Bass, Victor Lewis - Drums

Joe Magnarelli is a classic and a class act.  His quartet is always smoking!


Monday - 12/29, 1 AM to close
Afterhours with : Jonathan Michel

Tuesday - 12/30, 7:30 PM to 9 PM
The Spike Wilner Trio

Tuesday - 12/30, 12:30 AM to close 
The Next Generation Sessions with Kyle Poole

Thursday - 1/1,  6 PM to 9 PM

"Early Bird Sessions" with The Joel Press Quartet


Friday - 1/2, 4:30 PM to 7 PM
Friday afternoon open jam session with Ai Murakami

Friday - 1/2, 1:30 AM to close
Afterhours with Craig Wuepper

Saturday - 1/3, 4:30 PM to 7 PM
Saturday Afternoon Open Jam Session with Tuomo Uusitalo Trio

Saturday -1/3, 1:30 AM to close
Afterhours with Stacy Dillard

Sunday - 1/4, 1 PM to 3 PM
Vocal Masterclass with Marion Cowings 
$20 entry, $40 to participate

Sunday - 1/4, 7:30 PM to 10 PM
The Legendary Johnny O'Neal

 ENJOY SmallsLIVE records!

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