NYC Events,”Only the Best” (09/01) + US Tennis Open (Day 5)

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.

For future NYC Events better check the tab above: “Notable NYC Events-September”
It’s the most comprehensive list of top events this month that you’ll find anywhere.

Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

Cyrus Chestnut (Aug. 31-Sept. 2)
Jazz Standard, 116 E. 27th St./
“There’s a tactile feeling that emanates from Chestnut’s piano, a welcoming embrace that assures you that you’ve picked the right spot for the night. Since he arrived on the scene, in the late nineteen-eighties, Chestnut has gained renown as a trusted stylist who judiciously balances mainstream and modernist leanings, mixing high spirits and soulful, deeply satisfying improvisation touched by gospel music and the blues. Here he brings the same partners that make his new album, “There’s a Sweet, Sweet Spirit,” a treat: the bassist Buster Williams and the drummer Lenny White.” (NewYorker)

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6 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)

>>Peter Bernstein Quartet 
>>GRASSELLA OLIPHANT
>>SAX APPEAL WITH JIMMY HEATH, GARY BARTZ, JAVON JACKSON AND DONALD HARRISON
>>Met Summer HD Festival — Tristan und Isolde Acts II & III
>>Roy Hargrove
>>Charlie Parker Birthday Celebration
>>Kurt Rosenwinkel 
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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Peter Bernstein Quartet (Sept. 1-3.)
Smoke, 2751 Broadway, between 105th and 106th Sts./
“In 1994, the guitarist Bernstein roped together a pretty decent band for the recording of his album “Signs of Life.” These same former up-and-comers—Brad Mehldau, Christian McBride, and Gregory Hutchinson—rejoined Bernstein for his latest album, “Signs Live!,” proving that potential can reap dividends. His supporting crew here may not be quite as illustrious, but the pianist Sullivan Fortner, the bassist Doug Weiss, and the drummer Leon Parker will surely do the fret-board marvel proud.” (NewYorker)

GRASSELLA OLIPHANT 
at Dizzy’s Club / 7:30PM, $35
“A drummer with a light but declarative touch, Mr. Oliphant played early in his career with the vocalists Sarah Vaughan and Gloria Lynne, as well as the pianist Ahmad Jamal. He released two soul-jazz albums as a leader in the 1960s, “The Grass Roots” and “The Grass Is Greener,” both on Atlantic Records, but never became a household name. He eventually left the music business, staying away for decades before starting to perform publicly again in the new millennium. This concert at Dizzy’s takes place on his 88th birthday, and features Freddie Hendrix on trumpet, Bruce Williams on alto saxophone, Lance Bryant on tenor saxophone, Brandon McCune on piano and Chris Berger on bass. It’s the first show of the club’s monthlong Coca-Cola Generations in Jazz Festival.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

SAX APPEAL WITH JIMMY HEATH, GARY BARTZ, JAVON JACKSON AND DONALD HARRISON (Aug. 31 to Sept. 2)
at the Iridium / 8 and 10PM, $35-$45
“Each of these four saxophonists is a master of straight-ahead jazz, though most have dipped into other styles, too. Mr. Heath, 90, wears the hard-bop mantle: In the 1950s and ’60s, he was one of the style’s notable composer-practitioners. Mr. Bartz played in some of Miles Davis’s best jazz-rock ensembles, and honed a personal brand of frisky soul jazz. Mr. Jackson is known as a deft exponent of John Coltrane’s clear and untempered sound on the tenor saxophone. Mr. Harrison, a guiding light in the world of New Orleans culture, has a slippery and groove-soaked approach to the alto saxophone.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

Met Summer HD Festival — Tristan und Isolde Acts II & III
The Metropolitan Opera / 8PM
FREE Opera Screenings on Lincoln Center Plaza
“Sir Simon Rattle conducts Wagner’s meditation on transcendent love, with an acclaimed cast led by Nına Stemme and Stuart Skelton. Mariusz Treliński’s insightful production sets the timeless tale against a backdrop of modern-day warfare.”

Roy Hargrove (Aug. 29-Sept. 3.)
Blue Note, 131 W. 3rd St./ 8PM, +10:30PM, $30-$45
“The bebop bug that got the teen-age trumpeter Hargrove, back in Texas in the nineteen-eighties left its stinger in. This vigorous improviser has since investigated other byways, including fruitful forays into Cuban music and funk, but he always returns to draw from his initial inspiration. He leads a steaming quintet that offers plenty of room for his charging and lyrical brass ventures.” (NewYorker)

Charlie Parker Birthday Celebration (Aug 30 – Sep 02)
Featuring Vincent Herring, Greg Osby, Jeremy Pelt, Helen Sung, Lonnie Plaxico, and Billy Drummond
Birdland, / 8:30PM, +11PM, $40
“Born August 29th, 1920, Charlie “Bird” Parker was one of the most influential and iconic artists in jazz history. As the central figure in the development of bebop in the 1940s Bird was a legendary figure in his own lifetime and was idolized by those who worked with him including Dizzy Gillespie, Thelonious Monk, Charles Mingus, Bud Powell and Miles Davis. He was the inspiration for Birdland and practically defined its mission as the home for modern jazz in New York City. Since his death in 1955 at age 34 Bird has inspired every subsequent generation of jazz artist and left a rich legacy of distinctive compositions and signature melodic vocabulary that still informs every style of jazz. For his celebration Birdland presents a group of jazz all-stars who can move seamlessly between classic and contemporary Bird-inspired material.”

TODAY’S TOP EVENT

U.S. TENNIS OPEN Day 5 (thru Sept. 10)

The U.S. Open begins play today @ 11AM at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park in Queens (about 45 min. from Times Square.) This tournament serves up the world’s best tennis players right in our backyard. Celebrating its 20th year at Arthur Ashe Stadium, it is the fourth and final Grand Slam tennis tournament of the year.
subway: @ Times Square take #7 to Willets Point.

Today’s tips: Arrive Early. Security screening seems to have been ratcheted up which may cause delays to enter. Best not to bring a bag. The best, most comprehensive review of the tournament and the current state of tennis can be found at the NYTimes/Sports.

Early in the tournament forget the Big House (Arthur Ashe Stadium). Get a grounds pass and once inside check out one of the electronic scoreboards listing matches in progress. Find a match or players that interest you. Head over to their court for some great tennis, because in this tournament even the qualifiers are great players.There is no other major sporting event where you can get so close to world class athletes as at the U.S. Open – on the outer field courts, the Grandstand court, and the new Armstrong stadium, temporary for just this year. These are courts where you can get a real sense of the pace of the game.

PLUS, head over to Sports Illustrated for their comprehensive list of insider tips for attending the U.S. Open.

For the full schedule of play today, click here.

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Champions, title contenders headline Day 5 schedule

  • August 30, 2017 - Marin Cilic in action against Florian Mayer at the 2017 US Open. (USTA/Andrew Ong)

The fight for a spot in the fourth round of a wide-open men’s competition continues on Day 5 in New York as two former US Open women’s champions headline the action in Arthur Ashe Stadium.

When Andy Murray withdrew from the tournament last weekend, it opened the door in the lower half of the draw for 64 other players whose chances of glory improved with his absence. Sixteen of those men are still in contention, and that will get slashed in half after Thursday’s play.

No. 5 seed Marin Cilic leads the charge in the bottom half of the draw, and he’ll look to move three wins from a spot in the final when he faces No. 29 seed Diego Schwartzman. No. 10 seed John Isner will play No. 23 Mischa Zverev in the first of two evening matches inside Arthur Ashe Stadium, and fellow seeds Lucas Pouille (16) and Kevin Anderson (28) will also be in action against Mikhail Kukushkin and Borna Coric, respectively.

On the women’s side, two of the biggest names in the game will take center stage in the biggest tennis stadium in the world.

Two-time US Open champion and No. 9 seed Venus Williams is third on in the day session against Maria Sakkari of Greece, and 2009 champion Maria Sharapova will look to continue her impressive run against American teen Sofia Kenin.

Should the former champions keep winning, they are scheduled to meet in a must-see semifinal one week from now.

Play in Ashe gets underway with 13th-seeded Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic against No. 18 seed Caroline Garcia of France, followed by rising Canadian teen Denis Shapovalov against Kyle Edmund of Great Britain.

Elsewhere around the grounds, women’s doubles top seeds Elena Vesnina and Ekaterina Makarova are in action against the all-American duo of Jennifer Brady and Alison Riske on Court 11, and mixed doubles second seeds Sania Mirza and Ivan Dodig will face Jelena Ostapenko and Fabrice Martin on Court 6.

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Bonus NYC events– Jazz Venues:
Many consider NYCity the Jazz capital of the world. Here are my favorite Jazz clubs, all on Manhattan’s WestSide. Check out who is playing tonight:

Greenwich Village:
(5 are underground, classic jazz joints. all 6 are within walking distance of each other):
Village Vanguard – UG, 178 7th Ave. South, villagevanguard.com, 212-255-4037
Blue Note – 131 W3rd St. nr 6th ave. bluenotejazz.com, 212-475-8592
55 Bar – basement @55 Christopher St. nr 7th ave.S. 55bar.com, 212-929-9883
Mezzrow – basement @ 163 W10th St. nr 7th Ave. mezzrow.com,646-476-4346
Smalls – basement @ 183 W10th St. smallslive.com, 646-476-4346
Cornelia Street Cafe – UG, 29 Cornelia St. corneliastreetcafe.com, 212-989-9319

Outside Greenwich Village:
Dizzy’s Club – Broadway @ 60th St. — jazz.org/dizzys / 212-258-9595
Birdland – 315 W44th St.(btw 8/9ave) — birdlandjazz.com / 212-581-3080
Smoke Jazz Club – 2751 Broadway nr.106th St. — smokejazz.com / 212-864-6662

Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St. — caffevivaldi.com / 212-691-7538
a classic, old jazz club in the Village, Caffe V often surprises with a wonderfully eclectic lineup. It’s my favorite spot for an evening of listening enjoyment and discovery.

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♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.5 million, had a record 60 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2017.  Quality shows draw crowds.
Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just on day of performance.
NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

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