The Charlottesville Jazz Society swings into its 2018 season on Thursday February 15th with an all-star performance by The Shipp/Lowe/Cleaver/Ray Quartet. The concert will be held at The Thomas Jefferson Memorial Church on Rugby Road at 7:30 pm. The group leaders will be playing for the first time in Charlottesville. Allen Lowe is a talented saxophonist, but is better known as an author and jazz historian. He has performed and recorded as a leader with many jazz greats, and is currently a lecturer at Jazz at Lincoln Center, He will teach a course there in 2018 on the History of the Blues. His current projects include a suite called “A Love Supine: A Dixieland Love Supreme” (which will debut at Lincoln Center on February 20th); and another suite called “Black Brown and Beige, Yellow, Trans, and Queer: My Country ‘Tis of This,” which will be performed in March of 2018. New Republic has written that “Allen is one of the most important music historians alive… “ Lowe will give a talk to UVA professor Scott DeVeaux’s jazz history class as part of the Charlottesville Jazz Society’s education program. After moving to New York in 1984 Matthew Shipp quickly became one of the leading lights in the New York jazz scene. He has reached the holy grail of jazz in that he possesses a unique style on his instrument that is all his own. Shipp has made dozens of recordings, including several chamber jazz albums with Hatology, which are said to have charted a new course for jazz. Since the early 2000’s Shipp has been curator and director of the Thirsty Ear label, and he has made a series of visionary solo and group recordings for them. Since coming of age in Detroit’s vibrant jazz scene, Gerald Cleaver has become one of the New York City’s leading drummer/composers, covering a wide range of stylistic ground. Having played with jazz masters Tommy Flanagan, Barry Harris and Ray Bryant as well as such modern legends Roscoe Mitchell, Muhal Richard Abrams and Wadada Leo Smith, he is a product of many traditions within creative music. While many young musicians were embracing the retrospection of the 80’s and 90’s, Kevin Ray was hearing the adventurous call of The Art Ensemble of Chicago and The World Saxophone Quartet. He soon came into contact with one of his spiritual mentors, pianist Andrew Hill, who gave me him the confidence to become a serious jazz musician. He has played regularly with the pianist over the years. Tickets to see the Shipp/Lowe/Cleaver/Ray Quartet are available at online at Cvillejazz.Eventbrite.com, and at the Tin Whistle Restaurant between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday (cash or check only). The cost is $20 general admission, $15 for paid supporters of The Charlottesville Jazz Society and $10 for students. All tickets at the door will be $25. For more information visit Cvillejazz.org or call Gary at (434) 249-6191. Be sure to listen for the music of The Shipp/Lowe/Cleaver/Ray Quartet on WTJU, 91.1 FM.