Saxophonist Peter Brainin performs at the 11th Street Bar

October 24, 2007


Indie acts and bar jukeboxes might generate most of the musical sounds echoing out of East Village neighborhood joints, but it’s nice to know that casual jazz concerts live on in even the trendiest areas. Peter Brainin, whom I met during one of his gigs at Big Apple Jazz last month, played a three-hour set last Friday in a seemingly unexpected venue: an Irish bar on 11th Street. The concert was free of charge (in itself refreshing), and set selections varied from Brainin’s own songs to Herbie Hancock tunes. Most of the happy hour crowd sat by the bar, but I preferred the more intimate setting of the back room, where the band played by food-framed mirrors and mismatched sets of wooden tables and chairs.

Brainin, who will be on tour in Ecuador with his band Native Soul until early November, was backed up by Noah Haidu (an excellent and confident pianist), Matt Clohesy (double bass), and Ben Cliness (drums). For more info on Brainin, check out

 The 11th Street Bar ( frequently hosts live music and poetry readings. It’s also the gathering spot-of choice for Liverpool Football Club fans.

(Image from


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