Serving the San Francisco Bay Area New Music Community

Ivy Room
860 San Pablo Ave
Albany CA 94706  
Neighborhood bar with all kinds of music.

Upcoming Events:
Wednesday, December 6 2017 9:30 PM
Ivy Room Improv/ Experimental Hootenanny with Dirty Snacks Ensemble

Oakland-based vibraphonist/composer Mark Clifford kicks off a three-month mini-residency featuring his Dirty Snacks Ensemble. In composing for the ensemble, Clifford pays homage to his many musical influences which run the gamut from Kool Keith to Bela Bartok, and finds the balance among long form compositional structures, free improvisation, and short ditties while still maintaining musical freedom for his immensely talented ensemble. Speaking of which, the line-up for this show includes:

Mark Clifford – Vibraphone, composition, electronics
Andrew Maguire – Drums
Bob Ladue – Percussion and guitar
Crystal Pascucci – cello
John McCowen – Clarinet
Scott Brown – Bass
Patrick Roth – Vocals and percussion
Steve Blum – Keyboard

The Dirty Snacks Ensemble released their first full length record Tidy Universe (Recollect Records) in June of 2016, and will be releasing a follow up album of rarities and basement recordings, Another Man’s Treasure.  More...

Thursday, December 14 2017 8:00 PM
Damn Skippy: John Schott, Will Bernard, Scott Amendola, w/ Zach Ostroff - Albany, CA
Thursday, Dec 14, 2017 - 8:00PM

A rare reunion of three members of the 1990's Bay Area acid-Jazz supergroup T. J. Kirk, joined by a virtuoso rising star on bass, makes for a special night of grooving musical mayhem at the Ivy Room. Drummer Scott Amendola and guitarists Will Bernard and John Schott are masterful instrumentalists who share a penchant for musical anarchy and comedy when they get together. Joined by bassist Zachary Ostroff, this will be a memorable evening of feverish East Bay-centric Jazz and Funk, dished up by old friends and mad scientists of groove. In 1993, four young Bay Area Jazz hotshots came together, purely for fun, to form a high-concept supergroup named James T. Kirk, so named because their repertoire consisted only of mashed-up versions of songs by James Brown, Thelonious Monk, and Rahasan Roland Kirk. Response was immediate and overwhelming, including from Paramount Studios who demanded that the group change their name, which they did, re-christening it T. J. Kirk. Soon the group was signed to Warner Bros., releasing acclaimed CDs and touring the States. That the band was comprised of three guitarists and a drummer only added to the quirky uniqueness their sound and conception. Eventually Will Bernard, John Schott, , Scott Amendola, and Charlie Hunter, all focused on their own bands and careers, putting the group on indefinite hiatus since the late 90's. While this December evening at the Ivy Room is not quite the long-awaited alignment of the four planets, that three of them are re-uniting together still qualifies as an ultra-rare event (indeed, the first time three members have played together since 2003), sure to throw off sparks and reward long-time fans of the band. Revisiting staples of the Kirk repertoire as well as playing original music and unexpected covers, the debut of Damn Skippy is going to be a were-you-there? moment of 2017, Damn Skippy!  More...

Tuesday, December 26 2017 8:00 PM
Peter Apfelbaum's Sparkler

egendary Berkeley-born, now New York-based saxophonist/keyboardist/composer Peter Apfelbaum brings his latest band,Sparkler, back to the Bay Area for its debut at the Ivy Room. Featuring fellow Bay Area natives Natalie Cressman (trombone/bass/vocals), Jill Ryan (sax/flute/vocals), Will Bernard (guitar) Erika Oba (keyboards/flute) and Josh Jones (drums/percussion), Sparkler combines playfully offbeat songs, hyper-rhythmic poetry and electronica with the heavily-layered, world jazz-driven sound which Apfelbaum has become known for with his longstanding big band, Hieroglyphics. The band will perform excerpts from The Ambidextrous Nature of the Universe (commissioned by the Newport Jazz Festival in 2016) as well as songs from their forthcoming debut album, Excess.

While some of Sparkler's songs are based on imaginary situations, much of the current material deals with the themes of resistance and social justice. As Apfelbaum explains, "Partly as a result of having grown up in Berkeley in the 60's, the music I do has always implicitly had an anti-authoritarian spirit... but in these times, we have to be even clearer about where we stand. At the same time, this band has become like a weed that's been left to grow on its own - and we've grown deeper, stronger and more flowerful than ever."

"Sparkler... shakes the night sky free of its galactic mess... an extreme in and of itself." - Tyran Grillo, ECM Reviews
"Experimental and joyful music by one of jazz's hidden treasures" - Dan Ouellette, Zeal NY  More...