Indianapolis Music Events 2/25 to 2/28: John Coltrane Tribute, Harry Connick Jr., and Clifford Ratliff

This weekend in Indianapolis music, it seems the Circle City is returning to its musical roots. That’s right, there’s a host of jazz and blues concerts taking place all across Indy this weekend, and they’re not just limited to the three mainstays of the Indianapolis jazz community. First of all, the University of Indianapolis Jazz Week is this week, featuring tons of contemporary jazz artists from around Central Indiana and the United States. Groups performing include the Buselli Wallarab Jazz Orchestra (featuring the director of Jazz Studies at Ball State), the Famous Jazz Orchestra from Columbus, Ohio, Randy Brecker (a trumpeter who has won five Grammys), and the UIndy Jazz Festival, in which tons of Indianapolis high school bands compete for top honors.

Not only that, but several Indianapolis music venues are throwing jazz-themed bashes this weekend. Perhaps the coolest of these is taking place at The Jazz Kitchen on Friday. It’s the 50th anniversary of John Coltrane’s hard bop masterpiece, Giant Steps, and several illustrious Indianapolis jazz musicians are getting together to celebrate, including pianist Steve Allee, guitarist Rob Dixon, and drummer Steve Houghton. The Chatterbox will be featuring Cliff Ratliff and the Indiana Avenue All-Stars, and the Slippery Noodle Inn also has a barrage of jazz and blues shows, including the Larry Garner Blues Band and Little Joe McLerran.

That means that this is the perfect weekend to get out to the six Indianapolis cultural districts and see how Indianapolis evolved into the musical powerhouse it is today. With these Indianapolis events, maybe you’ll understand the kaleidoscope of musical Indianapolis history a bit better.

-Bryan Johnson

Thursday, Feb 25
University of Indianapolis Jazz Week Presents Buselli Wallarab Jazz Orchestra@ Christel DeHaan Fine Arts Center
Butler University Percussion Ensemble @ Clowes Memorial Hall
Carolina Chocolate Drops and Woodstove Flapjacks @ The Royal Theater in Danville, Indiana

Video of Carolina Chocolate Drops performing live; Carolina Chocolate Drops will be playing in Indianapolis this weekend


Larry Garner Blues Band @ The Slippery Noodle Inn

Video of the Larry Garner Blues Band performing live; the band will be playing in Indianapolis this weekend


Clifford Ratliff and the Indiana Avenue All Stars @ Chatterbox Jazz Club

Video of Clifford Ratliff performing with the Indy Jazz Company in Indianapolis


Brian Deer & The Achievers and Star & Micey @ The Melody Inn

Music video to “My Beginning” by Star & Micey; Star & Micey will be playing in Indianapolis this weekend


A Friend Called Fire @ Birdy’s Bar & Grill

Music video for “This Grace” by A Friend Called Fire; the band will be playing in Indianapolis this weekend


The Flying Toasters @ Joe’s Grille II

Video of The Flying Toasters performing live in Indianapolis


The Working Hour @ Mo’s Irish Pub in Noblesville, Indiana

Video of The Working Hour performing live at Locals Only in Indianapolis

Summon the Destroyer, Misery Index, Heavy Lies the Crown, and Magrudergrind @ Melody Inn

Video of Summon the Destroyer at Zanies Too in Indianapolis


American Cheese @ Moon Dog Tavern

Video of American Cheese performing live at the Moon Dog Tavern in Indianapolis


Desi, Rok Hollywood, Broken Equilibrium, and Priest of D’Molls @ The Ugly Monkey

Video of Rok Hollywood performing live near Indianapolis


The Michaels @ Artbox Gallery at the Stutz Artists Association

Music video for “The Michaels Rock Your Face” by The Michaels; The band will be performing in Indianapolis this weekend


Friday, Feb 26
Meet the Artists XXII @ Indianapolis Central Library
Alpha.Live @ Indianapolis Artsgarden
Joyce Licorish @ The IndyFringe Building

Video of Joyce Licorish performing with the American Cabaret Theater in Indianapolis


Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra Pops Concert @ Indianapolis Museum of Art

Video of Angela Brown performing with the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra in Indianapolis


“Safety Last” with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra @ Indianapolis Museum of Art

Video of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra performing at the Indianapolis Museum of Art in Indianapolis


Jennie DeVoe @ The Rathskeller Restaurant

Promotional video for Indianapolis singer/songwriter Jennie DeVoe


Lemon Wheel @ Mickey’s Irish Pub in Carmel, Indiana

Video of Lemon Wheel, an Indianapolis band, performing live


Tribute to John Coltrane’s Giant Steps w/ Steve Allee, Rob Dixon, Steve Houghton, Jeremy Allen, and Dick Sisto @ The Jazz Kitchen
Starlume, The Empires, All Day Holiday @ Radio Radio

Music video for “So Please,” by Starlume; Starlume will be playing in Indianapolis this weekend


Northern Kind and The Great Hookup @ Birdy’s Bar

Video of The Great Hookup performing live at Spin Nightclub in Indianapolis


Jon Justice Band, Little Joe McLerran, and Robbie Mack @ Slippery Noodle

Video of the Jon Justice Band performing live; the band will be playing in Indianapolis this weekend


Pravada, The Young Republic, and Ex Flames @ Melody Inn

Video of Pravada performing live; Pravada will be playing in Indianapolis this weekend


Frontiers and Erratic @ The Vogue Theater

Video of Frontiers, a Journey tribute band, performing live; Frontiers will be playing in Indianapolis this weekend


Aberdeen Project @ Mo’s Pub
Mojo Gumbo @ Jillian’s Downtown

Video of Mojo Gumbo performing at the Penrod Arts Fair in Indianapolis


Buggin’ Malone @ Indiana University

Video tribute to Leonard Peltier by Indianapolis artist Buggin’ Malone


Bomar & Ritter @ Chateau Thomas Winery
Sugar Moon Rabbit @ Ugly Monkey

Video of Sugar Moon Rabbit performing live in Indianapolis


Terry Lee and the Rockaboogie Band @ Fountain Square Theater

Video of Terry Lee and the Rockaboogie Band performing live; the band will be playing in Indianapolis this weekend


FREEZE @ 8 Seconds Saloon
Spanky’s Clubhouse @ Krazy Street

Video of “Let Your Love Ring Out” by Spanky’s Clubhouse; Spanky’s Clubhouse will be playing in Indianapolis this weekend


Saturday, Feb 27
University of Indianapolis Jazz Fest @ Christel DeHaan Center
Plaguesayer, The Paramedic, Omega, As the Fallen Rise, and A Silent Repent @ The Emerson Theater

Video of Plaguesayer performing live; the band will be playing in Indianapolis this weekend


Clifford Ratliff Blue Note Tribute Band @ Jazz Kitchen
Gordon Bonham Blues Band and The Northern Nights @ The Rathskeller

Video of the Gordon Bonham Blues Band performing live of television; the band will be playing in Indianapolis this weekend


Encore Vocal Arts Presents Poems and Parables @ Meridian Street United Methodist Church
Goldie and Exquisitely Yours @ Chatterbox
The Channel 4, Nick Vote & Genius Johnson, Black Oil Brothers, and Art Adams @ Birdy’s

Video of the Black Oil Brothers performing live in Chicago; the band will be playing in Indianapolis this weekend


Greta Speaks @ Pinheads Entertainment Center in Fishers, Indiana
Something Rather Naughty @ Mo’s
A Bad Idea @ Ball State University Dance Marathon
The Michaels @ Easley Winery
Accordions @ Earth House Collective
DJ Kool-Aid, Fiber, American Syndrome, The Dwellers, and Violent Calm @ Indianapolis Motor Speedway‘s Winner’s Circle

Video of American Syndrome’s music over Indianapolis radio


Sunday, February 28
Asante Children’s Theater and Blair Karsch and Friends @ Indianapolis Artsgarden
Philharmonic Orchestra of Indianapolis‘ 12 Annual Gospel Concert @ Pike Performing Arts Center
Harry Connick Jr. @ Murat Centre

Music video for Harry Connick Jr.’s “Recipe for Love.” Harry Connick Jr. will be playing in Indianapolis this weekend


Indianapolis Music Venues

8 Seconds Saloon | Big Car Gallery | Birdy’s Bar & Grill | Chatterbox Jazz Club | Emerson Theater | Jazz Kitchen | Old National Centre | Radio Radio | The Vogue | More Indianapolis Music Venues

Indianapolis Bands

Amanda Overmyer | Cathy Morris | Flynnville Train | Gwen Stacy | The Elms | Haste the Day | Jennie DeVoe | Margot and the Nuclear So and So’s | Mudkids | Murder by Death | Sloppy Seconds | Straight No Chaser | More Indianapolis Bands

Indianapolis Musical Organizations

Arts Council of Indianapolis | Capital City Chorus | Ensemble Music Society | Philharmonic Orchestra of Indianapolis | Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra | More Indianapolis Musical Organizations

Indianapolis Musicians

Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds | Freddy Hubbard | Wes Montgomery | Cole Porter | James Spaulding | More Indianapolis Musicians

Indiana Music by City

Avon Music | Brownsburg Music | Carmel Music | Danville Music | Fishers Music | Greenfield Music | Greenwood Music | Martinsville Music | Mooresville Music | Noblesville Music | Plainfield Music | Westfield Music | Zionsville Music | More Indiana Music