Maybe it’s because they’ve cultivated a true heartland strain of jazz. Or maybe it’s because of their knack for maxing out the potential of a four-minute bash. Whatever the reason, the Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey land at the top of today’s musical-improvisational scene. The Tulsa-based outfit — whose previous releases displayed a penchant for brief tunes laden with multiple mood swings and pianist Brian Hass’ solos-as-hypertext — now challenges listeners with the unlikely inclusion of pedal steel guitar, which it recently added to the piano-plus-rhythm trio lineup. On their 2009 EP, One Day in Brooklyn, Chris Combs establishes his steel as a full partner in a set that includes compositions by Rahsaan Roland Kirk and Abdullah Ibrahim. But the Odyssey’s iron man remains founding pianist Haas, who draws upon a broad jazz lexicon and, for all the various “new” tags this crew collects, whose old-school instincts convey what’s likely a deep respect for jazz tradition. The group’s performance precedes the release of Stay Gold, eight originals that further affirm its excavations into so-called “red dirt” jazz. They play the Grog Shop, with Oojis Whack and Funk You opening at 9 p.m.. Tickets are $10. —Duane Verh
Review the show at clevescene.com/concertscene
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