About Jazz@The Atlas

For 5 years (since May 2013), the Atlas Cafe has been presenting live jazz bands with no cover charge. Booking philosophy: Bands are booked on quality, not fame, so it's likely that you've never heard of these bands. You will always be assured of hearing an excellent band, and you'll get a chance to meet the players before they become famous!  Seriously.  Welcome to Jazz@The Atlas!  David Kaye books Thursday and Friday night shows. Please visit the Atlas Cafe on a Thursday or Friday and speak directly with him.  Craig and Meredith book their own Saturday afternoon shows. Please contact them directly.

Please do NOT phone or email the Atlas Cafe because they do not have any more information than what you see here on this page.


Thursday & Friday: Jazz@The Atlas is held every Thursday and Friday night (except certain holidays) from 8:00 to 10:00pm. There is no cover charge.

Saturday: Craig and/or Meredith (or a substitute when they're on tour) play every Saturday from 4:00 to 6:00pm. There is no cover charge.


Saturday Night Jazz Starts in March!

Thanks to your support over the years the Atlas Café is adding another night of jazz. After connecting with a dozen bands we've chosen 5, one for each Saturday of the month, to entertain you.  Hope you like it!  Saturdays, like Thursdays and Fridays run from 8:00 to 10:00pm and have no cover charge.    --David Kaye
Do NOT contact the Atlas Cafe!  Here's the email link:  Jazz@The Atlas Booking

February Shows

Friday, February 1, 8-10pm

Jon Frank Jazz Quartet

 Jon FrankNoah Frank

Unusual instrumentation featuring drummer Jon Frank. Definitely a must-listen!  Jon Frank is a jazz drummer who has been gigging in the Bay Area since 1974. He has studied with George Marsh and played with Ron Crotty, Woody Shaw, Eddie Henderson, and Bobby McFerrin. His band, Jon Frank Jazz Quintet (JFJQ) has been playing regularly since 2007 at spots like Bird & Beckett Books, Forte House, and Revolution Cafe. They play a mixture of original jazz and standards. JFJQ released their debut album “Syncopated Strut” in 2016. They currently maintain an active gigging schedule in San Francisco and the Bay Area.

Noah Frank, AKA Herbie One, is a jazz trumpeter, composer, producer, engineer, and DJ from SF. He has worked with Chance The Rapper, Mr. Carmack, Saba, Chuck D (Public Enemy), Pep Love (Hieroglyphics), Binary Star, and Mellow Man Ace (Cypress Hill). His band, Sueños, has performed at the Fillmore St. Jazz Festival in SF and the PDX Jazz Festival in Portland, as well as Helb Alpert’s Vibrato Jazz Club in LA and Paris Bistro Jazz Club in Philly. Recently, Noah recorded horns for Saba’s chart-topping rap album “Care For Me’.

Thursday, February 7, 8-10pm

Will Berg - David McFarland Quartet

Will BergDavid McFarland Guitar

William Berg is a Bay Area based jazz musician, composing and performing on saxophones and flute. Born and raised in Vacaville, Will moved to San Francisco in 2014 to pursue a Bachelor of Music in jazz studies at SFSU. His primary instrument is the saxophone, but he also plays flute and clarinet in a variety of styles and ensembles – classical, swing bands, latin musics, musicals, etc.

Will has taught private lessons since he was 15, directed a high school jazz band for a year, and worked as a music teacher at Highlands Christians school for a year and a half. He takes pride in his teachers at SFSU (Andrew Speight, Michael Zisman, John Calloway, David Xiques and many more) and plans on always being a student of music and striving to learn more. But along the way, he offers his knowledge to anyone who wants to learn.

David McFarland is a jazz guitarist and composer. He began playing blues, R & B, Pop, Rock & Fusion around the Detroit club circuit during his teens. After moving to San Francisco, he studied with Mimi Fox, Bruno Pelletier-Bacquaert, Tuck Andress, and Jonathan Kreisberg. He has performed and played with notable Bay Area musicians such as Randy Vincent, Steve McQuarry, Ted Burik, Doc Smith, Laura Wiley, Craig Kleinman, Edo Castro, Greg German, and many others. David plays a blend of modern and traditional jazz.

Friday, February 8, 8-10pm

Dana Geller & The Newtonians Quintet

Dana Geller

Dana Geller plays intricate, heart-stopping keyboard solos.  Along with her band, the Newtonians, you can expect a wide variety of music, stretching the limits of jazz.

Thursday, February 14, 8-10pm

Joshua Taylor Quartet

Josh Taylor Quartet

Classic bop jazz feautring Josh Taylor on Piano, with tenor sax, drums, and bass.  Bebop developed as the younger generation of jazz musicians expanded the creative possibilities of jazz beyond the popular, dance-oriented swing style with a new "musician's music" that was not as danceable and demanded close listening.

Friday, February 15, 8-10pm

Bill Petitti Quartet

Bill Petitti
The Bill Petitti Quartet is the longest-running jazz group performing at Jazz@The Atlas.
Bill Petitti says: "I started playing drums at the age of 10. I studied with various teachers in Chicago, my cousin Nick Petitti, in particular, who was a professional jazz drummer in the Chicago area and worked with world class jazz musicians.In Chicago, I worked as a drummer in a variety of musical settings and styles, which eventually led my taking up classical flute, jazz flute, and saxophone.

I attended Chicago's own Roosevelt University to study classical flute, and eventually found my way to Dick Grove School of Music in L.A.I studied many years with Larry Kassin in San Francisco, a wonderful classically trained flautist who hailed from Chicago as well.

Later, I studied for over five years with Jim Grantham in San Francisco, an incredible musician and Jazz educator! I also played and studied for twenty years with Lawrence "Larry" Cady, who’s worked with bassist Richard Davis, Josh Haden and Spain, John Coppola, Jimmy McCracklin among others.Over the years, I've played numerious gigs and sessions with world class musicians who have worked with jazz greats such as Joe Henderson, Sun Ra, Earl Fatha Hines, Bobby Hutcherson. I have had innumerable other musical influences and life experiences that have affected my approach to music.

Currently, I am fortunate to work with some of my favorite jazz musicians in a number of San Francisco-based music venues."

Thursday, February 21, 8-10pm

Make Jazz Quartet (the MJQ)


Vibes, piano, bass, and drums make up a new monthly residency for the Make Jazz Quartet. Come and be the first to see them at the Atlas Café!

Here's a musical sample for you: Soundcloud

Friday, February 22, 8-10pm

Michael Gold's Ad-Lib Ensemble

The spontaneous side of jazz, inventing on-the-fly arrangements and throwing each other creative curveballs.

Michael Gold says, "I’ve been playing jazz saxophone in the Bay Area for many years. The son of arranger, big band leader, and RCA recording artist Marty Gold, I grew up listening to the standards of such songwriters as the Gershwins, Cole Porter, and Rodgers and Hart. Though my regular groups play modern jazz (Miles, Monk, Coltrane, Bill Evans, Jessica Williams, Joe Henderson, Wayne Shorter, Charles Lloyd…) as well as our own original music, I also feel a strong connection to those earlier tuneful melodies from Tin Pan Alley and Broadway.

The Ad Lib Ensemble likes to take a looser-than-usual approach to quartet jazz, with band members throwing musical curve balls in real time.

Guitarist Ari Caprow and I lead that group, which often includes bassists Ken Lenga or Carl Herder and drummers Russell Lundgren, Evan Williams, or Darryl Kniffen."

Thursday, February 28, 8-10pm
Gil Cohen Trio

Gil Cohen

Gil Cohen performs on trumpet/flugel horn with Stephanie Lee on bass and guest performers rounding out the trio.

Background: "Don Ferrara, the master teacher of jazz improvisation, has mentored me in this art of playing jazz trumpet.

In addition to my intensive, and long tenure with Don, I studied at the Dick Grove Music Workshops in Studio City, CA, and at the Jazz School in Berkeley, CA. Highlights from those schools were my study of harmony and theory with Dick Grove, small group improvisation with Eddie Marshall, and composition with Don Alberts.

As study never ends, and progress never stops, now I teach myself. That is a skill, which I did not realize at the time, Don was also teaching me."

Saturdays, Each Week, 4 to 6pm

Craig Ventresco and/or Meredith Axelrod

Ragtime and early jazz! Two experts on ragtime and early jazz and blues will delight you with their wide-ranging repertoires.  Expect to hear music from 1890 to 1930.   

The following is from a review of Craig Ventresco by Pete Madsen, Acoustic Guitar magazine, October 2006:

Craig’s unconventional musical direction was set during early childhood, when he fell in love with old 78-rpm recordings of early ragtime and jazz. When other kids were listening to Led Zeppelin, Ventresco was searching through dusty bins for rare sides by such obscure artists as Billy Murray, Arthur Collins, and Will Denny. "I love all kinds of music from the turn of the century - ragtime, waltzes, marches," he explains. "I wasted every dime I've ever made on old records."

Ventresco's parents forced him to take classical guitar lessons, and he can read and write music. But he is essentially a self-taught. Much of the material he plays was not originally guitar music. The rags of pianist Scott Joplin are obvious examples, but Ventresco also draws inspiration from horn players, accordionists, and even the American Quartet, a best-selling vocal group that scored hits during the 1910s and '20s with such popular songs as "Casey Jones," "It's a Long, Long Way to Tipperary," and "Over There."

Here's a YouTube video we've unearthed showing Craig and Meredith performing a duet from the 1910s:  VIDEO HERE



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