From Herbie Hancock to Bobby Broom, a bustling jazz weekend

This will be a singular weekend in Chicago jazz, with a remarkable breadth of activity and styles. Among the highlights:

Herbie Hancock: We face a shortage of jazz legends these days, the old ones having passed away and the new ones unlikely to match their fame in our fragmented world of arts and entertainment. Which only makes Hancock that much more of a treasure, a pianist who worked with Miles Davis in the 1960s and led all manner of jazz and pop-tinged bands in the ensuing decades. Soon to be doubly honored with a Kennedy Center Honor in December and a 34-CD boxed set, "Herbie Hancock: The Complete Columbia Album Collection 1972-1988," to be released in November, Hancock returns to his hometown with a premiere of sorts. He'll be fronting his quartet – with guitarist Lionel Loueke, bassist James Genus and drummer Vinnie Colaiuta — with tabla virtuoso Zakir Hussain for the first time. Expect Hancock compositions reconceived for an East-meets-West setting. 8 p.m. Friday at Symphony Center, 220 S. Michigan Ave.; $38-$60; 312-294-3000 or

Bobby Broom Trio: For the past several months, Chicago guitarist Broom has been on the road, leading the Deep Blue Organ Trio as it opened across the country for Steely Dan, culminating with an extended run at the Beacon Theatre in New York. Now Broom returns home to lead his trio in an increasingly active, important and stylistically open-armed venue, Constellation. Broom will share the stage with stalwart Chicago bassist Dennis Carroll and rising drummer Makaya McCraven. Will Constellation's emphasis on experimental idioms encourage this band to seek out new sounds? We'll know soon. 9:30 p.m. Friday at Constellation, 3111 N. Western Ave.; $10;

"Remembering Jodie Christian": If pianist Christian had been as celebrated as he was admired and beloved, he would have been a household name wherever jazz is valued. Instead, he was top-notch musician known to connoisseurs and sought out by young musicians who yearned to be mentored by him. Christian died last year, at age 80, and this concert stands to be a worthy tribute to an under-acknowledged master. Pianist Miguel de la Cerna and trumpeter Brad Goode, who both traveled in Christian's orbit when they were young men, are co-leading a concert that also will feature saxophonist Ron Blake, another Christian acolyte. They'll be joined by bassist Marlene Rosenberg, drummer Xavier Breaker and guitarist Alejandro Urzagaste in rarely heard music by Christian and standards he favored. The program is presented by the non-profit Jazz Institute of Chicago and the Chicago Park District as part of the long-running JazzCity series. 7 p.m. Friday at West Pullman Park, 401 W. 123d St.; free; or 312-427-1676

Laurence Hobgood: One of these days, perhaps the music world will recognize the stature and tonal beauty of former Chicagoan Hobgood's pianism. Until then, those in the know will have him to themselves, the pianist making periodic bows in the spotlight when he's not working as accompanist for Kurt Elling. He'll enjoy such a moment this weekend, playing two nights at the Green Mill, where he performed often in the 1990s. This time he'll lead a quintet featuring saxophonist Ernie Watts and trumpeter Marquis Hill, with bassist Clark Sommers and drummer Jared Schonig. It's a strong lineup by any measure, even if listeners already have heard Hobgood with Watts in an earlier Elling outing (Sommers and Schonig, too, tour with Hobgood and Elling). What we really need to hear is Hobgood in a trio setting, in which does most of the heavy lifting himself and steps out of everyone else's shadow. 9 p.m. Friday and 8 p.m. Saturday at the Green Mill Jazz Club, 4802 N. Broadway; $12; 773-878-5552 or

Eldar Djangirov: The prodigy has grown up – or at least the calendar tells us so. Djangirov made quite a media splash as a teenage prodigy performing under the single name Eldar, but now, at the grand old age of 26, he steps up into a higher, more adult level of expectation. He has performed all too rarely in the Chicago area, making this performance a coup for Andy's Jazz Club and an opportunity for pianophiles to check out Djangirov's progress. He'll lead a trio, thereby placing himself in the lion's den. 9:30 and 11:15 p.m. Friday and Saturday at Andy's Jazz Club, 11 E. Hubbard St.; $15; 312-642-6805 or

John Fedchock with the DePaul Jazz Ensemble: The periodic residencies of the DePaul Jazz Ensemble – a strong collegiate band – have been highlights on the Jazz Showcase calendar. That's due not simply to the enthusiasm of the students but to what happens when they partner with a leading jazz soloist. Previous outings with saxophonists Jimmy Heath, Phil Woods, Benny Golson and others have elevated the orchestra and the guest star alike, each benefiting from the other's aspirations. This all unfolds under the direction of DePaul professor Bob Lark, who somehow keeps the young musicians' work at a consistently high level, even with constantly changing personnel. For this engagement, the musicians will partner with Fedchock, a trombonist of considerable achievement and reputation. 8 and 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 4 and 8 p.m. Sunday; at the Jazz Showcase, 806 S. Plymouth Ct.; $20-$35; $10 for students; 312-369-0234 or

Steven Lugerner: Multi-reedist Lugerner walks a fine line that wends through composition, improvisation, jazz, classical, avant-garde and other orthodoxies, venturing freely into all of them. He was won critical accolades for this freedom of thought, as well as for his fluency on a variety of woodwinds. For this engagement, he'll lead his quartet, with pianist Myra Melford, trumpeter Russ Johnson and drummer Michael Sarin. 9:30 p.m. Saturday at Constellation, 3111 N. Western Ave.; $10;

Audra McDonald: One of the leading song interpreters of her vocally impoverished generation, McDonald proves that that there are new insights to be found in the American songbook, as well as new repertoire to be explored and developed. She argues the latter point often, and especially in her newest recording, "Go Back Home," which juxtaposes standards with work by emerging composers. 8 p.m. Saturday at Symphony Center, 220 S. Michigan Ave.; $60; 312-294-3000 or

Xavier Breaker: The young Chicago drummer gets busier all the time in a variety of bands, playing with bassist Matt Ulery, saxophonist Rajiv Halim, trumpeter Corey Wilkes, the Chicago Jazz Orchestra and many others. For this engagement, he gets to lead a band of his own, in a performance presented by the non-profit Hyde Park Jazz Society. 7:30 to 11:30 p.m. Sunday at Room 43, 1043 E. 43d St.; $10;

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