The best jazz shows to see in Denver in October

SAT | DENVER JAZZFEST at NATIONAL WESTERN | 10/5/13 The inaugural Denver Jazz Fest includes contemporary jazz stars like keyboardist Brian Culbertson, Hiroshima, who formed almost three decades ago, Horns of Plenty (featuring saxophonist Darren Rahn and flutist Althea Rene) as well as R&B singer Kenny Lattimore and the legendary Bay Area R&B, soul and funk act Tower of Power.

See also: Ten essential jazz albums if you know squat about jazz

SAT | KNEEBODY at DAZZLE | 10/5/13 Kneebody has had many labels thrown at it, but none seem to fit. That said, the members of the transcontinental quintet (saxophonist Ben Wendel, keyboardist Adam Benjamin, drummer Nate Wood and Denver natives, trumpeter Shane Endsley and bassist Kaveh Rastegar) haven't exactly gone out of their way to make it easy for folks to pin down their shapeshifting sound, which is rooted in jazz, funk and rock. Thanks to a system of musical cues they've developed that allows each player to tweak nearly any element of any given song -- be it volume, orchestration, tempo or key -- the act's arrangements change constantly and zigzag through various vibes and moods.

SAT & SUN | EDDIE GOMEZ TRIO at DAZZLE | 10/19-20 While Eddie Gomez's eleven-year stint with legendary pianist Bill Evans was a milestone for virtuosic bassist, he's also had a chance to perform with other jazz luminaries like Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, George Benson and McCoy Tyner. Quite at home in the piano trio format, Gomez teamed up with Chick Corea and the late drummer Paul Motian on Further Explorations, which won a Latin Grammy last year from Best Instrumental album. For this pair of shows at Dazzle, Gomez is joined by pianist Stefan Karlsson, who has been performing with Gomez since 1996, and drummer Ed Soph.

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Jon Solomon writes about music and nightlife for Westword, where he's been the Clubs Editor since 2006.
Contact: Jon Solomon

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