Though the students may be young, many are already on their way to becoming seasoned pros, with recording sessions and tours of Japan and New Orleans under their belt. With graduation just days away, this is a great way to catch the current crop of young jazz talent before they move on to bigger things, with all funds raised at the concert going directly to help keep this acclaimed music program going.
Spring Concert: Friday, May 31 at Mission Bay High School, 2475 Grand Ave. 7 p.m. All ages. $10. $5 students / kids. missionbaymusic.com.
Australian singer-songwriter Nikka Costa appears at Humphrey’s Backstage Live on June 1 for two shows. Though still relatively unknown in the U.S., Costa has been recording since 1981, achieving platinum sales elsewhere around the world. Touring in support of her latest album, “Nikka & Strings, Underneath and in Between” Costa is a solid singles’ artist, with excellent hook-filled songs, such as “So Have I For You,” “Like A Feather,” and “Ching, Ching, Ching” all unified by incorporating different elements of funk. Longtime fans won’t want to miss this show, but anyone who enjoys modern R&B will find much to appreciate in Costa’s music.
Nikka Costa: Saturday, June 1, at Humphrey’s Backstage Live, 2241 Shelter Island Drive. 6:30 and 8:30 p.m. humphreysbackstagelive.com.
Dizzy’s is known for presenting the area’s top talent, but occasionally they also present the newest talent. Such will be the case on June 7, when two of the area’s middle schools team up for a night of big band and jazz music. The featured bands will be the Twin Peaks Middle School Jazz Band directed by Gerard Nolan, and the La Mesa Arts Academy Jazz Band under the direction of Mario Jativa. This is a wonderful opportunity to hear up-and-coming young musicians make their debut on the same stage as many of their musical mentors and heroes.
Middle School Jazz: Friday, June 7 at Dizzy’s at Arias Hall, 1717 Morena Blvd. 8 p.m. dizzysjazz.com.
On June 8, the 710 Beach Club will be the site of a special fundraiser benefiting nonprofit organization, Stand Up For Kids. The night will include an art show and music from reggae band Irieality, groove rockers Casual Yak and funky jam band, Thump Juice.
Irieality: Saturday, June 8 at the 710 Beach Club, 710 Garnet Ave. 8 p.m. 21 and up. 710bc.com.
Singer-actress Jennifer Lopez stops in at Pechanga Arena on June 10. Although her recent releases, including new single, “Medicine,” have not had the same sales impact as those released during her turn of the century heyday, there is no denying that Lopez is one of the biggest stars to emerge in the past few decades. Without a new album to push, expect this concert to feature the hits such as “I’m Real” and “Aint It Funny,” mixed in with amazingly choreographed dance numbers. Lopez remains a beloved pop culture icon, with her concerts as much about spectacle as they are about music.
Jennifer Lopez: Monday, June 10, at Pechanga Arena, 3500 Sports Arena Blvd. 8 p.m. pechangaarenasd.com.
Sixteen-piece big band, Big Time Operator, performs at Tio Leo’s on June 11. Continuing the trend of holding events earlier in the day, the swing dancing will kick off at 7:30 p.m. Formed in 1995, Big Time Operator features singers Warren Lovell and Draeh Jirnae, with a roster of top-notch musicians such as band leader, trombonist Kevin Esposito and drummer Larry Grano. The band excels at classic swing-era songs, with energetic arrangements that will appeal to anyone who just wants to listen as well as appeal to the dancers in the crowd.
Big Time Operator: Tuesday June 11 at Tio Leo’s, 5302 Napa St. 7:30 p.m. 21 and up. Cover TBD. tioleos.com.