Lee Brice and Randy Houser, Count Basie Orchestra: Also Playing

November 7, 2017 GMT

Lee Brice and Randy Houser, Count Basie Orchestra: Also Playing

CLEVELAND, Ohio – Country and jazz are the ying and yang of this week’s Also Playing offerings, with Lee Brice and Randy Houser supplying the former and the Legendary Count Basie Orchestra the latter.

Lee Brice and Randy Houser, 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 10, Hard Rock Rocksino. Four years ago, Garth Brooks began the comeback that would rightly earn him the 2016 CMA entertainer of the year award by releasing his version of Lee Brice’s “More Than a Memory.″ As great as Garth’s cover is, Brice’s original is better – there’s something about the honesty of a songwriter singing his own music that resonates differently. That alone will make Friday night special. But add operatic quality and range of Randy Houser, the other half of this co-headlining acoustic tour, and you’ve got a double winner. Tickets, $43.50 to $65, plus fees, are available at the box office, online at ticketmaster.com and by phone at 1-800-745-3000.

The Legendary Count Basie Orchestra, 7 and 9 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, Nov. 15 and 16, Nighttown. Count Basie was 83 when he died in 1984, and by that time, the band leader and pianist had created a lifetime of work that made him a legend. The designation admittedly is overused, but in this case, it fits. The Basie name continues to resonate with jazz and big band fans today, more than 30 years after his passing. Nine individual Grammys and four Grammy Hall of Fame Awards over the course of his career will do that. The musicians who are carrying on the tradition that began with 1937′s “One O’Clock Jump″ know that they bear a heavy responsibility – you don’t phone in a Count Basie tune unless you’re looking to change careers – and they do a great job of upholding his standards. Tickets, $40, are available at the door, online at nighttowncleveland.com and by phone at 216-795-0550.