Charles Hotel, 1 Bennett St, Cambridge | 7:30 pm [$25] + 10 pm [$22] | 617.395.7757 or regattabarjazz.com

TIERNEY SUTTON | Sanders Theatre | February 11 | Tierney Sutton has emerged from a crowded field of female jazz-standard singers with her own approach — idiosyncratic arrangements of familiar material, and a unique group concept that she's forged over several albums with pianist Christian Jacob. She's also a fluent improviser who — whatever her flights — never loses her grasp of the text. You can hear every word and understand exactly how Sutton means it.

45 Quincy St, Cambridge | 8 pm | $36-$46 | 617.482.6661 or celebrityseries.org

REED'S BASS DRUM | Lily Pad | February 13 | In addition to being a safe haven for local bands to experiment, the Lily Pad (like Outpost 186, its cousin around the corner) also imports its fair share of standout acts from out of town. In the fall, it was Mike Reed's People, Places & Things from Chicago and Toronto trumpeter Lina Allemano. This winter, my bet is on the trio Reed's Bass Drum (no relation to Mike) out of Brooklyn, with baritone saxophonist Jonah Parzen-Johnson, bassist Noah Garabedian, and drummer Aaron Ewing. Parzen-Johnson is a formidable voice on bari, and the band play the kind of post-bop — knotty tunes, strong grooves, lots of freedom — that has kept the avant-garde alive while shifting the mainstream to the left.

1353 Cambridge St, Cambridge | 9 pm | $10 | lily-pad.net

VIJAY IYER TRIO | Regattabar | February 18 | A provocative emerging voice since the mid-'90s, pianist Iyer more or less conquered the world with his 2009 trio album Historicity (Act). That disc showed him combining the off-kilter inventions of Andrew Hill and Thelonious Monk with his own trance-like exploratory originals and deep dives into unusual "standards" like Leonard Bernstein's "Somewhere." It doesn't hurt that his three-way conversations with bassist Stephan Crump and drummer Marcus Gilmore are amazing high-wire acts.

Charles Hotel, 1 Bennett St, Cambridge | 7:30 pm [$25] + 10 pm [$22] | 617.395.7757 or regattabarjazz.com

 12312010_JazzWayneShorter
Wayne Shorter Quartet

NOAH PREMINGER | Scullers | February 23 | If Preminger's tenor described his singing voice instead of his choice of saxophones, opera lovers might characterize his music as "cultured" — there are wisps of influences that flit through his sound and his improvisational patterns, from Warne Marsh to Lester Young and, oh, George Garzone. But the maturity is all his own. Still in his 20s, Preminger celebrates the release of his second album as a leader, Before the Rain (Palmetto), with his estimable veteran band of pianist Frank Kimbrough, bassist John Hébert, and drummer Matt Wilson.

DoubleTree Guest Suites Hotel, 1 Soldiers Field Road, Boston | February 23 | 8 pm | $20 | 617.562.4111 or scullersjazz.com

BRAD MEHLDAU | Sanders Theatre | March 12 | Last year I advised readers to make haste to Sanders Theatre for a rare Mehldau solo concert. The pianist delivered — with his usual mix of dense textures, yearning lyricism, and obsessive rhythms. This time he returns to Sanders with "and friends," following last year's multi-ensemble double-CD Highway Rider (Nonesuch) with a "new work for piano, six winds, and percussion." Players include pianist Timothy Andres, singer Becca Stevens, saxophonists Chris Cheek, Chris Potter, Joshua Redman, Joris Roelofs, Sam Sadigursky, and Greg Tardy, with more artists TBA.

45 Quincy St, Cambridge | 8 pm | $30-$42 | 617.876.4275 or worldmusic.org

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