The BAD PLUS celebrate the release of a new album, For All I Care (Heads Up), joined for the first time by a vocalist, Wendy Lewis. Lewis and the boys will play Berklee Performance Center April 3 in a presentation by World Music/CRASHarts (617.876.4275 or www.worldmusic.org).
The always adventurous AARDVARK JAZZ ORCHESTRA takes on one of its most daunting challenges yet: the world premiere of a new piece by visionary composer/multi-instrumentalist Anthony Braxton, conducted by Walter Thompson in Thompson's improvisational "soundpainting" method. (March 7, MIT Kresge Auditorium, 48 Mass Ave, Cambridge; 617.776.8778 or www.aardvarkjazz.com).
Longtime Boston-based violinist MIMI RABSON will premiere "The Berklee Violin Solos," commissioned from her colleagues at Berklee College of Music — Joanne Brackeen, Victor Mendoza, Neil Leonard, Stephen Webber, Winston Maccow, and Norm Zocher. Rabson will give concerts at Longy (February 16, Jewett Hall of First Congregational Church, 11 Garden St, Cambridge, 10 am), Berklee (February 19, David Friend Recital Hall, 921 Boylston St, Boston, 7:30 pm), and Boston Conservatory (February 23, 8 the Fenway, 7:30 pm). All are free.
The LILY PAD (1353 Cambridge St, Cambridge; 617.395.1393 or lily-pad.net) brings in some of the best of the experimental scene. Highlights this season: cross-genre improv-rock band the Tropics (January 22); a "Festival of Musical Indeterminancy" (January 24); bassist Alex Trampas's Mini Big Band followed by Dred Scott (February 20); saxophonist/composer Alex Spiegelman's Thursday-night series; and, of course, avant-garde legends the Fringe every Monday night.
Also keep your eyes open for events at OUTPOST 186, 186 1/2 Cambridge St, Cambridge (www.zeitgeist-outpost.org) and check the Phoenix and the always useful JazzBoston calendar at www.jazzboston.org.
Editor's note: In a previous version of this article, the date for Eleonora Bianchini's show at the Regattabar was left out. Her show is January 15, 2009 and is added above. Also, the writer incorrectly listed the "Brave New Piano Worlds" show as happening at the ICA on February 30. The correct date (listed above) is February 13.