Black Dolphin residency in 2018



ARC recording artist Christopher Burnett and his Quintet will be performing on the first Saturday of each month at Black Dolphin in Kansas City beginning on 6 January 2018. The Black Dolphin at 1813 Grand Blvd, is the newest, and the third stage to be featured as part of the Green Lady Lounge.

Chris Burnett Quintet is Burnett on alto saxophone with:

Roger Wilder on piano,

Charles Gatschet on guitar,

Dominique Sanders on bass

and Clarence Smith on Drums.

Other musicians are scheduled to substitute for members who have prior commitments that conflict with CbQ dates at Black Dolphin. As an example, Missouri State professor, Marty Morrison will replace Clarence Smith who will be directing an all-district honors jazz band in Missouri on January 6. The group is looking forward to this residency.

AUDIO: "A Risk I Take" by Mark Taylor, performed by Chris Burnett Quartet

Burnett said he found his voice as an improviser and composer progressively over a few decades that included completing a full 22-year career with military bands. He said the work is continuous, but understanding his instrument and how chords functioned in most types of music in detail has been vital.

“Of course I could play when I was in the military bands, everybody has to be extremely good to get those type gigs,” Burnett said. “Being able to devote all of my time to applied improvisation, modern harmony, and music theory once we moved back home to my native Kansas City metropolitan area to live again in 2001 was the key for me.”

AUDIO: "Triste" by Antonio Carlos Jobim, performed by Chris Burnett Quartet

Burnett said the residency at Black Dolphin is also vital at this stage in his career toward professional development – as a performer, composer, and recording artist. He said the type of cohesion that comes from a band playing together helps to refine its repertoire inherently and contributes toward members collectively learning the originals.

“It’s always fun playing with CbQ. We performed a well-received set at the Paola Roots Festival this past August, and our music sounded excellent,” Burnett said. “Playing regularly due to the monthly residency at Black Dolphin, we should be able to go into a studio and record in the fall of 2018.”

AUDIO: "Firebird" by Christopher Burnett, performed by Chris Burnett Quartet


“We are also hoping to finalize the contract to play a Jazz Appreciation Month concert for Gerald Dunn at the Blue Room within the historic 18th & Vine District in April,” Burnett said. “It’s a blessing to be able to play my original compositions and some of my favorite works by other composers with the great musicians in this group.”


John Scott, owner – photo: Jazz Ambassador Magazine / posted about Black Dolphin on December 10, 2017, stating: The expansion of the Green Lady Lounge jazz complex was the most encouraging development of 2017.  The Black Dolphin, a venue directly to the north of the Green Lady Lounge, is the latest (addition) to the jazz hub in the heart of the Crossroads District.  The Black Dolphin, the Orion Room, and the Green Lady Lounge host more than 20 performances every week. (an economic development organization dedicated to tourism) lists 15 venues featuring live performances of jazz and blues music in the city. Black Dolphin is among the newest listening rooms. Burnett wants music lovers, friends, relatives, and fans to make plans to attend the First Saturday concerts by CbQ.

“Thanks to John Scott who has been doing tangible things as a presenter and venue owner to provide live jazz opportunities for artists in Kansas City for several years,” Burnett said. “He’s also committed to us as locally based artists too, and I appreciate having this opportunity to perform at Black Dolphin.”


Born in Olathe, Burnett grew up in the United States and overseas as a military child during the 1960s and embarked upon life as an adult in the middle 1970s. He is a child of the post-bop era and brings a unique musical aesthetic shaped by those experiences as well as of the present. The music of Burnett’s jazz ensembles comes from this lens.

“I truly appreciate and study many styles and eras of music. Those who attend these performances will hear modern music that is also pleasing to hear,” Burnett said. “If I were to describe myself musically in critical terms, I would state that I am a modern jazz player who also enjoys various forms of improvised music.”