The tempo of Chicago jazz does not slow for the holidays.
Among the highlights:
Roy Hargrove: For the past several Decembers, Hargrove – a lyrically inspired trumpeter – has played an extended residency at the Jazz Showcase to ring in the New Year. He's doing that once more, the engagement typically drawing the club's largest crowds of the year. The nature and caliber of Hargrove's playing has varied, but last time around he sounding considerably stronger than the year before. And, of course, his melodic work on flugelhorn was nonpareil, particularly on a ballad he often returns to, "Never Let Me Go." As always, he'll lead a quintet. 8 and 10 p.m. Friday, Saturday, Monday, Tuesday and Thursday through Jan. 3; 8 and 11 p.m. Wednesday (New Year's Eve); 4, 8 and 10 p.m. Sunday and Jan. 4; prices vary; at the Jazz Showcase, 806 S. Plymouth Court; 312-360-0234 or jazzshowcase.com
Marquis Hill: In an exquisitely timed booking, the Green Mill will spotlight the winner of last month's prestigious Thelonious Monk International Trumpet Competition. The prize includes a $25,000 scholarship, a major-label recording contract with Concord Music Group and, in effect, a degree of attention that any talented 27-year-old jazz musician desires but few attain. Hill grew up in Chicago, was educated at Northern Illinois University and DePaul University and, not least, in the hothouse of Chicago jazz clubs. He moved to New York earlier this year but has vowed to stay visible in his hometown. For this engagement, Hill will lead his Blacktet. 9 p.m. Friday and 8 p.m. Saturday at the Green Mill Jazz Club, 4802 N. Broadway; $12; 773-878-5552 or greenmilljazz.com
Anne Burnell: The veteran Chicago singer mines the narrow zone where cabaret and jazz overlap, often with her husband and long-time collaborator Mark Burnell. For this outing, though, she'll celebrate a different partnership: her work with the superb Chicago guitarist Henry Johnson, who produced and arranged her newest album, "Summer Days & Dreamy Nights." Johnson plays on the recording, as well, the musicians covering a broad swath of repertoire, from Burnell originals ("San Juan") to standards ("Close to You") to less familiar tunes (Henry Mancini's "Dreamsville"). "Summer Days & Dreamy Nights" marks an important step for Burnell, one enriched by Johnson's jazz sensibility. 5 and 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday at Andy's Jazz Club, 11 E. Hubbard St.; $10-$15; 312-642-6805 or andysjazzclub.com
Mike LeBrun: Chicago jazz listeners may know saxophonist LeBrun best for his work with pianist-composer Josh Moshier, the two having collaborated on recordings, concerts and national radio broadcasts. But Moshier has headed to Los Angeles to develop his career in film scoring, and LeBrun on this occasion will lead his Rosetta quintet, with trumpeter Chris Lawrence, bassist Joe Vasquez, guitarist Lindon McCarty and drummer Luke Angle. This will be a welcome opportunity to hear LeBrun as bandleader-soloist. 9:30 and 11:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday at Andy's Jazz Club, 11 E. Hubbard St.; $15; 312-642-6805 or andysjazzclub.com
Chris Foreman: Musicians come and go through our clubs and concert halls, but some become fixtures: figures whose work always seems to be there for us to savor. Organist Foreman long has held the early-evening slot at the Green Mill, entertaining visitors from behind the bar in one of the most congenial offerings in Chicago music. If Foreman did nothing more than play the keys (and pedals) of his instrument, he'd give listeners plenty to absorb. But his singing and repartee have made this an end-of-the-week oasis for work-weary Chicagoans, a way to unwind after toil and to ease into the late-night music-making yet to come. The place is always packed, and not only because the price is hard to beat. 5 to 8 p.m. Friday at the Green Mill Jazz Club, 4802 N. Broadway; free; 773-878-5552 or greenmilljazz.com
Eric Schneider: Swing-era jazz has no more fervent or accomplished champion in Chicago than saxophonist Schneider, whose touring with Earl Hines and Count Basie, among others, put him on the bandstand with some of the architects of the genre. By definition, that kind of training no longer is available, Schneider therefore representing a link to an era and an idiom that never loses its appeal. As he does every week, he'll lead the late-late show at the Green Mill, a time-slot when various musicians around town stop in and play a chorus or two. Schneider will be joined the harmonically inventive pianist Dennis Luxion, bassist Steve Hashimoto and drummer Rick Shandling. 1:30 to 4 a.m. Saturday (late Friday night) at the Green Mill Jazz Club, 4802 N. Broadway; no cover; 773-878-5552 or greenmilljazz.com
Frieda Lee: A seasoned singer deeply influenced by Sarah Vaughan, Lee brings luxuriant tone and an unstoppable sense of swing rhythm to the mainstream jazz repertory. She'll appear in an intimate setting, the Sunday jazz session presented by the non-profit Hyde Park Jazz Society. 7:30 to 11:30 p.m. Sunday at Room 43, 1043 E. 43d St.; $10; hydeparkjazzsociety.com
"Portraits in Jazz": Howard Reich's e-book collects his exclusive interviews with Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Lena Horne, Ella Fitzgerald and others, as well as profiles of early masters such as Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington and Billie Holiday. Get "Portraits in Jazz" chicagotribune.com/ebooks.