Sonny & Perley Quartet – Sophisticated Jazz With a Bossa Nova Accent at Jazz on Jay

Keyboardist/arranger Sonny Daye and singer Perley Rousseau take full advantage of how music makes magic as the universal language; needing no translation to charm and entertain.

Many songs on their four albums (since 1996) are in Portuguese, the language of Brazilian bossa nova master Antonio Carlos Jobim. Several others are sung in French, but Sonny and Perley play and sing most often in the elegant, understated way of Jobim, restrained, relaxed, quietly beautiful.

The longtime team, however, doesn’t neglect what the late, great Tony Bennett dubbed the Great American Songbook. They claim venerable jazz standards, Broadway classics, and favorite pop songs as their own.

Sonny and Perley perform with bassist Erik Johnson and percussionist Brian Melick, who seems to be everywhere onstage these days.

In more than 30 years onstage and in the studio together, they make soft-spoken but eloquent music that has become popular across America and Europe in cabarets, festivals, concerts, and clubs. All About Jazz magazine proclaims, “They brightly meld lyricism, passion and rhythm in a way that is both rich and exotic.” And in 2013, they earned the singular honor of being chosen to perform a prelude concert for Broadway giant Stephen Sondheim.

“Rousseau’s voice is like vanilla pudding,” reports the Woodstock Times. “Daye is a creative and versatile jazz pianist.”

The concert is presented in memory of Dorice and Norman Brickman.

All Jazz on Jay concerts are free through support from the New York State Council on the Arts, Schenectady County, the Upstate Coalition for a Fairgame, the Schenectady Foundation, and the Downtown Schenectady Improvement Corporation. is the series media sponsor.

Showtime is at noon at the Jay Street Marketplace. Rain site: Robb Alley at Proctors, adjacent to Apostrophe.

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