Vocalese on Down the Road

Jon Hendricks is among the hippest octogenarians still warming a stage. Following the lead of Eddie Jefferson and King Pleasure, Hendricks perfected the art of “vocalese,” that is, fitting lyrics into the trickiest of instrumental jazz solos. With his seminal group Lambert, Hendricks and Ross and others, the 88-year-old singer performs literate, witty, often-tongue-testing lyrics he fashioned for songs by everyone from Monk to Miles to Basie. At 8 p.m. Friday at the Arsht Center (1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami), the master will join acolytes the Manhattan Transfer and the New York Voices for a salute to the vocal form he helped pioneer. The Transfer too has earned its props in the jazz and pop worlds. Now in its 40th year, the group just released one of its most ambitious and engaging recordings with The Chick Corea Songbook. Hardly newcomers, the Voices just celebrated their 20th anniversary. Call 305-949-6722, or visit arshtcenter.org. Tickets cost $45 to $125.
Fri., Jan. 15, 8 p.m., 2010

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