The Madison-based Helen Feest Sextet (Feestet for short) brings a fresh display of rhythm and sound to the table with a side of jazz standards you know and love – made famous by the stylings of Dinah Washington, Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan, Amy Winehouse, and more.
Formed in 2021, their blend of arranged jazz classics and originals pay tribute to the sounds and stories that withstand the test of time.
Helen Feest – vocals
Matty Allen – percussion
Luke Leavitt – piano
Anthony Utehs – guitar
Ari Smith – bass
Feestet is joined by Frank Mckearn IV on the Electronic Valve Instrument. The EVI, a predecessor to the modern EWI, was designed by Nyle Steiner and produced by the Italian instrument maker Crumar. Only 500 were made, and production stopped in 1996, making the instrument officially rare.
More on the Feestet: https://feestet.com/
Gerri DiMaggio is a vocalist drawn to storytelling using the poetry of Jazz. Her music is a sultry mix of American standards, Brazilian samba’s and lush ballads with a contemporary edge.
Gerri has been a major presence in the Madison music scene. She has performed regularly at the Isthmus Jazz Festival, Jazz at Five, Madison’s Festa Italia, Otto’s Restaurant on the deck, and festivals and clubs throughout the area.
Also she has been invited to the Telluride, Colorado Jazz Celebration, The Feast of LA on the Jimmy Kimmel stage, and to Madison’s sister city, Mantova, Italy for the Mantova Music Festival. She performed a special Jazz concert with Andrew Sewell and the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra at Concerts on the Square and was a guest artist with John DeMain and the Madison Symphony Orchestra at Concert on the Green.
Gerri was one of the original producers of Jazz at Five and as music director and promoter she brought to the stage local, regional, and international jazz artists such as Kurt Elling, Joe Sample, John Hicks, Sonny Fortune, Chuchito Valdez, Sheila Jordan, Cyrille Aimee, Richard Davis, and many others.
Gerri has recently released a new recording “Something Cool” along with her husband and guitar player, Bob Pesselman. She will have a new recording coming soon with her longtime band mates, Bob Pesselman, Paul Hastil, John Mesoloras, and Rich Larson.