Hey, what a cool kick-off for Spoleto Festival USA‘s Wachovia Jazz Series. I caught jazz singer René Marie‘s set on Fri. May 25 at CofC’s beautiful Cistern venue and it was a winner. She and and her trio — pianist Kevin Bales, double-bassist bassist Rodney Jordan, and drummer Quentin Baxter — perform again tonight (Sat. May 26). They handled a mix of standards and originals — from “Summertime,” “Caravan,” and an unexpected version of Bob Seger’s “Turn the Page” to brand-new originals such as “Stronger Than You Think” and “Rim Shot.”

Check out a full live review of this and all of this year’s Wachovia Jazz concerts on City Paper‘s web coverage of the jazz, blues, and roots music events (here). The Post & Courier‘s main jazz man Jack McCray seemed to enjoyed the gig, too (see his review here).

Tonight, it’s off to Tonik‘s Piccolo Jazz Series for some Leah Surez & Toca Toca