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Opened in 2008, The Dirty Dog is one of the premiere destinations in the United States for world class Jazz and cuisine. It combines the charm of an English-style pub with intimacy and meticulous attention to detail and hospitality.
The Dirty Dog brings together the musicians and guests in a way that creates a lasting impression and desire to come back.
January 8, 2020



IanFink @DDJC Osler


Pianist Ian Finkelstein at the Dirty Dog Jazz Cafe / Photo by John Osler



Back about 14 years ago I produced a live music series at the Jazz Café at the Music Hall. It was called the Jazz Café Discovery Series. Each week we’d feature local bands and artists from area high schools and universities. Their performances would be broadcast each Sunday night on WVMV 98.7 radio.



Since then, many of these young artists have gone on to become some of today’s best Jazz musicians in the Detroit area with many of them attracting national and international attention. These include Rafael Statin, DeSean Jones, Marcus Ellliot, Alex White, Jon Dixon and Ian Finkelstein to name a few.



As we mentioned in a previous blog article, Ian Finkelstein is known today as a pianist, producer, composer and educator.



IanFinkstein B+W Osler


Ian Finkelstein at the Dirty Dog Jazz Cafe / Photo by John Osler



During our Music Hall series, Ian really stood out as he played with technical precision and a good understanding of improvisational structure – making it hard to believe he and some of the others were still in high school.



Many of them have begun touring around the world and all have played the Dirty Dog Jazz Cafe. Ian and his band will be there again January 15-18. For more information go to our website at I’m looking forward to hearing his intuitive interpretations of Jazz standards as well as his own compositions.



Last time, he created a trance-like listening experience filled with personal intensity while flawlessly executing the music on the keyboard.


Ian graduated from the University of Michigan with two degrees: a BFA in Jazz Piano Performance and another in Performing Arts Technology. He’s also been mentored by many top musicians such as the late Marcus Belgrave, and Geri Allen and has shared the stage with many legendary Jazz artists including Benny Golson, Robert Hurst, and others.



Chick Corea, who was in town for the 2015 Jazz Festival was immediately impressed with his playing when he accidentally walked in on Ian (who was rehearsing) on his way to the Green Room at the Dirty Dog.



IanFinkstein B+W Osler


Detroit Jazz pianist, producer, composer, and educator, Ian Finkelstein.
Photo by John Osler



IanFink @WDET.orgStripeShirt

Ian Finkelstein  / Photo by WDET-FM



In 2014 he performed in Marcus Belgrave’s band at in New York with Marcus Elliot, Marion Hayden, Joan Belgrave, and Gayelynn McKinney. New York Times Jazz writer Ben Ratliff wrote, “the band also included two young Detroit musicians, the tenor saxophonist Marcus Elliott and the pianist Ian Finkelstein, convincing and confident, evolved in touch and tone, the kind of musicians New York would be lucky to have….”



A fan of many kinds of music, Finkelstein says some of his favorite pianists are Herbie Hancock, Andrew Hill, Jaki Byard and Ramsey Lewis. He said he’s been enjoying a lot of house and techno music these days, and also been creating a lot of his own. Other favorites include Theo Parrish, Norm Talley, Rick Wilhite, Roy Ayers and many others. As mentioned earlier, he’s also been checking out the late pianist Ken Cox’s Contemporary Jazz Quintet, from the 1970s and beyond and also the masterful drummer, Max Roach.





Detroit Public Radio mainstay, Judy Adams, is a trained pianist, composer and musicologist who hosts a Jazz and contemporary music show on CJAM 99.1FM and guest hosts on WRCJ 90.9FM.




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Each week the Dirty Dog Jazz Cafe hosts live performances from the greatest jazz musicians across the country.