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Saxophonist Harold Dawson jazz series throughout May at CityGate Grille

Plus, Elaine Dame duo with Chris White kicks off June

Saxophonist Harold Dawson will grace CityGate Grille weekend guests with a series of performances throughout May and, in honor of the Chicago-born musician, CityGate Grille will offer a special cocktail called “Saxy Dawson” featuring botanical gin, elderflower liqueur, fresh-squeezed lemon juice and lavender bitters, garnished with an edible flower. The Saxy Dawson will be served throughout the month of May at CityGate Grille.

Dawson’s series will open Friday, May 3 with a tribute to Kenny G, followed by a tribute to Boney James Friday, May 10, and a “Ladies Night” R&B tribute Friday, May 17. It will culminate with a “Smooth Jazz” night Saturday, May 25, when Dawson will present a blend of the three prior shows.

Born in Chicago and raised in Kentucky, Dawson was gifted his first saxophone at age 13 by his aunt. His style was nurtured by smooth jazz he would hear on the radio when visiting his grandparents in Chicago. His desire to blend classical music with jazz was influenced by some of the artists he will feature in the CityGate Grille series, Kenny G and Boney James.

“CityGate Grille has a longstanding tradition of presenting live music, particularly jazz,” said General Manager Augustus Solomon. “Harold Dawson surely is a guest favorite, and we are so pleased to present this series of performances.”

Dawson will also play April 12 and 26 at CityGate Grille.

Coming in June

On the heels of Dawson’s series, CityGate Grille will present a performance Friday, June 1, by nationally renowned jazz vocalist Elaine Dame accompanied by pianist Chris White.

Dame has appeared in world-famous venues such as New York’s Rainbow Room and 54 Below. She’s headlined at Herb Alpert’s Vibrato Jazz Grille in Los Angeles, and at the Chicago Jazz Festival. Called “a gem in the city’s vocal jazz scene” by Time Out Chicago, Dame is known for bringing virtuosic interpretations to vintage vocal classics and modern standards alike.

Prior to focusing on jazz vocal performances, Dame, a graduate of The Theater Repertory Program at California State University Northridge, performed in Chicago’s theater scene. She was described in the Chicago Reader as having “a winning stage presence and chameleon-like vocal flexibility.”

White, having made his name as a go-to pianist, arranger and accompanist in the Chicago area, has grazed the cover of Chicago Jazz Magazine, and performed at The Green Mill, Winter’s Jazz Club, The Jazz Kitchen and Chicago Jazz Festival. He is also a faculty member at North Central College in Naperville.

“We love celebrating local artists and look forward to presenting Dame and White to our guests in June,” Soloman said.

CityGate Grille presents live music on Fridays and Saturdays year-round. All shows are 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. at 2020 Calamos Ct., Naperville. Visit for music schedules and reservations.


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