Soul Food

If any musician in town has the cred to open up a club whose name translates as “voice,” it’s Khani Cole.

The adult-contemporary soultress and her skins-playing hubby, Mike Florio, have transformed the old Leccabaffi space into Vocé Ristoranté & Lounge. In one room, there’s a swanky Italian eatery. In the other, there’s a plush lounge where folks can marinate their ears in the sounds of burning jazz and take-you-back soul. “I want it to be warm, comfortable, and a place where something can be said onstage,” says Cole.

It’s most definitely that. Already during the four-week “soft opening” period, legends such as Joey DeFrancesco, Steve Gadd, and Dennis Rowland have been coaxed out of comfy black-leather booths to perform. And in the very near future, Cole says, the joint will showcase high-quality locals and national acts six nights a week.

Check out the grand-opening shindig featuring a quartet of Cole, Florio, Rachel Eckroth on voice/keys, and bassist Mel Brown. Knowing the way things have gone, we wouldn’t be surprised if Stevie Wonder or Norah Jones rises out of the venue’s shadows to sit in, udig?

Fri., Jan. 18, 9:30 p.m.-1 a.m., 2008
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Steve Jansen
Contact: Steve Jansen