Guitarist Leni Stern has never been easy to pin down. After touring Europe at the head of her own radical theater company as a teenager, she switched gears and enrolled at Berklee College of Music in Boston — ostensibly to study film scoring, though she wound up playing jazz alongside the likes of Paul Motian, Bill Frisell and Wayne Krantz. Though she never abandoned her jazz leanings (or collaborators), she gradually integrated singer-songwriter elements into her repertoire. Her latest CD, Sabani, mines both of those veins with a more recent twist — African elements culled from several journeys into West Africa, blended with jazz, blues and Stern’s hushed, sinuous vocals. The Munich-born Stern will be joined by djembe player Alioune Faye and bassist Mamadou Ba, making for an exotic, boundary-crossing mixture.
Sun., Sept. 16, 8 p.m., $7, with Dan Blacksberg Trio, Café Clave, 4305 Locust St., riprig.com.