As of last Friday May 25th, I am officially a Seattle resident for the first time since 2004. I’m so happy to be back and can’t wait to start playing lots of great music with all the amazing musicians here.
So far I’m having a blast! Trekked out to the Gorge on Saturday to see my friends in tUnE-yArDs tear it up in front of a very enthusiastic Sasquatch audience. Also got to enjoy a mind-blowing performance by the Legendary Roots Crew from side-stage. Questlove is my hero! Then on Sunday night I played my first Seattle gig with Wayne Horvitz’s conduction band at the Royal Room.
Spread the word Seattle people, I’m ready to dive in and start doing some good work. Recently revamped the teaching page on my website. I’ll be available to teach from my new home in the Roosevelt neighborhood as well as a little bit at the Gallery 1412 near Capital Hill. Also, I’ll be curating the Racer Session on Sunday June 17th (Father’s Day) at 8pm sharp. More info to come.
This is an especially exciting month because I have been given the opportunity to begin booking a monthly jazz series at the Actual Cafe. The first event will take place Sunday February 27th from 5-7:30pm. Check out the flier for details.
The premise of this series is to provide an all-ages music venue that is collectively produced and supported by the local Bay Area jazz community. My hope is to provide a much needed opportunity for young student musicians to experience and become a more active part of the local scene.
HOWEVER, the number of people that attend the first show will entirely determine whether this series exists at all. If (and only if) the first show goes well then the cafe will commit to a series most likely taking place on the 3rd Sunday of each month from 7-10pm.
SO, please mark your calendars, spread the word, and help us get this series off the ground!
Below is a more detailed description of my two primary goals for the series if it continues:
1) To create a situation where a community of local creative musicians (i.e you) makes a commitment to attend and support this series every month. Specifically I intend to have each month’s event curated by a different person. That person will be responsible for planning an entire evening of music however they see fit. As you probably know this is a model in use by The Stone in NYC, as well as a highly successful series in Seattle: http://racersessions.com/ (the racer sessions received a big write up in the New York Times last summer, and recordings from each week are now being officially archived at the University of Washington). I think the curator structure is an effective way to broaden the scope of activities and make this series more relevant for more people.
I should say that I do not by any means wish for this series to strictly adhere to presenting “jazz” performances. This is merely a starting point as a way to sell the series to the management and general public. My impression is that as long as there is an established audience, it will be fairly easy to transition to more diverse programming.
2) To create an all-ages music series that seeks to connect with and involve high school/college age musicians. I rarely perform in venues that are accessible for anyone under 21. This is problematic because there are a lot of talented young people who could benefit from being exposed to music happening in the area. It would also be great if young musicians could have the opportunity to perform for an audience of older musicians. For those of you that are teachers, and are connected with the schools; you would be an excellent resource for achieving this goal.
Please leave comments and/or feel free to contact me directly if you are interested in helping. As always, thanks for reading!