BELLINGHAM NATIVE, JEFF BUSCH, BRINGS BOSSA NOVA TO TOWN
Drummer, Jeff Busch, now lives in Seattle, but has deep Bellingham roots. Interested in rhythms that originated outside the U.S., he has revisited his hometown with groups playing African and Latin American music that feature many artists from foreign lands who now call Seattle home. Jeff will be bringing up two fabulous musicians originally from Latin America as part of a salute to the unique Brazilian contribution to the world of jazz, the Bossa Nova.
The ﬁrst Brazilian is Marco de Carvalho who will providing both the guitar and vocal contributions to the Bossa Nova Quartet Marco is a Brazilian musician, originally from Rio de Janeiro. He graduated from the prestigious Music Conservatory of Rio de Janeiro under Juarez Carvalho and Sergio Vale. He studied composition and harmony under Luiz Eça and Ronaldo Miranda. Marco has been a performance guitarist, composer and arranger for thirty years. He plays an extensive repertoire of music from Rio de Janeiro as well as his own compositions. Marco has played with many musicians in Brazil and the USA. He has recorded on numerous CDs and sound tracks also producing and arranging.
The pianist is Julio Jauregui who was born in Louisiana and grew up in Mexico City.
In 1990, Julio moved to Eugene, Oregon. In Eugene, he attended Lane Community College for two years where he received best theory student of the year award. He later enrolled at the University of Oregon to ﬁnish his music degree. He studied jazz piano with Gary Versace and jazz improvisation with saxophone player Steve Owen.
Bassist Jeff Johnson will be appearing with the group as well.
Since bossa nova music was created for dancing as well as listening, we’ll be keeping a large portion of the dance floor available for those who would like to express their enthusiasm vertically.
Concert is on Saturday, April 27th from 3-5pm at the Dance Barn in Sudden Valley (Gate 2), 8 Barnview Court. Tickets are in aid of the South Whatcom Library and cost $20 with a special student discount prices of $10. Tickets are available at Village Books, the Sudden Valley Office or on-line at http://lcj3.com/websites/suddenvalleyjazz/. For more information or special requests, call Mr. K.C. Sulkin at 360-670-1709.
A crowd of nearly 200 people were treated to a bit of jazz nostalgia Saturday when a bunch of Northwest jazz musicians revived the excitement and the spirit of Norman Granz’s Jazz At the Philharmonic concerts at the opening of this year’s Sudden Valley Jazz series at the Sudden Valley Dance Barn.
The opening set paid homage to the massive jam sessions featuring some jazzdoms great musicians. Ably taking the place of the likes of Dizzy Gillespie, J.J. Johnson, Johnny Hodges, Coleman Hawkins, Buddy de Franco, Nat King Cole, Ray Brown and Buddy Rich were Michael VanBebber,trumpet; Brad Shigeta, trombone; Thomas Harris, tenor; Eric Vanderbilt-Matthews, alto and clarinet; Tony Foster, piano; Nate Parker, bass and Julian MacDonough, drums. They opened with Robbin’s Nest and closed with Lester Leaps In and played some great 40’s standards in between.
Norman Granz always closed the show with Ella Fitzgerald backed by her trio and Seattle’s Greta Matassa easily stepped into her shoes (she also shared that Norman’s ﬁrst choice was Billy Holiday, but that Ella took the spot for her own with a wild version of “How High The Moon”.) Backed by Darin Clendenin on piano, Clipper Anderson on bass and Mark Ivester on drums, Greta sang many 40’s numbers from “I Told You I Loved You Now Get Out” to “Body And Soul” and ﬁnished by calling Thomas Harris and Julian MacDonough to join in a rendition of “How High the Moon” that would’ve had Norman
Granz smiling for ear to ear and had the Dance Barn audience on its feet. (For those who want a live video, go to Meredith Ann Murray’s facebook posting and big thanks to Meredith for capturing this magic moment.) I’ve also attached some great black and white photos taken by my friend and wonderful photographer, Jim Ollett. Hope you can open them.
A great way to start the season with more great jazz to come. Brazilian guitarist, vocalist, Marco Carvalho, salutes Bossa Nova on April 27th. Get your tickets now.
PACIFIC NORTHWEST ARTISTS SALUTE JAZZ AT THE PHILHARMONIC
By K.C. Sulkin, producer Sudden Valley Jazz
In the mid-’40’s, jazz producer Norman Granz, looked at the empty stage of Los Angeles’ Philharmonic Hall, and saw a great opportunity to ﬁll a musical void. The swing era was winding down and there were a lot of great jazz musicians looking for work. To add to that, be-bop, the new jazz style, was not grabbing the attention of the general public the way swing dancing had done and that meant more great jazz jazz musicians looking for jobs. Back East in New York City, big auditoriums like Town Hall were drawing large audiences to see dixieland and trad jazz musicians under the leadership of Eddie Condon and Mezz Mezzrow, get together and play, without any pre-rehearsal, whatever they decided to play at that moment.
Granz decided to rent Philharmonic Hall in L.A. for the same kind of jam session concert, but using swing and be-bop musicians instead of dixie cats. To his delight, they were a huge success and he later decided to tour the group, utilizing appropriate halls in different cities across the U.S. Later tours went to Europe and the far East.
Bellingham drummer, Julian MacDonough and I decided to pool our talents to re-create this free, jam session concert as part of the 2019 Sudden Valley Jazz series. Budget restraints meant that he would not be able to open the doors to large amounts of players, but Julian felt that we could recreate the atmosphere of the original with 7 jazz players from the region and I suggested that we must get a vocalist to ﬁll the spot usually taken by Ella Fitzgerald or Billie Holiday. Who better to ﬁll the bill than Seattle’s Greta Matassa. With Greta on board, Julian wracked his brain to think of jam session musicians from the Paciﬁc Northwest who were comfortable in both the swing and be-bop modes. He enlisted sax men, Thomas Harris and Jonathan Doyle, trombonist Brad Shigata, trumpet player Michael VanBebber, pianist, Tony Foster and bassist Michael Glynn.
The concert is planned to feature all horn players playing a solo number to begin the concert with a jam session ending the ﬁrst half. Greta will do a set backed by her trio including Darin Clendenon, Clipper Anderson and Mark Ivester that will feature vintage jazz standards and will then join the ensemble for a ﬁnal jam on that 40’s jazz classic, “How High The Moon”.
The fruits of all this labor will be on display at the Dance Barn in Sudden Valley on Saturday, March 30th at 3pm. Don’t miss it (or as they said in the 40’s, “be there or be square”!
Tickets are available at Village Books, the main ofﬁce at Sudden Valley in Gate 2 or on-line at www.fswl.org. Cost is $20 for adults and $10 for students. For further information, call K.C. Sulkin at 360-671-1709.
PIANIST BILL ANSCHELL JOINS SALUTE TO MILES DAVIS IN SUDDEN VALLEY
The salute to jazz legendary trumpet player, Miles Davis, has added another all-star musician for the November 10th concert at the Jazz Barn in Gate 2 in Sudden Valley. Seattle pianist, Bill Anschell, will be joining a group that already includes Kevin Woods on trumpet; tenor sax man, Josh Cook; bassist Roger Yashamita and Judd Sherwood on drums.
The band will heavily feature the music that Davis played for Columbia Records in the 60’s under the direction of Gil Evans and with Davis’ own small jazz group that included John Coltrane. Woods plays the Davis parts and Josh Cook is an admirable stand-in for Coltrane. Some of the pianists who worked with Davis included Red Garland, Wynton Kelly, Bill Evans and Herbie Hancock and Anschell ﬁts nicely in that niche.
The concert also features the Sudden Valley premiere performance of a new, 8 piece vocal group called PNWVoices that sings in the style of the Hi-Lo’s and Manhattan Transfer.
Tickets are $20 and may be purchased on-line at www.fswl.org, Village Books, the Sudden Valley Association Ofﬁce or by contacting K.C. Sulkin at 360-671-1709. The concert is at 3pm on Saturday, Nov. 10 at the Dance Barn, 8 Barnview Court, Gate 2, Sudden Valley.
Tickets for next year’s series, an $80 value, will be sold for the special advance price of $60 during the concert.
Magic Circle Brings Jazz from South Africa to Sudden Valley
Since jazz was born in the miasma of the Mississippi Delta after the Civil War, it has migrated to foreign lands and transformed itself according to the preferences of the locals. The group that will be playing a concert at the Sudden Valley Dance Barn on Saturday, Oct. 6th, pays tribute to the transmutations of jazz in 3 of those foreign climes – Brazil, Cuba and, most importantly, South Africa. This music was popularized in the States by Hugh Masakela and Ibn Ahbrahim (better known as Dollar Brand). The Magic Circle Sextet has taken on a heavy load in paying tribute to the musical genres of those 3 nations but they’re more than up to the task.
The band features a killer front line, featuring Alex Dugdale on both saxophone and tap dancing,Steve Mostovoy on trumpet and Jerome Smith (who most ably backed up La Von Harrison at our last concert) on both trombone and sousaphone. They’re all anchored by a great rhythm section featuring Eric Verlinde (who was also featured with La Von Harrison) on piano, Dean Schmidt on bass and Sudden Valley veteran Jeff Busche, on drums.
Their concert at Sudden Valley takes place in the Dance Barn at 3pm on Saturday, Oct. 6th. Tickets are $20 in aid of the South Whatcom Library and can be purchased at Village Books in Fairhaven, the Sudden Valley Association Ofﬁce, on-line at www.fswl.org or by called K.C. Sulkin at 360-671-1709.
Pegasus Art Gallery, at the corner of Holly and Bay Streets, has two ﬁne jazz acts to round out its February calendar and then will pause until the early spring in their musical presentations. Heidi Wood, gallery owner feels that sunshine and clear weather is more conducive to the cameo-jazz performances that she’s booked.
To end the winter series, Pegasus is presenting noted local jazz pianist, Steve Rudy and Tom Anastasio on bass. They will be appearing at the gallery on Tuesday, Feb. 13th from 7-9 pm. Admission is free.
The ﬁnal act this season is an interesting duo featuring Mark Ashworth on guitar and vocals accompanied by Mark Kelly, who, in addition to his duties as leader of Bellingham’s Youth Jazz Orchestra, is also a ﬁne sax, clarinet and ﬂute player. The two Marks will be appearing at the Pegasus on Tuesday, February 20th from 7 to 9 pm.
Stay tuned for further information about the reopening of this cameo jazz series in the spring. Naturally, the Pegasus Gallery remains open at its usual hours year round.
For further information, contact Heidi Wood at 360-599-7731 or K.C. Sulkin at 360-671-1709.