January 26, 2014
The Jazzschool Vocal Department presents a monthly jazz vocal jam session, hosted by Angharad Jones. All are welcome! Singers should bring three copies of their song for the band. Please arrive by 6:30 pm to sign up.
January 31, 2014
Tracing the banjo from its West African roots to the New World, Evans performs musical examples from the 1700’s to the present day on a variety of vintage instruments, ranging from an African ekonting to a mid-19th century minstrel banjo, a modern bluegrass banjo and even an electric banjo. From an 18th century African dance tune to the music of the Civil War, and from early 20th century ragtime to more recent folk and bluegrass banjo styles to Bill’s own incredible original music, Bill’s performances illuminate as well as entertain, exposing audiences to over 200 years of American music.
Bill is a doctoral candidate in Music from the University of California, Berkeley with specializations in American music history and the music of Japan. He has been a scholar/artist in residence at many universities across the United States. In addition, Bill has served as a consultant to the National Endowment for the Arts and is the former Associate Director of the International Bluegrass Music Museum in Owenboro, Kentucky. He is the author of Banjo for Dummies, the most popular banjo book in the world. Over a thirty-five year performing career, Bill has performed with acoustic luminaries David Grisman, Peter Rowan and Dry Branch Fire Squad, among many others. His folk and bluegrass chart topping 2012 CD In Good Company features over 26 musicians, including the Infamous Stringdusters, Tim O’Brien, and Joy Kills Sorrow.
You can learn more about Bill by visiting www.billevansbanjo.com. Watch video performances from The Banjo in America by linking to Bill’s YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/BillEvansBanjo.
February 9, 2014
The sound of your kit is equally, if not more important than the notes you play on it. This workshop addresses proper tuning, head combinations, muting and muffling techniques, hardware issues, quick fixes, and advances in new equipment. All participants are encouraged to bring a drum, a drum key and open ears!
Drummer Alan Hall has performed with Kenny Werner, Taylor Eigsti, Eddie Harris and countless others, including several seasons with Cirque Du Soleil. He is endorsed by Zildjian, Aquarian and Vic Firth and is the author of Internalization, an innovative jazz drumming method book.
Guitarist Matthew Charles Heulitt leads a workshop for guitarists covering modal harmony and improvisation. Topics include modal and diatonic chord voicings, common and unusual modal scales, using the geography of the guitar to generate fresh ideas and lines, and creating harmonic movement within a static key. Bring your instrument!
Matthew Charles Heulitt has performed and recorded around the world with artists as varied as Sting, Sammy Hagar, Carlos Santana, Mickey Hart, Taj Mahal, Keiko Matsui, Narada Michael Walden, Zigaboo Modeliste, Raz Kennedy and many others. He has been a noted Bay Area studio musician, producer and arranger since 1997.
Whether you work in your hometown or in faraway places, a singer must have a diverse repertoire, know how to put together a show, know what to wear and how to create a personal book of songs that will “translate” no matter what country they’re in. Understanding the audience, using proper microphone technique and leading the band are also key components of being well prepared. Students will hear a brief lecture and then will have the opportunity to sing with an accompanist, for critique and input from Diane Witherspoon. Please ensure the song is memorized and bring three copies of the sheet music.
Based in Las Vegas, singer Diane Witherspoon has recorded extensively since 1988. She has performed throughout the world with jazz greats including Cedar Walton, Bobby Hutcherson, Eddie Henderson, Kirk Lightsey, Frank Morgan, Eric Alexander, Red Holloway, John Clayton, Calvin Keys, John Heard, Roy McCurdy and many others.
Miles Davis famously said, “You can’t play anything on a trumpet that Louis hasn’t already played.” To this day, Louis Armstrong stands as the model of melodic improvisation, of a respect for melody, an irresistible swing, a wise use of space. He can teach anyone who wishes to perform in public a joyous, heartfelt relationship to an audience, transforming the simplest melodic line, and constructing solos that are surprising yet logical. This workshop will offer music, videos and a lively discussion of Armstrong’s performances, early and late. Even for those fortunate enough to already love Louis, there will be some surprises!
Michael Steinman runs a thriving jazz video blog, Jazz Lives, and has written reviews for Cadence, Jazz Journal and liner notes for several record labels. He is also a Professor of English at Nassau Community College, New York.
February 16, 2014
This workshop introduces you to the book/CD series, Play Jazz, Blues, Rock Piano By Ear, presented by the author. Students receive a free book/CD (your choice of book 1, 2, or 3). Andy Ostwald guides you step-by-step, as you progress from creating simple two-chord jams to creating fully realized jazz, blues, and rock improvisations. Each chapter features relevant music theory and easy to understand guidelines, learning through listening to featured recordings and learning from your own musical exploration and discovery. Prerequisites: Basic piano and music-reading skills. No previous experience with improvising, learning by ear, or music theory is necessary.
Andy Ostwald holds a Bachelor’s degree in piano performance from San Jose State University and also studied in New York with renowned jazz pianist, Harold Mabern. Andy’s approach reflects a love for the early stride piano tradition as well as for bebop and more contemporary styles. He has played with numerous Bay Area artists at venues such as Yoshi’s, The Great American Music Hall and the Concord Jazz Festival, also touring extensively with singer Diane Witherspoon.
This masterclass provides a great opportunity for jazz vocal students to gain high-level guidance from Jeri Brown. The focus will be on artistry through interpretation, including such topics as vocal styling, phrasing, rhythmic diversity, improvisation and diction. Students will perform in front of their peers in a relaxed setting and receive feedback. After a short performance, Jeri will invite students to participate through solo singing, jamming and other group activities.
Professor Jeri Brown has earned a reputation as one of the outstanding vocalists and educators in jazz. Her performances include collaborations with Dr. Billy Taylor, Betty Carter, Joe Lovano, Leon Thomas, Kenny Werner, John Hicks, Fred Hersch, Kenny Wheeler, Jimmy Rowles, Seamus Blake, Kirk Lightsey, Ellis Marsalis, Erik Truffaz, David Murray, Cyrus Chestnut and many others.
Embouchure is key to all aspects of trumpet playing including sound, flexibility and endurance. This workshop begins with an overview of the mechanics of embouchure, followed by a hands-on masterclass. Bring your trumpet and be ready to blow!
As a jazz trumpeter, Dave Scott has toured and recorded with Boz Scaggs, TOTO, Rosemary Clooney, Michael Feinstein, the Realistic Orchestra, the Marcus Shelby Jazz Orchestra, the Contemporary Jazz Orchestra, Brass Monkey Brass Band, the Dave Scott Jazz Quartet and the Glenn Miller Orchestra. In the classical realm, he has recorded and performed with the Honolulu Symphony, the Napa Symphony and the Santa Rosa Symphony, and performed as guest soloist with the San Francisco Sinfonietta Orchestra. Dave has taught trumpet at the Jazzschool, Berkeley City College, California State University Stanislaus, SF State University and Sonoma State University.
First-call keyboardist, producer and arranger Frank Martin shares his insight into creating fresh arrangements of jazz standards “on the spot.” Techniques covered include using different rhythmic feels and grooves, reharmonization and alterations to the melody and lyrics. Students sing or play selected repertoire in a variety of styles, and are guided in how to make even the most common of standards sound fresh. A great workshop for instrumentalists and vocalists preparing for their next recording or performance — or for those who simply want to learn the tricks of the trade!
Frank Martin has served as music director for Narada Michael Walden and Patti Austin, appeared at Carnegie Hall with Sting, James Taylor and Elton John, and produced records for Al Jarreau, Turtle Island String Quartet, and Joey DeFrancesco. He has performed or recorded with John McLaughlin, Dizzy Gillespie, Larry Coryell, Herbie Hancock, and many others.