Summertime…and it’s hot as hell!

isthisjazz:

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Yep, pretty much sums it up: but lest we forget how cold the winter was, so really this isn’t too shabby! Hope you all are doing well. This far I’ve had a fairly busy couple months so I apologize that my correspondences haven’t been timely. However, we do have some great music coming up over the next several months so strap in and get your date books out!

First of all I need to say that our last show was astoundingly attended. We had a lot of people come through, check out the sounds happening on stage, and at the end of the night the musicians got to go home with some decent bread for their efforts. So a sincere thank you to all who came and helped make last show by far one of our most successful nights. If you weren’t there, you missed your chance to see People Of The Way play a killer debut set that showed us all that no matter how long you’ve been doing it or playing together as long as you remain authentic to your sound you can craft beauty. Kamchatka was also outstanding with their own twist on the wide spectrum of jazz they covered. For a group whose members are constantly shifting, they pulled off a superb block of tunes and made it sound as if this band was on their 25th anniversary tour. A great night all around. Now, let’s keep the good train rolling!

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Independence is a human right regardless of station, gender, or ethnicity. The freedom to decide who you will be, to stake your own claim, to stand tall for you beliefs, and to help others maintain those freedoms. We live in a country with an at times ugly past but with the potential for a more beautiful future than could possibly be imagined. America has it’s share of the good and the bad, but damn do I love this country.

Independence is a human right regardless of station, gender, or ethnicity. The freedom to decide who you will be, to stake your own claim, to stand tall for you beliefs, and to help others maintain those freedoms. We live in a country with an at times ugly past but with the potential for a more beautiful future than could possibly be imagined. America has it’s share of the good and the bad, but damn do I love this country.

Bring On The Jazz

isthisjazz:

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The weather is once again on our side: No more cold or snow, it’s all sunshine and good times from here on out. And what better way to celebrate than going out to see some excellent , local jazz. We’ve got some really interesting groups scheduled to perform in the coming months but first let’s talk about when last we met.

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Tools Of The Trade

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There are many days where I envy vocalists. Singers who are born with their instruments to carry with them wherever they go and who can summon forth soul defining music at the slightest whim. Those jaw dropping MCs who have such a talent with words they can weave their way through language crafting all manner of poetry out of thin air. Vocalists turning words, even primal sounds, into melodious ballads of heartache or triumph that span generations and touch the deepest parts of what it means to be human. Unfortunately for myself, though I have learned to methodically craft my lyrics and have worked a little on improving my singing voice, I have not been so blessed with such innate talents as some around me. Instead, I turned towards being an instrumentalist and have learned to manipulate these tools in order to create music.

Donald Byrd and Pepper Adams together is always a winning combination. The horns fill up so much space for only two people. And swingin’ as hell!

We're nominated for Providence Phoenix's "Best Of '14" awards!

isthisjazz:

Apparently, Is This Jazz? at AS220 has been nominated for best jazz night in the Providence Phoenix's Best of 2014!!! Thank you to all the great people who have performed, attended, helped out, and supported this series of mine. Clearly whatever it is that we’re all doing is working!

Please follow the link and submit your vote for us to win, to show Providence that presenting great, original jazz is important to our community and deserves this achievement. Also, look down the list and send some votes around, I know a few names on that list and they earned the accolades as much as we have.

You are allowed to vote ONCE EVERY DAY. So if you have a free few seconds please navigate to the link below and vote for ITJ to win this year’s award. We’ve had a lot of incredible local talent playing their original material on the AS220 stage and we want to show rhody that this is excatly the sort of thing this city needs!

Thanks!!!

milkbreadmusic:

We put this here so you all would know that we have a new track that is a free download via our SoundCloud page. The tune is called “I See” and features Zumo Kollie rapping over a beat that we wrote. It’s part of a collaboartion EP we did with him. 

Not gonna lie, it’s preeeeetty killer. Also, again not lying here, you should go download it because you’ll dig it.

Some good, original hip-hop from my band Milkbread (milkbreadmusic) and guest MC Zumo Kollie. You’re gonna like this stuff. Trust me.

Motif's 2013 Music Award Nominees

Apparently the kind folks over at Motif Magazine have released their list of nominees for their 2013 Music Awards and I’ve been nominated for best jazz act!!! A complete surprise but I feel incredibly honored to be considered along side such talent. The winners will be based on public votes so if you have a free second I would greatly appreciate if you’d all throw in a vote for me. Clearly the work all of us have been doing to bring back Providence’s jazz scene is working and I consider my nomination to be a culmination of efforts between ITJ, and shows that you’ve all been a part of with me.

Of course I didn’t get this off of solo sax gigs. Thank you to everyone I’ve had the pleasure of performing with in an ensemble or as part of the bill. I would name everyone but there are way too many of you!

Please vote for me to show RI that the young bloods are here and ready to play some killin’ jazz. Also, I have a lot of good friends on the list too so vote for them as well, they’ve earned they place as much as anyone.

Thank you!

newsweek:

Back in 1958, Ted Schwarzrock was an 8-year-old third grader when he became one of the “Torrance kids,” a group of nearly 400 Minneapolis children who completed a series of creativity tasks newly designed by professor E. Paul Torrance. 

Schwarzrock still vividly remembers the moment when a psychologist handed him a fire truck and asked, “How could you improve this toy to make it better and more fun to play with?” He recalls the psychologist being excited by his answers. 

In fact, the psychologist’s session notes indicate Schwarzrock rattled off 25 improvements, such as adding a removable ladder and springs to the wheels. 

That wasn’t the only time he impressed the scholars, who judged Schwarzrock to have “unusual visual perspective” and “an ability to synthesize diverse elements into meaningful products.” 

The accepted definition of creativity is production of something original and useful, and that’s what’s reflected in the tests. There is never one right answer. 

To be creative requires divergent thinking (generating many unique ideas) and then convergent thinking (combining those ideas into the best result). The Creativity Crisis

newsweek:

Back in 1958, Ted Schwarzrock was an 8-year-old third grader when he became one of the “Torrance kids,” a group of nearly 400 Minneapolis children who completed a series of creativity tasks newly designed by professor E. Paul Torrance.

Schwarzrock still vividly remembers the moment when a psychologist handed him a fire truck and asked, “How could you improve this toy to make it better and more fun to play with?” He recalls the psychologist being excited by his answers.

In fact, the psychologist’s session notes indicate Schwarzrock rattled off 25 improvements, such as adding a removable ladder and springs to the wheels.

That wasn’t the only time he impressed the scholars, who judged Schwarzrock to have “unusual visual perspective” and “an ability to synthesize diverse elements into meaningful products.”

The accepted definition of creativity is production of something original and useful, and that’s what’s reflected in the tests. There is never one right answer.

To be creative requires divergent thinking (generating many unique ideas) and then convergent thinking (combining those ideas into the best result). The Creativity Crisis

milkbreadmusic:

"It’s been a personal belief of mine that there is music that you’re supposed to hear at a certain point in your life. Hear it earlier, it passes by you unable to make it’s impact, and you continue you on without ever taking a second listen. However, when an album or artist finds you at that perfect time in your life, just when your ear is searching for something, this sound can change your whole perspective. This is what our album of the week, Atmosphere’s "Seven’s Travels", did for me.

Back in the day, my big brother Brendon had an old Mazda 323 that was a hand-me-down from our uncle. Not a great car, but it meant independence, and since I didn’t have a license at the time it meant me getting a lot of rides from him. A common night would be to meet up with some friends of ours at a local IHOP to hang, eat stacks of pancakes, and hang for a bit discussing life as far as we had known in our few years. Since Brendon was the point man on these trips, he’d have rule over the CD player, and it was at this time that he was just starting to get into hip-hop, specifically underground, not widely known stuff. I was a dumb little music snob at the time who’s only real frame of reference for hip-hop was gangster rap that a bunch of kids I couldn’t stand listened to.

To this day, I remember exactly the corner we were at, the stoplight we were stopped at, the way the inside of the car looked, and the way the my brain lit up at the first few seconds of “Trying To Find A Balance”. Before playing it my brother prefaced the song with “this should change your mind about hip-hop” and god damn was he right. I had never heard an MC so honest, raw, or as self depricating as Slug was on this album. Couple that with Ant’s production with layers and layers of different sounds, all mashed together in one cohesive, pulse thumping set of tracks. This was what hip-hop COULD be.

Now, because of records like this, I do what I do. I make the music I make. Trying to get to that same self aware place that Slug was at when he wrote those rhymes, to make beats as intricate and complete as Ant does. Still working at it, but I’m getting there. Granted, there have been a lot of albums since and I’ve now opened my ears to all manners of music and sound (I dropped the music snob act a long time ago), but that memory remains. Its like the first time I heard Coltrane, Tom Waits, Mingus, The Roots, and artist that has shaped me. 

Always keep your ears open. Always be quick to surrender yourself to those moments. Always let your big brother show you his music.”

Dig this.

A little something I wrote for Milkbread for our album of the week series.