JazzFresno and the Fresno County Public Libraries host (free and open to the public) Jazz @ the Library, Tuesday, June 21, 2016 at 7:00 p.m. at the Woodward Park Regional County Library located at 944 E. Perrin Ave. (Champlain & Perrin).
Dr. Ray Briggs, ethnomusicologist and Assistant Director of Jazz Studies at California State University, Long Beach, will speak on the topic “River City Swing: Memphis Jazz in the Post-WWII Era,” drawn from his book on the history of jazz in Memphis (forthcoming from the University of Michigan Press). Often seen as the quintessential southern music city, Memphis, Tennessee has been celebrated as “Home of the Blues,” “The Birthplace of Rock and Roll” and a major source par excellence for soul music. This southern metropolis has stood historically as a mecca of musical innovation and creativity in the mid-south region. The jazz tradition in the city, however, has received scant attention. So impressed with the city’s prolific output of talented instrumentalists during its golden age of jazz (1940s-1950s), modern jazz icon Miles Davis once asked, “What were they doing down there when all them guys came through…?”
In response to this pressing question, this presentation will offer a brief overview of Memphis’ jazz legacy, with particular emphasis on the post-WWII era. In addition to highlighting significant individuals and their contributions to the local and national/international jazz scene, the session will uncover key connections between the jazz community and the city’s social and political infrastructure.
FRESNO, CA (5/23/16) – The Milestones Summer Jazz Concert Series has expanded from two nights to three and will take place on Tuesday through Thursday, June 14-16 at the Milestones facility at 3385 E. Shields Ave.
Tuesday, June 14 will feature the Matthew Yeakley Organ Trio with Walter Smith III. Yeakley is an LA-based guitarist who has been described as one of the Los Angeles jazz scene's most exciting and creative guitarists. He joins forces with keyboardist Sam Barsh, drummer Aaron McLendon and saxophonist Walter Smith III, widely regarded as one of the rising stars on the national jazz scene.
On Wednesday, June 15 Ryan Dragon’s Kid Songs will perform. Dragon is a trombonist and a fixture on the LA jazz scene and avant-garde community. Making up the remainder of Kid Songs is pianist Kei Akagi, best know for his work with the Miles Davis band in the late 1980’s, east coast saxophonist Mike Bjella, drummer Aaron McLendon and bassist Richard Giddens, a Fresno native.
Thursday, June 16 will feature trombonist Francisco Torres. Torres is the musical director for the Grammy-winning Poncho Sanchez Latin Jazz Band. He is also a member of several other jazz orchestras including Gordon Goodwin’s Big Phat Band, Monkestra, Clare Fischer, and Bill Cunliffe.
All of the above mentioned jazz artists will also provide educational workshops at the Milestones Youth Jazz Workshop Summer Jazz Camp that will be held in Fresno the week of June 13. Francisco Torres will serve as the camp’s artist in residence. The Milestones Summer Concert series is made possible through the generous support of PG&E.
All three concerts begin at 7:30 pm. Tickets are available available at MilestonesJazz.org and are priced at $15 for adults, $12 for JazzFresno members and $10 for students for each show. A ticket for all three shows is $30.
1st, 2nd, 3rd & 4th Sundays of the Month at Tokyo Garden
Since 2003, local jazz fans and musicians have had a home at one of Fresno's longtime restaurants and independent music venues, Tokyo Garden, located at 1711 Fulton Street in downtown Fresno.
On the first Sunday of every month, local pianist and jazz educator Craig Von Berg hosts a jam session with his trio, featuring John Lauffenburger on bass and Brian Hamada on drums. On the second Sunday, bassist Richard Giddens leads the sessions - occasionally featuring guest artists and touring groups. On the third Sunday of the month, jazz guitarist and director of Jazz Studies at Fresno City College, Mike Dana hosts the session with his band. On the fourth Sunday of the month the jam is hosted by pianist David Aus. The sessions begin at 6:00pm.
Every Sunday at Ooi Japanese Cuisine
Local jazz educator, trombonist and occasional vocalist Les Nunes heads the lineup for the Sunday evening jazz jam sessions held weekly at Ooi Japanese Cuisine, located at 840 Herndon Ave., Clovis, CA 93612.
A rotating cadre of the area's best rhythm section players anchors the proceedings for the evening, and participation is highly encouraged. The music begins at 6:00pm.
Become a JazzFresno Member and support jazz in the Valley!
JazzFresno is a private, non-profit organization dedicated to promoting jazz in the Central San Joaquin Valley through education and performance. The organization is made up of passionate jazz lovers like you, who want to help support the organization's many programs and see the Valley's jazz scene flourish. You can become a part of JazzFresno today with your membership donation.
Your contribution helps support events and activities that enrich the Valley's jazz community, and as a member, you also get special benefits, such as discounts at JazzFresno and other local jazz events. Being a member of JazzFresno also has other rewards, such as:
• Discounted tickets at all JazzFresno events
• Discounts at other local concerts and festivals
• News and updates on upcoming jazz events and activities
Join JazzFresno today with your gift of support. Membership levels start at just $25.00.
Choose the desired membership level below, and make your payment via PayPal!
If you would prefer to pay by check, please make payable to JazzFresno and mail to:
JazzFresno (attn: membership)
PO Box 26071
Fresno, CA 93729
Please include your email address so we can keep you up to date on the latest jazz happenings around the Valley!