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CoffeeTalk Jazz Magazine WINTER 2013











THE POWER OF A DREAM Dreams, Passions, Possibilities! Sometimes you’re only given one chance in this life to fulfill a “dream.” Sometimes, you have to watch your life fall apart before you realize that the “dream” you are living isn’t your own. This is where I was in 2006 when my mother fell ill. For over a year I sat by her side in the hospital and realized that although her life was changing in ways I couldn’t even imagine, mine was, too. Finding comfort in the little things in life became my mission...jazz, my sanctuary.

Welcome to our premier issue!!!

To go into even more detail, it was Peter White’s CD, “Perfect Moment,” that helped me catch my breath again. Absorbing the energy of every moment of that music brought a new perspective to light. Every one of those moments I spent by myself driving to and from the hospital became the end of one journey and the beginning of another. The “dream” I had been living was only a nightmare in disguise. I had to escape it and follow my heart to its fullest. What I loved and how I lived were completely different. I had to combine all the facets of my life in order to discover what lay ahead for me. This is how CoffeeTalk Jazz Radio and ultimately, CoffeeTalk Jazz Magazine was born. Applying my gift of gab, passion for education and deep adoration for all things music was the “easy” part. Evolving all of it into a fully realized vision and dream, well, that’s another story. Today my dream is in your hands. I have the pleasure of interviewing, meeting and supporting the best of the best in the jazz world. Broadcasting the Only True American Art Form to the world is a gift. CoffeeTalk Jazz Radio is now a worldwide network presenting everything from Classic Soul, R&B, Smooth Jazz, Arts Education, World-Class Cuisine and so much more! Our four distinct divisions, Coffee Talk Jazz Radio, Jazz Web-TV, Coffee Talk Jazz Gift of Music Foundation and now, Coffee Talk Jazz Magazine give voice to many perspectives that are often shadowed by the mainstream. I am so proud to present this magazine as a delicious glimpse into my dreams. Come on in, the Coffee’s hot, the music’s hotter and the view from here can only get better. Ms. Bridgette Y. Lewis Founder and Editorial Director I inspire you to LIVE YOUR DREAMS!

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MAGAZINE STAFF Founder and Editorial Director Ms. Bridgette Y. Lewis Editor-In-Chief Cicily Janus Assistant Mya Allen

Magazine Layout / Illumine Studios Joel Capps - Senior Designer Staff Consultant Loyce Wheatley

Legal Department Dr. Weston Taylor Interns Jodi Ann Caroline Cruz

Advertising Consultant Anthony (Tony) Smith

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Blanche and Paul Jackson Sr. Patrice Rushen Aubrey Logan Mateo aka Snuff Sharon Edwards-Billings Mark Peay Jon Barnes Mary Bogue Al Caldwell Katherine Gilraine Ruth Price Bruce Nazarian The late George Duke Craig “Holiday” Haynes Erin Dickins Tevis and Sheryl Laukat


Joel Capps Damien Smith Milla Cochran Katherine Gilraine Raquel Caldwell Andrew Dunn Mikey Cohen William Claxton


CoffeeTalk Jazz Magazine IN THIS ISSUE FEATURES 06 10 14 21 22 25 26 30 34 42 46 52 58

The Power of 3 - Allen-Carrington-Spalding Generation Next - Aubrey Logan Virgin On Board - Al Caldwell In Search Of The “Why” Chromosome - Mark Peay Generation Next - Elizabeth Mis / Cameron Ross Preserving Jazz - Craig “Holiday” Haynes The Jazz Bakery - Ruth Price Why Music Education Is Important - Jon Barnes Paul Jackson Jr. - Preserving Music - Cicily Janus Behind The Lens - Katherine Gilraine Let’s Talk About Sax - Cannonball Musical Instruments Girl’s Night Out - Mary Bogue George Duke - Remembering The Duke

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT 09 Fran Dominguez 12 Reggie The Jazzman Mitchell 13 The BluJ’z 16 Shannon Kennedy 23 Sam Hankins 24 Denise Donatelli 28 A Guy Named Joe Leavy 39 Bernard Rose 41 Mary Bogue 48 Bryan Lubeck 49 Camera Soul 54 Darryl F. Walker 56 Willie Bradley 61 U-Nam 65 Nelson Lee Pettigrew

LIFESTYLES 18 20 29 40 44 50 52 62 66


Lemonade Weekend 2.0 - Bruce Narzarian Giving Back - Bruce Nazarian Musician’s Corner The Gift Of Music Foundation - Bridgette Lewis Java Jazz - Erin Dickins The Art Of Jazz - Breck Rothage Designs Mastering The Mix - Mateo aka “Snuff ” All Hands On Deck - Sharon Edwards Billings CoffeeTalk Jazz Media Partners

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Experience Perfection


The Power of Three



os Angeles based CoffeeTalk Jazz Magazine and Executive Producer Ms. Bridgette Y. Lewis were offered an exclusive pass to cover the recent ACS performance at The Broad Stage in Santa Monica, California. Esperanza Spalding, Terri Lyne Carrington and Geri Allen, three of the biggest female Grammy winners in the business were on the bill. Warm and gracious in their welcome, each woman brought together through the ACS, were a true joy to meet. However, once they took the stage, it was clear that this triumvirate group were not only blessed with style and grace, but power.

They immediately captivated their audience through music allowing their commanding presence to shine through tune after tune. They served up a wide palette of innovative jazz leaving everyone there absolutely mesmerized. The fusion of these brilliant and often celebrated bandleaders definitely brought the spirit of improvisation to a higher ground. Supported by the quest for excellence in everything they do, it’s obvious that the multi-generational super group better known as the ACS sisterhood isn’t just powerful, it’s downright explosive.

ACS (Geri Allen, Terri Lyne Carrington and Esperanza Spalding) gathers three of the most important female instrumentalists in current jazz. Formed out of their work together on Carrington’s Grammy Award winning album “The Mosaic Project,” the small ensemble stretches boundaries and revels in the art form. In response to their debut at New York’s legendary Village Vanguard, The Village Voice remarked, “the set’s expressionistic push-pull turned out to be a show of jazz fealty as disorienting as it was riveting.” The trio is elegant, experimental, and unquestionably bold.


Geri Allen is an internationally recognized composer and pianist. Since 1982 she has recorded, performed or collaborated with Ravi Coltrane, Dianne Reeves, Bill Cosby, Ron Carter, Ornette Coleman and Paul Motian. Allen is also an active jazz educator, and has taught at the New England Con-

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servatory, The New School in New York and her alma mater, Howard University. She currently teaches at the University of Michigan School of Music, Theater and Dance as an Associate Professor of Jazz and Contemporary Improvisation.

Terri Lyne Carrington is a Grammy Award-winning jazz drummer, composer, record producer and entrepreneur. She has played with jazz legends Dizzy Gillespie, Stan Getz, Clark Herbie Hancock, and jazz pioneer Wayne Shorter. Terri Lyne has been at the top of the music industry for almost 25 years, collaborating with various jazz luminaries like, Al Jarreau, Stan Getz, David Sanborn, Joe Sample, Cassandra Wilson, Clark Terry, Nancy Wilson, George Duke, Dianne Reeves, and numerous others. In one of the most startling achievements in jazz history, bassist Esperanza Spalding captured the world’s attention upon earning the title of Best New Artist at the 53rd Annual Grammy Awards. A gifted composer with a hypnotic voice, Spalding stretches the boundaries of jazz and continues her evolution with the 2012 release of Radio Music Society, which she describes as “bombastic and fun – funkier and more upbeat” than her critically acclaimed Chamber Music Society. This dynamic trio is only on tour for a limited time. Catch them in a city near you, soon!



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Fran Dominguez TRUMPETER


uban-native Fran Dominguez along with his group, The Smooth Fran Project is excited to release their brand new album, “As The Phoenix Bird.” With ten exciting tunes, his trumpet style ranges from soft, sweet and soulful to spicy Latin tossed with Afro-Cuban jazz. Inspired by his Idol, Arturo Sandoval and other musicians including Norman Brown, Dave Koz and Chuck Loeb, Fran continues to pour his soul out through the bell of his sweet horn. You can find his album and more information at:


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Generation Next


& Bridgette Lewis


omeone unfamiliar with breakout artist Aubrey Logan might well ask if she is a singer or a songwriter or an instrumentalist. And the answer would be “yes!” The daughter of music educators, Aubrey grew up with the music of practically every teachable period: hearing it, learning it, performing it. With an innate vocal gift, sensitivity for translating thoughts into song and a wicked jam ability on a trombone, Aubrey has surfaced today as a standout anmong her peers. She has clearly tackled the world of jazz by anyone’s definition, especially her own.

“That’s just it,” Aubrey says. “Jazz is what I perform the most, but ‘jazz’ can suggest different things to different people.” True, the arts seem always in search of genres to define them – stylistic places that seem understood and “safe” to audiences – yet jazz in and of itself covers more than a century of history and a broad spectrum of styles, and therefore resists finer definition.

Still, the breadth of abilities inside the musical package known as Aubrey Logan defies pigeonholing.

“I guess I perform jazz that leans toward R&B,” she says. “No wait! ‘Jazz Funk’ is part of it. And I’m also comfortable with ‘Jazz Pop.’” And so, it’s this performance diversity that not only adds interest to this accomplished artist, but it also delights those who listen to her recordings or take in her live per-


n Marina Terteryan

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formances in venues ranging from intimate clubs to concert halls.

Aubrey’s exposure to music at home and her prodigious performance abilities early on resulted in many opportunities to appear before audiences and rise in competitive stature and critical acclaim. She is the winner of the popular Audience Choice and the juried First Place Awards in vocal competitions at Switzerland’s famed Montreux Jazz Festival. Aubrey is also a graduate of Boston’s prestigious Berklee College of Music. There, she studied musical art of every era and refined her blossoming technique on her instrument of choice, the trombone.

1. You graduated from the prestigious Berklee College of Music? How did Berklee help shape you into the artist you are today? Berklee College of Music was swarming with every kind of musician: pop, jazz, R&B, classical, African traditional music, Indian folk music, big-band, avante-garde, country...and EVERYONE was good! It was a place where I had to get good at several genres in order to survive. Of course, I ended up liking every one of those genres. It was a place that further solidified my love for the eclectic. 2. As part of music community. What steps can we take to encourage girls to become a part of the music conversation? As in, picking-up an instrument? I was always told I could do whatever I wanted, be whatever I wanted as long as I put in the work. No one ever discriminated against


me because I was a girl. But I did have a lot of girly-girlfriends, a fabulous mother, and great female role models who encouraged me. I needed these women. But I also needed the men. My band director in middle school (a man) was the first one who taught me that I had to be excellent on my instrument. I think women AND men need to come together and encourage young girls to join band, to come into a music store and mess around with the brass instruments. To pick up an electric guitar and mess with the gear.

Girls need to know they have the freedom to explore music the same way boys do. Men and women, mothers and fathers (biological or not) need to give these daughters the opportunities to explore music. 3. You are the next Generation of Jazz. You stand on the shoulders of many Jazz Giants like Sarah Vaughn, Ella Fitzgerald? How did the soul of their lyrics and music touch you? If you could go back in time and ask these ladies a question what would you ask? These women, Ella, Sarah...they came alive on stage. But they were mysterious, vulnerable human beings. I am vulnerable, a bit of an introvert. For some reason I feel like these women were too. My question to them would be, “Ella, do you ever feel awkward on stage when you’re talking to the audience between songs? I sure do! You seem to fake it well, I might detect a little itch here or there” Ella was so cute

when addressing her audience, but I always feel a sense of her thinking, ‘ok I really want to stop talking and just sing.’ 4. I love the way you sing, play and pull the audience in when you perform. Where does that energy come from? Wow, thank you! I’m so’s important to me that the audience feels included in my performances. I’m happy on stage. I love to sing and play.

I love people being in the performance with me for that’s when I have the most energy. I don’t have to gather energy for a performance most of the time. It’s the day-to-day part of being a musician, writing emails, going to meetings, where I think... “Oh God please give me supernatural energy!” Stage? That’s easy and comfortable. 5. Use three adjective to describe yourself? Content. Fearless. Ready.
 6. Do you think that young musicians in the public eye who impact so many young people have a responsibility to be positive role models? I don’t know...I can’t speak for them. I can only speak for myself.

I do feel that I have a responsibility to be a positive role model. There’s a lot of music out there that

I personally feel hurt and even a little grossed out when I hear 8-yearolds singing the lyrics to it. (Now, even some of MY music isn’t to be understood by an 8-year-old, but it wouldn’t be particularly harmful for them to hear it). Music is very powerful. The content of it gets into your head whether you want it to or not. That’s human nature. I think young musicians are incredibly influential and whatever they put out, their young audience will want to emulate. That’s a big deal. That kind of thing can change culture and society, for better or for worse. 7. With the wide acceptance of social media and its powerWINTER 2013

ful reach, how would you say its helped you craft your image and get your message to the masses? Social media is incredibly helpful. My audience is made of incredibly supportive people. There are thosethose who have been there since day one and then there are the new people I meet every day. I really enjoy sharing the evolution of my career and getting to know my audience. Whenever I do something new, I’m always excited to share it with them first. Social media allows me to do just that. It’s definitely the avenue for people to find me, talk to me, ask questions (I DO answer) and discover what’s next.

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Reggie The Jazzman Mitchell SMOOTH JAZZ MIXES


eggie The Jazzman is passionate about music and has been for a life time. You see, there’s something about THAT sound: The keys, the chords, the voices, the chorus, the harmonies and the flow. All the right ingredients to take you on a journey...

Music is the beat of life, and Reggie demonstrated just that as a 3-year old when he was found doing his best James Brown impression at the foot of the stage in the legendary Apollo Theater in New York City. Soon after he started playing drums, which laid the groundwork for his talent today. Throughout the years Reggie worked the club scene and DJ’d in both Cleveland, OH and New York City, where he was influenced by the broadcasting styles of Batt Johnson, Pamela Bussey, Vaughn Harper, and Frankie Cocker. His interpretations of rhythms and his ear for the unique have enabled him to continually bring something new, exciting, and innovative to the world of smooth jazz.


Reggie The Jazzman Mitchell, your mixologist and master of transition, will take you on a musical journey you are not soon to forget. His syndicated show, ©The Definition of Smooth, is heard both nationally and internationally.

“Music is the beat of Life and with each beat we draw that much closer to being together once again. Make sure you take care of yourself and each other. And until we meet again, Peace...” 12

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The BluJ’z


Based in Fresno, The Blu J’z bring music to life when performing. Their true love for music is basically where their name originated. To see the Blu J’z perform is like a breath of fresh air. They have a fresh unique sound of their own, as you will see when you catch one of their performances. The high energy that emanates from the band will bring you into their world. They do that by playing their hearts out for you. Listen to their latest CD on their website and get a little taste of what you will experience when you catch one of their performances.




n Al Caldwell


o one ever forgets his or her first time. The great anticipation, the sweating, hoping you live up to the expectations… You know I’m talking about my first tour of Japan…right? I was the bassist for South African Guitarist Jonathan Butler. We did a great tour in the states and he had a string of hit songs like Sarah, Sarah and More than Friends. After the States tour, the phone call came, “We’re going to play The Blue Note in Tokyo, Osaka and Fukuoka Japan.” I’ve always been curious about Asian Culture but I never thought I’d get the chance to perform there.

I had my passport for over a year but I’d never used it before.

I asked the other more experienced players like Bernard Davis what would it be like.” It’s Cool” he replied. In my mind I thought…that answer came from Brooklyn and that’s why I don’t understand the complexity of his simplicity. I’m from St. Louis, Missouri, the Show Me State, tell me more than that…somebody please. I only had 2 weeks to prepare. I’m a tall guy at 6 feet 2 inches, so the first thing they could have told me was how small the seats were on the flight. We left from JFK in New York and had 16 hours before

we reached Tokyo at Narita airport. When I snapped my seat belt I knew that I would not be able to father a child, ever, not after 16 hours in what I now called the “bleeding locust position.” I looked around for the other band mates on the plane but all of seats were so sporadically placed. I was surrounded by strangers. No one spoke English, or maybe they didn’t feel very talkative. They had a very warm and kind disposition so that put me at ease. I was so glad that I had the window seat.

I didn’t know that after we passed Alaska I’d be sick of looking at water. The Japanese broadcasting station on the plane reminded me that I was no longer in Kansas TOTO! Everything around me spoke of the lack of our country’s embrace of other cultures. We aren’t taught in public school how to act and behave when we leave this country as ambassadors into a faraway land. After my first meal, I prayed, “Lord please don’t make me have to go to the bathroom!” I didn’t know what was in there! I was scared as hell. I had heard about Japanese bathrooms. There were rumors of “It’s just a whole in the ground that you straddle...” I’m not open minded enough for that. I cried and cried on the inside. I fell asleep after my second meal. I don’t know if I snore or not but I hoped that they would look at me like some cute panda bear that was a bit too tired. When I woke up we were one hour from landing. It was breakfast time...yes! I knew that I could hold the bathroom until I got to my room. Ya’ll know what I mean, right? God is GOOD. I filled out my customs sheet and we finally landed. In my mind I was thinking, let’s count this thing off.

Getting off the plane, the first thing I noticed was all of the high-tech items. There were money exchange stations everywhere. It didn’t take me long to realize that all of my money was in the wrong. We got our luggage and made it through customs without a hitch and then we saw the driver with the name, J. Butler on his sign.

I was excited! I felt like a star. This was better than anything musically that I had ever experienced. 14

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We drove down the street in a car with a steering wheel on the wrong side. The streets were so clean... even the trash trucks seemed polished! This has to be the cleanest place in the world. We pulled up to the Hilton and checked into our rooms. And guess what! I had a western bathroom. A real toilet! I was happy. This must be heaven. Turned out I was the only guy in the band that had never been here before and the band is making sure I know it...they keep calling me “green.”

Turns out that Jonathan had to go and do publicity and promotion for the gig. I had no idea how much pressure is put on the artist. People asking you the same questions for hoursand hours and then they want you to sing your brains out later. I thank God I’m just the bass player.

We had the rest of the day off to decompress. I ordered room service because I wasn’t familiar enough with the area to walk around. We were on a thirteen hour time difference. The jet lag is killing me...being so very sleepy with the sun out! I’m a world traveler now, or so I told myself. I took a long bath, went downstairs and talked to the people at the front desk. They converted 100 of my dollars into Yen and gave me directions to the 7/11 down the street. Thank God the number system was the same. I bought some sushi, chocolate and orange soda. Then I went back to the hotel and took a nap. Before I knew it, it was time for our sound check...3pm! That’s 4am NYC time. I was so very sleepy.

I didn’t find out until later that the others had changed their sleep habits before we left. I wish I had done the same.

The Blue Note Jazz Club was beautiful. I could smell the good food and they had the amp that I was accustom to in the states right on stage. Jonathan showed up and rehearsal started. We really had a great band so sound check was easy. The only black people in the room guessed it, us. Our talent was imported via South Africa to NYC to Japan. I truly felt blessed.

not only fond of but loved enough to pay money to see. That moment changed me because it never occurred to me how hard it is to be the”artist,” the star every night.

I was really proud to be a part of this moment in time; we prayed on stage and held hands. Jonathan is quite the preacher. As we entered the stage, I realized that we were doing so as unified group of musicians and vocalists that were ready to spread the message of Jonathan Butler. This was it. Bernard clicked his drumsticks together and yelled, One...two...three...four...Yes. We did it and it felt great. I am truly blessed.

After we dressed, I looked around the corner and saw all of the faces. It was amazing. I’m on the other side of the world to support an artist that these people were WINTER 2013

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Skytown Staff

U-Nam | CEO | Artist | Producer Steve Cohen | A&R | Artist Manager | Media Relations Michele-Marie Cohen | Production Assistant | Media Relations



n Bruce Nazarian


ounded in 2011 by musician Bruce Nazarian in response to the cancellation of a San Diego jazz festival, The Lemonade Weekend 2.0 is scheduled again for March 27-30, 2014 in Los Angeles, CA. It kicks off with a VIP Founder’s Party on Thursday followed by several days of music. Some of the special events unique to this festival include the First Annual Citrus Music Awards and a special late-night show at the Baked Potato featuring TIZER. With a large number of great musicians from around the country in attendance, Lemonade Weekend 2.0 promises to be something special!

The First Annual Citrus Music awards will recognize excellence in many categories of the contemporary jazz genre, from soloists to sidemen to producers. These awards are a promising contender within the music industry award culture. A panel of industry notables will help determine the final nominees for voting. Initially vetting nominations in all categories, the judges will leave certain categories open to public submission. Voting will be via secure website and will take place in early 2014. The Citrus Music Awards will take place during the Lemonade

Weekend. The Citrus Music Awards presentation event will take place during the Lemonade Weekend events. Featured artists during the weekend include Greg Manning, Jessy J, The Groove Messengers and Greg Adams and East Bay Soul! Performances on Saturday include a special producer’s segment featuring two-time Grammy winner Paul Brown in addition to many others. All to be followed by a Jazz Brunch on Sunday. A special limited-attendance Recording Session event is planned for Sunday noon at the legendary Capitol Records Studios. This event will have a limited number of attendees.

Lemonade Weekend 2.0 is so much more than just the music. The most important aspect of this weekend is the fact that the entire event is being produced as a fundraiser to help school music programs connect children with the arts through the TDG Foundation, Inc. The TDG Foundation, Inc. is a


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501(c)3 non-profit corporation dedicated to increasing awareness of the arts in all walks of life, in all levels of classrooms. The Foundation is the lifelong dream of its creator, Detroit native, Bruce Nazarian. Nazarian greatly benefitted from early exposure to the arts and to this day believes that it was this exposure that ignited his passion and is responsible for his forty-plus years of success in the industry. Through the works of the foundation, Nazarian provides similar opportunities to promote music and the arts to students of all ages. He focuses on showcasing how the arts, when combined with modern technology, benefit the entire world.

In addition to the charitable contributions to schools that the TDG Foundation will donate, the foundation has made arrangements with a large post-secondary educational facility to offer scholarships to talented seniors from the class of ’15 to encourage them to continue to be involved with the arts.

With these scholarships, students will be able to continue their professional studies in California. After they’ve finished their studies, the Lemonade program will then mentor them into job opportunities through connections within the L.A. arts community.

More than just a festival of great musical performances, the Lemonade Weekend 2.0 is about giving back in a significant way to the community at large. Ultimately, the TDG Foundation’s aim is to increase the amount of aid available therefore broadening the reach of its efforts.


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Bruce Nazarian



emonade Weekend 2.0 founder and producer Bruce Nazarian has a reputation that precedes him. With a long and distinguished career in the music business, including studio work with Detroit’s legendary Funk Brothers, Anita Baker, David Ruffin, Madonna and Frank Sinatra. Nazarian is one of the most diverse players within the industry. In addition to his extensive session work, Nazarian has been a chart making singer and performer with bands as diverse as Invictus Records’ The 8th Day, CBS artists Brownsville Station, and his own MCA records band, The Automatix.

In addition to his label, Smooth Sounds Music Label, Nazarian has recently branched out with his work as the producer for his internationally syndicated radio program, The Digital Guy Radio Show, which proudly proclaims it plays “The Best Music from around the World.” With a career as respectable as anyone alive today, Nazarian has become one of the most promising industry leaders today.


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In Search Of The “Why” Chromosome FINDING PURPOSE IN PASSION

What’s going on? What’s love got to do with it? Well, I do know this: Love’s in need of love today. But I know a change is gonna come because I am everyday people.


he above statement might have sounded like a random soliloquy laced with a hint of frustrated empowerment and self-assurance that “every little thing is gonna be alright. “ Yet for those of us who are music aficionados, we know that this is not just a statement of encouragement, it is a representation of titles of the tunes that defined the era of their birth.

As with any other form of media, music is evolutionary. However, we also know that everything evolutionary doesn’t always progress the way they should. As a matter of fact, so much gets lost in translation over the years. Not everything written and put out in the world is communicated and received as intended. This happens much of the time with music. As a pro in the music industry, I have found that communication through text is paramount. The focus shouldn’t be on just the WHAT and HOW, but also, and most importantly, the WHY. I call this finding the “Why” chromosome in our music. The term chromosome comes from the Greek word for ‘color’ (chroma) and ‘body’ (soma). Although this is an article on music and not science, I do believe that our musical ‘makeup’ and DNA should be balanced...inclusive of all of the components that compose greatness in song.

As artists, we should ask ourselves, why are we writing what we’re writing? Why are we even doing this? How does it feed into our musical DNA? What is the message we are compelled to deliver? If you listen to any of the socially charged anthems of the 30’s, to the 60’s, you will hear that the songwriters connected to not only the passion of their craft, but the purpose. These artists pursued their “why” chromosome by sharing the views of the world and social change through their art. While songs of the past certainly denote a rich and relevant place in musical history and social consciousness, finding music today that speaks to what AND the WINTER 2013

n Mark Peay

why seems to be missing from our musical genetics. Writing from a sincere place of conviction with the desire to invoke change isn’t easy. It is clear, when listening to a lot of the music of the past and even today’s most popular tunes, who these songs represent. However, I find myself asking the question, “Why is it necessary for society to hear this?”

When Marvin Gaye delivered his socially confrontational question, “What’s going on?” it represented one of the first times in history that a question represented its answer. The solution to the myriad of ills that existed in society at that time, and still do today, is embedded within that tune. Gaye wrote this tune and caused a generation of people to think about what was going on in the nation. Listening to his music made finding the solution much easier. In the 1976 preeminent album by Stevie Wonder, “Songs in the Key of Life” Wonder momentarily traded his title of musical artist for that of “newscaster.” He politely interrupted our broadcast and lives with “Good morning or evening friends, this is your friendly announcer. I have serious news to pass on to everybody...” Wonder went on to give the late breaking news that “love is in need of love today.” The relevancy of Wonder’s poignant and profound declaration rivals that of even the most in-depth news delivered by the likes of CNN or NBC to date. Again, the answer serves the question. Without taking any of this into account, any of the “why” into consideration, the writer often resorts to topics and content that truly lack substance and dsustainability. Songs of selfishness serve no purpose other than pride and power.

This is by no means an indictment on today’s musical songstresses or producers or artists. There are still a significant number of entertainers that value and place the heart of the matter over the climbing of the proverbial ladder. However, it is my prayer, as someone who has made their life out of song, that more professionals demand lyrical relevance, not just from pop culture but also a social cry from our best artists. It is a responsibility of everyone in this industry to not only foster “change,” but also change.

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Generation Next



ot so fast, James Brown--Elizabeth Mis has a little something to say about your searing mid 60’s declaration that “It’s A Man’s Man’s Man’s World.” Inspired by the not too cool reality that the contemporary urban jazz genre has been male dominated since she grew up listening to favorite artists like Grover Washington, Jr., Dave Koz and Kirk Whalum, the 21-year-old saxophonist bursts onto the scene with an infectious and danceable, party-ready new single whose title says it all from here on out: “It’s Uh Girl’s World.”

Generation Next

Breakway was produced and largely composed by another labelmate, keyboardist Nate Harasim, who won a BET Award and earned a Grammy nomination for his role as composer and keyboardist on Dave Koz’s Hello Tomorrow and has also worked with Darren Rahn and Steve Oliver . Mis, a native of Cleveland who started playing clarinet around age nine before switching her focus to sax a few years later, vibed with Harasim immediately when the two got together at the suggestion of Trippin N Rhythm President and Founder Les Cutmore.




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ameron, a native of Osceola, AR, comes from a heritage deeply rooted in God and music. As a child, he always knew that he had a place in music, but didn’t know exactly where. That all changed when he entered the 6th grade. Determined to play the drums, he signed up for middle school band. However, his parents told him that he had to play saxophone. “I didn’t want to play it because it had too many buttons.” After being tired of always getting last chair in band class, he decided to take his sax home and actually practice it. This resulted in him getting first chair and he has been soaring since.






Denise Donatelli SOUL SHADOWS


enise Donatelli, a GRAMMY® Nominated Savant recording and international concert artist, has become one of today’s premiere vocalists. To date she has recorded four albums that have collectively garnered three GRAMMY® nominations.

Her 2012 release, Soul Shadows received a GRAMMY® Nomination for Best Jazz Vocal Album, the second consecutive nomination in that category of her recording career. Her 2010 release When Lights are Low received two GRAMMY® Nominations, one for Best Jazz Vocal Album and another for Best Arrangement Accompanying a Vocalist for pianist and collaborator Geoffrey Keezer’s arrangement of Don’t Explain. In 2008, Denise recorded her second CD entitled What Lies Within. The record garnered uniformly high praise from critics and casual listeners alike making it to the top ten of the Jazz Week Radio Chart and in 2005, her first recording In the Company of Friends brought her critical acclaim. Additionally, Denise makes a vocal appearance on GRAMMY® Award Winner pianist, Bill Cunliffe’s 2011 Christmas recording, That Time of Year.

In addition to her GRAMMY nominations, The Los Angeles Jazz Society has honored Denise with the 2012 Jazz Vocalist of the Year award … Voting advisors include John Clayton, Herbie Hancock, Quincy Jones and Johnny Mandel. More recently, Denise has made the 2013 DownBeat Critics Poll in the Rising Star category. Congratulations Denise! Visit Denise website to get more information.


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Preserving Jazz

KEEPING THE LEGACY ALIVE n Craig “Holiday” Haynes


he preservation of jazz is a very interesting subject these days! I recently posted a photo of my jazz-legend father (Roy Haynes) and myself having a simple dinner. I was quite surprised to see over 350 “likes” accumulate in just a few days. We used to say that my father was the only drummer to play with all the great vocalists and all the great saxophone players. He played with everyone from Sarah Vaughn to Billie Holiday to Ella Fitzgerald to Whitney Houston to Coleman, Young and Parker, Coltrane to Branford Marsalis!

But you see, my father is not only the only drummer; he’s the only person that can say he did this! Having played with all the greats of Jazz from 19492013) he is now considered a National Treasure.**

When my father first became a professional musician, “jazz” was the popular music of the day. Rock ‘n roll didn’t come about until the late 50’s and was made popular in the 60’s. Then there was what we call “pop” music, which is the basis of what made the recording industry a billion dollar industry, simply because they could market it and sell copies that would be “certified gold” before they even hit the stores. But what’s so “golden” about jazz is that despite it’s shelf date, a jazz record will sell copies for decades on end unlike the short lifespan of pop records that amass their sales all within a week and then die off. In jazz, sales are not the main factor. Quality is the jazz “it” factor. Most pop music is based on a simplicity, whereas jazz is much more complex...much like the human mind. They say that you can judge a society by its music. Well, most people would agree that pretty much any society that you choose has been better off when the music was “real,” meaning real musicians, playing music consisting of real chords and real instruments. Think about that!

I encourage you to do your own

research on music throughout history.


Honestly, think about it. If you look at any ethnic race, you’ll find the same thing. Once the music is no longer “real” and there’s no intellect and/or romance within the art of their music, you can forget intelligence, togetherness, thoughtfulness, love and romance in the people.

Jazz is music that always conveys respect, love, unity yet individuality. Jazz is enough to make your spirit dance. Too many people walk around this life like zombies. They’ve lost their spirit, their soul, consciousness, respect, love, etc. How do we help them? With music. As humans, we need to have real music to soothe the soul ...our soul and the soul and souls of the world. There’s no better way to do this than with the universal language of jazz. I have felt major love, from audiences all around the world despite their understanding of English but they understand love and jazz. It brings people together! This is why Jazz needs to remain alive in our culture and in our hearts.

** According to the Smithsonian Institute, Congressman John Conyers et. Al.

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The Jazz Bakery



hile most recently known as the founder and heart and soul of one of America’s most famous jazz clubs, Ruth Price was originally a dancer and started her musical trek as a singer in 1952, touring with Philly Joe Jones’ trio which included Red Garland and Paul Chambers. She joined Charlie Ventura’s band in 1954 and also performed with the Billy Taylor Trio.

She recorded three albums in her first full year as a singer and the cutting-edge Philadelphia jazz community of the 60s quickly picked up on her potential as a singer and she was soon performing with international touring groups as diverse as Charles Mingus and Harry James.

After a stint in Philadelphia, she moved to New York City – Birdland, the Village Vanguard, and the Blue Angel. There she performed with Johnny Smith, Tommy Flanagan, Lester Young, George Wallington, Dave McKenna, Eddie Costa, Dizzy Gillespie, Sonny Stitt, Stan Getz, and Sonny Rollins to name a few. During this time she also won the Down-Beat magazine’s New Star Award and began working outside of New York – Baker’s keyboard Lounge in Detroit, the Racket Club in

Cleveland, Mr. Kelly’s, The Cloister, The Black Orchid in Chicago (co-featured with Bobby Short).

She toured with Mel Torme and was regularly featured on Canadian television.

Ruth eventually made her way to Los Angeles to record for Mode records. The company folded but she remained to perform with the likes of Red Mitchell, Jim Hall, Art Pepper, Joe Albany, Victor Feldman, Russ Freeman, Richie Kamuca, Tom Garvin, and Scott LaFaro. Bob Dorough takes her to Jazz City where she sings with Shelly Manne and becomes the featured singer at Shelly’s Manne Hole. With Manne she records the classic ‘61 concert disc Ruth Price with Shelly Manne and His Men at the Manne-Hole.

Ruth goes on to act in films and television- making pilots with Dick Van Dyke and Rowan and Martin. She also sings regularly on the Stars of Jazz (ABC), Jackie Kane (CBC), and the Tonight Show. She then joins the Harry James band with Buddy Rich for appearances at the Monterey Jazz Festival, Carnegie Hall, Boston Symphony Hall, and a tour of Japan. She leaves the James band, and works New York’s basin Street East with Hank Jones and Ronnie Scott in London. Upon her return Ruth continues with public appearances at the Trident in Sausalito; Rio de Janiero with Jobim, Sergio Mendes, Dory Caymmi, and Edu Lobo. Retiring from professional singing in the ‘80s, Ruth found herself in possession of a grand piano and Jazz Bakery images by William Claxton


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the decision to open up the non-profit club the Jazz Bakery in 1991. It started as a weekend operation in an austere photography studio, where she tested the concept, and then moved to its custom-built space in the historic Helms Bakery complex,

...where it became the only non-profit, full-time (alternatively: seven-night-aweek) jazz club in the country. Initially featuring artists such as Walter Norris (who opened the club) on a weekend basis, she gradually expanded her bookings to featuring music every night, ranging from Stanley Turrentine, Joe Bushkin, Charles Brown, George Shearing, McCoy Tyner, Diana Krall and Brad Mehldau to Lee Konitz and Cecil Taylor. She invested her time in not only bringing top name talent, but lesser known musicians such as Tom Harrell and Kurt Rosenwinkel, who she felt deserved wider exposure. The theatre atmosphere of the club created a loyal following of both attentive listeners and dedicated jazz musicians, making the Bakery one of the premier jazz venues in America.

In recent years Price has taught jazz vocal techniques at UCLA and the Dick Grove School of Music. She focuses her coaching on helping students with diction while encouraging them to relax and incorporate physically natural movement while onstage, and most of all, to expand their repertoire.


Image by Bob Berry Jazzography

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A Guy Named Joe Leavy I HEART YOU!

n Bridgette Lewis


oe Leavy’s voice is fresh, authentic and thought provoking. Some music lover’s say they can only listen to specific genres...Leavy’s debut project “A Guy Named Joe Leavy” challenges anyone to dislike and enjoy his music. His stylistic range and multi-faceted contemporary ballads are refined and evenly spaced with his upbeat soul-filled tunes. Each tune willfully becomes a part of the bigger picture that is Joe Leavy. Gifted, incredibly diverse, his music will remind you why you fell in love with music.


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Musician’s Corner


he Jazz tradition lives through the ever-expanding variety of

artists featured year after year on CoffeeTalk Jazz Radio. Artists use their music as an outlet for us as

listeners to plug into their artistic

internal monologue. They show us

through song what it is to write and

play jazz. It is this insider’s look and detail that defines CoffeeTalk Jazz Radio.

We are here to expand the listener’s appreciation for the artist’s contribution to music not only through jazz but other genres and unique

shows including Latin Jazz, Blues,

The Ladies of Jazz, Saturday Night’s Carefree Drive, The Living Legends and Sunday’s Gospel Brunch. We hope you’ll tune in to us today!


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Why Music Education is Important THE NECESSITY OF MUSIC AND THE ARTS

n Jon Barnes certos on the violin, as if he was turning the page on a piece of music. I still use his piano chords that he used when I was in elementary school, because I remember the live sound of his playing permanently etched in my mind. He also made it possible for us to visit the Baltimore Symphony to expose us to all types of music.


o you remember your grandmother singing to you as an infant, in a rocking chair, while putting you to sleep? Well, I do and it is one of the primary voices of music that I still hear every day, as I compose, write, and record music. Her heart felt moans and warm sounds of spirituals, lullabies and other childhood tunes helped create a foundation I draw from even today. Of course the same holds true with many moms and dads that sing and play for their kids, too. However, grandma spent the most time with me as a child.

The importance of music and mentors in our lives cannot be understated. What we sing and play for our


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babies turns into their inspiration. I was given many opportunities to play in church, even before the age of 5 while my mom was the choir director. Music lessons, rehearsals...they were normal in my home. When given the opportunity to learn music in elementary school, I had already developed skills for learning music thanks to this. As a result, music has always seemed natural for me. Students who study music in school develop a natural love for the arts, while improving social skills. The minute my friends saw me caring a trumpet home from school, I was reminded of how cool it is to be a musician playing in a band. I still feel in love with the jazz music Robert Smith, my teacher, would play on the piano. Then he would play classical con-

Unfortunately, there is only a hand full of elementary music programs in the United States, due to budget cuts, mismanagement, or ignorance. Studies have shown that students who study music in elementary school do better on state testing. Also, students learn to use both sides of the brain when studying music and they learn to concentrate, which helps them to do better in other subjects. It is important that parents help the school districts to reinstate music programs in all schools to improve academic achievement and the cultural values learned, as students become life-long learners. With out real pressure from active parents, the state of the arts looks really bleak.

Re-investing into the Arts and Humanities will help to create a brighter future for all students.

Global competition is at an all time high and our students must musically think outside the box to find new solutions to old problems. A good Arts program can also


improve student motivation and academic participation to lower the achievement gaps in all students. Music brings the best out of all students. As a result, critical thinking skills are enhanced and student feel better about themselves and their new abilities.

Friends of Main Street

School is just one example of how parents can help out. Parents and community have partnered with the school system to raise funds that support music education, technology, art, and afterschool programming. This combination of support has ignited real passion and joy in student learning and achievement. Even their community business leaders assist academic leaders with better business plans and models to facilitate advanced music curriculum that meets the needs of all students. As a result, everyone plays music at this school! We need our past, current and future leaders to make important changes in how we educate our

A future jazz star!

children. Good business plans, community, and parent support is the fuel that drives positive change to help all students become better learners.

Music must be included in the curriculum to improve test scores, student moral, and leadership for future generations to come.

Good business plans, community and parent support is the fuel that drives positive change to help all students become better learners.

IMAGE CREDIT: Bob Delgadillo


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Gorov Music Marketing Gorov Music Marketing is regarded as the top promotion firm in the Smooth Jazz radio format. Our experience, knowledge, and relationships with radio and recorded music have helped many musicians establish their careers in Smooth Jazz.




n Cicily Janus Thank you to the many who contributed to this article: Paul Sr. and Blanche Jackson, Patrice Rushen and Bridgette Lewis.

there is so much more to Paul’s life than music.

Paul performing at the Santa Clarita Jazz Fesitval


e all need dreams, love and passion in our lives. However, you can’t live on love alone. Although hard work and versatility are essential tools for anyone to be able carve their dreams into a reality, sometimes you have to define your work and conjure up your own vocabulary to carve your niche in this world. Whether your dream is to become an accountant, writer or musician, doesn’t matter. Becoming the success you see when you close your eyes is sometimes miles away from reality. You can ask anyone from Quincy Jones to Ray Parker Jr. and Oprah this question. They’ll tell you that Paul is the guy that gets the call. But why is it that Paul has become THE man? It’s because he has found his place in this world and embraced it like nobody’s business. Among many, one of Paul’s closest


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IMAGE CREDIT: Bob Delgadillo

mentors was the late George Duke. In an interview for “The New Face of Jazz” (Random House, 2010), George Duke was asked about his views on why music exists not only for others but for himself. George replied, “...(music) has to be treated as though it’s a gift from God.” Paul, now living out his dream, has done exactly that. He is a man that treats everything in his life, especially his music, as though it was handed to him from above.

Paul takes pride in raising his beautiful daughter, Lindsey, who graduated with a degree in music from UCLA. His son, Paul Jackson, the III is hard at work attending Cal State-Northridge on a degree in Business. His kids are truly his pride and joy. However, one of his other “pet” projects is taking on the life and training of a German Shepherd that became a gift to his parents that traveled all the way from the Czech Republic to join his family. Most notably though, he spends his free time working with at-risk males at the Boys and Girls Club in South L.A. and serves at his church as a teacher and music worship leader. Doing everything, especially as well as Paul does, can’t be easy. So how does he stay grounded? Where does a man like this come from? Not only did we get the scoop from Paul, but

Working as one of the busiest men in the industry, Paul’s career is multi-faceted.

It involves not only work as a solo artist, but work with the Tonight Show and artists such as George Benson, Whitney Houston, Quincy Jones and Barbara Streisand. Yet


“I know where I’m headed!”

we invited his best friend, Patrice Rushen and his parents, Blanche and Paul Jackson to help us answer these questions and offer insight. What amassed from all of the answers and tales, is that Paul has the artistic strength of a titan and unbelievable energy.

Paul started out this life as one of those children blessed with a sunny disposition and natural talent that reached well beyond his height and sight. He had a sense of humor, a zeal for life that involved hidden talents like knowing how to ride a unicycle and being a very technically strong complex thinker. It was clear to everyone that met him, even as a child, that he was going to be the kind of light the world needed; one that gets brighter with time and works only through helping others find their way through the dark. To this day Paul, having traveled many miles since those sunny days as a child, has remained as open and bright as in his beginning. And it doesn’t matter if you’re talking about his career as a child-actor, a producer, or solo artist,

Wayne Lindsay, Gladys’ Knight & Paul Jackson Jr.

Paul Jackson Jr. is a leader and visionary for today and the future to come.

Although many lives have influenced and worked with Paul, there has to be something said for the role his parents have had in his past and present. Engineering his train towards success from day one, they continue to work as his managers and biggest champions. In an exclusive interview for CoffeeTalk Jazz they offered insight, laughter and wisdom into all things Paul Jackson, Jr. Of course all parents will tell you that their kid is the best at what

Bootsie Collins & Paul Jackson Jr. WINTER 2013

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ever it is they do that’s special; but not all parents can say that their “kid” is someone that has worked in so many facets of any industry with as much success as Paul has had. When asked about challenges Paul faced, even during his early days, they had this to say: Paul is the third of four children. We cannot think of challenges that Paul faced because he never thought of himself as different. He had been a child actor but it never got in the way of his schoolmates and peers...we always told him that he was lucky to be blessed with opportunities, but he still had to do chores as did his siblings AND we insisted that he work hard in school. This was never a problem. It was this insistence that played a role in shaping the key tools that have carried Paul further than most. Parents today, however, don’t always have their thumb on the pulse of how to handle a gifted child. Offering up their support through their experience raising Paul Jr. and his siblings, his parents said, Our philosophy is never to push your child into any career. Make sure your child is doing the pushing, and you as the parent, are not. It is important that you have a visible presence so whenever they “perform” they know you are in their corner. If their talents lie in a career, which they seek, then be supportive, provide instructions and instruments, encourage them and make sure, they are technically ready. Make sure they practice, practice, practice so that they’re ready when THE opportunity arises. We made it clear to our children that it did not matter to us what career they chose, as long as they received an education and that the career was one that was ethical and honest. We always told Paul and his siblings to do your best and don’t settle for anything less.

Doing your best though, isn’t always good enough... not according to the Jacksons. They went on to say, we also encouraged them (our children) to help others in every way that they can. We always thought that everyone would benefit from a helping hand and we should provide it when appropriate. We tried our best to provide and guide through example in our personal lives. We are now retired. However, during our children’s school years, we both maintained full time jobs...Blanche as an educator and Paul, Sr. as a systems engineer and later as a Human Resources Director. Today, we manage our son, Paul Jackson, Jr. in addition to enjoying retirement.


Although providing great examples to each of their children, Paul’s parents weren’t the only guiding lights in his life. Many have guided his career. Patrice RushCoffeeTalk Jazz Magazine

en, among others, has to be mentioned first.

Patrice has been a part of Paul’s family’s life since she was about four years old. Paul’s dad endearingly refers to her as his daughter. Not only a family friend, she is a mentor to Paul. Having introduced him to big industry names such as Lee Ritenour and more, Patrice is as close to Paul as it comes.

In another exclusive interview, Bridgette Lewis spoke with Patrice for even more insight into all things Paul. Patrice, a Grammy-nominated pianist who has assembled an astonishing lists of firsts, such as serving as the first woman Musical Director for the Grammy and Emmy Awards, People’s Choice Awards and the NAACP Image Awards, she also stands out as a pianist and composer. As a composer/songwriter she not only owns her own publishing company, but she is notable for many achievements such as ASCAP’s award for writing the tune, “Men in Black” as the Most Performed Song From a Motion Picture. As a soloist she has played with greats such as Quincy Jones, Chaka Khan, and Herbie Hancock among others. When asked the time she realized that Paul had the “it” factor in music, she had this to say, ...What was funny was that Paul was very good at everything he’s ever put his mind to.

He grasped the music early in school. After he’d complete his homework he’d come to my house and we’d dig around in my record collection. We listened to


everything from R&B to Opera. We loved music back then just as much as we do today. Even then it was obvious that he thought about everything, especially music, on a conceptual level. He understood music even on a spiritual level and realized early on that if you put in the time you get the result. He was always dedicated, driven and very talented. Patrice, while building her own astonishing career, was invaluable to Paul through her advice and guidance. When this kind of gift is forked over, you don’t turn it down. Thankfully, she extended memories and insight as to how she helped him out. Her words to him were, (not to mention it’s great advice for anyone in this industry) I wanted him to think in terms of think about music as not just about performance. There were many opportunities coming and he needed to be prepared. He could work anywhere with anyone if he had the right skill set...and he had the skills! Paul was always ready and prepared to play. So, when the time came, I took him around on gigs and he began to make a name for himself. But I told him, I’m sticking my name out for you and my name is on the line and artists are hiring you based on MY word. Patrice giggled and then said, I told him, Don’t make me look bad!

When asked though, what she thought the best advice she had given Paul was, she said, Make sure you stay versatile. This is the easiest way to float around in a variety of music circles and make sure that you’re always working. Patrice remains an active mentor, friend and gem in Paul’s life. But Paul’s relationships with others, including the students riding his waves, his mentors and peers and God that are key to his vision in music and life. Yet to know just how these connections have affected him, it’s best to go to the source. Paul, in an interview with Bridgette Lewis explains his career, his thoughts on education and why he does what he does his own words:

Really, my story begins with growing up down the street from Patrice Rushen. She put me in her band when I was seventeen. I played a lot with her and Pastor Frank. They both introduced me to a lot of musicians to get me started in the L.A. session scene. And the Good Lord really blessed me. I mean, I was eighteen years old and recording with Michael Jackson, Barry White, Cher, Donna Summer and so many more folks. I even worked with Ella Fitzgerald...Whitney Houston, Quincy...a lot with Luther WINTER 2013

Vandross. But it wasn’t until ‘99-’00 that I started recording solos. I was nominated for a Grammy for best instrumental R&B song then. But I’ve recorded with a lot of different folks and done worship conferences all over the world. Like I said, I’ve just been fortunate to do a lot of great stuff.

But I’ve really known that this is just a gift from the Lord. It (music) was something I was called to do.

Plus my mother was one of those women who could really throw shoes. To this day I get a little worried when she puts on high heels. She’s 77, but she’s one of those with DEADLY aim! If I get full of myself or out of line she knows how to “correct” me from 50 FT away. So, you know, I know better than to lose my mind! Seriously, I just try to write songs I have fun playing. I always try to play a little bit better and write a little bit better. I just try to push the musical envelope that I hope people will enjoy listening to. And that is how most of my records come about.

When asked what it takes to impress him about other musicians, he said, Voice. By that I mean this, not’s not what you would call vocabulary either, where the person has a lot to say. It’s also not just the way a person “feels.” I love GREAT-FEELING music. But it’s all of those things that sum up to make a voice. The person has to SAY something. I remember Buddy Guy came on the Tonight Show and he did this song called,

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FEAT URE - PAU L JAC K S O N J R there’s a scripture in the bible that says you should stir up the gifts that are in you.

“I’m 81 Years Old.” It was a blues tune and man; he played EVERYBODY into the ground. I mean it was amazing! It’s not how old or young a person is; it’s what their voice is and what they’re saying.

But how do you know what gifts are in you? The key is exposure. I think musical education is very, very, very important just as I believe physical education is important. Everyone is not going to be a musician just like not everyone is going to be a track star or football player. But you need to expose people, especially kids. I’m lucky I was “exposed.” I am so honored to do what I do. Praise God.

Finding the best voices to listen to isn’t everything to Paul when it comes to embracing others and expanding his outreach through music. Ms. Bridgette challenged Paul to search through his success to find the even the most heartbreaking moments that have affected him. Paul, in all honesty, said, I think what affects me in terms of heartbreak is when I see a person’s career go down the tubes or when we lose somebody for what I think is no apparent reason. You see a person who’s doing well and all of a sudden they’re not, somebody you’ve worked with or someone you’ve just never know. But, you know, you have to keep on pressing. Through it all, because of thinking of it like this, I haven’t had a lot of disappointments. You just never know how you’re going to touch people’s lives and how you’re going to affect people. It’s a real blessing to know that you’re kind of touching people or that people are, you know? It’s a gift from God and God is allowing me to be called to do this at this time of my life so I just appreciate being able to do it. You know


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In life, in song, and most of all, in respect of those that have helped him along the way and those that are profoundly affected by him and his gifts, Paul Jackson Jr. is the very definition of what it means to be a “class act.” Yet none of his accomplishments or success would have been possible without all the hard work and his love for the art. Many the miles Paul has traveled and through these travels, we as listeners, fans and musicians can learn from all that he has to offer. CoffeeTalk Jazz would like to thank Paul for sharing his talent with not only the world, but with us. We are more than honored to honor him.

Paul is endorsed by Paul Reed Smith Guitars and Takamine acoustic guitars and Godin Guitars JA-15 - Paul Jackson Jr.’s First Signature Model PRS





ernard, a native of the South, has developed a style that not only echoes his roots as a musician but identifies his sound as unique... crystalized in its vision. Rose’s playing and sound has gained great favor and appeal over a wide variety of audiences and people over the years. You can find his music and works at:


The Gift Of Music Foundation SHARING THE JOY OF MUSIC

n Bridgette Lewis


rts Education and Music are two of my passions in life. I created the Edward B. Bass Gift of Music Foundation to preserve the rich legacy of Edward’s selfless career as an educator in the arts. Through his mentoring and singing, he was able to touch many of those less fortunate communities throughout the U.S.

Established in 2009, The Gift of Music Foundation has been based upon the belief that impacting and changing a child’s life through the Arts is possible. We work to fill this void by keeping instruments in the hands of children, ensuring the future of music by funding their future in music. These students are our country’s musical future. Their energy and enthusiasm must not be stifled by a lack of funds. Working to fill the void of arts education in this country, the Gift of Music Foundation needs your financial support through tax-deductible donations. I hope you will support the leaders of our country’s cultural future by donating today.


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Mary Bogue



orn to upstate New York parents Nelson Binner and Gladys Witt, Mary Bogue was the fourth of five children. Her love of acting was apparent early in her life, when she acted out imagined scenes in the second story hallway of their home on Division Street.

Moving to California in 1959 only fueled the fire and soon she tried out and got the part in Beauty and the Beast, a children’s production at The Old Globe Theatre in San Diego. The bug followed her into junior and high school productions, but when she struck out on her own in the early 70s, she found it wasn’t as easy as sitting at the world famous Schwab’s on Sunset. Her first audition stopped her dead in her tracks for years when the “casting director” expected nudity. It was only in 1990 that she returned to her first love, albeit slowly as she was a caregiver to 16 foster daughters. Only when she was cast in Antonio Bandera’s directorial debut, Crazy in Alabama (1999)(which she was cut from) did she pursue this dream.



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Behind The Lens

CONCERT PHOTOGRAPHY n Katherine Gilraine

Few things are as powerful as the words, “Why not?” And that’s what I asked myself when embarking on this journey known as concert photography.

Concert photography is very particular. A tricky thing to grasp. When you enter a venue and hitch that lens onto your body, that is the end of your control over the shoot. You can pose someone in a studio, you can go out and capture the world around you, but when you’re shooting a concert, you’re at the mercy of the venue and your skill. One can’t very well tell a musician to move a certain way or pose, mid-concert! Invariably, the real subject of the lens is the music itself. You have to capture the way it feels all the while allowing the artists to become the only means of its expression. Although we all love jazz for many reasons, I love it for its originality...its artistry and the way it requires absolute raw talent. It becomes a colorful capture of emotion. As an jane of all trades and fan, I often see my favorite artists immerse themselves in their sound, their expressions. Through their music listeners are allowed to not only feel what they feel but see inside their zone through sound. 42

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As a photographer, the camera is my instrument... a digital extension of my eye. I’m a captor of perspective. My subject always boils down to what I believe should be seen by someone, whether they’re new to jazz or an old fan. I just have to keep my eyes open and not only hear, but feel the magic on stage.

Every concert is a journey, a lesson in letting go. You never know what will surface. Photographing music is being willing to become a part of a deeper adventure in art. This is why I love what I do. It’s just always interesting to see what develops.


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Java Jazz

n Erin Dickins - Jazz Vocalist



have occasionally been asked how it is that I am so passionate about so many things. It seems very natural to me. I find joy in sports, cuisine, music and art in addition to many other delights. Equally pleasurable are the similarities among finding that they all require passion, hard work, creativity and love as their essential ingredients to success.

I grew up in a home where both music and food were front and center. My dad was a talented amateur musician – super at jazz piano and Dixieland banjo. He bought me my first guitar at the age of 9 and taught me how to play what he called, “standards.” The first song he taught me was “Ain’t She Sweet.” A few months after that, I sang “Scarlet Ribbons” in a school recital and I’ve never looked back. My dad was so proud and happy – he beamed when he listened to me sing and play. To date, one of the highlights of my life remains the day when he asked me to “sit-in” on guitar with his Dixieland jazz band, “Bars and Tonics.” This was a band he founded when he was an undergrad at the Naval Academy. Once retired, he resurrected the band, with at least half of the original members – all near 70 years old. They joined him for local gigs around the Annapolis area. He was really something.


By contrast, my mother was the ultimate foodie before we even knew what that was. No fast food or microwave dinners for our house! She could whip up paella, a masterful curry or the most delicate poached sea bass in her sleep. Holidays were an extravaganza of irresistible delicacies. Mom regularly treated us to international foods and exposed me to a great variety of flavors, textures and preparations. Every single meal was fresh, well prepared CoffeeTalk Jazz Magazine

and celebrated. We ate all our meals in the dining room at a beautifully appointed table. She carefully chose simple but perfectly paired wines for dinner. Not that she was stuffy; rather, this was what juiced her and it was clearly an expression of her love – a gift she gave to my father and me every day. Not surprisingly, I came to share her passion about food and wine, and found myself carrying on her traditions - cooking elaborate meals for friends and family, exploring exotic cuisines and even studying for a while. I owned a restaurant in New York City and cooked regularly there for a year, learned charcuterie at the New York Restaurant School, and attended meetings at Les Amis du Vin. I was a Julia Child wanna-be, spending days and days on a multi course meal – starting with Escoffier’s basics - stocks and demi-glazes - fretting over the tiniest detail and nuance, and enjoying the hell out of every minute. Food preparation is beautiful to me and I like to create little still-life paintings with my ingredients and tools. Somehow it makes everything taste even better! Eventually my music career got in the way of all this good fun, and I had to find ways to condense my food-as-art approach to accommodate my crazy schedule. I am still away from home a good deal, and so I plan ahead to have delicious and healthy food at the ready whenever possible. I enjoy undertaking a full-on food production when I can, but my standard fare now is simple, fresh and put together in minutes. Some of the most fun times on tour (off-stage that is) are spent with the band after a gig winding down over a good meal.


When coming off the road, I can’t wait to get into the kitchen and re-connect with my family and friends. Fire up the grill and pour me a glass of Cabernet! Sunday afternoons are often spent preparing several meals for the week, and extras to store. Soups, curries, lasagnas and grilled foods are nutritious and freeze well, so these are my go-to foods. My freezer is stocked with several varieties of frozen fruits and veggies from Trader Joes – they are delicious and enable me to whipup something healthy in a pinch. It is great when I come home exhausted to find something homemade all ready to go.

To this day, it gives me great pleasure at this juncture in my career to introduce my two passions as one. I believe that both music and cuisine bring great joy and comfort to everyone, and they are a natural fit. I do not know many musicians who don’t dabble in the culinary arts….and, well, is there anyone who cooks without their favorite CD setting the mood? And doesn’t the music just “make” a dinner party? I draw the line at poaching a sea bass on the bandstand, but try me! If the music’s swinging hard enough, who knows what I’ll do!

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Let’s Talk About Sax



alt Lake City-based Cannonball Musical Instruments are some of the most beautiful horns heard or made. CEO Sheryl Laukat was raised among a family of saxophonists in Utah. She has a degree in Music Education from Weber State University and currently serves as the V.P. for the Board of Directors of the International Children’s Choir. At Cannonball Saxophones she oversees all operations including managing instrument production and heading International Distribution. President Tevis Laukat was raised in Sacramento, CA. He has been playing saxophone since he was a young child. After graduating from BYU, Tevis had a successful career as a woodwind doubler with stars such as Barry Manilow, Bob Hope and Tom Jones to name a few. At Cannonball, Tevis oversees and participates in hand acoustical customization of the horns in addition to creating, experimenting and testing new ideas. It is a great pleasure for him to communicate with musicians, distributors and dealers.

CEO Sheryl Laukat


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President Tevis Laukat

Eric Darius

SAXOPHONIST AND COMPOSER “I want my music to be a vehicle for change and to transcend boundaries from age to race. I believe my music can make a difference in the world,” states the commanding and strikingly handsome 20-something musician, composer, and performer, known for his dynamic and exhilarating live shows. Darius’ explosive arrival on the contemporary jazz scene at age 17 caused a frenzy. This was not a surprise as the ambitious saxophonist, who has shared the stage with everyone from Prince, Carlos Santana, Wynton Marsalis, Wyclef Jean, George Benson, and Brian McKnight, had just released an auspicious recording debut and several years prior had already made an appearance at the famed Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland.

Garnering accolades from critics, musicians and fans alike, there seemed to be a consensus that this young man was bringing a sense of history but yet a youthful and forward-thinking approach to the genre. Eric Darius, who has scored a #1 on Billboard’s Contemporary Jazz Charts and several top ten hits, has steadily proven to be anything but your typical ‘smooth jazz guy.’ The savvy business school grad whose iPod features a mix of everyone from John Coltrane and Bob Marley to Jay-Z, the Rolling Stones and Alicia Keys, confesses, “Contemporary jazz is the genre that has embraced my music, but I see myself as a musician first. I play every style of music from Jazz, R&B, Pop, Reggae, Hip-hop, Rock to Gospel. As I continue to evolve and grow musically, it’s the journey to explore new things that keeps me excited and hungry to do what I do.”


James Saxsmo Gates

SAXOPHONIST AND EDUCATOR The passionate search for perfection describes James Saxsmo Gates and his career as a top-notch jazz musician. From his experiences performing with Art Blakey, Larry Carlton, Jeff Lorber, Alex Bugnon, Cyrus Chestnut, Chris Botti, Billy Kilson, Terrance Blanchard and many others, comes a smooth, yet blazing style and presentation. “Gates Wide Open” is the third commercial release for Saxsmo as a solo artist and is the beginning of a new era for Saxsmo.

The journey to “Gates Wide Open” has been heartfelt and emotional. Saxsmo lost both of his parents between his first and second CD’s, they were his inspiration to strive for perfection and to continue making excellent music. A positive major event in his life was receiving his Masters of Jazz Studies degree at North Carolina Central University (Magna Cum Laude), where he worked closely with Branford Marsalis and Dr. Ira Wiggins. With that behind him he is determined to show the world that James Saxsmo Gates is Wide Open and moving on up, making intensely emotive music that will gratify, entertain, inspire and move his fans, and the general listening public

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Bryan Lubeck



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Camera soul



amera Soul is a group inspired by legendary artists such as Earth, Wind and Fire, The Commodores, Tower of Power and Stevie Wonder, as well as neo-soul grooves by Erykah Badu and Jamiroquai. Based out of southern Italy (Bari) Camera Soul is led by veteran composer / arrangers and brothers Piero and Pippo Lombardo. *not all band members pictured

Camera Soul is a powerful Jazz-funk ensemblein association with Kathryn Ballard Shut of TIMKAT Entertainment


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Breck Rothage Designs


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TIMKAT focuses on building strong, long-term partnerships with entertainment industry professionals. TIMKAT is a proud member of NARAS (National Association of

Recording Arts & Sciences, aka “Grammys”) since 2008 along with ASCAP writers and publishers since 2012.



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n Mary Bogue “When I hear her play, I am always in love with her. She is an amazing musician, truly great, she’s better every time I hear her! She’s beautiful and can play her backside off!” -Les McCann


ometimes the best man for a job is a woman. And jazz pianist Karen Hernandez drives that all the way on home. I’m one of the lucky ones to not only have recorded with Hernandez, but to call her my friend. I arrived at Colombo’s in Eagle Rock, California to sit down and interview her on her breaks. First thing she says is, “You want to interview me while I play? Just bring a chair up.” Knowing full well she could play while eating, sleeping or giving an interview, I opted for the breaks. I just wanted to hear her play, and that she did.

“What do you want to hear?” she asked.

“Play me some ‘Back To The Chicken Shack,’ I replied. That’s all it took. Play she did! Might I suggest as soon as you can, go to CDBaby and download her CD, “Cross Town” with the great Lou Shoch on bass and Larry Klein on drums. You can thank me later. Karen wailed. I closed my eyes and heard shades of her icons, Erroll Garner, Gene Harris and Les McCann. Karen played for a good 45 minutes each set of three, as I just kept throwing songs out there. Her sidekick vocalist Jimmie Spencer was not there, but bassist Tony Dumas showed up and the two of them created something special.

No matter what I asked, she easily fell into the groove. It’s next to impossible to catch her off guard or grasping for the bridge of a ballad. There’s a reason for that. Karen started playing piano by ear at the age of four, just outside of Salt Lake City. She took the bus by herself at the age of nine to a tap dance studio, and played swing for tap dancers.

I was stunned, “You, what?” “Oh, it was no big deal, my mom had taught me how and I just listened and did what she did,” she shrugged. Immediately I could see Karen as a little girl, handing over some pocket change and finding her seat on the bus to travel the ten minutes into town, making her


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way to the piano and climbing up and just hitting it. There is still the little girl in her today, an innocence and twinkle in her eye. You can’t help but love her.

Years later the great Gene Harris told her to come to Los Angeles and play, and thankfully she did as told. Jazz bassist Andy Simpkins got her a job in 1968 at the Pied Piper and the rest is history. You can catch her now at JAX Restaurant in Glendale on Sunday nights with her sidemen, Jack LeCompte on drums and Lou Shoch on electric bass guitar. And what will you hear? They absolute amaze on Stevie Wonder tunes, finding a smooth groove in R & B, and seriously jam on jazz standards. Monday nights there and Hernandez and LeCompte keeps things grooving at an open mic where a usual round of blues and ballads fill the air. Wednesday evenings she’s at her gig at Colombo’s – the same gig she’s had there with the incomparable Jimmy Spencer on vocals. Thursday evenings she packs the house at the Hollywood Studio, Bar & Grill in Gower Gulch on Sunset and Gower for a vocal showcase that runs from 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. and stays another few hours for open mic where Karen shines. I have watched neophytes get up without sheet music nor a key and ask her to play. On the spot she determines their key, whispers to Tony Dumas on bass and Ralph Penland keeps perfect time on the drums, giving wings to all who venture to the mic. The old-timers count it out and seem to fly in her hands. Few know that she has accompanied Johnny Hartman, Marilyn King and Barbara McNair, but all know that she is killer when seated at a baby grand.


Don’t be surprised to see a roll of masking tape sitting on the piano. The first time I noticed, I asked could I just get her some Band-aids from my purse. “No, no. I don’t have any sores. I use this to protect my fingertips,” she stated as she pulled off short pieces and neatly wrapped each finger so that she could trail them down the 88’s in a unique style without hurting them.

Hernandez is a marvel to hear, but just as much, one to watch.

I asked Karen what the best piece of advice was ever given to her. “Well, Erroll Garner told me to keep playing for singers because I would learn lots of songs, play in every key, and not just get stuck playing a song the way I would otherwise.” She took that to heart and ended up going on the road with Gloria Lynne. When the road took her to Liberia, Africa in 1973, she just missed her five kids too much and returned home to stay. At least at home she could hear her favorites, ranging from Ray Charles to Les McCann, Latin song stylist Eddie Palmieri to George Shearing and Ahmad Jamal. If you’re lucky enough to just sit back and listen to Hernandez magically improvise, you too would ask where she ever learned the craft. “I went to see Louis Armstrong at 11 years old and I saw what improvisation was, and decided to do it too,” she exclaimed nonchalantly.

But what about today? “Today it’s kind of depressing, so many nightclubs are becoming sports bars…back in the day you could see Larry Gales, Esther Phillips, Lorez Alexandria, those are the ones who influenced me. I like it all, gospel, straight ahead jazz, Latin…” her voice trailed off.

Besides being a phenomenal musician, Hernandez has written about 30 songs. While her favorite original tune is “Riverside Drive,” I can’t help but unapologetically offer for listening her “Hot, Strong and Black” which we recorded in Pasadena with her icon Les McCann in a call and response on my CD, “Don’t Go To Strangers.” And between us, I have to tell you that when we sat down to record the title cut, Les McCann had just arrived at the studio that very minute. Karen suddenly sat straighter at the piano bench, and knowing that her icon was listening, transformed WINTER 2013

the song from what we just rehearsed as fabulous to unbelievable as McCann sat at the mixing table next to jazz trumpeter and sound mixer Nolan Shaheed. The studio fell to a hush as we took our places, and Karen drew out the ballad to six minutes and 37 seconds of the most stunning piano I have ever heard. It’s an exquisite example of Hernandez at her best. That makes me the luckiest vocalist ever. Ever.

In her perfect world, Karen’s dream gig would be getting to play with fellow Mormon, Gladys Knight, giving all glory to the Lord. Just as she is a remarkable musician, she is just as devout to her religion and when asked how she would like to be remembered, she quietly answered, “As a caring person.”

As far as I am concerned she is already known for being kind, gracious, and helping anyone she can. She is generous with all singers, supporting them and making them sound great, and always has a kind word. Personally, I wish Karen spent more time in the studio recording. You’ll find “Cross Town” and more at And her modest website, offers up a taste and only a taste of what is really a feast. A night of listening to Karen Hernandez in person is really a girl’s night out to keep you marveling until you have the blessed opportunity to catch her in action again. Oh yeah!

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Darryl F. Walker






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Willie Bradley ANOTHER DAY & TIME


illie Bradley was in the midst of recording a group project with his contemporary jazz/ funk band Essential Elements earlier this year when an extraordinary opportunity to do a solo project came up and inspired him to take his career in a new direction. The Fayetteville, North Carolina based trumpeter had invited several young urban jazz sensations, including saxophonist Marcus Anderson and then 18 year old keyboardist Nicholas Cole, to join him onstage during one of his regular First Saturday of the Month gigs at the Holiday Inn Bordeaux. At the urging of Cole’s manager at the time, Kim Giles, owner of Beyond One Entertainment, Bradley hired Cole to produce & co-write Bradley’s first solo album. Several months later, the trumpeter and Nicholas are halfway through the trumpeter’s edgy, urban jazz flavored solo debut Another Day & Time. Released as a preview for the full collection, the title track has already been picked up and played regularly by the national cable service Music Choice.


“Nicholas is very talented as both a writer and producer and we have an awesome chemistry in the studio,” says Bradley. “He’s very calm and humble and has incredible talent and an innate knowledge of music that’s far beyond his time. All of this is most amazing because I’m almost 50 years old, have played music for many years, and I learn new things from him every day! Working with him felt right because as I thought about doing a solo project, I didn’t want my music to sound like anyone else’s. He brings a fresh, young perspective to my trumpet sound and the result is great songs that are very unique. The title ‘Another Day & Time’ refers not only to the fresh start my collaboration with Nicholas is bringing to my career, but also a new chapter in my spiritual life after God helped me survive and kick addictions.”


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Another Day & Time will also feature many special guests from the contemporary urban jazz realm, including saxophonist/producer Darren Rahn, guitarist Matt Marshak, bassist Julian Vaughn and saxman Marcus Anderson.



Mastering The Mix 1. THE SOURCE | PART 1 OF 3

n Mateo aka “Snuff”


t doesn’t matter how many years you have in the industry or how many “hits” you’ve watched go from conception to birth, putting together a record/album is work. Some hits are manufactured for years before the public consumes them.

For example, Brian Wilson or Axel Rose takes years to produce new projects. But others such as the White Stripes can write and record an entire album in three weeks. Yet, even that seems like a long time for some in the industry. Regardless of the “place” in the industry that the band holds, completing an album is a process.

Pinning down the “right” or “wrong” way to make an album isn’t easy.

As a matter of fact is there isn’t exactly a formula that can be followed for greatness. What determines greatness is a combination of various factors. Two ingredients, I’ve learned through my experience, make or break you...wait for it...attitude and perseverance. Some people are born with these traits. Others, such as myself, had to learn them the hard way. Trust me, it wasn’t all fun and games.

Through the years, I’ve stumbled quite a bit, fallen prey to gimmicks and quick fixes, but experience is the only thing that brought me to where I am. This series on mastering the mix of an album will give you the tools to keep in mind while working on your record. We will start like every album the source 1. THE SOURCE

It doesn’t matter how good the mixer is that you’re working with, you’ll want to start off with a good quality recording. The better the recording is, the better the final product will be. Even the best of mixing and


mastering engineers can work miracles, but they can’t change the source of the album...the recording.


Each instrument needs it’s own special attention. The drums, however, are in need of the most attention when recording. If you’re planning on recording live drums instead of samples, you’ll need an engineer or producer that understands your musical direction and mic’s and sets the drums up to suit your project specifically. This will be key to succeeding with whatever resources you have available. Even with limited resources, you’ll be better off. However, many musicians, especially those new to the industry, don’t realize what resources are available in our date and time. You can bring your own gear or rent everything you’d need for nominal cost. Success, mind you, still requires skill and direction.


Success isn’t an easy thing to come by, but given the right tools and direction, you’ll be on your way to creating and mastering the mix.

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REMEMBERING THE DUKE n Bridgette Lewis and Cicily Janus


eorge Duke. Husband, friend, father, mentor...and master musician. As one of the true master keyboardists of the late 20th century, Grammy Award Winning soloist and band leader, George Duke lived to play nearly forty remarkable years. Performing with everyone from Cannonball Adderley to Frank Zappa, George’s legacy is one that will last for the ages.

Of all his accomplishments, his own recordings stand out as some of the best, cutting-edge contemporary jazz albums on the planet. These document his true vision and brilliance. Bridgette recalls her interview with George, a mere two years ago, as if it were yesterday. George said that it was important to always keep progressing in order to stay relevant and educated in your field. To never stop growing. He also mentioned one of the reasons he earned his masters in education was so that he could teach if his music career didn’t “work out.” Ha! Ms. Bridgette laughed and told him that he never had to be concerned with that.

In his interview with Cicily for her book, The New Face of Jazz, George spoke about his connections to music and what it meant to him to be a musician, Music... is the first wireless medium to reach people as a true analog and spiritual connection. It’s because of this that musicians bear a great responsibility to bring music to the has to be your way of communicating with others. If it doesn’t communicate, then it doesn’t fulfill its destiny. People have connections to music whether they realize it or not.

It (music) has to remain honest… treated as if it’s a gift from God. As one of the best multi-faceted musicians and songwriters, George delved into serious studies from his childhood on. The pervasive influences of jazz, classical and gospel music throughout his formative years would be a lethal combo capable of sustaining him through each year of his illustrious career. According to George he had to, find out who I was before I could really play. I had to learn how to let my guard down and be honest’s the real guys that put in the work. Your art shouldn’t go beyond the WINTER 2013

heart as its journey molds and shapes its own way into the industry. Everyone has their own timing. It’s about going through that walk and discovering who you are on the way. (NFOJ, Random House, 2010) By the end of 1970, George was certainly on his way. He joined bands that ranged from Weather Report to Dizzy Gillespie’s group to the masters of Adderley, Herb Ellis and Ray Brown.

It was clear that he could expertly perform in any situation.

And then his career took the turn it was meant to take. George finally began to record his solo projects, “Faces in Reflection” and “Feel,” for the MPS label.

Signed to Epic records in 1977, George released two recordings that set the jazz/funk world on fire: “From Me to You” and the Gold Record album, “Reach For It.” Following these albums he went on to reach the very top of the charts with tracks from each album he produced. Over time and with each production he hung his hat on, George became an important innovator on the keyboards. He emphasized sounds that were particularly difficult to recreate due to their soulful, almost human elements. As George put it, I was feeling really good about playing music again and content to not have a record deal unless I could have the freedom to make unorthodox records as well as commercial ones. With the freedom to record diverse projects like the orchestral ”Muir Woods Suite” and “After Hours,” a Grammy-nominated concept album of romantic instrumentals, George was able to focus his other solo projects in a more cohesive direction for the better half of his career. What began with “Snapshot” continued with 1995’s “Illusions,” featuring the track Love Can Be So Cold. Following a nearly thirty-year run recording for major record labels, 2002 was the year that George Duke decided to go the independent route, starting his own company, Bizarre Planet Music. Although this is a move that many artists have made out of necessity, George’s reason was based on his need to move onto

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IN M EM O R I AM the next chapter in his distinguished career with the complete freedom that comes from being your own boss.

However, amassing a lineup for an “ultimate George Duke” collection is next to impossible. It’s easy though to pick your favorite tracks, imagine George’s infectious laugh and smile and hum along with him. Remembering George Duke...remembering George is to look upon a man who touched the world with his heart, music and vision.

George recorded “Dream Weaver” as a dedication to his late beloved wife and soulmate, Corrine. George has left this world all too soon. His gift to the world not only included his music but his two sons, John and Rashid. Passing away on August 5, 2013, George has left all who know him personally, professionally, and musically know that he’s left a void that just can’t be filled. We all love and miss you George.

IMAGE CREDIT: Katherine Gilraine

George’s last recording was titled, “Dream Weaver.” which also include his little brother and good friend

Paul Jackson Jr. on bass guitar, once again Paul gets the call.


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Sharon Edwards Billings ALL PARENTS ON DECK

n Sharon Edwards Billings


haron Edwards - Billings’ appreciation of music was shaped by her academic experience and by the Franciscan nuns. She learned how to sing and read music while attending Catholic School at the age of seven. Coffee Talk Jazz’s goal of exposing children to music is aligned with Sharon’s vision for every child - which is their successful completion of high school and college and an awareness of different genres of music. mastering engineers can work miracles, but they can’t change the source of the album...the recording.


A Parent & Student Advocacy Organization. Webster’s Dictionary defines the word Advocate as:

One that supports or promotes the interests of another.

Sharon Edwards-Billings, who is the Executive Director and Founder of ALLPARENTSONDECK, LLC., has demonstrated a commitment to advocating and supporting students and their parents, since 1999. Her ability to advocate for others is grounded in her previous experience as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) with the CHILD ADVOCATE OFFICE - of Los Angeles. She worked with students with mental health challenges through the Dane County Mental Health Agency – Children Come First, Family Works and the Dane County Foster Care Program. Her ability to understand the needs of parents was strengthened by her experiences as a facilitator of


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workshops as a PEOPLE PARENT at the University of Wisconsin-Madison PEOPLE PROGRAM.

Her work experience as an Administrator with a federal agency strengthens her ability to serve as the Founder of ALLPARENTSONDECK, LLC.

EDUCATION: She received a B.A in Political Science from the California State University-Fullerton.

She is a Librarian and successfully completed her Masters of Arts (M.A.) degree in Library and Information Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.


HISTORY: Her family experienced unusual challenges within their school community throughout their student’s elementary, middle and high school years. The process of seeking answers to their questions from school staff and district representatives was difficult and downright frustrating, because neither parent had experiences that involved working within the public school system. Ongoing support from siblings, grandmothers, grandfathers and fictive kin helped them to survive their ordeal and find solutions to their problems. The level of support from other parents whose children had completed school also lightened their burdens and provided them with coping skills, through-

out their children’s school years. They met regularly with a diverse pool of parents through the University of Wisconsin-Madison People Program and within their community, who talked about their experiences with their child’s school.

Ongoing conversations with parents impressed upon Sharon, a need for stronger levels of support for parents of school-age children. These experiences impacted her decision to create a parent- student advocacy organization that provides additional layers of support to parents as their children navigate roads that lead to academic success/failures in their local school.



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’m a native of a small town in Missouri. Born in 1989, I can hardly remember a day that’s gone by in my life where I haven’t been intrigued by the sound of smooth jazz. I was only eleven years old when I started playing the saxophone. I remember sitting on the couch when I heard the sound of beauty. There was a man on the television playing the sax. From that moment on, I’ve been playing with that sound in my ears and passion beneath my notes.

I’d describe my sound today as contemporary. Several of my biggest influences include Gerald Albright, Boney James, Candy Dulfer and Brian Culbertson. Eventually, I’d like to own the piece of the dream that’s kept me going... traveling the world, doing what I love most, playing music for others to embrace within the smooth jazz industry.



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Thank You To my incredible design team you are the best in the

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business. To my team of photographers Joel Capps,

James Saxsmo Gates

Milla Cochran Rose Wedding Photography, Damien

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Smith Photography, you all make me smile in any

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light. To My Advertising and Marketing Team, you all

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never took no for an answer. LOL

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To the wonderful Musicians who advertised in our Premier issue we are grateful for your music and for supporting our vision by entrusting us to share yours.

Kathryn Shut Elizabeth Mis Cameron Ross The BluJ’z Smooth Jazz Band

Paul Jackson Jr.

Reggie the Jazzman Mitchell

Shannon Kennedy

Lisa Belligan Eric Darius Enterprises


Paul Reed Smith Guitars courtesy of Paul Jackson Jr.

Darryl Walker

Valley Arts Custom Pro “Strat”

Nelson Lee Pettigrew

Takamine Hirade Nylon String

Willie Bradley

Ibanez GB-10 Hollow Body Electric

Geri Allen Marina Terteryan Terri Lyne Carrington Esperanza Spalding

Cannonball Musical Instruments: Saxophones, Trumpets, Clarinets & Flutes. Sandy, Utah, USA

Al Caldwell

To my Editor-in-Chief Cicily Janus you have been my

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wingman and voice on this project.

Sam Hankins Camera Soul Group

To all the contributing writers: Thanks again for

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sharing your time, talent, energy and expertise

Mort Weiss

with CoffeeTalk Jazz Magazine.


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