Michigan Jazz Educators Association
The Michigan Jazz Educators Association aims to heighten jazz education awareness
in music arts communities and create information resources that network, inspire, and sustain
jazz performance in upper and lower Michigan and around the Great Lakes area.
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Paul Keller Orchestra
Monday, September 18, 2017; 7-10pm

Zal Gaz Grotto, 2070 W. Stadium Boulevard (between Liberty and Pauline), Ann Arbor
ph: (734) 663-2102
Tickets:  $10 cover - FREE Parking
Paul Keller Orchestra
After an 8-week summer vacation, bassist Paul Keller and the 15-piece Paul Keller Orchestra returns to their hometown turf at Zal Gaz Grotto, launching their weekly Monday night roar with vivacious big band jazz.  
Sarah Barnes D'Angelo
will sing and play clarinet. 
PKO's special guest band is Battle Creek Swingtet, who will play a 30-minute set on PKO's break.
PKO celebrates the start of their 29th season bringing great big band jazz to Ann Arbor's music-loving community.  Be there!

Vijay Iyer - Exploding the Narrative in Jazz Improvisation 
(PDF download  73.5KB)

Building on Robert G. O'Meally's acclaimed Jazz Cadence of American Culture, these original essays
Vijay Iyeroffer new insights in jazz historiography, highlighting the political stakes in telling the story of the music and evaluating its cultural import in the United States and worldwide.

Vijay Iyer | credit: Jimmy Katz

In an incendiary essay detailing what constitutes architecture and framework across the jazz solo, Harvard University professor, academician, and
virtuoso jazz pianist Vijay Iyer asks how an improvised solo can convey meaning or "tell a story." He develops a theory of jazz improvisation around his idea of hearing the body. To Iyer, the effectiveness of improvisation, particularly its rhythmic aspect, depends on an awareness by producers and listeners of the physical actions involved and their situation within a shared social environment, which creates a cascade of meaningful events in an “exploded” (i.e., not conventionally linear) narrative.

Uptown Conversation: The New Jazz Studies

Uptown Conversation
The New Jazz Studies

Edited by Robert G. O'Meally, Brent Hayes Edwards, and Farah Jasmine Griffin
Columbia University Press

Pub Date: June 2004
ISBN: 9780231123518
544 Pages
Format: Paperback
List Price: $35.00

Thematic Jazz Improvisation Playlist - Steve Treseler
From his Creative Music Blog, see the story here.
Thelonious Monk
 Thelonious Monk | Credit:  William Gottlieb

Thematic improvisation is the process of embellishing, developing, changing, and/or deconstructing a musical theme. These themes arise from the composition itself or improvised on the spot.  This approach to improvisation is a hallmark of some of the greatest jazz soloists, and practicing the process helps generate an endless flow of ideas on any tune, in any style.

Steve Treseler is a Seattle-based saxophonist, teaching artist, and author.  He's on the faculty at Seattle Pacific University teaching saxophone and improvisation.  Treseler's music education came on scholarship at New England Conservatory of Music in Boston where he studied with jazz legends Jerry Bergonzi, Bob Brookmeyer, George Garzone and Steve Lacy.  He holds a Master of Music degree from the University of Washington, where he studied with renowned avant-garde trumpeter Cuong Vu.

Why Jazz Matters | Chris Washburne | Talks@Columbia
View the Lecture Here
Time:  24:07
Chris WashburneThe creative process of jazz — collaboration and improvisation — can inform leadership, adaptability, innovation, collaboration, and risk management in business settings, demonstrates Chris Washburne, Associate Professor of Music and Director of the Louis Armstrong Jazz Performance program at Columbia University.

Called the best trombonist in salsa by Peter Watrous of The New York Times, Washburne leads the acclaimed Latin jazz group SYOTOS and has recorded with Tito Puente, Eddie Palmieri, Celia Cruz, Ray Barretto, Mark Anthony, Justin Timberlake, Celine Dion, Gloria Estefan, and the Duke Ellington Orchestra.

Talks @ Columbia draw speakers from among the thousands of thought leaders and researchers that make up the diverse faculty community at Columbia University. Through brief, engaging multimedia presentations, these experts show how the idea that matters most to them can resonate with us all. Talks @ Columbia provide fresh perspectives on the most important global topics today, persuasion to change how we think and act, and inspiration for us to help others and improve the world.

Guest Recital - Sean Dobbins Group
Monday, September 18, 2017; 6:00pm
Earl V. Moore Building, Carolyn and Milton Kevreson Rehearsal Hall (North Campus)
1100 Baits Drive, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
Free Admission - no tickets required

Sean DobbinsDrummer Sean Dobbins his continually made his mark as decorated solo artist and sideman, starting at a young age in his native Detroit.  He got his start regularly playing with and studying under Blue Note trumpeter and acclaimed Ann Arbor educator Louis Smith.  As Dobbin's career progressed, he received many awards and accolades including the Woody Herman Jazz Award for outstanding musicianship, plus the Louis Armstrong Scholarship.  Dobbins' bright future was cemented following launch of his groundbreaking band Urban Transport (featuring trombonist Vincent Chandler and pianist Rick Roe) and Sean Dobbins and the Modern Jazz Messengers.  He regularly plays Kerrytown Concert House, Cliff Bell's jazz club in Detroit, and has headlined for many years the Detroit Jazz Festival.

Guest Lecture - Sachal Vasandani, jazz vocalist
Thursday, September 14, 2017; 3:30pm
Sachal Vasandani
Earl V. Moore Building, Carolyn and Milton Kevreson Rehearsal Hall (North Campus)
1100 Baits Drive, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
Free Admission - no tickets required

U-M School of Music alumnus Sachal Vasandani is recognized for his singular voice, with a tone and unique phrasing that mark him as one of the most compelling voices on the scene today. Thoroughly rooted in jazz, he has the swagger to front the most swinging big bands, and the vulnerability to present definitive takes on ballads. His deeply creative approach to improvisation across changes and time signatures is as unique as it is disciplined, and he has come be regarded as one of the great vocal improvisers. At this master class he will discuss his career and the choices he has made since graduating from U-M’s jazz program.

Gull Lake Jazz Orchestra
Wednesday, September 13, 2017; 7pm to 9:15 pm
The Union Cabaret & Grille, South Kalamazoo Mall, Kalamazoo

Ph: (269) 384-6756    Free Admission!

Website:  http://www.gulllakejazz.com/

Musical Director: Harry Boesch

Gull Lake Jazz Orchestra
Fall season is here!  Time to step out, bring some friends along to help strike up the band.
September welcomes Big band swing in downtown Kalamazoo courtesy of 17-piece Gull Lake Jazz Orchestra!
Another lively outing with Harry Boesch and West Michigan's finest jazz musicians.  Harry and band mates represent an A-list of jazz educators and devoted musicians.  GLJO draws from a vast library of classic big band literature and faithfully reproduces the power and excitement of leading bands of yesteryear --Stan Kenton, Woody Herman, Count Basie.  Plus, contemporary ensembles made famous by Frank Mantooth and Maynard Ferguson.
Harry says, "We all look forward to seeing you and thanks for supporting live music!"

Gull Lake Jazz Orchestra
Harry Boesch - Trombone (Band Leader)
Gary McCourry - 1st Tenor; Sandy Shaw - 2nd Tenor
Mark Greer - 1st Alto; Greg Marsden - 2nd Alto
Frank Silva - Baritone
Earlie Braggs - Trombone; Paul Brewer - Trombone (Lead)
Scott Grupke - Bass trombone
David Wells, Tim Culver, Scott Cowan - Trumpet; Danny Barber - Trumpet (lead)
Terry Lower - Piano
Denis Schebukhov - Bass
Tim Froncek - Drums
Edye Evns Hyde - Vocalist (select dates)

MSU Professors of Jazz
Friday, September 8, 2017; 8pm
Fairchild Theatre, Wharton Center, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI
Tickets:  $10 adults, $8 seniors, students free
College of Music Box Office Ph: (517) 353-5340
Jazz Director:  Rodney Whitaker, University Distinguished Professor of Jazz Bass

MSU Professors of Jazz:
Etienne Charles, trumpet; Xavier Davis, piano; Michael Dease, trombone; Randy Gelispie, drums; Randy Napoleon, jazz guitar; Diego Rivera, tenor saxophone; Rodney Whitaker, bass

MSU Professors of Jazz

Grand Rapids Jazz Orchestra
Sunday, September 3, 2017; 5:30 - 7:30pm
Founders Brewing Co., 235 Grandville Ave., S.W., Grand Rapids, MI
Ph: (616) 776-1195
Free admission!
Musical Director:  Bob Nixon
Website: http://www.grjo.com/

In its third decade the Grand Rapids Jazz Orchestra remains a leader for large ensembles pushing musical boundaries  in the thriving West Michigan jazz scene. Comprised of jazz educators from the region, GRJO reliably charges up audiences  who thirst for top-notch musicianship and soloing, notably infectious improv and interplay served up by drummer Tim Froncek, tenor saxophonists Bob Nixon and Greg Marsden, trumpeter Dan Jacobs, pianist  Steve Talaga, and trombonist Mike McLeod. The band also garners gracious applause by introducing new compositions  by many leading composers and arrangers.

Dafnis Prieto - A World of Rhythmic Possibilities
Dafnison Music

Dafnis Prieto-A World of Rhythmic
Grammy Award-winning drummer-composer-arranger Dafnis Prieto is on the move. The dynamic MacArthur Fellowship (2015) recipient has released four albums as a leader, but he's also authored and self-published a well-received book on drumming – “A World of Rhythmic Possibilities” (Dafnison Music).  The book honors the perception and awareness behind rhythm, plus the relationships of drum patterns, notably cáscara, clave, cowbell, and others emanating from his native Cuba.  Prieto is elated to honor the work of influential drummers – José Luis Quintana “Changuito,” Max Roach, and George Lawrence Stone – who each receive major mention. The book includes 338 audio samples plus 33 video clips. 

Maria Schneider - Jazz Advocate for the Musician-Artist
Maria Schneider
"Why am I speaking about the power of music? Because at this moment in history, our livelihoods and the entire culture of music—jazz and more—stand in jeopardy. And so does the power for good that music brings the world."

* read Maria Schneider's speech at the 2017 Jazz Connect Conference here *

Composer and jazz band leader Maria Schneider and her music has been hailed by critics as “evocative, majestic, magical, heart-stoppingly gorgeous, and beyond categorization.”  Schneider is widely hailed for writing and conducting for her 18-member collective comprised of the finest musicians in jazz today, tailoring her compositions to distinctly highlight the uniquely creative voices of the group.  The Maria Schneider Orchestra has performed at festivals and concert halls worldwide.  She herself has received numerous commissions and guest-conducting invites, working with over 85 groups from over 30 countries.

After completing a music degree at the University of Minnesota, Schneider moved to New York in the mid-1980s. There, she became an assistant to the legendary Gil Evans, and also worked with Bob Brookmeyer. In the '90s, Schneider began leading her own jazz orchestra, and her talent has flourished exponentially since then.  Schneider's compositions are as complex as they are clear in vision and feeling.  Since her debut release in 1994 with "Evanesence", in tribute to famed arranger Gil Evans, Schneider and her orchestra have a distinguished recording career with twelve Grammy nominations and five Grammy awards. 

Schneider has been awarded many honors by the Jazz Journalists Association and DOWNBEAT and JAZZTIMES Critics and Readers Polls.  A recent collaboration with her orchestra and the late David Bowie resulted in his single called, "Sue (Or In A Season of Crime),” and brought her a 2016 Grammy (Best Arrangement, Instruments and Vocals).  Schneider and her orchestra also received a 2016 Grammy for their latest work, The Thompson Fields (Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album). Previous Grammy wins came in 2005, 2007, 2015. 

In 2012, her alma mater, the University of Minnesota, presented Schneider with an honorary doctorate, and in 2014, ASCAP awarded her their esteemed Concert Music Award.  Schneider has become a strong voice for music advocacy and in 2014, testified before the US Congressional Subcommittee on Intellectual Property about digital rights. Most recently, she and concerned colleagues in New York have launched a widespread campaign on behalf of music-makers, MusicAnswers.org

She raised the bar even higher giving a moving keynote address at the 2017 Jazz Connect Conference (New York City), advancing an impassioned plea against musical piracy on the Internet.

Dave Liebman and Michael Kaplan: How Does the Brain Make All that Jazz?
By Victor L. Schermer, All About Jazz
Dave Liebman
All About Jazz sits down with NEA Jazz Master Dave Liebman,
saxophonist-educator, and Michael Kaplan, who teaches neuroscience
in the Biological Basis of Behavior Program at the University of Pennsylvania, as they discuss how the brain works to make improvised
jazz happen.  A topical, insightful look at required skills for jazz improv
and how brain activity transforms it into executable action. 

Along the way their engaging talk covers the neurobiological basis of
musical talent and learning, the "telepathy" that occurs when jazz
players co-improvise, and the cultural and developmental factors that
make jazz a personal and communal experience. 

Martin Bejerano
Developing Solo Jazz Piano Chops

By Martin Bejerano, Keyboard

Martin Bejerano reveals an exciting viewpoint on aspects of solo piano playing
using the jazz standard “Stella By Starlight”.  Here he demonstrates four creative
approaches to get a complete, varied, and fully orchestrated sound from the piano. 

Besides holding down the piano chair for the Roy Haynes Quartet jazz pianist,
composer, and educator Bejerano heads the jazz piano department at
Frost School of Music, University of Miami.

Check out his most recent album Potential Energy

Visit his website at martinbejerano.com.

What We Should Learn From Jazz Band Teachers
Our schools are broken. Here's the fix.
By William R. Klemm Ph.D.,
Psychology Today
William Klemm, Ph.D.

William Klemm, Ph.D., is senior professor of Neuroscience at Texas A&M University.
He is the author of 18 books, including Science, The Brain, and Our Future; Discovery Processes in Modern
Biology; Brainstem Mechanisms of Behavior; Understanding Neuroscience; Memory Power 101; Better Grades,
Less Effort; Improve Your Memory for a Healthy Brain; Core Ideas in Neuroscience; Atoms of Mind; and Mental
Biology, The New Science of How the Brain and Mind Relate.

Jazz Education Watch - Adam Olszewski,bassist, Michigan State University
MSU Jazz Studies undergraduate earns placement for Betty Carter Jazz Ahead project
Adam Olszewski
Congrats to MSU bassist Adam Olszewski -- he can testify what it's like to have a dream come true.  Earning a special invite and performing in a premier jazz residency program in Washington, D.C. turned out be his grandest shining hour.

In 2016, the 20-year-old jazz studies sophomore at Michigan State University packed his stand-up bass and hit the road to the nation's capital for the 17th annual Betty Carter’s Jazz Ahead program through the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

“I never expected it,” says Olszewski. “You tell yourself you’re in the right spot and that you’re doing the right things, but until you hear that from someone else, you don’t really know. I’m so very excited that I matched the program’s idea of what a young person should be doing.”

Olszewski was among just 24 participants selected from a competitive audition process to attend the international jazz residency project that identifies outstanding, emerging jazz artists and composers in their mid-teens to age 25. Experienced artists and instructors lead the career development program for aspiring jazz musicians, and mentor attendees in performance, composing, and arranging skills.

“It’s an absolutely amazing honor to be selected for a program that has nurtured so many jazz greats,” says Rodney Whitaker, director of MSU Jazz Studies. “Adam is very humble but knows he has an incredible gift. I’ve never seen him take things for granted. He’s always working hard to be his best and to learn from those around him.”

Adam's Website:  http://adamobass.com/index.html

The Art of Jazz Arranging - Richard DeRosa - University of North Texas
Richard DeRosa
Video by Jazz Video Guy (Bret Primack) / Length: 7:27
Musical selection:
"Perseverance", Rich's masterful composition from the UNT "Lab 2011" release.

Richard DeRosa teaches jazz composition and arranging at the University of North Texas,
and is also the conductor of the WDR Band in Köln, Germany.  He has arranged, conducted music for Wynton Marsalis and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, plus other arranging credits through recordings by Mel Lewis-Thad Jones Orchestra, Gerry Mulligan, Glenn Miller Big Band, and vocalist Susannah McCorkle.

Watch it here.

WMUK Interview: Miguel Zenón, Thomas Knific, & Andrew Rathbun

Miguel Zenon Tom KnificThe annual Western Invitational Jazz Festival features jazz performances and master classes with a cavalcade of musicians, from high school ensembles to college bands, and professionals. This year, the thirty-fifth festival featured virtuoso saxophonist Miguel Zenón (left) as guest artist.

A multiple Grammy nominee and Guggenheim and MacArthur Fellow, Miguel Zenón is widely considered to be one of the most groundbreaking and influential saxophonists of his generation. Zenón has been repeatedly recognized as an important composer in jazz, receiving dozens of commissions, awards, and grants.

Tom Knific
(right) is an internationally renowned bassist, educator, and chairs/directs the WMU Jazz studies program at Western Michigan University (Kalamazoo).  Toronto-native Andrew Rathbun is an educator-composer and a performing member of the Western Jazz Quartet (with Knific, drummer Keith Hall, pianist Jeremy Siskind).  

WMUK-102.7FM, NPR public radio at Western Michigan University, airs over 40 hours of jazz weekly and streams online.

Hear the interview here.

Jazz Educators/Academics and Jazz Journalists:  Friends or Foes?
(What do we have in common? How can we work together better?)
   -presented by the Jazz Journalists Association-

View a replay of a two-part Google (video) Hangout from January 2015 featuring educators Dr. Monika Herzig and Dr. Larry Ridley, Ph.d. student and former jazz writer for the Newark Star Ledger Alex H. Rodriguez, and jazz writer/broadcaster/adjunct faculty at University of Illinois Chicago and Northwestern University Neil Tesser talk about their experiences in the field. The moderator is respected journalist-educator Howard Mandel, JJA president and 28-year adjunct professor at New York University.

** See Part-1 here / See Part-2 here
JJA Jazz Education PanelHoward Mandel
JJA Panelists (l-r, Larry Ridley, Monika Herzig, Neil Tesser, Alex Rodriguez, Howard Mandel)

* Dr. Larry Ridley, executive director of the African American Jazz Caucus, Inc., is a bassist, lecturer at Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Swing University, and professor of music emeritus of Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, where he designed and implemented the undergraduate jazz degree program of the Livingston College starting in 1972.
Dr. Monika Herzig is a jazz pianist/ composer as well as Senior Lecturer in the Arts Administration program at Indiana University. Currently she serves as the Secretary for the Jazz Education Network and heads the Jazz Research Committee. More info at  monikaherzig.com
Neil Tesser has written and broadcast about jazz for more than 40 years, for publications ranging from Playboy Magazine, Chicago magazine, to the New York Times. He won a 2014 Grammy Award for liner-note writing.
*   Alex W. Rodriguez is a jazz writer, improviser, trombonist and Ph.D student in ethnomusicology at UCLA, where his current research focuses on jazz clubs around the world and the creative improvised music communities that surround them (with case studies in California, Chile, and Russia). Alex also contributes jazz coverage to NPR Music’s A Blog Supreme and LA Weekly’s West Coast Sound and maintains his own blog, Lubricity.
Howard Mandel is a  New York-based writer, editor, author, and producer for National Public Radio. For more than 30 years, he's covered jazz, blues and new music for newspapers, magazines and websites. Mandel teaches at New York University and consults for various arts organizations. He is president of the Jazz Journalists Association, and blogs at ArtsJournal.com.

Topics explored:
->Does the world of jazz scholarship respect and employ the work of jazz journalists, and do jazz journalists gain
          from relations with the academy?

->Are the worlds of jazz education and jazz information/dissemination parallel or do they intersect?
->What values and techniques do both media-makers and teachers hold dear, or need to acquire?
->Are there ways to build or strengthen bonds, or are these two sectors of the jazz ecology forever separate, equal or not?

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