Strings Magazine hails multi-style cellist and composer Jacob Szekely as "one of the leaders in the creative string community." With his Indie chamber jazz trio, Los Angeles-based Szekely creates a unique musical tapestry that incorporates the richness of jazz improvisation, the structure of classical music, and the edginess of rock into its own alchemy that expands the sonic culture of the cello. Grammy winner cellist Eugene Friesen declared that Szekely's music is "the first time a cellist has made the case as a leader in modern jazz!"
Szekely's compositions and arrangements effortlessly blend influences from Jazz, Classical, and Rock with Middle Eastern, Klezmer, and R&B. In 2014, the trio released their debut EP, which was hailed by critics from The Strad, Strings Magazine, International Musician, Berkleyside, LA Weekly, as well as artists from Yo-Yo Ma to Rush Bassist Geddy Lee, and declared a "quantum leap forward" in pushing the boundaries of the cello. The trio's 2015 debut album made several year-end top ten lists and debut album of the year nods from JazzEd, International Review of Music, and others.
Formed by Singer/Saxophonist, Chelsea Luker, in collaboration with Rick Bouvette on bass, Eric Hickey on guitar, Keith Abbott on drums, and Gil Assayas on keys, JoyTribe is a passionate fusion of Pretenders inspired vocals meets Prince and Pink Floyd's psychedelic funk child.
Chelsea initiated JoyTribe with the goal of making unique fusion in a democratic writing situation. After 5 years with Mars Retrieval Unit, and a little break in Thailand, she took time searching for the right fit of musicians, and once she reacquainted with former MRU bassist Rick B., everything fell into place. Initially imagining a mix of electronic, prog and funk, the music made up it's own mind to veer towards world inspired funk. Songs lean heavily on reggae, Latin and African elements, paired with vintage rock vibes. This is due to Eric's study of latin percussion and flamenco, Rick's love of Reggae, and Keith's strong connection to classic bands like Pink Floyd. With the recent addition of Electro Looping guru, Gil Assayas of Glasys, the vibe can go anywhere during a show.
The mood of the band is intense and sometimes shy, a little silliness bursts through, but there is a very strong sense of passion, focus and love during live performances.
JoyTribe has been performing around the NW for over two years now, opening for international touring acts such as Balkan Beat Box, Dumpstaphunk, Afrolicious and Kung FU. They recently released their first EP, "We Insist", featuring 5 original songs and an adapted version of Peter Gabriel's "In Your Eyes". back to top
Tiffany Wilson is a true musical artist and songwriter whose voice speaks to something real and soulful. Not content with writing only standard love songs, her latest album "#SeeSharp" also speaks of inner and outer change, politics, and vision of a brighter future.
The production of her sophomore release is a conscious blend of the sounds of the past and the future. It is a mix of classic live soul & funk music filtered through her contemporary R&B roots and sensibilities. Eschewing the retro soul fad and moving towards a unique combination of past, present, and future.
Genre-blending Portland, OR-based Lost Ox have been cooking up their own all-original mix of prog rock, country Americana and funk since early 2017. Hot off recording their first full-length ablum, "Wildheart", the band brings their own brand of inventive playfulness to performances, weaving dark, murderous yarns in the same stride as delightfully groovy jive numbers, saturated richly with improvisation and interplay.
with: Reed Bunnell - bass
Dylan DiSalvio - guitar
Mark Mullen - keys/guitar
Mike Stavish - drums
Join us for a classic night of cocktails and cabaret featuring the following fantastic frolickers:
The reputable radical Rummy Rose
The heavenly hypnosis of Holly Dai
The sensual seductress Sugar Kane
and the lusciously lithe Layne Fawkes
Peter Eldridge ranks "in the celebrated tradition of melodic poets, most famously represented by such disparate voices as Stevie Wonder, Paul Simon, Joni Mitchell, Van Morrison and Steely Dan - singer/songwriters who create catchy, beautiful tunes with insightful lyrics that are both personal and universal" (allmusicguide.com).
He continues to combine his talents into an eclectic mix of performing, composing and arranging, recording, as well as teaching (after almost twenty years at the Manhattan School of Music as the head of it's graduate jazz voice department, Peter joined the voice faculty at Berklee College of Music in Boston this past Fall). Peter was also recently asked to be the artist-in-residence at Western Michigan University. To this date he has released four solo recordings. Stranger in Town, characterized by its bittersweet swing garnered Best Jazz CD of the year by Boston radio station WICN, and released in the same year was Fool No More, full of Peter's evocative original music in a sophisticated pop setting, were both released in the same year (Rosebud Records). Following on the heels of those albums was Decorum, a 2005 release of originals. Downbeat was noted as saying, "If musical intelligence and artistry were prompters to marketplace success, Decorum would grant him stardom. . . .strong, far-ranging voice . . hauntingly wistful". Finally the latin-inspired Mad Heaven was released in 2011 on the Palmetto label. "Mad Heaven showcases Eldridge as a major player in vocal jazz, an artist of extraordinary depth and conviction" (Jazz Review). Peter is currently working on two new recording projects, one with jazz pianist Kenny Werner and strings, and the other a project of originals and covers with his trio (Ben Wittman on drums/percussion and Matt Aronoff on bass). Both projects are being planned for release in 2015.
Championed by some of music's most celebrated figures, Sara Gazarek has emerged as a strikingly original artist with limitless potential. With four highly acclaimed CD's under her belt at the young age of 35, Sara has been hailed by the LA Times as "the next important jazz singer," and "impeccable," by the Winnipeg Free Press, Sara continues to seamlessly combine the intimacy of singer/songwriter stylings with the musical and improvisational elements of jazz. Blessed with a gorgeous, translucent voice, excellent pitch, and supple sense of time, Gazarek is steeped in the jazz tradition, but is not afraid to embrace the music that moves her generation. Her newest album, Dream in the Blue (2016, Steel Bird Music) was released to rave reviews, as Dan Bilawsky of All About Jazz has noted "...one of the best modern day piano-voice matches in action." Sara is currently on faculty at the University of Southern California, leading the award-winning vocal jazz ensemble there and teaching privately.
Boston-based multi-instrumentalist Mark Zaleski comes to Portland to celebrate the release of second album "Days, Months, Years". Zaleski performs on alto saxophone, soprano saxophone, and acoustic bass on this recording, unique to almost any jazz record ever recorded. The album includes clever through-composed music combined with choice standards reimagined to fit the style of his band of 10 years. Zaleski will perform on saxophone this evening as he puts a unique spin on modern jazz by fusing his love of rock music with his jazz training. He has appeared with Dave Brubeck, Christian McBride, Jethro Tull, the Either/Orchestra, Bob Moses, Tiger Okoshi, and Antonio Sanchez and is currently on faculty at Berklee College of Music, New England Conservatory of Music, and Longy School of Music at Bard College.
Based out of Portland, The Cherry Blossom Orchestra were formed as a direct result of Louis Armstrong's visit to the city in 1965. He is one of many inspirations for the band - see also Fletcher Henderson, King Oliver, Duke Ellington, Fats Waller, Jelly Roll Morton, W.C. Handy, Spencer Williams, the Oklahoma City Blue Devils, and so many more. The Cherry Blossom Hot Jazz group use only premier musicians to accurately and sincerely remind their audience that the very roots of the music are as exciting to play as they are challenging to execute. With unqualified success, the band toured The Centenary Of Recorded Jazz Show in 2017, with highlights in Lincoln City, Salem, and the Waterfront Blues Festival right here in Portland. With an equal appeal to both listeners and dancers, we can proudly proclaim to play the jazz created during its most important period : the 1920s to the 1940s
The Seattle Soul All Stars is a collective of perhaps the finest musicians the tradition rich Emerald City has ever produced...a bold statement considering the likes of Jimmy Hendrix, Quincy Jones, Kenny G, etc were all spawned in the unbelievably fertile Seattle music scene. Gerald and Thaddeus Turner, two of Seatown's finest bass/ lead guitar combination since 70s funk superstars The Brothers Johnson, take the stage alongside DJ ROC PHIZZLE,( Jamaal Robinson), an extraordinary talent whose keyboard playing is reminiscent of some of the great funk / Soul Keyboard players in some of the best bands of the 70s and 80s. It should come as no surprise that his father played bass guitar in the legendary 70s and 80s funk super band " "Lakeside".
Also included in this eclectic group of musicians is the aptly named"Superman", Conrad Real, on the drums; Conrad, together with the aforementioned Turner brothers, form the nucleus of the rhythm section for 90s super hip hop jazz group " Digable Planets" and will be leaving with DP to go on tour shortly after doing the Jack London show.
Bossa PDX is a Portland-based group that pays homage to the masters of the bossa nova era. The group, which is led by pianist-vocalist Kerry Politzer, plays lovingly transcribed arrangements of compositions by Jobim, Chico Buarque, Ary Barroso, Joao Donato, and many others. Bossa PDX also plays a selection of upbeat Brazilian jazz tunes, dipping into the rhythms of samba and baiao. The band provides an experience both soothing and uplifting.
Elise was born in Southern California to a South African father and a mother from New York in the very last year of the millennium. Raised on The Carpenters, Green Day, and 80s New Wave, I always looked forward to rides in my mom's car where she played her "mixtapes", whether it was on a compilation CD or an ancient iPod. Inspiration struck when my six-year-old self first heard the haunting piano melody in "My Immortal" by Evanescence. I distinctly remember a five hour plane ride that consisted of that one song blasting repeatedly into my ears. So I begged my parents for piano lessons, and after they finally relented, they were then begging me to not practice at five in the morning every day. I did it anyway, and my love for piano just grew stronger.
Life changed when my family bought the game Rockband for Xbox. After mastering the drums to "Dani California" on Expert Mode, I thought I was ready to rock (thank you, Chad Smith). It took a lot more to convince my parents I needed drum lessons, but I managed to wear them down with my obsessive talk and relentless requests. Luckily, at that time we were living on a 2-acre former chicken farm in the middle of nowhere, so the decibel change from piano to drums was irrelevant.
A few months after finding my way around an actual drum kit, my parents realized that I was serious about drumming, so they supported my cause and enrolled me in School of Rock, where I learned how to play and perform with other young musicians. Being one of the youngest only pushed me harder to keep up with the older kids. From Mitch Mitchell's jazz-rock waltz on Jimi Hendrix's "Manic Depression" to the syncopated groove of Richard Bailey on Jeff Beck's "Blow by Blow" to the funky feel of Tower of Power's David Garibaldi, I wanted to learn it all.
During my high school years, I started reading charts in band, and jazz became another component of my musicality. At the same time, I began writing both on piano and guitar, spending hours before, after, and even during school to fulfill my creative desires. Because of my dedication to music and growing following on social media, I graduated early to commit fully to music and the creation of my first album. The decision to perform all of the instrumental and vocal tracks on the recordings stemmed from my desire to learn more about recording and to push myself beyond my own limits.
People ask me "What genre is your music?" With songs in 5/4 and 7/4, chords that you'd normally find in The Real Book next to "Take Five," and influences like Radiohead, The Police, and Steely Dan, I'm really not sure what box I fit into- I'll leave that up to you.
2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017 Muddy Award nominee for Best R&B act, The Ken DeRouchie Band is an 8-piece Soul/R&B/Funk/Blues band from Portland Oregon. The band features a crisp horn section and a tight rhythm section along with amazing 4 part vocal harmonies, performing original music written by Ken DeRouchie as well as a few handpicked twists on classic tunes. Influences for the band include everything from Aretha Franklin, Lenny Kravitz, Koko Taylor, Steely Dan, Jill Scott and Galactic. KDB has had the pleasure of opening for such national acts as Cheap Trick, Blood Sweat and Tears, Curtis Salgado, Robben Ford, The Cherry Poppin' Daddies, Mary Wilson and the Supremes, and Leftover Salmon. Top players from the Northwest join DeRouchie, including Northwest Soul phenom, Arietta Ward (DooDoo Funk All-stars), long-time KDB bassist Rob Busey (Robbie Laws), virtuoso guitarist Jeff Knudson (Lisa Mann and Her Really Good Band), keyboardist Brian Harris (Curtis Salgado), drummer Chris Lay (Tim Snider Band), Pete Peterson on tenor sax and Caleb Denison on trumpet. Steve Pringle of KINK FM Portland writes "Ken and his band bring it each and every night. Horns that moan and wail, guitars that grind and soothe and a rhythm section tighter than a frogs ass. The KDB has a story to tell, pull up a chair." Marty Gunther - Blues Blast Magazine writes "Muse is totally soulful from beginning to end. DeRouchie is a masterful songwriter, and the varying musical textures used keep you interested throughout. Available through all of the major websites, this isn't your granddad's blues. It's totally modern in every way and definitely worth a taste." Andre Hagestadt, The Oregonian and Statesman Journal writes "....the Ken DeRouchie Band has developed a reputation for being one of the best live bands in the Northwest" The Ken DeRouchie Band puts on a HIGH-OCTANE, Soul, R&B and Blues fueled live show. Bring your dancing shoes and get ready for a world class live music experience. This will be the party of the year!
"What makes the homey Ozark stew of Handmade Moments so very nourishing, so perfectly spiced? Partake and be effortlessly guided through wistful and deep channels of musical flavor, rich with hearty roots and fungi, vegetables home-gardened and watered from the sacred well of American musics: jazz old-time country blues soul hip-hop rock (and it don't stop). Glistening with insight and whimsy, long-simmering with righteous compassion and beauty, Handmade Moments are a fearless all-weather duo - complementary spirits of musical tightrope and magic - serving up entrée to their secret river of goodness." - Matthew Souzis