Seattle Opera's production of "Charlie Parker's Yardbird" opens Feb. 22, and we were thrilled to have the lead tenor Joshua Stewart come in for a conversation and a preview, with accompanist David McDade at the piano.
Located between the cities of Seattle and Tacoma, Decatur High School in Federal Way is in prime position to soak up all the arts activities on offer. And these teenagers are creating their own art as part of a successful and still-growing jazz program.
The Tiptons Saxophone Quartet and Drums was formed in Seattle in 1988. Now with only Amy Denio still based in the Puget Sound area, the Tiptons roll on. A new album is due in March, and with their performance in the KNKX studios, the Tiptons showed they're at the top of their game.
The Westerlies unique combination of two trumpets and two trombones, nothing else, has been described as "folk-like and composerly, lovely and intellectually rigorous." In the KNKX studios, these four Northwest natives, now based in New York, were simply four brass players having a lot of fun.
Roxy Coss grew up with a motto in her house that always stuck with her: do what you love, and the money will follow. She's taken that idea to heart, "making decisions based on passion rather than fear," she says. The music Coss makes is passionate, fearless and incredibly cool. The proof is in her new retrospective album, Quintet .
Janiva Magness is one of our best known and most decorated singers, with 26 Blues Music Award nominations, and seven wins, among them BB King Entertainer of the Year. Her 2016 album Love Wins Again was nominated for a Grammy, and she just released her 15 th studio album, Change in the Weather.
For a third time, KNKX hosted an all-star jazz ensemble from Central Washington University for a studio session performance. The fresh faces of this combo did have some familiarity, with two former School of Jazz high schoolers in the group as well as our friend, saxophonist Mark Taylor, acting as mentor.
Guitarist Dave Peterson has been the "secret sauce" in the Seattle jazz scene for decades. He taught at Cornish College of the Arts for 35 years, and has added his graceful tones to countless performances and recordings. He's a composer, too, having penned more than 100 works for bands of all sizes. Dave recently started a project with his cousins from Montana, pianist Lee Kohler and bassist Rob Kohler. Along with Brent Jensen on sax and John Bishop on drums, they recorded the album Winter...
Saxophonist Anton Schwartz wished he'd had more time to work with the young jazz combo from Eckstein Middle School. In the KNKX studios, these six young women stepped up and showed Schwartz there was no need to be nervous. These kids can really play. Eckstein Middle School's stellar reputation for early jazz education comes largely from the director of the school's jazz bands, Moc Escobedo. Last year he was given the Jazz Education Achievement Award from Downbeat Magazine, which noted Mr....
Pianist Emmet Cohen has a passion for music, and still in his late 20s, he's only begun to share that passion with audiences and fellow musicians. That love shone brightly in the KNKX studios as Cohen led his trio through a brief set of songs previewing his Earshot Jazz Festival concert that night.
On her last visit to the KNKX studios, singer and songwriter Madeleine Peyroux was debuting music from her then-upcoming album Anthem in a duet with pianist Andy Ezrin. On this return visit, Ms. Peyroux accompanied herself on guitar and brought in longtime friend Steve Cardenas on guitar for her recent single "On My Own," as well as an old favorite and a brand new original song.
Having just flown in that day from Vancouver, the four men of Kneebody settled into the KNKX studios to briefly catch their breath and play a few songs. Their new album Chapters comes out Oct. 18, and their world tour is kicking into gear.
On the afternoon of opening up for Kneebody, one of their favorite bands, our Portland friends Trio Subtonic played the same role in the KNKX studios. Spirits were high, and the trio brought a pair of exciting additions.
At 22 years of age, Jontavious Willis is already a formidable blues talent. Largely self-taught, he has highly developed skills at Delta and Piedmont guitar styles, as well as playing banjo and harmonica. In 2015, his talent got the attention of Taj Mahal and Keb Mo, who took him on tour and helped him fund and produce his latest release, Spectacular Class . Like his mentors, he brings a keen sense for history and for the earlier musicians who created the music we call blues. He says that...
Though some jazz fans around the Seattle area will always think of Sara Gazarek as the talented young singer with the Roosevelt High jazz band, her new album Thirsty Ghost is making waves around the world. Back in the KNKX studios, Gazarek told us how this album is different from previous efforts, and why the accolades it's receiving is so gratifying.
About 25 years into his career, Kareem Kandi is one of the key figures in the Northwest jazz community. For his third visit to the KNKX studios, Kandi's interchangeable World Orchestra band featured one of Portland's finest musicians, George Colligan, for this delightful meeting of extended I-5 neighbors.
Otis Taylor is a unique Blues artist for many reasons. With 15 studio albums and 12 Blues Music Awards, he has made his mark as an originator of Trance Blues, a style that describes his mesmerizing approach to music and the blues.