Jamie Cullum Performs With a Hand-Selected Group of Special Guests for This One-of-a-Kind Evening Created Especially for the Jazz at the Bowl Series.
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 20, AT 8:00 PM
This performance is a Fidelity Investments FutureStage Concert
Media sponsors: 88.1 KJAZZ/Univision 34/Telefutura46
British jazz/pop sensation Jamie Cullum, who wowed audiences at the Hollywood Bowl last season with his combustible talents, puts a modern twist on swing classics with The Count Basie Orchestra and a group of remarkable guests including A Christian McBride Situation and Elizabeth Shepherd. A Christian McBride Situation debuts at the Hollywood Bowl, offering a carte du jour of jazz all-stars including Christian McBride, Patrice Rushen, DJ Logic, Jahi Sundance, Walter Smith III and Maysa. Opening the concert is jazz singer/pianist Elizabeth Shepherd, who is touring in support of her latest album, Parkdale.
Citing influences from Herbie Hancock to Steely Dan, Jamie Cullum’s beginnings include gigs on cruise liners, at weddings and bar mitzvahs. Cullum’s unique musical style and dynamic stage presence has propelled him into jazz greatness. The New York Observer declares "a talent this size comes along as rarely as a hot January." Cullum is a musical opportunist, taking advantage of jazz’s characteristically lack of restrictions by integrating elements of rock, pop, classical, funk and dance music. His next album following his sophomore record Catching Tales is set for release in early 2009.
A Christian McBride Situation features a unique arrangement of legendary performers created especially for the Jazz at the Bowl series. Christian McBride performs on bass, DJ Logic and DJ Jahi Sundance on turntables, Maysa on vocals, Patrice Rushen on keyboards, and Walter Smith III on tenor sax.
Elizabeth Shepherd pushes the boundaries of what is considered conventional jazz, while creating a sound completely her own. Shepherd blends sounds from differing genres including soul, blues and samba backed by rigorous conservatory training. Her debut album, Start to Move, was nominated for a Juno award last year for Vocal Jazz Album of the Year. Her latest album, Parkdale, bears the name of her South Toronto neighborhood and explores the universal human condition.
This special Jazz at the Bowl performance showcases the flexibility of jazz while paying homage to the greats of yesteryear.
Born in Essex, and raised in Wiltshire, JAMIE CULLUM fixated on all types of music from an early age: rock, hip-hop, acid jazz and blues. While studying English at college, he began working as a singer-pianist anywhere he could get a gig: on cruise ships, in pubs, even wedding receptions. There, he crafted the explosive on-stage persona that would win him accolades in The New York Times -"a natural showman with the confidence of a bantam rooster waking up the neighborhood," Variety -"a one man British invasion," the New York Observer -"A talent this size comes along as rarely as a hot January" and more. When Universal Classics & Jazz snatched up the rising talent in the spring of 2003 and sent him into the studio to make Twentysomething, he was ready for the rigors–and joys-that waited ahead. With his sophomore set, Catching Tales, Jamie Cullum continued to redefine where the parameters of pop, and jazz–all musical genres–were drawn: "People ask why I play jazz. It's because you can take it to so many different places." Cullum is currently putting the finishing touches on his next aural excursion to be released by Universal Classics & Jazz in early 2009. The album was recorded in Los Angeles with producer Greg Wells (Katy Perry, OneRepublic, Mika, and Timbaland).
Jazz is an American invention of the 20th Century. William “Count” Basie expanded and elevated the art form to where modern music’s connoisseurs around the world regard his legacy as an American institution. William Basie grew up with the tempos of the swing era in New York City; where live big bands were filling ballrooms with dance rhythms. Toward the close of the Roaring 20s it was Kansas City that was drawing notice for jazz. Young pianist Bill Basie landed there while working the national vaudeville circuit, then stayed on with The Benny Moten Orchestra. With Benny Moten’s sudden death three years later, Basie went from pianist to bandleader. He took the name “The Count” when his new group THE COUNT BASIE ORCHESTRA headlined at Kansas City’s Reno Club in 1935. Jazz critic John Hammond heard these programs and was so impressed that he prevailed upon Music Corporation of America to sign them, bringing Basie back to Manhattan in 1936. A recording contract with Decca came next, and a combination of radio airtime and records had popularized the band from coast to coast. By the 1950s the Korean War saw a decline in demand for big bands and by the 1960s, pundits declared the big band officially dead except The Count Basie Orchestra. The Count Basie Orchestra of today is eighteen performers committed to upholding and advancing this American institution.
Raised by ministers of the Salvation Army Band, ELIZABETH SHEPHERD experienced an early exposure to the brass band sounds mixed with her love for house, disco, classical and hip hop. Trained extensively in conservatories from Alberta to France, she completed a degree in music from McGill University, Montreal. From the Jazz Cafe in London to the Cotton Club in Tokyo, Elizabeth has captivated audiences and critics on both sides of the pond. She was recently nominated for her first Canadian Juno award in the Vocal Jazz Album of the Year category. Shepherd’s debut album, Start to Move (Do Right! Music 2006) continues to receive critical acclaim and made it into the Top 3 Jazz albums of 2006, as voted by the listeners of the Gilles Peterson Show on BBC Radio 1 in the UK. Her follow-up full-length album Parkdale (Do Right! Music, 2008) is an older, wiser Shepherd teamed with her ever youthful, graceful soul. The mood of Parkdale tracks the emotional whirlwind of human experience. "I've always found strange the massive discrepancy between the highly emotional events that shape our personal lives, that we generally don't share, and the completely mundane events that insidiously make their way into conversation.” Elizabeth does not count herself as a jazz performer as she does not define herself by one sole musical genre. Her music comes straight from the soul—it's not just what she does, it's what she loves. Elizabeth is constantly redefining the way people think about jazz.
For almost two decades, CHRISTIAN McBRIDE has been widely recognized as one of the most original American musicians to emerge from the jazz scene. A Grammy-winning virtuoso of the acoustic and electric bass, he is recognized as an accomplished composer and arranger whose collaborations as a bassist read like a “who’s who” of quintessential artists of our time. Over the past 17 years, McBride has been featured on more than 200 recordings and composed nearly 40 musical works along with dozens of arrangements. His passion for musical diversity has led him to work with everyone from Chick Corea to Pat Metheny, from Kathleen Battle to D'Angelo, from Diana Krall to Bruce Hornsby, from Quincy Jones to Sting. McBride holds Artistic Director posts at the Jazz Aspen Snowmass summer program and is the co-director of The Jazz Museum in Harlem. He was chosen as the Artist-in-Residence for the Monterey Jazz Festival, and can now add the Detroit International Jazz Festival to his impressive list of directorships. McBride is the second Creative Chair for Jazz for the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association, and works year-round building on the Philharmonic's presence in the musical community as a leading presenter of jazz.
As one of the world's most accomplished turntablist’s, DJ LOGIC is widely credited for introducing jazz into the hip-hop realms and is a highly respected session musician and an innovative bandleader. Since his emergence in the early nineties amidst the Bronx hip-hop scene, the New York City based DJ has been amassing a veritable mountain of collaborations ranging from the likes of Medeski Martin and Wood, Christian McBride, Vernon Reid, Charlie Hunter, Jack DeJohnette, John Mayer, Ben Harper, Mos Def and The Roots, to name a few. Logic’s body of work also includes three highly accomplished solo albums: Zen of Logic, The Anomaly, Presents Project Logic, all released on Ropeadope Records.
Born and raised in Baltimore, MAYSA discovered that she wanted to be a musician at the age of six. She recalls, “The moment Melba Moore took the stage an opened her mouth, I made my decision that music would be my fate.” Upon graduating from Morgan State University with a degree in classical performance, Maysa joined Stevie Wonder’s Wonderlove group. While with Wonder, she appeared on the Jungle Fever soundtrack and performed on such television shows as Oprah and The Tonight Show. In the early 90’s, Maysa became a member of the acclaimed British jazz/funk/R&B band Incognito, relocating to London to record Tribes & Scribes, featuring the hit single "Don't You Worry 'Bout A Thing." Since then, Maysa has appeared on over seven Incognito recordings including their latest CD, Bees and Things and Flowers. Maysa recorded her self-titled debut in 1995, followed by her solo sophomore effort All My Life (1999), Out of The Blue (2002), Smooth Sailing (2004), Sweet Classic Soul (2006), and Feel the Fire (2007). Maysa has also collaborated with Rick Braun, Will Downing, Jason Miles' Soul Summit, Rhythm Logic, Jonathan Butler and Pieces of a Dream.
Admired by many for her ground-breaking achievements, PATRICE RUSHEN has amassed an impressive list of firsts. She was the first woman in 43 years to serve as head composer/musical director for the Emmy Awards, and the first woman to serve as musical director for the NAACP Image Awards broadcast, an honor she has held for twelve consecutive years. In addition, Rushen was named musical director/composer for Newsweek's first American Achievement Awards, broadcast on CBS from the Kennedy Center, and she served as the musical director for Janet Jackson's world tour, janet. Considered one of the world's top jazz pianists, Rushen has performed with and produced for such esteemed artists as Stevie Wonder, Herbie Hancock, Prince, Lionel Hampton, Carlos Santana, Boys II Men, George Benson, Jean-Luc Ponty, Tom Jones, Nancy Wilson, Michael Jackson, Dianne Reeves, Sheena Easton, Stanley Turrentine, and Joshua Redman, among many others. In 1998, Rushen’s adult-contemporary CD, Signature, received a Grammy nomination, an NAACP Image Award nomination and landed in the top ten of the adult-contemporary jazz charts. In addition to her success as a recording artist and musical director, Rushen is also an accomplished composer, providing musical scores for Emmy-nominated television movies and series, including Showtime's The Killing Yard; Just a Dream, Our America; Fire and Ice starring Kadem Hardisson for BET, HBO's America's Dream, starring Danny Glover and Wesley Snipes, the Wonderful World of Disney telefilm Ruby Bridges; Masterpiece Theater's Cora Unashamed, Brewster Place starring Oprah Winfrey, the PBS documentary A. Phillip Randolph and the hit sitcom, The Steve Harvey Show. Rushen's feature film composing credits include Men in Black, Waiting to Exhale, Sandra Bernhardt's Without You, I'm Nothing, and Robert Townsend's breakthrough, Hollywood Shuffle.
Trained at the Manhattan School of Music and the Berklee College of Music in Boston, WALTER SMITH III has performed all over the world participating in numerous national and international festivals as well as famed stages in the U.S. such as Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center. While in Boston, Smith was selected by the Boston Jazz Society to receive its annual award whose past winners have included Branford Marsalis and Donald Harrison. In July of 2002, Walter walked away from the Montreaux Jazz Festival in Switzerland with third place in the 1st annual International Saxophone Competition, as well as winning the Audience's Favorite Award. Smith has shared the stage and/or appeared on recordings with many jazz notables including Terence Blanchard, Darren Barrett, Herbie Hancock, Eric Reed, Mulgrew Miller, Joe Sample, Bob Hurst, Donald Harrison, Wayne Shorter, Joe Lovano, Bill Pierce, Myron Walden, Walter Beasley, Lewis Nash, Terri Lynne-Carrington and a host of others. Walter's debut recording as a leader was released in March of 2006 on the Fresh Sound New Talent label and features many of his original compositions. The band is comprised of some of the best young musicians on the scene today including Aaron Parks, Robert Glasper, Lionel Loueke, Lage Lund, Gretchen Parlato, Rueben Rogers, Vicente Archer, Kendrick Scott, Eric Harland, and Matt Kilmer. Walter is currently touring with the Sean Jones Sextet, and Christian Scott, Smith’s own quintet will record its new album this coming fall.
In the DJ game now for nearly fifteen years, JAHI SUNDANCE is a unique figure that can take the crowd on an unforgettable musical journey. Always on the cutting edge, Jahi Sundance plays everything from hip-hop, house, jazz, 80’s, rock, reggae to punk. However, he is most known for creating unique and positive soundscapes. Defined by his musical ear, Jahi Sundance has created some of the most inventive DJ sets on the scene today; landing him spots at Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center. He is currently working on an album with a group he co-founded called BlackGold. Recently, Jahi has produced songs for Chris Brown, Danity Kane, and Miguel. He is also a professor at Scratch DJ academy, started by Jam Master Jay, located in NYC; as well as holding down the official DJ spot for Christian Audigier/Ed Hardy brands.
One of the largest natural amphitheaters in the world, with a seating capacity of nearly 18,000, the HOLLYWOOD BOWL has been the summer home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic since its official opening in 1922, and in 1991 gave its name to the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, a resident ensemble that has filled a special niche in the musical life of Southern California. The 2004 season introduced audiences to a revitalized Hollywood Bowl, featuring a newly-constructed shell and stage and the addition of four stadium screens enhancing stage views in the venue. To this day, $1 buys a seat at the top of the Bowl for many of the Los Angeles Philharmonic's concerts. While the Bowl is best known for its sizzling summer nights, during the day California's youngest patrons enjoy "SummerSounds: Music for Kids at the Hollywood Bowl," the Southland's most popular summer arts festival for children, now in its 40th season. Attendance figures over the past several decades have soared: in 1980 the Bowl first topped the half-million mark and close to one million admissions have been recorded. In February 2008, the Hollywood Bowl was named Best Major Outdoor Concert Venue for the fourth year in a row at the 19th Annual Pollstar Concert Industry Awards. The Bowl's summer music festival has become as much a part of a Southern California summer as beaches and barbecues, the Dodgers, and Disneyland.
EDITORS PLEASE NOTE:
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 20 AT 8:00 PM
HOLLYWOOD BOWL, 2301 N. Highland Ave. in Hollywood
Jazz at the Bowl Series
JAMIE CULLUM WITH THE COUNT BASIE ORCHESTRA
A CHRISTIAN McBRIDE SITUATION
This performance is a Fidelity Investments FutureStage Concert
Media sponsors: 88.1 KJAZZ/Univision 34/Telefutura46
Tickets ($1- $95) are on sale now at HollywoodBowl.com, at the Hollywood Bowl Box Office (Tuesday–Saturday, 12 p.m.–6 p.m.), or by calling Ticketmaster at 213.480.3232, and at all Ticketmaster outlets. Groups of 10 or more may be eligible for a 20% discount, subject to availability; call 323.850.2050 for further details. For general information or to request a brochure, call 323.850.2000.
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Lisa Bellamore, firstname.lastname@example.org, 213.972.3689; For photos: 213.972.3034