Miami, FL – Jazz Roots – 2015

Miami – Jazz Roots – 2015

I’ve been to Miami a lot but not enough. It should be right there alongside New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Berlin, London, and Paris. I’m still thirsty. Well anyway, the audience turnout was great and welcomed me and David Sanborn and the Jazz Roots outreach program.

I’m always a little worried to follow David Sanborn at a performance J. The stage is still red hot and smoldering with small pockets of fire that continue to erupt during your opening song. This has been happening for years and it’s a marvelous union of a couple of guys cut from the same cloth. We’re thought to be jazzers but we both have such a deep love for R&B, Soul, and Pop, which will not allow us to exclude those genres from what we do. This day was special because we were Jazz Roots’ amb-jazzadores reaching out to young people who are doing music or who want to do music and will certainly be the future of music to come.

The Jazz Roots outreach program was started by Larry Rosen of GRP Record Label. What a heart-felt notion in a growing desert of interest in the arts education at all by City Hall and Washington DC. Education itself is a withered stepchild who’s unheard, unattended, and marginalized. Teachers are underpaid and underappreciated. So Jazz Roots is reaching out and encouraging and even finding big-hearted donors who will provide instruments for kids.

David and I spent an hour on stage answering questions and chatting with a hundred students on the afternoon of the concert. We glanced at each other in astonishment as we both spoke about the crying need of support for music and the arts. More about the singular importance of arts in life a little bit later…

This for me was the highlight of the Miami visit. David and I did burn the stage up in this wonderful concert hall with wrap-around balcony seating and a pipe organ in the back of the stage. Magnificent…really European in concept, i.e. organ recitals and 200 voice choirs on stage with a full orchestra. That was so much fun to turn around and recognize those people with a shout or a hand wave and they hit it real good on “Day-o”.

Yo, Miami! Let’s keep doing this. There is so much more for me to share with you. See you in Panama City…



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