Miami, FL with Ramsey Lewis

The Adrienne Arsht Center is a huge ultra-modern complex with a gorgeous concert hall that we played: Knight Hall. Ramsey and his partner Larry Rosen did a great job announcing and promoting their jazz music education program in the local area schools. I pitched in with some interviews at press and radio, and I think it was effective in getting the attention of the target audience.

Backstage after the concert there were 15-20 music students from The University of Miami, all scrubbed faces, bright eyed and excited. That’s wonderful stuff, y’all!

Wonderful that young kids come and get excited about a performance of good and relevant music that’s different from what they are getting through regular ‘pop’ media channels where spectacle and extravaganza so often obscures and distracts. Let’s be clear; this kind of performing is wonderfully valuable, compelling, and has its place. Who could question M.J. and Bon Jovi and Beyoncé and Prince, etc. etc. – It’s just that the young music lover, and especially the young music student and future professional needs to know that there is some really beautiful and exciting music to do without a dance routine and fireworks.

And so, I hope out colleges and universities will fill in the void and make opportunities for exposure to excellent alternatives like jazz and classical, and how about theatre and ballet, and the whole spectrum of the arts. My band did light things up with some inspired jobs from all the guys, including Chris Walker’s “Human Nature” treatment.

On a different note, I have to mention that I’m so proud of my multi-cultural audience in Miami. They come and I think Ramsey Lewis and I together gave them a unique little spectrum of contemporary music arts at Knight Hall. I think the reation of those students was an excellent barometer of how the audience felt. Thumbs up!

Gracias and Thank you, Miami


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