Summers always disappear so fast. Ever since I was little and took summer trips with family, played sports in Maine or studied intently at music camps, summer has been a time for departing from the norm and self-discovery. The summer of 2012 has been no exception.
First and foremost, here in Nashville summer 2012 brought on the first ever Summer Jazz Camp at the Nashville Jazz Workshop. We had a great group of over 20 high school kids from the area have fun learning and sharing through jazz. The camp was a great success, thanks mostly to the very hard work of all the people involved, notably Joe Davidian, Jonathan Wires, Larry Seeman, Duffy Jackson, Chester Thompson, Connye Florence, Matthew White, and of course Lori Mechem and Roger Spencer. The students had an absolute blast and there’s no question that the camp will be continuing and expanding moving forward.
Lots of fun musical projects took place this summer: new music with The Dynamites, a tribute to The Carpenters, oboe improvisations for a harp guitar album by Brad Hoyt, to name a few. And my musical comrade Matthew White (who has sadly departed Nashville for a teaching gig in Myrtle Beach) recorded an album of his original material. If you’ve listened to Falling Up, you’ve heard Matt play circles around me on my material and have an idea of all the ground he covers on the trumpet! His compositional work is as equally, if not more than, exciting as his trumpet playing and I think the recordings made reflect that. I’ll look forward to sharing some of those sounds here as soon as I can.
For a few days in June I had the distinct pleasure of hosting Jason Crane, he of The Jazz Session, and giving him as much digestible information about Nashville as possible. Jason is an incredible and successful example of modern journalism – by traveling around as a self-sufficient news entity Jason is able to immerse himself in different scenes and produce fascinating insights on the people and places he visits. Over the past two weeks he posted six interviews with parts of Nashville’s music scene, including Jeff Coffin, Denis Solee, Rahsaan Barber, Roger Spencer of The Nashville Jazz Workshop, Jonah Rabinowitz of the W.O. Smith Music School, and myself. All of those shows are available as free podcasts on Jason’s website. If you enjoy them and can afford to, I recommend making a donation to his show. The only thing harder than being an unbiased and uncompromised news source is funding such an entity!