We are definitely looking forward to Thursday, when we will present some music on the lawn at the brand new Grand Park in Downtown Los Angeles. The Performing Arts Center of Los Angeles County (better known as the Music Center) has been busy programming music and dance events in the park, just a stone’s throw (or more like a 3-iron) from their usual digs at Disney Hall and the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. Thanks to Sean O’Connell, jazz writer for the LA Weekly, OC Weekly, and Downbeat among other publications, for suggesting us for this outdoor concert series, dubbed “OUT OF OFFICE“. As the name suggests, the Music Center is looking to entice the hardworking men and women of our city center to rack up millions of dollars in lost productivity by quitting work early and coming out to Grand Park to gorge on food truck fare, get sloshed in the beer garden, and enjoy some quality music by some of the finest homegrown jazz artists in Los Angeles. That last run-on sentence might have obscured the important facts of this event, namely there will be food trucks, a beer garden, and jazz.
We were asked to put on a show loosely based along the lines of “Jazz at the Philharmonic“, a series of shows created by producer Norman Granz, with the very first show held 59 years ago almost to the day of our performance, on July 2, 1944, featuring the likes of Nat King Cole, J.J. Johnson, Les Paul, Buddy Rich, and many others. Those guys were not available for our gig, but we managed to secure some outstanding musicians:
Garrett Smith, trombone
Steve Cotter, guitar
Sara Gazarek, voice
Chuck Manning, saxophone
Matt Politano, Rhodes electric piano
Hamilton Price, bass
Jason Harnell, drums
DJ Trolley Parker, turntables
Garrett, Steve, Sara, and Chuck will each play a mini set with the fine rhythm section of Matt, Hamilton, and Jason, and hopefully there will be time to do a tune with all of them at the end. Somewhere in the middle we will have some record spinning by Sean O’Connell (AKA “DJ Trolley Parker”), who in addition to being a great writer (and pianist) is also a competent and knowledgeable DJ . We will also have some cool merchandise giveaways, so be sure to stop at our info table.
All in all, it’s going to be a fun evening. Music starts at 5pm and goes to 8pm, so if you work or live near downtown, please drop by.
(For more info check out our previous post.)