LAJC Last Saturday Series June 27: Brian Carmody Quartet, Mike Scott Quartet

By Gary Fukushima

Here we are, thick into the summer, and the months are flying by.  We are about to present our third event at Curve Line Space.  We couldn’t be more pleased with the reaction and the reception by those of you who have come out to the shows.  The music has been first-rate, and there’s no end to the list of great players we are hoping to feature on this series.

This month we are proud to present two quartets, led by musicians who have quietly become among the best players in jazz in Los Angeles, and are two of the most earnest and genuine people I know personally.  I’ve worked a lot with both of them and they are two of my favorite musicians to play with.

Drummer Brian Carmody began his musical career in San Francisco, where he was an active player for a decade.  He moved to Los Angeles eight years ago and the relocation has been highly productive for him, earning his Doctorate of Music at USC, becoming a prolific composer for television and movies, joining the faculty at Pasadena City College, and maintaining a busy schedule playing gigs around town.  His steady gig at Bandera in Brentwood on Thursdays and Fridays has been a mainstay for several years, featuring a strong rotation of great musicians, including bassists Dave Robaire and Edwin Livingston, and pianists Matt Politano, Dennis Hamm, Richard Sears and Max Haymer.  His beautiful and compelling writing was featured in the award-winning documentary Somm, and we are looking forward to having his music displayed for our ears.  Joining Brian for the evening are guitarist Mike Abraham and bassist George Ban-Weiss, two great players whom Brian knew and played with during his time in the Bay Area, and who have recently transplanted to Los Angeles.  Rounding out the quartet is phenomenal clarinetist John Tegemeyer.

Guitarist Mike Scott was actually born in Fukuoka, Japan, while his father was stationed there in the U.S. Air Force.  He moved around a lot as a kid before coming to Southern California at age 18 to pursue a career in music, eventually getting a Master’s degree from USC.  He’s gotten to perform with Stevie Wonder, Monica Mancini, Seamus Blake, and Matt Wilson among others, and he is on the faculty at Fullerton College, which boasts one of the strongest junior college jazz programs in the region.  Mike has several albums to his name, including his most recent, entitled Fallen Peach, a well-crafted record which features drummer Jason Harnell and organist Joe Bagg.  His quartet has been a working group for some time now, featuring his colleague at Fullerton and great bassist Roger Shew, South Bay saxophone guru David Sills, and a young master of drumming in Jake Reed.

Here’s to another compelling night of music by some of our fantastic local jazz artists.

As always, we provide complimentary refreshments, including beer and wine.  We’re trying a new policy starting this month:  Anyone bringing a donation of beer or wine can see the show for $5 (regular price $15).

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