Crosstown Arts today announced that two new concert series would be coming to Memphis, TN: Crosstown Arts Presents Modern Masters Jazz Series and Crosstown Arts Presents The Cutaway Acoustic Guitar Series.
The jazz series was guest curated by renowned two-decade New Orleans jazz guitarist Ted Ludwig, who has received an ASCAP award, the Louis Armstrong award, and the Overture to the Cultural Season award and is a member of The Arkansas Jazz Hall of Fame. Crosstown Arts will welcome jazz artists from New Orleans, NYC, LA, and beyond. Highlights include Roseanna Vitro, who has sung with Christian McBride, Elvin Jones, and Lionel Hampton; Ed Cherry, of Dizzy Gillespie’s band; GRAMMY-winner Victor Atkins; and Dee Dee Bridgewater saxophonist Ed Peterson.
Crosstown Arts Presents The Cutaway Acoustic Guitar Series will showcase dazzling virtuoso guitarists performing solo, with the exception of band Pearl Django, in styles ranging from classical to blues.
All concerts will take place in the Green Room at Crosstown Arts. Tickets went on sale today for both series:
Crosstown Arts Presents Modern Masters Jazz Series:
Here’s a playlist
of music by artists who are a part of this series.
January 14, 2020 – Ed Peterson
Edward Petersen is the Associate Chair of the Department of Music and Coordinator of Jazz Studies at the University of New Orleans. He is a featured saxophone soloist and arranger with Dee Dee Bridgewater and the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra (NOJO). He has performed at major festivals and concert halls in the United States (Rose Hall-Lincoln Center, Newport Jazz Festival, and many other venues), France (Jazz a’Vienne, L’Olympia), Switzerland (Festival Ete, Jazz Ascona), Finland (Pori Jazz Festival), Norway (Molde Jazz Festival), Hungary (Jazz Veszprem Festival), Canada (Saskatoon Jazz Festival, Montreal Jazz Festival), Netherlands (North Sea Jazz Festival), Australia (Sydney Recital Hall, Melbourne Jazz Festival), South Africa (Capetown Jazz Festival), and New Zealand (Wellington Jazz Festival) .
February 11, 2020 Tim Lerch
Currently one of the Pacific Northwests busiest and most well-respected guitarists, Tim is a member of the legendary Northwest Gypsy Jazz Group Pearl Django. In between gigs with PD Tim tries to play as many Solo Guitar performance as he can fit into the schedule. Also a sought after session guitarist, Tim records frequently in Seattle and Vancouver.
March 10, 2020 – Joel Frahm
For nearly 30 years, Joel Frahm has lived in New York City, working in jazz clubs, collaborating with other musicians, and honing his craft. His bold, inventive tenor sound has won fans in the U.S. and across the world.
April 14, 2020 – Pat Kelly
Recognized for his signature touch, harmonic dexterity, bluesy melodies and sense of rhythm, guitarist Pat Kelley has enjoyed a steady and successful career in Los Angeles as a studio and touring musician, recording artist, composer, producer, arranger, vocalist, recording engineer, and educator.
May 12, 2020 – Peter Bernstein
New York jazz guitarist Peter Bernstein has been a part of the jazz scene in New York and abroad since 1989. During that time he has participated in over 200 recordings and numerous festival, concert and club performances with musicians from all generations. “Peter has paid attention to the past as well as the future. He is the most impressive guitarist I’ve heard. He plays the best of them all for swing, logic, feel and taste.” Jim Hall
June 9, 2020 – Roseanna Vitro
July 14, 2020 – Ed Cherry
Born in New Haven, Connecticut, Ed moved to New York in 1978 to play guitar with Dizzy Gillespie from 1978 to 1992 performing in Gillespie’s quartet, big band and with The United Nation Orchestra which recorded the Grammy Award-winning Live at Royal Festival Hall (Enja). Gillespie died in 1993, and Cherry released his first recording as a leader, ‘First Take’ (Groovin’ High). That same year, Ed recorded with Paquito D’Riveras’ small group which recorded “Havana Cafe” (Chesky Records). Ed also worked with composer/saxophonist Henry Threadgill for two years and recorded three cds with Henry’s ‘Very Very Circus’ group.
August 11, 2020 – Geoff Clapp
While Geoff was a high school student at the North Carolina School of the Arts (studying classical percussion and playing in the school’s jazz band), he had the opportunity to meet and hear New Orleanians, including trumpeter Wynton Marsalis, pianist Ellis Marsalis and drummer Herlin Riley (All-Star 1991). “I never knew drums could be played like that,” exclaims Clapp of Riley’s style and talents. “That really sparked my true interest in jazz.”
These events ultimately resulted in Clapp attending the University of New Orleans in the fall of 1989. He was among the first talented group of musicians, which included drummer Brian Blade (All-Star 1993), trumpeter Jeremy Davenport (All-Star 2000) and bassist Chris Thomas (All-Star 1999) in the new jazz studies program headed by Ellis Marsalis. “We were just a bunch of hoodlums trying to play jazz,” says Clapp with a chuckle.
September 15, 2020 – James Singleton
James Singleton is an acoustic bassist, composer, and producer. He is a member of the New Orleans-based jazz group Astral Project with Johnny Vidacovich, Tony Dagradi, and Steve Masakowski. He has been described as one of the best and most sought-after bassists in New Orleans.
October 13, 2020 – Howard Alden
“He may be the best of his generation,” writes Owen Cordle in JazzTimes. George Kanzler of the Newark Star Ledger proclaims that he is “the most impressive and creative member of a new generation of jazz guitarists.” And Chip Deffaa of the New York Post observed that he is “…one of the very finest young guitarists working today.”
November 10, 2020 – Victor Atkins
Victor began his professional career on Delfeayo Marsalis’ “Pontius Pilate’s Decision” record. After recording he moved on to be a professional pianist alongside many notable musicians such as Elvin Jones, Mark Whitfield, Nnenna Freelon, Joshua Redman, Wynton Marsalis, and Leroy Jones. Subsequently he returned to school to finish his Masters at the Manhattan school of Music. He was inducted into the Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame in 1998. Atkins is well-known for his work with Grammy-winning, New Orleans-based Los Hombres Calientes as well as his re-working of Duke Ellington’s “Such Sweet Thunder,” a tribute to William Shakespeare.
January 17, 2020 – Alberto Lombardi
Italian virtuoso guitarist Alberto Lombardi is an internationally renowned acoustic solo fingerstyle and electric rock guitarist. His captivating acoustic performances are comprised of elaborate arrangements of great classics both of the Italian and international tradition, incorporating fingerpicking, flatpicking and looping.
February 21, 2020 – Calumn Graham
At only 26 years old, Canadian Calumn Graham has already enjoyed a career that would be the envy of artists twice his age and was recently named one of the world’s top 30 guitarists under 30 by Acoustic Guitar Magazine. His music embraces elements of folk, world and blues all built upon the foundation of fingerstyle technigue. “The most promising your guitarist I have seen,” said Andy McCee.
March 20, 2020 – Paul Asbell
“A genre-blurring, virtuosic waltz through the deep heritage of American folklore, where styles of Robert Johnson, Doc Watson and Dr. John rub elbows with those of Joe Pass and Bill Thrasher” – The Flynn Theatre
April 17, 2020 – Peppino D’Agostino
Italian guitarist D’Agostino has performed in more than 34 countries, at prestigious international festivals and has played in some of the world’s most important theaters. He has shared the stage with Tommy Emmanuel, Leo Kottke, Laurindo Almeida, Sergio Assad, Larry Carlton, and Eric Johnson, to name a few. His solo recordings include high quality labels such as Favored Nations, Mesa / Bluemoon, and Acoustic Music Records.
May 22, 2020 – Sam Pacetti
“Although the woods are full of young guitar virtuosos, few have developed the style, technique and artistic wisdom of Sam Pacetti. Solitary travel heralds the arrival of one of the most talented instrumentalists and composers to appear in acoustic music in a month of Sunday’s.” – Dirty Linen
June 19, 2020 – Pat Kirtley
Combining Kentucky tradition with contemporary style, Pat Kirtley is a solo guitarist with a wide repertoire known for its honesty, humor and depth. He has penned a virtual library of fresh lyrical compositions enjoyed by audiences of all ages and backgrounds. Pat’s performing skills won him the title of U.S. National Fingerstyle Champion, and in 2006 he was inducted into the National Thumbpickers Hall of Fame.
July 17, 2020 – Pierre Bensusan
Winner of the Independent Music Award, in the Live Performance Album category for his latest triple live album “Encore” (2014), “Rose d’Or” of the Montreux Festival for his first album, “Près de Paris” (Switzerland, 1976), “Best World Music Guitar Player ” by the readers of Guitar Player Magazine (USA, 2008), Pierre Bensusan is recognized as one of the premier musicians of our time.
August 21, 2020 – Shane Hennessy
Irish virtuoso guitarist Shane Hennessy has established himself as one of the leading guitarists on the world stage, known widely for his fingerstyle, flatpicking, and percussive guitar-playing approaches. His energetic live performances and his cinematically-vivid compositions tie in influences from Bach to Beyoncé.
September 18, 2020 – Pearl Django
With a performance history spanning more than two decades, Pearl Django endures as one of the most highly regarded Hot Club style groups working today. Although the band’s roots are firmly in the music made famous by Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli, its extensive repertoire includes traditional jazz classics and original compositions. Pearl Django has performed at festivals, dances and nightspots throughout the U.S. and abroad.
October 16, 2020 – Don Ross
Canadian guitarist, Don Ross has toured regularly since 1989, across Canada, the USA, a dozen European countries, Japan, Taiwan, China, Australia, Russia and India. He has played with symphony orchestras in Canada and Germany, and collaborated live and on recording with U.S. guitarist Andy McKee, Canadian singer/guitarist Brooke Miller, Canadian guitarist Calum Graham, & Toronto bassist Jordan O’Connor. He also composes scores for television, radio and film, and does production and recording engineering for a variety of other musicians.
November 20, 2020 – Brooks Robertson
“I was completely knocked out with the acoustic guitar virtuosity of Brooks Robertson! Brooks has a very original touch and sound plus monster chops. He’s always making great music with his guitar. I’m sure Brooks will be sharing his music with the entire world and have an incredible career.” – Lee Ritenour