Faye Carol Interview with Wanda Sabir –

Faye Carol - City of Berkeley Proclamation - 04.01.14

The Dynamic Miss Faye Carol was interviewed today by Wanda Sabir of for being recognized as the Jazz Journalists Association’s Bay Area Jazz Hero 2014. It was a very insightful interview with this spectacular Bay Area music legend.

Faye Carol will be presented with the Jazz Journalists Association’s Jazz Hero Award 2014 on Saturday, April 12, 2014, 1-3PM at Yoshi’s Oakland. For ticket information,

See you there!!!

Deniece Williams @ Yoshi’s San Francisco

Deniece Williams @ Yoshi's San Francisco - 03.15.14

Deniece Williams
Yoshi’s San Francisco

I can remember first hearing Deniece Williams sing “Free” in 1975 or 1976 when I was a child. I remember loving that song and much of her music as I was growing up . Fast forward to 2014 and Yoshi’s San Francisco announced Deniece Williams would be performing there this past weekend. It was a no brainer for me. I had to hear her in concert. Trust me, this four octave songbird did not disappoint.

Deniece gave the audience what they wanted to hear, the classics. Her set included “Free”, “Black Butterfly”, “Let’s Hear It For The Boy”, “It’s Gonna Take A Miracle” and she closed the evening with “Silly.” She told us that she was getting over a sore throat but you could not tell because her voice was amazing. She shared that she wrote “Silly” after a heartbreak years ago but the emotion she conveyed in that song was like it happened yesterday. Hearing her that evening made me go dig out all my Deniece Williams songs and even add a few missing classics to my collection.

Thank you, Deniece, for your wonderful gift and I hope you come back again soon!

The Jazz Journalists Association Recognizes The Dynamic Miss Faye Carol With A Jazz Hero Award At Yoshi’s on 1-3 p.m., April 12, 2014


For Immediate Release

Contact: Andrew Gilbert – – (510) 527-2455
James Knox – – (510) 654-4538

The Jazz Journalists Association Recognizes The Dynamic Miss Faye Carol With A Jazz Hero Award At Yoshi’s on 1-3 p.m., April 12, 2014

Musical Guests To Be Announced

The public is invited to join the Bay Area chapter of the Jazz Journalists Association (JJA) in presenting vocalist and educator Faye Carol with its annual Jazz Hero Award. Jazz Heroes are activists, advocates, altruists, aiders and abettors of jazz who have made a significant impact in their local communities. The honor is presented as part of the JJA’s JazzApril campaign (, which encompasses some two dozen Jazz Heroes honored during JazzApril by the JJA in partnership with local fans and grassroots organizations. Past Bay Area Jazz Heroes include SFJAZZ’s Randall Kline, flutist, arranger and educator Dr. John Calloway, vocalist Ed Reed, trumpeter and educator Khalil Shaheed, and DJ Sonny Buxton (

One of the most versatile vocalists in jazz, the blues-steeped Carol can croon soul and standards, scat hurtling bebop lines and deliver torch songs with scorching intensity. Over the years she’s devoted much of her energy to raising up young musicians in the jazz traditions. The Bay Area scene is rife with players who got their start under her firm but loving direction, from saxophonist/drummer Howard Wiley and saxophonist Joshi Marshall to bassist Marcus Shelby, pianist Kito Gamble (aka Sista Kee) and pianist Benny Green, who says “I can’t begin to fathom how much I got from Faye in terms of a foundation as a jazz performer. We played standards and talked about the blues from an insider’s perspective. Opening the show playing a trio number or two was my first time getting my feet wet leading a band. Being around a Black American musician who lived the music all her life was an experience that money can’t buy.”

Born in Meridian, Miss., Carol moved to the East Bay town of Pittsburg as a child and by the time she graduated high school she was established on the Black Diamond mainstream, the hopping strip of blues and jazz clubs catering to soldiers from Camp Stoneman. A talent contest victory at the Oakland Auditorium led to steady work with veteran East Bay bluesmen like Johnny Talbot, Eddie Foster, and Johnny Hartsman, who took her out on the Bay Area blues circuit.

While she grew up listening to the soul and R&B hits of the day, Carol came to appreciate the great jazz singers and instrumentalists of earlier eras through her future husband, the late educator Jim Gamble, and pianist Martha Young, a niece of tenor sax immortal Lester Young. As a teenager in Pittsburg, Carol used to hang out at Young’s house almost every afternoon to sing, and it was Young who introduced her to Billie Holiday’s music, though she didn’t start performing those songs until decades later.

Sometimes it seems like Carol has mentored half the young (and not so young) players on the scene. She first started teaching in the late 1980s at Jazz Camp West. But in recent years she’s been taking the music to the street through her Music In the Community program at Berkeley’s Black Rep Theatre. Initially funded by the California Arts Council, she’s kept the program going for the past decade through her own sweat and determination. With arts education but a memory in many East Bay schools, Carol provides a desperately needed service.

Photos available upon request.

The Jazz Journalists Association Recognizes the Dynamic Miss Faye Carol with the Jazz Hero Award at Yoshi’s, 510 Embarcadero West, Oakland, 1-3 p.m., Saturday, April 12, 2014. $20. (510) 238-9200,


Since I Fell For You – James Knox


Happy 2014 Everyone!
Happy Lunar New Year!

I have not had a new post here in quite a while. I really promise to write more often :). Since the last time I have been here, I turned 50 years old, had an awesome birthday celebration and photography exhibit at The Sound Room in Oakland (we sold out the place!!!) and took voice lessons with Ellen Hoffman, Faye Carol, and Valerie Troutt. Most recently, I took my 2nd voice workshop with The Dynamic Miss Faye Carol at her School of the Get Down at Chamber Arts House in Berkeley. This intense workshop runs for one evening a week for 4 weeks. On our fourth week, we present the song we have tediously worked on for the previous 3 weeks for our student workshop which includes our peers, friends, loved ones and a pot luck.

I chose the Buddy Johnson classic “Since I Fell For You” which you can hear below. I am accompanied by Joe Warner on piano and Dante James on drums. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

Photography Credit: Grason Littles

Valerie Troutt – The Sound of Peace CD Release Party – Yoshi’s Oakland – 11/25/2013


My friend, mentor, and teacher/singer/pianist/composer Valerie Troutt will have her CD release party for her debut album, The Sound of Peace, on Monday, November 25 @ 8 PM at Yoshi’s Oakland.

Please read Lee Hildebrand’s review of The Sound of Peace in this week’s East Bay Express.

Be there and be blessed!!!

Album Cover Photo Credit: James Knox

Celebration!!! The Photography of James Knox @ The Sound Room – June 7 – July 3, 2013

Terrence Brewer

A new photography exhibit celebrating the rich Bay Area jazz scene and my 50th birthday. Please join us on June 29 at 5:30pm for my artist reception and birthday celebration. The Matt Wong Trio will be providing the music. At 8pm, the Terrence Brewer Quartet will be performing an outstanding concert and I will be joining them later in the set for a few songs. I am very honored and excited.

Celebration!!! The Photography of James Knox
June 7 – July 3, 2013
The Sound Room
2147 Broadway Avenue
Oakland, CA 94612

June 29, 2013

Artist Reception & Birthday Celebration
5:30pm – 7:30pm
Music by the Matt Wong Trio

Terrence Brewer Quartet
8:00pm – 11:00pm

Terrence Brewer, guitar
Tammy Lynne Hall, piano
Marcus Shelby, bass
Greg Wyser-Pratt, drums
James Knox, guest vocalist

Tickets $20

Purchase tickets –

Howard Wiley Quartet: I Love The 80’s @ Intersection for the Arts – 3/28


When: Thursday March 28, 2013 at 8pm
Where: 925 Mission Street Suite 109


Howard Wiley – saxophone; Michael Aaberg – piano; Sly Randolph – drums; Marcus Shelby – bass

Howard Wiley brings a new quartet to Intersection performing music influenced by favorite pop hits from the 80s. Howard Wiley’s grandfather, Sam Wiley, played saxophone in Count Basie’s Orchestra, and gave constant advice to the young musician growing up in Hercules, CA. Wiley’s debut recording, The Businessman (Sax Records, 1995) was produced shortly after his 15th birthday by Steve Savage and Jim Nadel, founder of The Stanford Jazz Workshop. While still in high school, Wiley received the Thelonious Monk Scholarship, Downbeat Blues/Pop/Rock Instrumentalist award for best soloist, and the MVP Award for the Grammy All-American Jazz Band. In recent years, Wiley has also had the great fortune of being able to learn from, perform with, and befriend two living jazz legends – saxophonists Bill Stewart (who has performed with Lionel Hampton, Sonny Stitt, and Gene Ammons) and Jules Broussard (who has performed with Charles Mingus, Eddie “Cleanhead” Vincent, and Carlos Santana). Through Wiley’s ongoing relationships with these two men whose mentoring abilities have become indispensable to his growth as a musician and composer, Wiley has directly and intimately learned tradition, understanding, and historical perspective of jazz music.

Wiley has performed at the San Francisco Jazz Festival, the North Beach Jazz Festival, the Stanford Jazz Festival, the Fillmore Jazz Festival, and the Huntington Beach Jazz Festival, and has been the recipient of a Meet The Composer Commissioning Music/USA commission and a recording grant from The Aaron Copland Fund for Music. Wiley’s second recording, Twenty-First Century Negro, was independently released by High Cotton Productions in 2002. Inspired by his early years attending church and the continuing and deepening influence of the blues, gospel, and spirituals on his musical performance and compositional writing, Wiley has been composing for and performing with his newest ensemble – The Angola Project – which investigates the roots and legacies of African American prison spirituals, encompassing folk, blues, and gospel, with a focus on the songs and stories from the Louisiana State Penitentiary in Angola, LA from the 1950s onward. He released his third recording, The Angola Project, in 2007, and his fourth recording, Twelve Gates to the City, in 2010, which has received critical reviews nationwide.


Founded by Intersection for the Arts and local award-winning composer and bassist Marcus Shelby in 1999, Jazz at Intersection provides local Jazz artists and audiences with consistent and ongoing opportunities to celebrate the diverse and powerful Jazz traditions that are unique to the San Francisco Bay Area, while encouraging experimentation and creativity with new forms and styles. Since establishing the program, we have presented over 170 performances featuring over 400 musicians and vocalists (many of whom have performed multiple times in our series) to thousands of audience members. Dozens of new Jazz compositions have been commissioned and premiered through our series. We aim to nurture an audience not for specific artists or traditions, but rather for a broad and inclusive definition of the Jazz idiom.

“Jazz At Intersection is notable not only for the breadth of its musical content, but for bridging communities across all lines: age, race, gender, cultural affiliation, and even class…” – Sam Prestianni, SF Weekly

We continue a series in our new home at 5th and Mission Streets that highlights an array of contemporary and historical musical styles within the Jazz idiom; provides insight into what influences new music and musicians; and also shows direct connections between well-known songs and composers and the new music being created today. Our approach to presenting Jazz is based on an intimate and direct connection between the musician, the music, and the audience. The 2013 series will include 8 indoor performances at Intersection’s new location with the 5M Project (a flexible performance space that can seat up to 100) and a dozen free outdoor performances in partnership with Off The Grid, a local organization that produces pop-up food markets featuring independent mobile food trucks.

3rd Annual San Jose Jazz Winter Fest 2013 – March 6 – 15

Robert Glasper

***For Immediate Release**

Wednesday, March 6 – Friday, March 15, 2013

San Pedro Square, Downtown San Jose, CA
Event Info:
Tickets: $10 – $25 Advance/$10 – $30 Door

National Headliners:
Robert Glasper, José James, Vijay Iyer, Sean Jones, Carolyn Wonderland,
Tony Monaco, Andre Thierry & Zydeco Magic, Delhi 2 Dublin

Bay Area Headliners:
Latin Jazz Youth Ensemble of San Francisco
San Jose State Jazz Orchestra
San Jose Jazz High School All Stars

“[José James is] a romantic baritone with a deep-funk band, stretching out songs, evoking both the ’70s of Roberta Flack and Gil Scott-Heron and the ’90s and oughts of J Dilla” -New York Times

“Mr. Glasper’s way has to do with both looseness and intricacy: a loose frame and intricate, slip-and-slide languages of harmony and especially rhythm, built up through years of experimenting with a steady crew.” -New York Times

“Carolyn Wonderland is the real deal. She’s an amazing guitar player and damn, she can sing!” -Los Angeles Times

“Without a doubt, Sean Jones has what it takes to become the next great jazz trumpeter.” -All About Jazz

“In the organ world, Tony Monaco has become an unanticipated new star.” -Jazziz

“Take an electric sitar, a Celtic fiddle, electronic mixing and bilingual vocals and a new genre is born – this is Delhi 2 Dublin. And this species has fangs.” -Rogue Valley Messenger

San Jose, CA – February 6, 2013 – The Bay Area is a hotbed for non-profit organizations presenting internationally renowned jazz artists to the greater arts community. Alongside other prolific Bay Area institutions such as SFJAZZ and the Monterey Jazz Festival, San Jose Jazz offers innovative arts programming celebrating the jazz, Latin, World, blues, and other culturally significant musical traditions and singular concerts curated for audiences within the heart of Silicon Valley. San Jose Jazz’s counterpart to the wildly popular Summer Fest, the 3rd Annual Winter Fest 2013 features celebrated jazz headliners and genre-busting emerging artists presented on various stages, in master classes and a standout collaboration with one of Silicon Valley’s top tech companies (PayPal). Winter Fest 2013 is set to take place in downtown San Jose, CA from Wednesday, March 6 – Friday, March 15, 2013. For the full festival line-up and schedule, please visit: Artist interviews and photos are available upon request.

Leading this year’s Winter Fest 2013 line-up is double Grammy Award® nominated artist Robert Glasper; his latest album, Black Radio, is considered by many critics as one of the best jazz albums of 2012. Blue Note label mate and collaborator José James’ deep baritone is picking up national press attention with recent highlights in The New York Times and NPR, and an appearance on The Late Show with David Letterman. Red-hot Vijay Iyer closes the festival on Friday, March 15, 2013 and also appears with PayPal’s TechXploration series on March 14; Iyer’s trio swept the five major awards of DownBeat’s 2012 international critic’s poll, the first time any jazz artist has done so in its 60-year history.

Sean Jones, formerly the lead trumpeter for Wynton Marsalis’ Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, is adept at creating emotionally complex work. His most recent release, No Need For Words, explores the many layers and levels of love. Texas native Carolyn Wonderland had her hands on a Martin guitar while other girls her age were playing with dolls. She has since become a cornerstone of the contemporary Texas blues tradition. 2012 Summer Fest artist and B-3 wizard Tony Monaco’s organ grooves will set the right soundtrack for a lighthearted Sunday at the intimate Theatre on San Pedro Square.

If you like to dance, check out 2013 Grammy Award® nominee Andre Thierry & Zydeco Magic. Thierry’s sound is a rich blend of old and new that honors zydeco’s past while carving a fine path for its future. Delhi 2 Dublin is a Canadian collective that pulls from influences as varied as bhangra, Celtic music, dub reggae and electronica to create an infectious, danceable sound.

Enhancing our focus on the future of jazz, Winter Fest 2013 will present the Latin Jazz Youth Ensemble of San Francisco, San José State Jazz Orchestra and San Jose Jazz High School All Stars, three distinguished ensembles composed of students of the art form. San Jose Jazz continues its efforts in youth education throughout Winter Fest with master classes by Robert Glasper, Sean Jones, and Tony Monaco.

Brendan Rawson, Executive Director of San Jose Jazz comments, “We are feeling very fortunate here at San Jose Jazz that the interests of our community allow us to pull together a program that includes such varied artists as Vijay Iyer, Carolyn Wonderland, Robert Glasper, and Delhi 2 Dublin. Silicon Valley is a very diverse and forward looking place and our Winter Fest program reflects that spirit well.”

Artistic and Festival Director Bruce Labadie adds, “The third annual San Jose Jazz Winter Fest offers artists reflecting the diversity of programming at the San Jose Jazz Summer Fest, our commitment to education and our desire to continue our connection and development with a younger audience for jazz. The programs include master classes, performances by outstanding high school and college artists, dance parties and presentation of nationally-recognized artists in very intimate settings.”

San Jose Jazz’s presentation of the Vijay Iyer Trio is supported by Presenting Jazz, a program of Chamber Music America funded through the generosity of the Doris Duke Foundation.

Margaret M. Lioi, CEO of Chamber Music America, notes, “San Jose Jazz was one of 11 grantees selected from 55 applicants to Chamber Music America’s ‘Presenting Jazz’ program. San Jose Jazz’s application received high marks from the panel of jazz professionals not only because of Iyer’s featured appearance at Winter Fest 2013, but because of his participation with the Silicon Valley TechXploration Creative Conversation and efforts to engage with the local community. CMA is very pleased to support San Jose Jazz and the Vijay Iyer Trio for this wonderful project.”

Winter Fest 2013 is presented by Metro, and support for San Jose Jazz and the festival is provided by the Chamber Music America; City of San Jose, Office of Cultural Affairs; Arts Council Silicon Valley; The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation; and The David & Lucille Packard Foundation.

3rd Annual San Jose Jazz Winter Fest 2013
When: Wednesday, March 6 – Friday, March 15, 2013
Where: Downtown San Jose, CA
Admission: Concert tickets are $10 – 25 advance; $10 – 30 at the door; SJJ members receive 15% off a web purchase of three tickets or more (excluding Master Classes).
More info:; (408) 288-7557


World AIDS Day 2012

Together will still make a difference!!!

Groovin’ Around The Bay – 11/10/2012

Denise Perrier

There is so much great music in the Bay Area, that I needed to let you know about just a few of the happenings this weekend.

My Picks for the Weekend:

David Sanborn at Yoshi’s Oakland – Shows tonight and Sunday. I got to hear Mr. Sanborn and his band last night and they were excellent.
Pancho Sanchez – Yoshi’s San Francisco – Shows tonight 8 and 10 p.m.
Denise Perrier Birthday Bash – Piedmont Piano Company – Oakland – 8 p.m. tonight!! Ms. Perrier (pictured above) will be accompanied by the Tammy Hall Quartet. Come out and celebrate with Denise!
Rhonda Benin – The Sound Room – 2147 Broadway Avenue – Oakland – 8 p.m. tonight!!! Rhonda will be performing the first concert at the brand new Oakland music venue, The Sound Room.
Muziki Roberson – 57th Street Gallery – Oakland – 8:30 p.m. tonight!
Terrie Odabi with the Tight Fit Blues Band – Dotha’s Juke Joint behind Everette and Jones BBQ – 2nd and Broadway – Oakland

Enjoy your music!!! Please support live music!!!