Jazz at the Creek with M.A.N.D.A.T.E. Records
By: Jacqueline Penhos
Bringing originality back and adding a new twist, that’s what Jazz at the Creek is all about. If you’re anything like me, you appreciate the sultry sounds of Bessie Smith, Etta Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, Louis Armstrong, George Benson, and Ray Charles. A few Sundays ago I had the opportunity to meet a few of the new names added to the lovely genre, we call Jazz. Upon arrival, I immediately felt the smooth tempo and fresh air. After a couple hellos and lots of hugs, I started to meet the Artists. I had the pleasure of interviewing the one and only Marion Meadows. One of the best American Saxophonist, Composer, and smooth Jazz recording artist. Native of West Virgina, grew up in Connecticut, Marion graced San Diego with his presence for the first time in 5 years. Jazz at the Creek motivated him to return. His passions for music, led him to appreciate the works of many jazz musicians such as Stevie Wonder and Duke Ellington. After studying jazz with Anthony Truglia, Meadows attended Berklee College of Music, where he majored in arranging and composition. He later went to SUNY Purchase School of the Arts where he studied under Ron Herder. Marion has an eclectic group of inspirations, from Miles Davis to West Montgomery. Growing up in a household with a variety of music, in his words, “The Express Train, overwhelming.” “Unfortunately the generations coming up will never hear the marvelous icons we grew up with.” I asked his opinion of the future of our music industry and where do you think it’s going? “It’s a good time for Artists (contemporary jazz artists), at least internationally, not so much in United States. It’s important for people (younger) to understand and appreciate the history of music. We haven’t kept up with the education of music. Our kids don’t know about different genres of music because most schools do not have the budget for such programs. Music always recycles around, generation after generation. If you’re a true musician then you learn about it and appreciate it.
“This series brings Jazz to the community. Meaning, it affords an opportunity for those who are community involved, as well as those who are community jazz enthusiasts to come together in a multicultural setting, where they oriented, networking , and enjoy good music.” Enjoying Jazz at the Creek reminds our generation that Jazz is part of history. It must be honored and remembered. It brings me joy to know that young people are being conscious and positive.
The Groove Masters also wowed the crowd with a personal touch performance. As they grooved the crowed on stage, several attendees were pleasantly surprised with a in your face, in your lap performance, as the band members played to and in the audience. Locals such as Kelly Cole, Authur Mitchell, Douglas Oden and the owners of Baad Baby Clothing Diana Higgins and William Campbell got an upclose and personal show. As I was going to sit down and enjoy the show, I met Kelly Cole and Amehd Dense both radio personalities and Jazz lovers. Each show is also posted online. Ms. Cole believes in promoting new artists and new music. Amehd is the Host for Jazz at the Creek and Lights Out with 98.1. Both were a joy to meet and learn from.
Amehd reminds us that a portion of each ticket purchased will go to the San Diego Food Bank Kids Backpack Program. There are children in San Diego, who are in need of food and essential items to help them grow in strength and confidence. What better way to make a donation to a child and enjoy an afternoon of soulistic vibes. Jazz at Market Creek plaza, sets a new perspective and positive energy to our community. Market Creek is the perfect location, to enjoy a weekend afternoon, listening to Jazz, enjoying a few bites while supporting the arts. For more information, visit www.JazzattheCreek.com for showtimes any lineup.
The next installment for Jazz at the Creek is this Saturday June 14. It is recommended to arrive early for parking and good seating. The lineup include industry leading guitarist Paul Brown with special guest Elan Trotman and Curtis Brooks. Jazz at the Creek is produced by M.A.N.D.A.T.E Records, Lead by Leonard Thompson (Masters of Education, Bachelors of Business Administration, Psychology of Business Management & Productivity) and Michelle Thompson, who are well known in the industry for seeking and finding talent, while developing artist for “Show Ready” status. M.A.N.D.A.T.E. Records produces quality shows and artist throughout the industry in gospel, R&B and jazz. To find out more about MANDATE Records and future shows visit www.mandaterecords.com.