Hear 2 local school bands at Cool Jazz event

  • Thu Mar 29th, 2012 8:13am
  • Life

By Jackson Holtz Herald Writer

Two Snohomish County high school jazz bands are playing Seattle’s Paramount Theatre as part of the 17th annual Starbucks Hot Java Cool Jazz series.

“Hot Java Cool Jazz is an amazing experience,” said Darin Faul, the band director at Mountlake Terrace High School.

His school’s band will play along with Edmonds-Woodway, Roosevelt, Garfield and Ballard high schools.

Faul said the concert is a great time for everyone.

“Not just the kids, but for their parents, their friends, their relatives and me,” he said. “We get so many people who are supporters of Mountlake Terrace High School and music education to attend the event. It is a supercharged environment because everybody wants to do so well.”

The program is presented as a way to help support local music education. All ticket proceeds are donated to help music in the schools, Starbucks officials say. Last year the program brought in $35,000, according to a Starbucks blog.

“The show has an amazing vibe,” said Timothy J., on the blog. “The pace is perfect.”

It is a great event, Faul said.

“We have had very successful performances,” he said. “And we have some very special things planned for this year, too.”

The show is at 7 tonight, The Paramount Theatre, 911 Pine St., Seattle. Tickets are $20 at www.stgpresents.org or 877-784-4849.

Known around the world as a classical tabla virtuoso, Indian born Zakir Hussain presents an astonishing performance.

With his fingers, palms and knuckles, he plays the traditional Indian drum like it was a piano, creating an array of sounds.

“He has elevated the status of his instrument with playing marked by uncanny intuition and masterful improvisational dexterity,” his promoters say.

Catch him playing with The Masters of Percussion, 8 p.m. Saturday, The Moore Theatre, 1932 Second Ave., Seattle.

Tickets are $37 to $44 at www.stgpresents.org or 877-784-4849.

Another world music performance this week is the Mexican duo, Rodrigo Sanchez and Gabriela Quintero, known as Rodrigo y Gabriela.

They are known for their blissful guitar work, which is central to their music.

But this tour, supporting the recent release of “Area 52,” features the back-up band C.U.B.A., a multi-piece Cuban orchestra.

They’ll appear with Bobby Long.

The show is set for 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, The Paramount Theatre, 911 Pine St., Seattle.

Tickets are $41.25 at www.stgpresents.org or 877-784-4849.

Finally, jazz bass virtuoso and band leader Christian McBride swings into Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley for a four-night run.

McBride, 39, is fresh off a 2012 Grammy-Award win for his big-band project. But he returns to Seattle with his straight-ahead quintet, Inside Straight.

“We’re probably going to have some brand new material,” McBride told The Herald in a recent phone interview.

Before coming to Seattle, the band was planning a weeklong run at Birdland in New York and then another week in the recording studio for a new album.

A release date hasn’t been set for the latest recording but it’s likely to be late fall or early winter.

For McBride, who has been playing gigs at Jazz Alley for more than two decades, the Seattle trip is a kind of homecoming.

“I absolutely love Seattle,” he said. “It’s one of my favorite cities in the world.”

The best part, still, is performing for appreciative audiences.

“There’s nothing greater than to be paid for what you love,” he said.

The gigs, with sets at 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m., are scheduled from Thursday through April 8, Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley, 2033 Sixth Ave., Seattle.

Tickets are $26.50 at www.jazzalley.com or 206-441-9729.

Jackson Holtz: 425-339-3447; jholtz@heraldnet.com.