Musician

  • Interview with Musician Zoe Lewis

    3-7-17 Interview

    3-7-17 Zoe Lewis says she never had any choice but to be a musician, she was simply pulled to it. Today she plays the piano, guitar, ukulele and clarinet as well as the washboard and spoons – often playing several of these at one time. Virtually constantly in motion Zoe sings her quirky, interesting, extremely smart and often funny songs, and spontaneously (she never has a script or a set list) tells stories, all the while attempting to interact with the audience. She is trying to build community and when you are in her audience you want to be part of Zoe’s community. She is also a traveler, she has been in countless countries and virtually all of the United States –“soaking up” the interesting sounds and stories of the places she is visiting. Born and raised in a tiny town in England Zoe benefited from the unconditional love and encouragement her elderly parents (her mother was 51 when she was born). She was endowed with the belief that should do and be whatever when found it in her heart to do and be. And what she found in her heart warms ours.

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  • Interview with Dick Hyman

    2-28-17 Interview

    2-28-17 Dick Hyman is turning 90! The celebrated pianist, organist, arranger, music director, and composer he is as busy now as he has ever been, and it has been an extraordinarily busy and productive life. He was Artistic director for the Jazz in July series at New York’s 92nd Street Y for twenty years, jazz advisor to The Shedd Institute’s Oregon Festival of American Music, winner of seven Most Valuable Player Awards from the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences and an Emmy for his original score for Sunshine’s on the Way, a daytime drama, and another for musical direction of a PBS Special on Eubie Blake, and composer of 11 or 12 scores for Woody Allen movies. Dick was inducted into the Jazz Hall of Fame of the Rutgers Institute of Jazz Studies and the New Jersey Jazz Society. In 1995, and will be a National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Masters fellow in 2017. Listen to this gentle, self-deprecating man talk about his approach to music, and hear several cuts from one of his CD’s. Come to the Sarasota jazz festival to help him celebrate his 90th birthday.

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  • Interview with Master double bass player John Lamb

    2-21-17 Interview

    2-21-17 When John Lamb plays everyone stops to listen. His solos may be poignant or whimsical, achingly simple or blindingly complex, but you don’t want to miss a note. A highly respected musician who spent three years touring and recording with the legendary Duke Ellington band, he is the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award and the Sarasota Jazz Club’s “Satchmo Award” for service to jazz as both a musician and an educator. In his 80’s he is arguably the busiest musician in South Florida. But despite his success and accolades he remains kind, generous, charming and self-deprecating, dedicated to sharing his extraordinary talent and knowledge and making the world a better place which, by his very presence, he already has. Listen to him describe the way he constructs his solo’s and come hear him along, with an extraordinary group of musicians, as they celebrate the 90th birthday of icon Dick Hyman at this year’s Sarasota Jazz Festival.

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  • Interview with Jazz composer, keyboardist, singer teacher Gwen Wahman

    1-10-17 Interview

    1-10-17 Pianist, composer, arranger, singer, dancer, teacher Gwen Wahman fell in love with music at four years old. Although she took her first piano lesson at 4 1/2 she had wait till she was five for her motor skills to develop. Hear Gwen describe how she “waited and waited” and when she was finally five she “couldn’t wait to get at it.” But Gwen is a multi-passionate person so she also studied the saxophone and was a professional dance at 16. Listen to her describe the dilemma of having to choose between two passions – music and dance – and how her choice has informed her life. Also hear 2 cuts from her first CD Certitude.

    ftp://lynne@thelynneshow.com@ftp.thelynneshow.com/Audio/Podcasts/Show_454%20_1_10_17_Gwen_Wahman.mp3

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  • Interview with keyboardist, composer, jazzman Tommy Goodman

    8-2-16 Interview
    12-20-16 As composer, arranger, pianist, conductor, teacher, Tommy Goodman approaches his 92nd birthday, he is still indulging the passion he discovered at two years old. Studying with Paul Hindemith, Nadia Boulanger, Nikolai Lopatnikoff and Bernard Rogers to hone his craft, Tommy worked with Louis Armstrong, Benny Goodman, Sammy Davis, Jr., Lena Horne, Louis Bellson, and Frank Loesser . just to name a few. He has composed operas, ballets and commercials, and been performed by The New York Philharmonic at Carnegie Hall. Listen to this remarkable man talk about the way he discovered his attachment to various forms of music and how he relentlessly pursued excellence in every one. Hear him play the classic “My Romance,” and come out to hear him every Friday night at the Burns Court Café in downtown Sarasota.

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  • Interview with pianist Billy Marcus

    8-2-16 Interview

    9-13-16 The incomparable Billy Marcus joined the Al Hixon jazz jam team after the unforeseen death of beloved pianist Charlie Prawdzik. Bringing a passion and unique style to his solo’s Billy flawlessly supports the many and varied singers and musicians who perform at the jam. Named Miami’s Best Musician by Miami/South Florida Magazine, some of his credits include playing with Bobby Hackett, Stan Getz, Dizzy Gillespie, The Bill Evans Trio, The Horace Silver Quintet, McCoy Tyner, Thad Jones-Mel Lewis Band, Maynard Ferguson, Dexter Gordon and Sonny Rollins, Scott Hamilton, Al Grey, James Moody, Jack Sheldon, Pepper Adams, Mark Murphy, Eddie “Clean-head” Vinson, Kai Winding, Terry Gibbs, Richie Cole, Buddy DeFranco, The Buddy Rich Big Band, Woody Herman, Grover Washington, Freddy Hubbard, Stanley Turrentine, Spyro Gyra, Doc Sevrenson, Ramsey Lewis and Kenny Burell. Billy has appeared in clubs in Miami, Boston, New York Chicago, Los Angeles, Washington, Switzerland, Paris, London, Rome, Amsterdam, Zurich, Bern, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Bangkok, and Dubai. Listen to this modest man describe his haphazard journey to becoming the remarkable musician he is – and listen to a cut from one of his albums. Come out to see Billy at the Allegro Bistro in Venice next week before he takes a hiatus.

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  • Interview with Bassist Mark Neuenschwander

    8-2-16 Interview

    The following shows are a tribute to drummer, band leader, impresario, landscape artist and bad joke teller Al Hixon and the musicians and singers who appear at his long-running Jazz Jam, currently 6:30-9:30 every Monday night (Oct 3-May 15) at
    15 South Ristorante 15 So, Blvd of the Presidents Sarasota, FL 34236

    9-6-16 Outstanding bassist Mark Neuenschwander is one of the busiest musicians in in Florida and, luckily for us, he sets aside one Monday a month to share his remarkable talent – and wicked wit – to join Al and Billy at 15 So – and accompany the fortunate singers and musicians who perform there. Mark has played with Billy Eckstine, Cab Calloway, Rosemary Clooney, Michael Feinstein, Atlanta Ballet, Tampa Bay Opera, Philharmonia Virtuosi, The Florida Orchestra, Eddie Arnold, Bob Hope, Red Skelton, Andrea Bocelli, Herb Alpert, Yanni, Chick Corea, The Moody Blues and the 5th Dimension as well as over 140 national Broadway touring shows Also respected as an educator/clinician, Mark is on the faculties of USF, SPC, Southeastern University.

    Ironically Mark never expected to live a life dedicated to music, it seemed to sneak up on him. Self-effacing, Mark says that he wasn’t born to do this. Continually told how smart he was, Mark believed he had to be an engineer or a physicist or a combination of both, but music just kept getting in the way. Mark’s is the story of a man who kept trying to be what they told him he should be, but who kept bumping his head against what he actually is – until finally realizing and allowing himself to embrace and enjoy the “tremendous” joy of doing what he loves to do and getting paid for it. Listen to this candid man describe his, not a straight line journey, to becoming the musician he always was. And hear his solo on a cut from a CD with pianist Johnny Varro.

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  • interview with Charlie Prawdzik

    8-2-16 Interview

    8-23-16 This show is dedicated to the memory of Charlie Prawdzik, a musician’s musician. Looking more like and accountant than a jazz musician, when Charlie sat down at the piano you had no doubt that the music was going directly from his soul to his fingers. Able to play pretty much any song in any style, tempo, or key, Charlie made virtuosity look easy. And if you were a singer you wanted no one by Charlie backing you up. Listen to this self-effacing man and his wonderful music.

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  • Interview with Tom Renoud

    8-2-16 Interview

    8-2-16 Tom Renoud had fooled around with singing but never thought seriously about a career in music. When, at around 30, he was struggling to support his family he found a saxophone and taught himself to play “well enough to sit in with the guys at the local bar” and “it was fun!” From then on his career just “morphed.” The guys discovered that he could sing, so he did, then he taught himself to play the piano and although he continued to work at his “day gig,” until retirement, music became the passion of his life. Listen to Tom tell this story and hear 2 cuts from his CD In the Bag, and hear why the guys wanted him to sing.

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  • Interview with Len Murphy

    5-24-16 Interview

    6-28-16 Musician, educator, triathlon competitor Len Murphy has spent most of his life making and teaching music. Ironically, although both his parents were musicians and although he was given piano lessons early in his life (unfortunately the teacher rejected him),and although he took the clarinet lessons his dad set up for him which actually liked – it wasn’t until he heard a saxophone playing Jazz ( perhaps that of Stan Getz) that he fell in love. From then on he simply inhaled music. He taught himself the sax, later he would teach himself the flute and bassoon, and chose to skip college a go into the Navy which promised an opportunity to play music – Listen to Len tell of his experiences in the Navy. After the Navy he discovered that playing music for a living was more difficult than he’d thought and with a wife and 1 and ½ children to support, he got a straight job. When a friend casually commented that his Army G.I. Bill would pay for his education (somehow this information had eluded him) he went to college got a BA and Masters and began a career in teaching which would take him to the school in NJ where he spent 30 very happy years. Listen to this enthusiastic, energetic and dedicated a man talk about a life in which he found his passion and never looked back.

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  • Interview with Lee Dougherty Ross

    5-24-16 Interview

    6-7-16 – Seven year old Lee Dougherty saw her mother and brother at the piano and knew that she too wanted to play. Her mother immediately enrolled Lee with Francis Marsh Bunton, who had a profound impact on Lee’s life and with whom she studied until she entered college. Many times in Lee’s life someone came along and told her what she must do next and bravely she followed their instructions. At one of the piano completions organized by Ms. Buton for her students, a judge told Lee that she must attend North Texas State College to study piano there. And she did. During her stay at North Texas she went to study at Chautauqua. In addition to piano she took voice lessons from Julius Huehn, an operatic bass-baritone who had sung over 200 performances with the Metropolitan Opera . Mr. Huehn insisted that Lee must go to the Eastman School of Music to study voice. Lee left North Texas before graduating and went off to Eastman to finish her degree. During her studies there Lee decided that voice was to be her main instrument, but she never stopped playing the piano. She and her husband Jerold Ross, created soiree’s wherever they lived bringing beautiful music to audiences often in their own home. When they relocated to Sarasota FL they continued their soiree’s which morphed into the highly successful Artists Series Concerts which is now celebrating its 25th year. Listen to this delightful woman describe her journey and hear her play and sing and also hear a cut from the remarkable piano duo Anderson and Roe.

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  • Interview with Joyce Valentine

    1-19-16 Audio Interview

    Two and a half year old Joyce Valentine would stand by the piano and listen to her music teacher mother give lessons. Although shocked when she heard little Joyce playing the song she’d just taught to her seven year old student, Mom began to teach her remarkable little girl and by the time Joyce was three she was playing and singing on the radio, and by four she was performing on The Children’s Hour. Not surprisingly from then on Joyce’s life has been about playing the piano. Listen to her talk about the up’s and down’s, and all the hard work. Hear her describe how, while a student at the Conservatory of Music at the University of Missouri at Kansas City she was asked to learn the Beethoven A Major Piano and Cello Sonata overnight, because none of the professors wanted to try it and how that experience introduced her to a lifelong friend Cellist, Debbie Brooks. And listen to these remarkable musicians play one of Joyce’s original compositions in their joint creation of the CD Reunion.

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  • Interview with Justin Lucero

    12/15/2015 Audio Interview

    Justin Lucero says he was always “bossy,” always telling his siblings and friends what to do and how to do it. He was addicted to anything Disney but had no access to theater and never imagined being – what he became – a theater director. A talented saxophonist, he was unable to make music his college major because his parents insisted that he major in “something to do with computers,” an area that neither he nor they knew anything about but which his parents apparently thought would make him able to support himself. A series of accidents and unforeseen opportunities lead Justin to a discovery of theater and on his ironic journey towards his final goal. Listen to the hilarious and serendipitous events which lead him to work, right out of conservatory, with Timothy Sheader, one of London’s foremost directors and winner of back to back prestigious Olivier Awards, then later spent four years with the El Paso Opera. Yearning for more training Justin applied for and was accepted to the first director training position at the Asolo. There w he assisted Michael Donald Edwards, Frank Galati, Peter Amster, and Greg Leaming. Greg was so impressed with Justin’s work that he has assigned Justin to direct The Liar, the second production of the FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training season which opens on December 30th and runs thru 1/17.

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  • Audio Interview Jazz Pianist Mike Markaverich Re-Run

    10-13-2015 Audio Interview

    If you live around Sarasota Florida you and have probably heard extraordinary Jazz pianist Mike Markaverich. Although blind from birth Mike was trying to play the songs he heard on the radio on his toy piano by the time he was three years old. A neighbor generously provided little Mike with his first piano, but pursuit of the music that would become his life, was very challenging. Listen to this extraordinary man describe the dedication with which he pursued his passion, experience his delightful sense of humor, and listen to cuts from his CD “Solid.” And come see him in person Friday and Saturday nights at The Haye Loft 5540 Gulf Of Mexico Drive Longboat Key, 34228

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  • Audio Interview with Mike Lang Re-run Part 2

    10-6-15 Audio Interview Part 2

    In part two of my interview Mike Lang talks about how he evaluated his choices as a musician, how he discovered that there was a career for recording musicians, how he found his way into it and became one of its most successful players. Playing Jazz with Paul Horn, Ray Charles, Ella Fitzgerald, Milt Jackson, Lee Konitz and Arturo Sandoval, Rock and Roll for Phil Spector and Marvin Gaye, more than 2000 film scores for Lalo Schifrin, Henry Mancini, John Williams, Jerry Goldsmith, James Newton Howard, Elmer Bernstein, Hans Zimmer and accompaniment for Barbra Streisand, Bette Midler, Natalie Cole, Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gaye, Diana Krall, John Lennon and Frank Zappa, to name a few. Listen to this self-deprecating man talk about his remarkable career saying “when people say I’m a legend, I say I’m a myth.” There is nothing mythical about Mike Lang, he is the real thing. At the end of this interview listen to him play an original piece on his own piano in his own living room, a rare opportunity.

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  • Audio Interview with Pianist Mike Lang Re-Run part 1

    9-29-15 Audio Interview Part 1

    Pianist Mike Lang is a professional recording musician who has played with virtually everyone in virtually every genre of music. In this first part of my interview listen to the way his life in music began. Mike’s parents say that he asked to take piano lessons when he was four and a half. Serendipitously his early teachers taught him about a wide variety of music. His first teacher’s favorite pianists were Jose Iturbi and Liberace, so she had him playing written (classical) pieces and also popular music, and she taught him to play chords and begin to improvise. Mike says it was “a magical way to start because it set the tone for me being able to be about more than one thing in music.” Then he studied with the brilliantly eclectic George Tremblay who not only introduced him to a wide variety of musical styles but subjects as diverse as Shakespeare. Mike calls these “auspicious experiences” because they prepared him for a career which would include playing incredibly diverse music. Listen to this charming, thoughtful man talk about his philosophy of being in the present and the impact that philosophy has on his playing, also hear cuts from his only solo album, Days of Wine and Roses – the classic songs of Henry Mancini.

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  • Interview with Pianist Michael Royal (re-run Part 2)

    9-22-15 Audio Interview

    Based in Sarasota Florida, pianist Michael Royal has performed in London, Paris, Rome, Amsterdam, Athens, Lisbon, Copenhagen, Tokyo, Bangkok, New York, Los Angeles and throughout the U.S. He has worked with Red Rodney, Mel Lewis, Clifford Jordan, George Garzone, Larry Coryell, Emily Remler, Ira Sullivan, and Mark Murphy in addition to his own groups. Born and raised in Tampa, Florida, Michael began improvising at the piano at the age of five. Turning away from the conventional study of music and by fusing and uniting classical and jazz influences, Michael developed his own piano style, his unique brand of romantic jazz. While still performing, composing teaching, coaching and lecturing Michael continues to pursue his independent studies. His repertoire includes Standards from the Great American Songbook, Bebop, Ballads, Blues, and Classical Masterpieces. In this first half of my interview listen to Michael describe his early life and the way he discovered his unique path. Also hear 2 cuts from his CD – TRANSITION – released in 2008 with bassist Richard Drexler and drummer Steve Davis. And come see Michael play every Monday night at Starlight Café 101 Coconut Ave Sarasota 34236 and Wednesday’s and Friday’s at The Haye Loft 5540 Gulf Of Mexico Drive Longboat Key, 34228.

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  • Interview with Pianist Michael Royal (re-run)

    9-15-15 Audio Interview

    Based in Sarasota Florida, pianist Michael Royal has performed in London, Paris, Rome, Amsterdam, Athens, Lisbon, Copenhagen, Tokyo, Bangkok, New York, Los Angeles and throughout the U.S. He has worked with Red Rodney, Mel Lewis, Clifford Jordan, George Garzone, Larry Coryell, Emily Remler, Ira Sullivan, and Mark Murphy in addition to his own groups. Born and raised in Tampa, Florida, Michael began improvising at the piano at the age of five. Turning away from the conventional study of music and by fusing and uniting classical and jazz influences, Michael developed his own piano style, his unique brand of romantic jazz. While still performing, composing teaching, coaching and lecturing Michael continues to pursue his independent studies. His repertoire includes Standards from the Great American Songbook, Bebop, Ballads, Blues, and Classical Masterpieces. In this first half of my interview listen to Michael describe his early life and the way he discovered his unique path. Also hear 2 cuts from his CD – TRANSITION – released in 2008 with bassist Richard Drexler and drummer Steve Davis. And come see Michael play every Monday night at Starlight Café 101 Coconut Ave Sarasota 34236 and Wednesday’s and Friday’s at The Haye Loft 5540 Gulf Of Mexico Drive Longboat Key, 34228.

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  • Interview with Lillette Jenkins-Wisner

    Sept 8, 2015

    90 year old Harlem born Lillette Jenkins-Wisner well give her farewell performances at Ruth Eckert Hall in Clearwater, Florida. Dubbed Queen of the Keys, Lillette is an internationally renowned concert pianist and vocalist. At 3 years old she could “play anything she could hear.” and she began her career at the age of six. Initially trained as a classical musician she developed a strong interest in Gospel, Ragtime, Jazz and Popular music. Lillette traveled all over the world with the USO during 3 wars. She has always had a demanding schedule of concerts, shows, round-the-world cruises and club performances. She has shared the stage with Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Cab Calloway and Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Nat King Cole, Ray Charles, Lena Horne and more recently Billy Joel. She performed on Broadway, in movies and was a regular on the TV Soap Opera All My Children. She has won many awards including most recently the Sachmo Award.

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  • Audio Interview with Billy Marcus

    8-4-15 Audio Interview

    Although both of his parents were professional musicians Billy Marcus didn’t touch a piano until he was 16 years old and his study of the instrument was sporadic and haphazard. It took him a long time to realize that he was, and then to identify himself as, a musician. But his talent would not be denied and a musician he most definitely is as the South Florida Jazz Hall of Fame recognized when they inducted him. Listen to this funny self-deprecating man talk about the roundabout way he discovered his career and hear a cut from his CD – The Billy Marcus Trio. Also go listen to him live on Thursday nights at the Allegro Bistro 1740 East Venice Avenue, Venice, FL (941) 484-1889 and Friday nights at Fandango 1812 S Osprey Ave. Sarasota, FL 34239 941-954-5400.

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