Cyber-hugging the Blues Away!

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2020 News!

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Summer News!

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May Updates

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Happy April Everyone!

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(March-April 2020)

Listen to Blind Lemon Jefferson ‘How long?’
Hello dear family, 

That may sound strange, but now, we are truly all related more than ever. Blood or no blood. Related through isolation, related through screens, related through news, related through sickness and health, related through joyful online reunions (now that we have more time to settle) and related through headphone and speaker sounds that never seem to end.

I have procrastinated on this letter for awhile, mostly because there is not much I can really say to help any of us truly make sense of this time. We are all experiencing the various levels of trauma-zone we find ourselves in, in our own unique and personal ways and if you are like me, music is proving to be one of the most soothing elements in the midst of this bumpy and blurry ride. We SHALL Overcome! Hang in everyone!

Thank goodness for the communication tools and systems we have at hand though!

Even if they do sometimes bring us sad news as so many great musicians from our family circle move onto and into higher places of existence.

From our evening porch concerts (when it’s been warm enough to play without freezing fingers) following the neighborhood salutes to the frontline workers, to the online lessons and classes I have been filling my week with, to the time I have with amazing groups of music students in my many masterclass visits, to the exciting online recording projects that I am honored to be playing on – I am lucky and thankful.

If you didn’t see this, grab a tissue and enjoy. Jens Lindemann pulled this one off right at the beginning of all of the shut down. I was not set up to record video yet but I did my best.
‘A Hope for the Future’ was written as a tribute to the true frontline heroes around the globe, health care specialists dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic!
As the spring semester winds down, I’ll be posting more videos in this format as my composition students and combo finish up their amazing works.

Speaking of students! This past week was filled with exciting meetings and hello’s as I accepted a humbling position at the Manhattan School of Music to fill in as interim Artistic director of the Jazz program as the great Stefon Harris moves on to do even more wonderful things with his ‘mad’ education skills and more.

I was recruited by Stefon a few years ago to teach trumpet lessons at MSM and was blown away with the high level of the students, not to mention the beautiful level of community and caring that the student body expressed in our day to day interactions on campus. 

I will do my best to keep the ship on a steady course with respect to the positive direction that Stefon has created, as I  both honor the history of such a prestigious institution while bringing a few of my own ideas on board  in the process. 

In the meantime on the home front ( since everything is on the home front these days) ~

There is third grade online school for our daughter, semi-daily online yoga and Hiit classes, gardening in our front yard garden, zoom family hangings, fundraisers and festivals galore, our daily porch concerts and bugle calls out of my studio window and the crucial daily walk/run/bike around the neighborhood no matter what the weather. Jon is building a solid and beautiful sound-proofed studio in the basement and our new couch is proving to be an amazing invention! Yes, the TV made it downstairs and I am finally catching up on Schitts Creek and the incredible MasterClass series that you may have all seen so heavily plugged on Youtube. The Itzhak Perlman and Herbie episodes are worth the price of admission, and then some!

In the midst of it all there are album releases and upcoming online Festivals and Zoom Listening hangs.

Keep and eye on my website for details. (some dates listed below)

I’m so thrilled and honored to be part of this incredible project ~

Joel Harrison. America at War!

Buy, listen, enjoy.

Congratulations to Joel and the big bad big band team of brilliant musicians conducted by the great Matt Holman.

Resource links to help us all in the area of mental health and more ~

Krista Tippitt- On Being (podcast)
Michael A Singer – The Untethered Soul

Some music to sooth the soul ~
Chris Dingman- Embrace
John Scofield – Quiet

Dates in the book that will happen FOR SURE!

May 13th – 7 PM   The Royal Room Livestream hosted by Thomas Marriot

May 18th – Act 4 FestivalMore good things on the way.

Stay strong, be soft, dig deep, listen hard and reach out to one another and stay in touch. Health and peace to all.“Love is not consolation, it is light.“   Simon Weil.

Some photos from the old road.

In music and in love,
“As the doors closed to gigs and tours, live bloggings and lounge access breakfasts, I find my photo cache filling up with images of the earth, and it’s unraveling of springtime beauty…”Ingrid Jensen, April 2020. 

2020 News!

Hello dear friends, family and fans,

My oh my, how the minutes, days and months fly by….

I have been beyond blessed to have had so many incredible projects on my plate these days and would be remiss to not reflect and share the riches of my  adventures with you all while giving a heads up to a few upcoming events.

After a wonderful Christmas break with the NY/Montreal family and some quality down time at  home, it’s back on the balancing trail teaching, playing and traveling.

The New Year began with a great night of music making at the BeanRunner in Peekskill with the wonderful Alex Smith Organ trio featuring Jessie Lewis (guitar). We played with such intensity that the Fire Alarm went off and yes, the Firemen were summoned! More ballads next time Alex!

A sold out Winter Jazz Fest hit was next and Artemis brought it, as we welcomed the great Nicole Glover on tenor and shared much of the music that will be released on Blue Note in September.

The band then travelled to Indiana to play for and clinic the inspiring young players at the Purdue Jazz Festival. 

Allison Miller getting mobbed by drummers after the trio clinic at the Perdue Jazz Fest in the photo below!

Week three of 2020 sent me to lovely Bern, Switzerland where I had the privilege of working with some of the finest up-and-coming players in the world. The FocusYear program is an incredible setting for players of all ages to come together and grow, and I was honored to be invited to mentor and play with them.

While there, I also connected with an old friend and student Babette Wackernagel, a truly inspiring woman who has started a music school for special needs students, giving them an outlet to improvise and create on any instrument they choose.

With jet-lag in my back pocket, I summoned the caffeine gods and made it to the Lower east side for a set of music written and sung by super-mom Brenda Earle Stokes. Her Motherhood Project both captivated and entertained the audience at Rockwood Music Hall and will hopefully be recorded soon so all can hear and enjoy this very special project.

Just when the constant 40 degrees and cloudy weather reading on my phone was starting to get to me it was time to go cruising! Whew. With family in tow, and Artemis on stage, we Jazz-cruised away.

So many wonderful memories, both personally (from the waterslide screams and laughs, to the quality hangs with family and friends), to the sweet moments on stage with Artemis and a number of special events I was invited to play on.

Home for a hot minute and then it was off to North Texas to play and teach  for a week with Terri-Lyne Carrington, Kris Davis, Tia Fuller and Linda Oh. What a treat to be in the presence of such wise and powerful forces of musical greatness as these women!!

Finishing out February, numerous airlines took me back and forth into the mid and south-west of this enormous country.

I had a wonderful time playing with the  beautiful string orchestra and quintet the my old pal and wonderful pianist, Johannes Wallmann put together at the University of Madison with Allison Miller and Dayna Stephens on deck.

Then it was back to the NY area  to play with the incredible Conackamack Middle school bands and their awesome director, Shamie Royston.
Heading into March meant heading to Indiana to play with the Ball State big band finishing up in Tucson, Arizona with the  awesome young folks at the University of Arizona led by their stellar director, Angelo Versace.

Since I have very little wit at this moment, I’ll leave this letter with a fun shot from one of my daughter’s many journals. I think she sums it up well.

Happy trails and safe journeys to all. In these times of heightened health alerts I hope we can all find a way to keep sharing live music moments and hugging away our blues as we celebrate all of the riches around us.

In the music,

Summer News!

Hello lovely friends, fans, and family,

It’s been an incredible summer run filled with quality family time, sparkling jazz camp energies and general great all-round music making. I feel more fortunate than ever to have been surrounded by inspiring young music-futures as well as sharing the bill and the teaching arena with so many of my wonderful peers.

I’ve done my best to keep track of all of the concerts and events and am sharing a few photos below.  From the all-star youngsters backstage at Dizzy’s who make up the Jazz at Lincoln Center Youth Orchestra to the night of music-making at Sing Sing Kill Brewery with my combo from Purchase College (and special guest on mouthpiece, Kårinna Wikan) to teaching and playing at three unique jazz camps. 

Jazz camp West was as magical as Artist Director Allison Miller described it be and more. 
The Brubeck Summer Colony was overflowing with talent and future jazz inspirations. Banff was beyond description and I’ve returned home fully energized and motivated to share the wisdom and joy for music and more with my students at MSM and Purchase College.

I also had the pleasure of playing on mega-musician/singer, Kristin Berardi’s exciting new album and joining the awe-inspiring Melissa Gardener on her CD release at City Winery.
Stay tuned as my fabulous new website is nearing its final stages of completion, with a launch date happening in the next few weeks. 
Peace and good music to all and go to my Facebook fanpage (in the meantime) for all upcoming events.

All my best,

May Updates

Dear sound and event followers,

Hello from Chicago where I’ll be playing tonight, Friday, June 7th, with Jon Faddis at the Symphony Center

I’ve finally found a moment to regroup, re-cap and update before my summer of camps and camping begin.

What an amazing spring this has been!

I started April with a bang! Recording with the John Daversa for an extremely exciting and important new project, the Suffragists, highlighting music from the suffragist movement. More on that later!

From playing  So What with Ravi Coltrane, Christian McBride, Jimmy Cobb and more, at the JazzHouse Kids Fundraiser in NYC, to a full-on teaching stint at the University of Miami, with family-time at Disney-world and more!

More, including playing with my dear sister-in-sound Tia Fuller and the wonderful Princeton Jazz ensemble at the inaugural Princeton Jazz Festival, my first visit to Oklahoma to play with the University Big band there, an awe-inspiring hit with Jim McNeely and his Tentet at Wesleyan University and finally finishing out April with a guest artist visit to Grand Rapids, Minnesota to work with some fine young musicians there.

More reflections to come, but first, a very exciting event to discuss!

This Sunday, June 9th, at 1 PM Eastern Time, I will present a live webinar for all to take part in. The topic I will be discussing is Meaningful and Effective Practicing. To see this webinar go to JazzHeaven.comand register to view. There is even a chance to have a 1-on-1 session with me during the live stream. 

Also, I am in the process of building a new and improved website, so stay tuned! All my live dates are available on my site and Facebook as well! 

In the music,

Happy April Everyone!

For those of us in the Northeast, we might even be get some true Spring weather in the next few weeks. Although my iPhone weather says snow on friday, definitely an April Fools joke.

As the winter wanes and the warmer weather amps up, so does my schedule.

No time for gardening just yet…Tonight, I am at Dizzy’s with the William Patterson Big band, tomorrow in the studio with Grammy winning John Daversa and his exciting Sufferagette Project featuring a host of exciting musicians.

Then it’s off to Akron, Ohio to play with Chris Coles and the Kent State folks.

Next weekend is the inaugural Princeton University Jazz Festival where I will perform with Tia Fuller and an amazing group of student players from the University.

Mid- April gets busy, ha! I’m honored to be on board to play at the Jazz House Kids fundraiser gala on the 17th at City Winery, then it’s off to Miami to teach for a few days at the Frost school of music.

I’ll be guest-artisting at the University of Oklahoma the following week, my first time in a state I have yet to discover!

The incredible Dena DeRose has invited me to join her at Birdland on the 26th and then it’s off to Weslyan University to play with the one and only Jim McNeeley and his nonet!

Rounding of the month I’ll make my way midwest again to play with the Duluth folks at the Grand Rapids Minnesota Jazz Festival.

Thank you all for following and supporting this lively life of mine!  

Peace and good sounds to all!