Evening Jazz Event to Benefit Elementary Students
By Marcia E. Gawecki
Marshall Hawkins, a bassist who heads up the Jazz Department at Idyllwild Arts Academy, has long been the face of Jazz in the Pines, an annual two-day jazz event that has grown in popularity each year.
Now, Marshall is lending his image and musical charisma to an evening jazz event next weekend, Aug. 27 and 28.
“Town Jazz with Marshall Hawkins” will likely bring more business to Idyllwild shopkeepers, while helping to bring more music to elementary schools through Marshall’s charity, Seahawk MOJO.
“I’m bringing some of the best jazz musicians from all of Southern California,” Marshall said. “It’s going to be a really great event.”
“Town Jazz with Marshall Hawkins” will be held for two evenings at JoAn’s Restaurant, in the center of Idyllwild, so there is no conflict with the Jazz in the Pines concert held during the day on the Idyllwild Arts campus.
Town Jazz’s lineup on Saturday, Aug. 27, and Sunday, Aug. 28, is impressive. These musicians will honor Graham Dechter on Saturday, Aug. 27, from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. and honor Daniel Jackson on Sunday, Aug. 28, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.: Daniel Jackson (tenor/sax), Gilbert Castellanos (trumpet), Bob Boss (guitar), Brett Sanders (drums), Mikan Zlatkovich (piano) and Roy Gonzales (Latin percussion on Sat.) and Najite (African percussion on Sun.). Special guests both evenings include Yve Evans and Roland “Esquire” Holmes.
Naturally, Marshall will play both nights, and is excited about this first-ever event, mainly because it’s going to help to bring music to young people in the schools.
“Seahawk MOJO, is an acronym that stands for Seahawk Modern Jazz Orchestra,” Marshall explained.
Because he was out of town and pressed for time, he sent a letter explaining Seahawk MOJO’s mission. It started with a great need to put music education back into the elementary schools.
“Few Americans need to be reminded of the long-term damage caused by the removal of arts education, including music, from the curriculum in our public schools,” Marshall wrote. “Jazz education teaches a ‘universal language’ that can serve as a tool for personal, social and economic empowerment. It’s a language that expresses the ironies of our American democracy, especially for the disenfranchised, with humor, joy, boundless artistry, and imagination.”
During this event, Seahawk MOJO is operating under its parent non-profit organization, the Idyllwild Master Chorale. Marshall has long played bass for the Master Chorale events, including their Messiah program.
Although the next generation of jazz musicians will benefit from this “Town Jazz” event, another group set to benefit: Idyllwild shopkeepers, innkeepers and restauranteurs. The Idyllwild Business Roundtable and the Idyllwild Chamber of Commerce are managing the business end of the “Town Jazz” event, namely sending out promotion, bringing in volunteers, and managing the two-evening event.
“Town Jazz is going to bring back jazz to the town of Idyllwild,” said Doug Yagaloff, who co-owns Mountain Harvest Market in Strawberry Plaza. “Too often, business owners have been left out of the Jazz in the Pines weekend. We don’t hear the music and business revenue goes down, so this year, we’re going to reverse course.”
Doug spoke frankly about Idyllwild business owners wanting to be part of Jazz in the Pines weekend.
“There are three categories of people that we want to reach that weekend: those who come for the concert and stay overnight and might eat dinner in town. There are those who come for the day to hear a specific jazz musician, but leave immediately afterwards. Then there are the locals, who may like jazz music, but the $65 daily price ticket is out of their reach.”
Town Jazz, at $10 a ticket, can appeal to all of these groups. It offers a nice musical lineup outside JoAn’s restaurant in the center of town. Seating, drinks, food and bathrooms are provided by JoAn’s. The Business Roundtable rented 300 extra chairs, and expect to attract 400 to 500 people for the two-day event.
Ticket sales cover costs for the musicians, while everyone else is volunteering their efforts, Doug said. He estimates it will cost about $4,000 to put on the Town Jazz event. He hopes to recoup those expenses in ticket, T-shirts and poster sales.
Cafe Aroma, which also features jazz musicians during Jazz in the Pines weekend, fully supports the efforts of Town Jazz, Doug said.
“Frank and Hubert think there’s enough jazz for all of Idyllwild that weekend,” he said. “It’s a win-win situation for everyone.”
Doug said that Idyllwild Arts Associates, the nonprofit group that hosts Jazz in the Pines, is supporting Marshall’s “Town Jazz”
“They came and spoke with us at our Business Roundtable, and we’re also hosting a booth at their event,” Doug said. “Everything’s cool.”
Tickets for “Town Jazz with Marshall Hawkins” are $10 each, and can be purchased at Mountain Harvest Market and the Spruce Moose. T-shirts with Marshall’s image, will be available for sale starting Friday, Aug. 26, for $13 each/$15 for larger sizes.
For more information on the event, visit www.IDY4U.com/jazz.
Published on: Aug 19, 2011 @ 1:49 E
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