Marshall Hawkins Known as Casey’s Mentor

Marshall Hawkins mentor relationship with Casey Abrams will appear in a future issue of Down Beat magazine.

By Marcia E. Gawecki

The text message from Casey Abrams came while Marshall Hawkins was performing the bass onstage Sunday night during his Town Jazz event in Idyllwild. Casey, the local “American Idol” heart throb, was thousands of miles away performing with “American Idol Live.”

“I got the picture,” Marshall said later. “It was taken a long time ago. Casey was here with us tonight.”

Marshall, who helped start the successful Jazz in the Pines event 18 years ago, brought two nights of jazz music to Idyllwild locals and jazz lovers during his first-ever Town Jazz event Aug. 27-28.

Marshall heads up the Jazz Department at Idyllwild Arts Academy and has played with the likes of Miles Davis. With more than 200 in attendance each night, Marshall plans to host the event next year.

Proceeds went to his charity, Seahawk MOJO, which brings jazz to the grade schools in Idyllwild, Hemet and San Diego.

Marshall didn’t say what Casey’s text message was about, but his mother, Pam Pierce, who lives in Idyllwild, didn’t mind sharing it:

“First of all, I miss you and your crazy classes. And second, you are the reason I got into music on a new and much different level. I would have no idea how to even TALK to another musician–you gave me the language, the knowledge of chord structure, all the possibilities of the bass line, and most importantly, the love I have for jazz.

I needed that cheerleader/friend in my life growing up. You are amazing. We’ll definitely work together in the future.”

Casey Abrams (with Caleb Hensinger, Idyllwild Arts) has credited Marshall for his love of jazz music. Photo credit: ME Gawecki.

Marshall said that Casey would have been performing with him onstage at Town Jazz had he not been committed to “American Idol Live.”

“Casey is part of Seahawk MOJO,” Marshall said. “He’s part of our jazz orchestra. When Casey’s done with his commitment to ‘American Idol,” we’re going to perform together for the kids in the grade schools.”

When Casey was competing on the 10th Season of “American Idol,” he credited Marshall as being his mentor.

“He mentioned it several times on national TV,” said Pam, who was taking tickets Sunday night for Town Jazz.

Sometime in the future, a national magazine will feature a story on Marshall and Casey’s close relationship.

“I’m not going to tell you what’s in the article,” Marshall chided after a Tuesday night jazz set at Cafe Aroma. “I don’t want to spoil it.”

Carl L. Hager, a freelance writer who has written about Casey before, said he plans to show his article to different magazine publishers with jazz listeners in their readership.

“It is possible Down Beat could eventually publish it, or it might end up with Esquire or GQ or Rolling Stone, that hasn’t yet been determined,” Carl wrote in a recent email.

Commemorative Town Jazz T-shirts are still available for $15 each along with full-color posters at The Spruce Moose. All proceeds go to Seahawk MOJO.

Copyright 2011 Idyllwild Me. All rights reserved.

Published on: Sep 5, 2011 @ 18:21


the attachments to this post:

Casey & Caleb Idy Arts

Casey & Caleb Idy Arts

Casey & Caleb Idy Arts

Snapshot 2011-09-01 22-59-51


Comments are closed.