Archive for November, 2010
Template: MIO Final Blog Compilation – Fall 10
Compilation will be due by noon on Wednesday, December 8th (email to email@example.com).
Each student is asked to attend an activity that correlates with one of the guests or subjects that were discussed in class. Then, focusing on this activity and subject, each student will blog a minimum of 1,000 words, Facebook the most powerful aspect of the experience and Twitter the most powerful quote from or thought about the experience.
Due by noon on Wednesday, December 8th
-Saturday Music School concert on Saturday (below)
Each student will blog about what this class means in general and to you individually.
Due by noon on Wednesday, December 8th
Lecture: November 29th (Monday), 12:30-2:00pm (Math 102)
During the lecture, I read excerpts from my upcoming book and CD “A Love Letter to New Orleans,” which reflects back to my 10 CDs with Basin Street Records during the past 12 years.
1. Mo’ Betta Blues
The first excerpt described my memory of seeing the movie “Mo’ Better Blues” as a teenager, which demonstrated to me the possibility of a successful career as a musician. In doing so, it affected my life’s path. In the same way, I choose each class guest to do the same for you: to allow you to see what is possible for your future and to expose you to opportunities you may never have considered.
2. Gordon Parks
When I was given the opportunity to work with Gordon Parks, I had never met anyone who was so many things at once: photographer, musician, poet, novelist, journalist, activist and film director. What was so impressive about him is that – despite having accomplished so much – he never lost the desire to investigate and to learn. Mr. Parks taught me many lessons that I will never forget; the most important was that I should never let anyone else define me. Within our class and life discussions, one thing we should consider is who is defining aspects of our culture or life.
3. Lynch Mob
Race affects us all the time, and I have never been one to avoid the topic, despite the tension that surrounds it. I believe that conversations about race and diversity must take place, because – when it comes to the power of the mind – diversity always adds value.
4. Super Star
The power of art is demonstrated when music can transport you back to a memory or feeling. We must always investigate what art and culture mean and can potentially mean to each of us and to our community. It is odd how little investment we typically make as a community in the arts, even though it is our most valuable local resource. We must always strive for success in what we’re best at and use it as a catalyst to move forward.
5. El Negro
Typically the first thing people learn about a culture is the worst thing (i.e. Bourbon Street or violence in New Orleans). I have been fortunate to visit many different cultures and to experience the true facets of each. I think as a city there are far too many of us that don’t experience, learn and appreciate our own culture; doing so should be a goal for each of us.
We must have the patience to be open to opportunities, and the gumption to pursue them when presented. We’re so often taught to be on the offense that we often miss opportunities that fall into our laps. These courses are about discovering not just what people think but also why and how they think it. Remember that the best idea will always win out if it’s voiced.
Irvin Mayfield, trumpet
Ronald Markham, piano
Peter Harris, bass
Ed Petersen, saxophone
Jaz Sawyer, drums
Michael Watson, trombone
Jazz Cat. Traditionalist. Pop Icon. Rapper. Rocker.
Shamarr Allen is none of the above. The New Orleans trumpeter and vocalist who leads his own funk band, the Underdawgs, is making his mark on the national landscape as an artist determined not to be pigeonholed into any one genre. And his mounting fandom is enjoying the ride.
The 2009-2010 calendar year brought tremendous opportunity to Allen, including a performance for Barack Obama, a multi-city tour with country icon Willie Nelson, studio sessions with Nelson and friends, Ray Price, Leon Russell and R.E.M., the release of the red hot Saints anthem, Bring ‘Em to the Dome (racking up an impressive 500,000 hits on YouTube) and the production of the oil spill song “Sorry Ain’t Enough No More.”
A household name in New Orleans, not just for his scorching trumpet playing or playful vocals, but for his ability to bridge hip-hop, jazz, funk and rock, Allen leapt out of the box with the 2009 crowd pleasing release of “Box Who In?”
His 2008 solo release “Meet me On Frenchmen Street” was an homage to the storied past of New Orleans; “Box Who In?” is a vision of its future. The tracks are representative of what’s here and now, with an insight into the man behind the horn. “The title of the CD is how I feel,” says Allen and “I will not be put into the box of a particular style of music. Maybe one day I will want to do a country record and I don’t want to feel limited in any situation.“
And limited he is not. Allen has risen through the ranks as a member of the Wolfpack, Mahogany, Hot 8 and ReBirth brass bands and he has shared stages with some of New Orleans’ finest. But, he has recently come into his own as a bandleader to be reckoned with.
Shamarr Allen is certainly leaving his thumbprint on the music scene, transcending his local celebrity and spreading his star power throughout the U.S. and abroad. Once hailed as New Orleans’ latest trumpet flash, Allen is now regarded as “one of the brightest diamonds to emerge from the Crescent City in recent years.”
Interview: Professor Victor Atkins
Wes Anderson, trombone
David Harris, trombone
David Polk, alto saxophone
Austin Johnson, piano
Nick Hughes, drums
Jasen Weaver, bass