The Jazzcat

Miles Electric at The Soraya, The Valley Center for the Performing Arts!

by on Mar.11, 2018, under News

The Valley’s Center for the Performing Arts, recently named “The Soraya” after family’s generous gift, is one of Los Angeles’ premium venues premiering the worlds music, arts and culture. Of course always included in their fine programming is a solid line up of jazz performances and tonight, the excellence is certainly on par. Miles Davis, The Cheif, The Prince of Darkness and of course known by so many other iconic monikers, was one historic figure who set the tone for elegance, innovation, pristine sound by demanding progression in his path to creativity.

There are many whose compositions reach the pinnacle of success and become standards in popular culture. Most regurgitate that acclaim and continue their journey living on the success of that moment. But others exist in a smaller minority. They unabashedly move forward chasing the light to discover new meaning for sound, new dimensions and ways of expression. Liked, loved or hated, these artists are seekers powered by the determination to produce new work that is important to them; that is their success. Create the art in hopes that the public will follow and be moved by the sound. Miles Davis was one of those in the minority. Can you imagine what the world would be like if he just stopped and rode out the rest of his life surfing on the sea salted white caps of his ocean of profit? When you stop and settle, life is over and the music dies. Never for the man with the horn!

Many, many many times over, Miles Davis set new trends in the music and Electric was one periods. Nef; family creates future as the Miles Davis spirit lives on. Vince Wilburn Jr. is Miles Davis’ nephew and one who had the honor of playing with “Unk”. He had the opportunity to watch, listen and learn from a family perspective, a human perspective and also as an integral part of “The Band”. These multi-in-depth perspectives shape not only the future of a man, but are responsible for the continuum as the everlasting sonic wave spans out to blanket a new generation with its omnipresent vibrations.

The Miles Electric Band represents a time of freedom when Miles selected the right players and let their intuition be the natural direction for the music. Here in 2018, the bloodline continues with Nef at the helm and yes, he knows how to put a group of like minded musicians together to create a benevolent contemporary representation of the sound that came before. Several members of this band played with Miles at some point in this eclectic electric period. The concert began with a wonderful video montage of video and photos all hailing, “The Cheif”. The smallest touch rings the truest sound as tabla player Debasish Chaudhury’s solo open the set with a tune that represents heroism and strength in the single whisper of the name; “Jack Johnson”. Stick and move. Miles was a boxer and I am sure the dance, the finesse, the strength, the clothes, the attitude and the spotlight were all things that reminded Jack Johnson of himself.

Slide Show photographs by Richie Porter

The band is like the many minds of Miles the painter, looking at the morphing canvas and brushing in the right mixture of color as the vision progresses and “In a Silent Way”, John Beasley’s celeste like rhodes intro lovingly drops us off at the front door. The transitions between all of the tunes are strikingly mystical and seamless and “It Get’s Better”!

If you close your eyes and listen to Cheif Atunde Adjuah together with Antoine Roney, you can picture audible sepia tone sketches of Mile and Wayne the way they darted out to the stratosphere, wove the fabric of the music, and brought you home through mantra codas. Atunde Adjuah (Christian Scott) projects in such a way that the bright tone has his stamp, yet leaves one foot in the Dewey sauce which is not a copy, but a perspective of freshness leaving young and old steeped in respect.

Chicago native Robert Irving III roles out an array of color in his piano solo as a prelude to Nefertiti. He also got down on a keyboard battle with Beas! And if you didn’t know what time it was, our brother Munyungo Jackson shouted out “DINNER” on “Decoy”, as he reached into his percussive magic bag and keep light speed tempo on the triangle. It was an amazing feat, eight minutes later solid stellar rhythm. He also got down on the shekere with aerobic feats straight out of P90X before a happy duo on cahon with Debasish on tablas; a conversation of rhythm and mathematics. DJ Hapa spinning scratching and mixing at those low levels supporting the groove but, blasted his solo mixing in the music as well as the voice of the Cheif! Darryl Jones, with the tones, lying in the cut and emerging on “Jean Pierre”, immersing that buttery bass sound deep in the groove leaving us on that subliminal bob your head frequency. After the countdown, David Gilmore takes his guitar and blasts off; no problem in Houston!

This is Miles Electric!

LeRoy Downs

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John Beasley talks about Monk! Don’t Miss Monkestra at Disney Concert Hall March 9th

by on Mar.08, 2018, under Photos

Click on Top to watch and listen! Click below to buy!!!!

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The One and Only Mary Stallings Saturday Night March 3rd at Bar Fedora

by on Mar.02, 2018, under News

Mary Stallings at Bar Fedora!!!

An evening not to be missed!


1st set 7:30 – 9:00

2nd set 9:30 – 11:00

$35 per set.       $40 for both sets.

Saturday Night jazz DTLA

         Âu Lạc LA         

    Plant-Based Food & Drink Restaurant    

    710 West 1st St    

    Los Angeles, CA 90012    213-617-2533    

Mary Stallings is a classic example of how it takes time, musical seasoning and living a full life to mature as a vocalist and to address a lyric properly. While youthful instrumentalists may have something to say, Stallings brings a lifetime of emotional intelligence that enables her to truly inhabit a lyric.

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Young Vocal Singing Sensation Darynn Dean Rocks the Clayton March 25th!!

by on Mar.01, 2018, under News


Showtime 2pm

12:30pm DOORS OPEN



3-4pm BREAK



Mimi Melnick’s

Double M Jazz Salon

Darynn Dean and the Jazz Collective

Double M Jazz Salon continues its legacy at the Mayme A. Clayton Library & Museum in Culver City. Jazz

Baroness Mimi Melnick first began Double M Jazz Salon in 1996 in her Encino home on Strawberry Drive.

Mimi loved jazz, she organized and hosted the Jazz Salons to support the jazz community in Los

Angeles. Mayme A. Clayton Library & Museum is proud and honored to carry the torch.


Tickets are $20

Purchase online


TheMayme A. Clayton Library&Museum



ExecutiveDirector, Lloyd L. Clayton

4130 Overland Avenue, Culver City,CA 90230 | 310.202.1647 |

Sunday, March 25, 2018, 2pm

Darynn Dean and the Jazz Collective is Darynn Dean, vocalist and leader;

Christopher Astoquillca, alto sax; Aaron Shaw, tenor sax; Brian Schwartz, trumpet;

Paul Cornish, piano Michael Alvidrez, bass; and Clayton Cameron, drums.

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Enjoy 3 hours of Lovely Music! LeRoy Downs Feb 17th on 89.9

by on Feb.15, 2018, under News

Hello Beautiful Jazz People!

Join The Jazzcat on KCRW Friday Night/ Saturday Morning!!!

Saturday Feb 17th

KCRWClick Picture above and hear MUSIC!!!

3am – 6am

It’s such pleasure programming the most exciting music for you. Jazz is about Life; constanty blossoming, reaching out, reaching back, in the trenches of socio political landscapes, painting with colors that are vibrant, daring and full of creative imagination.

Our musicians our poets, telling the stories of our lives, the heroes who came before us and the responsibility that we have now to lend our vibrations towards truth, justice and beauty!

Join me for a cerebral mix of emotions that relish the times past, present and future!

We are United through MUSIC! Saturday Los Angeles 3am, New York 6am, Tokyo 8pm, Brussels 12pm, Paris 12pm, Istanbul 2pm, ChiTown 5am, London 6am, Brazil 6am, Dubai tune into the source!!! One World, One Vibration: Love!!!!

89.9 FM


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Listen to The Jazzcat on 89.9FM Feb 10 Show

by on Feb.07, 2018, under News

Hello Beautiful Jazz People!

The Jazzcat on KCRW Friday Night/ Saturday Morning!!!

Saturday Feb 10th

KCRWClick Picture above and hear MUSIC!!!

3am – 6am

Looking so forward to spinning the most creative, eclectic jazz for you! Always diving into some new sounds from today and back in the day. Going to spin some music from some of the folks I saw at Winter Jazzfest in New York, from our 2018 Jazz Grammy winners and as always let the spirit guide the sound!

Join me for an eclectic journey spinning and weaving through signatures and steering clear of the neighborhood where 4th Ave and 4th street reside! A cerebral mix of emotions that relish the times past and present.

89.9 FM


The one thing I love is playing and discovering new and exciting music. We live in a world of mediocracy and there is no reason to program music anything less than SPECTACULAR! I consider myself a seeker, constantly on the prowl for extraordinary sounds. Stay tuned for a special eclectic  experience as we paint mosaics with Sounds and Colors! Beauty dancing on the edge of daring and provocative with a splash of nocturnal perplexing orgasmic composition! If you are thirsty for exciting music that you may not have heard or that your certainly won’t here on your average radio station then please, tune in! Creating a new personality for your definition of JAZZ! Signatures ranging way beyond your normal 4/4 patterns and, it DON’T look like your daddy’s music! 21st Century creations mixed with the avant guard beauty of the past makes for a brilliant blend of relevant parallel musical time lines. Homage to the past, Amen to the future!

Instructions for enjoyment

  1. Come to the music openly
  2. Hear all the notes
  3. Allow yourself to feel the vibration
  4. Do NOT allow mediocre mainstream media to dictate you taste
  5. Seek, explore and settle on nothing less than extraordinary
  6. Let love and intent of the sound guide you to new destinations within yourself
  7. And most of all Enjoy!

ld-on-air-at-kcrwIt is not often that you have an opportunity to hear and enjoy pure, unadulterated JAZZ creativity coming through the airwaves here in Los Angeles.

screen-shot-2016-11-29-at-3-34-38-pmThere are but a few heroes that grace the airwaves on a consistent basis. KCRW’s Bo Leibowitz with “Strictly Jazz” and KPFK’s ld-max-on-kpfkMark Maxwell with “Rise” are but a few truly providing a great service for Los Angeles. I am honored to work with and sub for both of them whenever the occasion permits.

Friday Night / Saturday Morning

“The Wee Hours”

Saturday Feb 10th & 17th


3am – 6am KCRW.ORG

The Jazzcat sitting in for Bo Leibowitz spinning a menagerie of sonic brilliance and whippin’ up magic with lot of great music by the cats you know and some you don’t!


Bring your enthusiasm for sound and your blank canvas to listen to the colors of jazz unfold, blossom and enlighten! Come on you nocturnals, weather its wine or a cup of java, stay up and let’s jam together!

P1060082 P1060081

Saturday Feb 10th & 17th 3am


Friday Night /Saturday  Morning

3AM to 6am Pacific Standard Time

3 Hours of Progressive, Eclectic Jazz for you dome!


The Light is ON!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Winter Jazzfest 2018

by on Jan.29, 2018, under Events, Festivals, Jazzcat Hosting, News

In a
cloud of red dust, poof, Winter Jazzfest is gone. I can’t believe that just yesterday that I had so many nights of fantastic music ahead of me to indulge in and in the blink of an eye, it is now be-lovingly referred to in the past tense. But just because life tends to move at the speed of sound, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take that time to relish and revel in the miraculous sound and experience of the extraordinary jazz music. 

Winter Jazzfest is done, and all the cats have taken flight, off to other gigs and receiving ovation from audiences in other places across the globe. It feels like something so beautiful and incredibly significant should have the power to stop time and allow us to embrace the pendulum shift before it begins to start swinging over there!


West Coast, Mid-West, East Coast Love. Winter Jazzfest is a culmination of the best in jazz creativity, from all over the planet steeped in a message of love, strength and the power of the people. The power that lies within us as we listen, learn and unite sonically and socially for a cause that many have been fighting for our entire lives; freedom of equality, freedom of expression and the right to be seen and respected as beautiful, multicultural, individually intelligent emoting beings.

Throughout the ages, music has been our avenue and outlet to bite back, fight back and stand up against the stench of widespread injustice. And now more than ever, have those underlying themes have made their way into the systematic conscious mainframe that unites us. So much so, that to not speak on it as an artist is a missed opportunity to advance the cause of universal love through the music.

I arrived in New York two nights after this festival had begun so missed Jose James and an evening with Giles Peterson. Having hosted many Jazz Festivals on the left coast, it was an honor to grace the stage on the right at New York’s Tishman Auditorium at the New School. Introducing performances from not only some of the premiere talent in the game but, opening up the first of two marathon nights of music. Yes, Winter Jazzfest was in several place at once around the city and although impossible to catch everything, with a little planning, some diligence, and a tenacious determination to take on the cold, you were guaranteed to get your jazz on!

Iqua and Adegoke Steve Colson started the evening off and as astounding as they sound on record, their live performance was even more enhanced by the addition of Craig Harris on Trombone, Marlene Rice on violin and Santi Debriano on bass and Reggie Nicholson on drums. Iqua, with her acrobatic upper register melodics and Steve back and forth between piano and saxophone was the proper way to lay the foundation for a night of creativity.

Stefon Harris brought his Blackout band and of course they turn it up with Casey Benjamin out front on saxophone and king of the rhythm Terryon Gully lighting up the drum kit! Stefon, composer, educator, Dean and Artistic Director of the Manhattan School of Music, and creator of “Harmony Cloud” an app to train you ears! Always bringing precision and supreme tone quality to a performance but, also levity! Stefon has truly got to be one of the happiest humans I know and this is always displayed by the irreverent positivity that emanates from each strike of the vibraphone. His verbal message to us is to be careful in these times because Love and Hate amass the same power. So stand strong and let love get us through!

Mark Ribot’s Song’s of Resistance says all of that in the name. An amalgamation of cross cultures blending sounds of folk, jazz, guitar and vocal truth spoken from and for the perspective of the people. A call against the mighty foes of Government and power whose number one interest is not blood red but money green.

Closing the evening at the Tishman but, not the night is the Artist in Residence Nicole Mitchell. The New York Times says, “Ms. Mitchell is probably the most inventive flutist in the past 30 years of jazz” and I would tend to agree. Nicole has been putting in work for decades and creating music out of necessity. Music vibrating on a frequency of truth, emanating from stories of heroes that must be told, battles that need to be fought, and a strong reverence toward making the unity of love and inclusion be the overwhelming source to move and inspire the world out of the darkness. Joined onstage tonight by Jason Moran holding down melody, thought and adventurous vision, Shana Tucker and Erica Hunt on vocalese and spoken word, Brad Jones on Bass, bling booted Shirazette Tinnin on drums and shakin’ it up on plantar percussion dancing in her own sweet way into our hearts Rashida Brumbray!

For the second night of the Winter Jazzfest marathon, we start right back at the Tishman auditorium with to witness an incredible performance by Jazzmeia Horn. After she won the Thelonious Monk vocal jazz competition in 2015, we were fortunate enough to fly Jazzmeia to Los Angeles for a special episode of “Christmas Jazz with LeRoy Downs”

featuring her spectacular vernacular but, tonight was different. She was here, in her own town, with her own band and just had such control of her performance and the audience. They were mesmerized, and Jazzmeia’s combination of youth and wisdom along with a full on array of vocal acrobatics really took fresh perspective excitement to another level. I saw her after the performance and I got the impression of an old soul who has been knocking out performances for decades. More to come for sure!

A quick jaunt down the street to the New School with an audience flowing literally out of the doors listening to the music of Marquis Hill. Chitown always makes good joined by Los Angeles transplant Josh Johnson on alto, the young Joel Ross on vibes, Jeremiah Hunt on bass and Makaya McCraven on drums. A night of soulfully expressive originals shaped with a beauty and melodic wave with all heads bowed, all bodies rockin’, allowing everyone to be locked in to that MH groove.

Now it is really a touch of LA in NYC as we are off from 5th Avenue down to the Bowery Bowl for Cameron Graves, Miguel Atwood-Ferguson and Ronald Bruner Jr. West Coast getting’ down in the East and although we got the left on lock, individually the music could not be more different. Cameron has always had a bit of metal running through his veins as he rocks originals from his latest on the Mack Avenue jazz label, Planetary Prince! Just as excited as we are to see Miguel, he is happy and honored to be presenting his original music for the first time outside of Los Angeles. Big in so many ways for NYC to get a real taste of the enormous diverse compositions of one of our genius composer-arrangers and viola masters. In this generation, whether it’s classical, hi-hop, soul/ R&B or jazz, Miguel’s sound and composition style is a staple in the fabric of the sound. Ronald Bruner Jr. combines his dynamic out front drums style with vocals to take the music in his own direction. Never missing a beat and switching up the grooves at a moment’s notice, Brother Bruner’s got the groove and the audience in the pocket!

The late night hit at Sub Culture featured a former college of Ornette Colman Jamaaladeen Tacuma’s Brotherzone along with Abiodun Oyewole of The Last Poets. Spoken word artist Wadud Ahmad could not say enough about how The Last Poets changed, molded and guided his life. They performed spoken word pieces solo and together while Jamaaladeen layed down the funkiest non-stop bassline grooves. He and Ornette must have had many conversations on fashion back in the day!It is now Sunday however, with a constant source of music happening every night, all you know is that whatever day it is, this is New York City and the music never seems to end. As a visitor I have the feeling that you can see and hear jazz whenever the wind blows. Tonight it is blowing at Le Poison Rouge with Ravi Coltrane’s tribute to his beautiful mother Alice with Universal Consciousness!

There is no better person on the planet to represent and recreate a vibrations filled with the color of love.
The electric piano and Wurlitzer organ are a mesmerizing experience in this setting. The harp has all the heavenly resonance and spirit of a woman and man who express life’s lessons through peace and love. A love that leaves a sonic legacy carried on through their children. The spirit of Alice within us has re-emerged as the sound rises up and rains down to coat our souls. Universal Consciousness indeed. From the album “Eternity”, they perform “Los Caballos” which has never been performed live and music from an album recorded in the 70’s called, “Transformation”.

It is a true tragedy when we lose a life. A soul that no longer radiates on this frequency. When that soul is a musician, music, thought, color, imagination and expression stops beaming outward and onward and like a prism, we refract back on recreated sound waves that once were. Still able to get a sense of feeling and meaning. We are so lucky to have recordings that represent the brilliance that once was. Geri Allen was certainly one of our shinning stars. So many many many are present and all to refract those colors and that extremely creative beautiful spirit. An angel that left us all to soon. Mount Allen, Geri’s brother speaks about family, friends and lots of blood.

And while the music will last forever, we will miss dancing on this plane with that soul whose vibration embraced us, lifted us up, took us to distant places, and delivered us time and time again to a place of serenity and happiness that lies within us. New York has the Tishman filled to the rim and Love is ever present. Special cannot describe the amount of inspired talent and love that grace this stage tonight. Each member of this collective ensemble has been influenced by some part of Geri’s spirit. Either her compositions, playing, her intellect or perhaps the way the feeling exudes from her tone. Whatever the case, musician and audience a like, we are all here to bond our energy and connect with the spirit on the other side.
Angela Davis and S. Epatha Merkerson co-host the evening providing some words about Geri and a few introductions between sets.
The concert opens with a video of Geri on a Fazoli. Craig Taborn is playing along with the images. On the side towards the back of the stage are the WJF All-stars. Kind of like the NBA All-stars except they sub after each play, and the game strategy here is not to win, but to reflect. One by one, variations of incredible performers grace the stage to emote and allow us to share in it. Kris Davis with Terri Lynn Carington, Tia Fuller, Linda May Han Oh; Vijay Iyer with Kassa Overall, Linda, Tia and Mino Cinelu; Jeff “Tain’ Watts, James Genus, Paul Bollenbeck; Lizz Wright, Kenny Davis, Ingrid Jensen, Terri Lynn, Helen Sung; Nicolas Payton, Esperanza Spaulding, Terri Lynn; Ravi Coltrane, Vijay Iyer, James Genus,Tain; Jack Dejohnette and Dee Dee Bridgewater, Maruice Chestnut with Kenny and Kassa for Timeline Liveare you starting to get the picture? And then, Wallace Roney Jr., son, family, a direct descendant whose talents as a trumpet player are on the rise. A grand finale ending with Dee Dee, Esperanza and Liz holding down the vocal melody on a Marvin groove and if you don’t know what’s going on by now, you better ask a whole lot of somebodies!

Brooklyn saxophonist Ras Moshe leads a panel discussion at Le Poison Rouge that features our artist in residence, Nicole Mitchell, legendary composer, activist for social justice and saxophonist extraordinaire Archie Shepp, Samora Pinderhughes, and Adegoke Steve Colson. These are extremely conscious musicians who stand up against all odds so that you can wake up and walk amongst the living. No blue pill fantasies my friend, real life through real music. And as you see, several generations of artists who lay down life through their compositions to reach and teach humanity knowing you will get on board and hoping those across the line will see and feel the error in their ways. Everyone on the panel takes a moment to give proper respect to Archie Shepp for being the bold one to lead the way. And of course credit to Bob Thiele for allowing Shepp to record controversial music. Shepp was instrumental in the Loft Jazz scene back in the day where in an apartment where he lived, they had parties to raise $$ for the political social music. Shepp makes several mentions of Rubin Stacy and suggest we look up his picture. It depicts a festive lynching with all white men, women and children enjoying themselves in the presence of a black man who hangs there by a tree lynched and beaten for their enjoyment.

Nicole says Music can be transformational. Celebrating resilience and resistance, creating a space for freedom, creates a space for possibility in the music! Nicole and Adeogoke are prominent members of the AACM (The Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians) who make a nurturing space for the musicians to experiment with the sound that lurks within. She worked for many years for with Haki Madhubuti and the Free World Press in Chicago “Don’t Cry, Scream”. She did it for free because she believed in his mission, a service to the community, a poet and member of the Black Arts Movement of the 60’s. He himself was influenced by Gwendolyn Brooks, author, poet, Pulitzer Prize winner and the woman who this evenings music is dedicated to.

Samora Pinderhughes is actively involved in interdisciplinary poetry with his Transformation Suite put out through his own efforts in order to keep the sound pure and free from any label influence or interference. He does not want to finish his performances and let the audience leave without activating their feelings and giving them them things to do to be active and proactive. Presenting ideas in the music for change is hearing, feeling and being responsible for what is happening in the world.

Tyshawn Sorey, playing with sunglasses on a dark stage diminishing sight opens up vision into a mystic world of REM sound possibilities; where ideas are changing at lightning speed in a complex sound vortex. Molecules evaporate and active listening opens a world that emerges where dreams, concepts, thoughts, algorhythms and all mathematical equations make sense. As perplexed as many may be, the illuminating force pulls them inside themselves discovering parallel worlds of love and understanding. No more in a series questions, healing and togetherness exist. Once consciousness returns, these lessons will emerge and humanity will once again begin to realize the real reason for existence and bbb towards the truth, leaving behind, greed, selfishness, and finding a new space in the Place. Earthlings, the message is communication, community and love.

Mandorla Emerging WorldsA clash of pregnant thoughts and ideas born into imaginary worlds. What if we hear and took the voices of all the people, let them be heard and the harma-humanized love and compassion for one another? The vibration would be a culmination of all people, all colors, all sounds. The East, The Mid-West and sonics in all directions coming together. The concept has been addressed but, as advanced as we are human tragedy still persists. The bull kicks its forelegs ready to charge it’s target, injustice. It is time to “Make a change”! Contemplation implications spark the imagination and creativity births more possibilities.

LISTEN!! The sound is calling, the birds are singing and commitment is life. Another fresh clean start is brought in with the eyes to a mind that holds no judgement. What are the odds.
Nicole’s ensemble bathes us, caresses us, feeds us from its sonic bosom and points us toward the vitamin D! 

This is the performance to close the Festival. Eight days of non-stop creativity. Nicole in her final performance with Fay Victor, Arun Ortiz and Tomeka Reid at Le Poison Rouge with the theme, “No One Can Stop Us”

Wadada with Dearhoof- another dimension in the idiom of cross cultural, cross genre, freedom touching on and pushing forward pristine notions of the sound and it works! Smashing, not clashing and space allows for voices to dance and express themselves in a manner that may be new for some, but allows for growth; a larger ear makes for and expanding audience! With mantra rhythms the question is, what will you do with your space? It is an opportunity to take the music to new plateaus! Changing sound is mind expanding! Riffing on mastery, Wadada embellishes on top, through, and in the middle of groove while Deerhoof rocks it out! And We OUT!



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