Indigenous Storywork

Indigenous StoryworkIndigenous Storywork by  Jo-ann “Q’um Q’um Xiiem” Archibald is helping to evolve my perspective and focus the content of Listen to Seattle. Yesterday I sat down and wrote songs based on the perspective of respect and reciprocity.

Location for Sound in Stone Premiere

20150714_133949The Northwest Courtyard at Safeco Plaza may be the site of the premiere for Sound in Stone. The location features 4 benches by James Washington and 2 fountains (not working) by George Tsutakawa. I’m working with the property manager to schedule the event.

4Culture Supports Panama Hotel Jazz Performance Extension

panamadoorssmallContrary to the growing stack of grant rejections, 4Culture will fund the Panama Hotel Jazz Performance Extension. This provides matching funds for the National Park Service grant that supports monthly performances at the the Panama Hotel and other regional locations. My deepest gratitude to 4Culture for commissioning this piece and their ongoing support! This allows the performances to be free to the public while the artists get paid to perform.

2015 Jack Straw Artist Support

jackstrawJack Straw Productions selected the Steve Griggs Ensemble for Artist Assistance in the 2015 Jack Straw Artist Support Program. The discounted studio time will be used to record A Cup of Joe Brazil.

Unpublished Autobiography of James Washington

WashingtonFoundationI began work on Sound In Stone yesterday by visiting the James and Janie Washington Foundation. I read a 21 chapter draft autobiography that was assembled with the help of Doreen Mitchum and Nancy Rawles. Mr. Washington describes his experiences with racism, relationships with Mark Tobey and Diego Rivera, and artistic process. I look forward to weekly visits at this rich trove of information.

Performance at Jack Straw

GJack Strawrateful for the attentive audience and passionate performance at Jack Straw on January 14. It is a joy to share the story of Joe Brazil with people unfamiliar with his life. Jay Thomas, pictured here on trumpet, played his first jam session with Joe. Susan Pascal, vibraphonist out of the frame to the right, is married to Dave Pascal, who worked in a band with Joe. In the audience was a student from one of Joe’s History of Jazz classes. Stories of musicians are a backbone of the jazz tradition. Blending new music and old stories is at the heart of my artistic practice. Thanks to Jack Straw for supporting this project through discounted studio time.

January ’15 Performances

Happy New Year! I hope your holidays were restorative and the year is beginning well.

I’m excited to have been awarded funding for two new commissions this year. King County will support Listen to Seattle about Chief Seattle’s words of peace and harmony. The City of Seattle will support Sound In Stone about sculptor James Washington. Details on the premieres will follow soon.

This month, the Steve Griggs Ensemble will be performing Panama Hotel Jazz and A Cup of Joe Brazil. Come out and bring your friends. Free admission thanks to sponsors 4Culture Historic Site Specific Grant, National Park Service Japanese Confinement Sites Program, Jack Straw Foundation Artist Support Grant, and Earshot Jazz.

January 10, 2:00PM Panama Hotel Jazz, Panama Hotel Tea Room, 605 S. Main St., Seattle
January 14, 7:30PM A Cup of Joe Brazil, Jack Straw Studio, 4261 Roosevelt Way NE, Seattle