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Joshua Breakstone (USA) – Workshops
Wednesday, February 14, 2024 @ 1:15 pm
Doors open at 1:00 pm
1pm For Singers (1.5hrs for all levels):
A discussion on what it means to be a jazz singer and why singing jazz is so different from singing most other kinds of music. We’ll listen to examples of jazz vocalists singing in their own ways and at their best. We’ll discuss how to both listen and react in a musical environment, the concept of developing ideas in communication with the audience as well as within the group. Anyone who would like to will have a chance to sing at least one song. We will also do some simple vocal exercises together which will, hopefully, give you ideas of directions to take in your own practice.
3pm For Guitarists (1.5 hrs for all levels):
How to develop your own unique voice in jazz. How to play new ideas in your soloing. The art of listening. The role of the guitar as chord playing (comping) instrument within a group. The connection between the dynamics of vocal and musical expression and why an understanding of such enables us to find our own voices, our own personal means of expression. Everyone who would like to can play!
“Fire in velvet. A fitting description of Joshua Breakstone’s jazz guitar,” wrote Paul Weidman in The Sante Fe New Mexican. “His flowing lines on up-tempo cookers are impeccably clean and fiery, bearing the mark of a first-rate improviser, while his chordal work on heartbreaker ballads is the final word in finesse,” has raved Guitar Player Magazine. Japan’s Jazz Hihyo (aka Jazz Critique) recognizes that “The style in which Joshua develops his fluid single-note solos used to be thought of as the Grant Green school, but now this man leads the school.” Charles Alexander wrote in his book, Masters of Jazz Guitar, “With a firm grasp of the bebop language, Breakstone nevertheless avoids its cliches, instead unfolding a storyline in his solos, all the while building interest with economical, elegant lines and sustaining longer notes with a clear, rounded guitar sound.” Steve Day wrote in sandybrownjazz.co.uk that “Joshua Breakstone is a fabulously exciting player to listen to”.
With 24 recordings out as a leader with such greats as Kenny Barron, Barry Harris, Tommy Flanagan, Pepper Adams, Jimmy Knepper, Jack McDuff, Mickey Roker, Al Harewood, etc, Breakstone tours twice each year in Japan, plays across Europe every year, in Australia, and tours just about everywhere in the US.
Joshua is also the author of “Jazz Etudes: Studies For The Beginning Improviser” (Hal Leonard Publishing), a standard text at colleges and universities worldwide. He has both performed and presented workshops throughout the world.
As Eric Harabadian wrote in the Feb 2014 edition of Jazz Inside, “Breakstone is, simply, a tasteful and melodic master.”
“Sittin’ on the Thing with Ming”, which he recorded 30 years ago, is just about to be re-released. Recorded at Rudy Van Gelder’s, the group members are: Kenny Barron (piano), Ray Drummond (bass), Keith Copeland (drums). I will have copies for sale every night in Australia.