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Kamasi Washington
Wednesday 08/26
Kamasi Washington @ The Howard Theatre
$25 / $25
At the age of 13 Kamasi Washington decided to begin a life long quest of the many wonders to be found in music. He made this decision one night when after a rehearsal at his home his father left his soprano saxophone lying on the piano and left Kamasi with an uncontrollable curiosity of all the beauty he’d just heard come from it. So he took father’s horn, and even though he didn’t know anything about the saxophone, in fact he’d never even touched a saxophone, and played Wayne Shorter’s “Sleeping Dancer Sleep On”, his favorite song at the time. Kamasi was shocked he had been playing drums, piano, and clarinet for years but he’d never played the saxophone. Yet he was somehow able to play a song from his heart and in that received an early glimpse of the euphoria that music can bring. And at that moment he knew that music was his life’s quest and the saxophone was his voice. Within two years Kamasi earned the lead tenor saxophone chair in the top jazz ensemble at the prestigious Hamilton High School Music Academy. At the same time Kamasi joined the Multi School Jazz Band (MSJB) where he was reunited with several child hood friends who were well on their way on their own musical quest. During his senior year of high school Kamasi formed his first band with childhood friends Ronald and Stephen Bruner on drums and bass, along with pianist Cameron Graves. The group was called “The Young Jazz Giants”. After high school Kamasi went on to study ethnomusicology at UCLA were he received a full scholarship and was exposed to many of the non-western musical cultures around the world. In the summer after his freshman year Kamasi recorded his first album with “The Young Jazz Giants” a platform they used to spread the new sound of jazz all around the country. In his second year at UCLA Kamasi went on his first national tour with the west coast hip-hop legend Snoop Dog. Ironically this band was made of many of the most talented young jazz musicians in the country. Later that year Kamasi joined The Gerald Wilson orchestra. Gerald Wilson was his biggest hero compositionally and being a part of his orchestra motivated him to make composition the focus of his major at UCLA. In doing so Kamasi began studying many of the great American and European composers. After his senior year at UCLA Kamasi went on his first international tour with RnB legend Raphael Saadiq who had ¾ of “The Young Jazz Giants” in his band. Later that year he was given the honor of representing Gerald Wilson’s Los Angeles band on his album “In My Time” witch featured Wilson’s New York based orchestra. Over the next few years Kamasi was blessed to be able to perform and record with many of his musical heroes, from many different genres. He played with legendary jazz artist such as McCoy Tyner, Freddie Hubbard, Kenny Burrell, and George Duke. At the same time he was working with artist such as Lauryn Hill, Jeffrey Osborne, Mos Def, and Quincy Jones. During this same time Kamasi started his new band called “The Next Step”, a kind of modern spin on a big band, with two drummers, two bassist upright and electric, piano and keyboards, three horns and a vocalist. Recently Kamasi has been touring with legendary musicians Stanley Clarke, Harvey Mason, and Chaka Khan. He’s featured on Harvey Mason’s latest album “Chameleon” and will be featured on Stanley Clarke’s upcoming album as well. Kamasi also has a ground breaking new album coming out on the record label “Brainfeeder” with his band “The Next Step”. It’s a triple disc masterpiece appropriately titled “The Epic”.
Savion Glover
Thursday 08/27
Savion Glover @ The Howard Theatre
$35 / $40
Famous tap dancer, choreographer, and actor Savion Glover is the epitome of a living legend. Born in 1973, the tapping marvel has graced the stage since childhood. He set a record as the youngest person ever to receive a scholarship in the Newark Community School of the Arts. Before he was a teenager, Savion made his mark starring in the leading role in the Broadway musical The Tap Dance Kid. Savion Glover developed his own dancing style he dubbed "free style hard core." The Tony Award winning dancer has starring roles in major motion pictures like "Tap" (with Gregory Hines & Sammy Davis Jr.), "Happy Feet", "Happy Feet 2" & Spike Lee’s “BAMBOOZLED”. He also starred alongside Gregory Hines in "Jelly's Last Jam", a role for which he made history as the youngest ever recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts grant. As a choreographer, Glover's work has helped maintain tap dancing as an art form in the modern dance world. His starring role in the musical Bring in 'da Noise, Bring in 'da Funk, which he also choreographed, debuted on Broadway in 1996. The musical chronicles events in African-American history and brought Savion a Tony for best choreographer. Glover was made known to the younger generation with recurring appearances on "Sesame Street." He also holds the credit as the live captured dancing motion behind Mumble the penguin in the Disney film "Happy Feet." Savion also served as co-choreographer for the film. Glover's quick steps and amazing rhythms continue to influence the lives of young people. His production company tours schools across the country, spreading enthusiasm for tap dancing and cementing his place in history.
BYT Presents: Nat Geo HQ After Hours Takeover
Friday 06/19
BYT Presents: Nat Geo HQ After Hours Takeover @ The National Geographic Society
$20.00 / $25.00
Brightest Young Things presents: NAT GEO AFTER HOURS 2015 A Special All-Access National Geographic HQ Take Over! Croosh Deets June 19th, 8pm – 12am The National Geographic Society 1600 M St. NW PURCHASE DISCOUNT TICKETS / GET MORE DETAILS AT: http://bytnatgeo2015.eventbrite.com Featuring hot jamz from our friends: Solidisco!!! With exclusive party-time access to the Nat Geo Museum exhibits including: Indiana Jones and the Adventure of Archaeology: The Exhibition MONSTER FISH: In Search of the Last River Giants Cash bars everywhere, including cocktails and a special secret Beers From Around The World Bar! + Lightning talks from Nat Geo Explorers!/#NukedTheFridge: The Roast of Indiana Jones!/3D movies to blow your little mind!/DJ Set from the Axel F Crew/Real man music from Jonny Grave/DJ Smudge (ESL) A big outdoor courtyard to frolick in! Food trucks! Photobooths! Lasers! Mechanical Sharks! & more surprises! ~~~ Discount tickets on sale now for $20 Price goes up to $25 on June 1st! Last 3 years we sold out! This is a 21+ event As always, there is no dress code, but we recommend staying on theme: indy / short round / sexy snake / giant boulder / jungle foliage / #nukedthefridge monsters / fish / nessie / moby / narwhal / mega and/or mecha shark archeology gear / safari hats / zissou fashion / jane goodall slacks
Shuggie Otis
Friday 07/31
Shuggie Otis @ The Howard Theatre
$35 / $40
Irony is a part of life. Though the music business may at times have nothing to do with "real" life, irony is a part of the biz. Just ask singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Shuggie Otis. Shuggie Otis, for those not familiar with him through David Byrne's heroic disinterment of his 1974 album, Inspiration Information or through his authorship of the wonderful Strawberry Letter 23 - is the son of legendary R `n' B bandleader Johnny Otis. A musical prodigy he was playing with his father by the time he was 13 and from the word go displayed an uncanny mastery of the blues guitar. He wrote "Strawberry Letter 23," a gold single for the Brothers Johnson that went to number one R&B and number five pop in spring 1977. George Johnson was dating one of Otis' cousins who gave him a copy of Otis' 1971 Epic LP, Freedom Flight. Immediately, Johnson liked "Ice Cold Daydream" and "Strawberry Letter 23." The duo recommended it to their producer, Quincy Jones, and recorded a cover version that sticks pretty close to Otis' original version of "Strawberry Letter 23." By the time "Strawberry Letter 23" was a million-seller, Otis had been dropped from Epic three years earlier. The 24-year-old guitar virtuoso was sure he would get a new record deal. Ironically, the record executives would be impressed that he wrote a million-selling song, but they weren't interested in anything else he'd done. Disillusioned, Otis dropped out of the music business before returning to it in the late `80s, playing with his father, Johnny Otis' band. Later the axiom "good things come to those who wait" took effect. Spurred by sales and critical kudos of reissues of his 1974 Epic LP, Inspiration Information, from Sony Music Special Projects and David Byrne's Luaka Bop label, Otis performed "Strawberry Letter 23" on May 2001 appearances on Conan O'Brien and David Letterman. Though in recent years he has chosen to remain out of the spotlight, he continues to be revered through musical circles, as evidenced by his 2009 performance with Mos Def in LA. Feb 2013 sees the re-release of Inspiration Information via Sony distribution, complete as a double album package with a set of sought after unreleased masters. He will perform his first live dates outside America in over 20 years.