The mainstage portion of the 2017 Jazz Port Townsend festival kicks off this Friday with featured performances by Justin Kauflin and NEA Jazz Master Hubert Laws (pictured above). Please note that our previously-scheduled line up has changed. Mr. Laws will perform Friday night only. Nikki Harris has graciously agreed to move her mainstage set to the Saturday evening performance so that Mr. Laws can attend a funeral. We appreciate our audience’s understanding.
Jazz Port Townsend Friday Night
Friday July 28, 2017, 7:30pm
Reserved Seating $46, $35, $27
Keep On Keepin’ On
- Justin Kauflin, piano
- Doug Weiss, bass
- Kendrick Scott, drums
Laws To Live By: Hubert Laws
- Hubert Laws, flute
- Bill Cunliffe, piano
- John Clayton, bass
- Matt Wilson, drums
JUSTIN KAUFLIN – PIANO
New York-based jazz pianist, composer and producer, most notably known by his appearance in the award-winning documentary “Keep On Keepin’ On” based on the mentorship/friendship of Justin and legendary trumpeter, Clark Terry. Born in Silver Spring, MD with a rare degenerative eye disease and totally blind by age 11, Justin adjusted by learning braille, cane mobility and focusing on music; performing jazz professionally by age 15.
He attended the Betty Carter Jazz Ahead Residency, Vail Jazz Workshop, won the VSA International Young Soloist Award, Veer Jazz Artist of the Year, a semi-finalist in the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Piano Competition and graduated Summa Cum Laude from William Paterson University. Through his friendship with Cee Tee, Justin met, and subsequently signed by, Quincy Jones, joining him on a couple of world tours, as well as co-produce his second album, “Dedication” which was a DownBeat magazine’s Editor’s Pick and #1 on JazzWeek Chart.
DOUG WEISS – BASS
In 1995 Doug Weiss recorded the first of two critically acclaimed Blue Note records under the leadership of pianist Kevin Hays. His relationship with Kevin, both intuitive and visceral, continues to the present with 10 cds recorded and many appearances in the United States and abroad. In 1996 began Doug Weiss’ association with legendary drummer Al Foster. Al’s band has toured the world, playing more than 1000 concerts and recording 2 recordings to date. Weiss was featured, along with Billy Drummond and John Scofield, on Eddie Henderson’s release “For All We Know” on Furthermore records.
He is a member of the Eli Degibri quartet, touring Europe, Asia, and the Americas. He has recorded the Cd “San Francisco” and toured with renowned Dutch vocalist Fleurine and her husband, pianist Brad Mehladau. Weiss has also performed and recorded with such notable figures as Toshiko Akiyoshi, Lee Konitz, Jacky Terrasson, Eddie Henderson, Lew Tabakin, Walt Weiskopf, the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, and Joshua Redman. Weiss currently resides in the Hudson River Valley, and is engaged in creating a new work by folk legend Pete Seeger, which is being produced by percussionist Jeff Haynes. Their previous effort, “Tomorrow’s Children”, won a Grammy for best children’s album in 2010.
KENDRICK SCOTT – DRUMS
In the relatively short span of ten years, drummer and composer Kendrick Scott has established himself as an artist of great versatility and depth. Having toured and recorded with such luminaries as Terence Blanchard, Herbie Hancock, the Crusaders and others, he has proven his ability to adapt his style to virtually any occasion or circumstance, and at the same time maintain his own distinctive voice in the process. In addition to his work as a support figure, he has also developed a reputation as an innovative composer and bandleader, with the help of his ever-evolving musical collective. The Kendrick Scott Oracle began their creative odyssey in 2007 with an eclectic and ambitious debut recording called The Source, and followed up on its success with Conviction, an album set for release on Concord Jazz in March 2013.
“Kendrick is a true artist of the highest order,” says Blanchard. “He is not bound by the conventional wisdom of the music world. I’ve noticed that he never says why, but rather why not. He is exactly what the music world needs: someone with the vision and courage to press forward and expand the world of music. I am blessed to have him around and I look forward to seeing what he does every time we play.”
HUBERT LAWS – FLUTE
NEA Jazz Master Hubert Laws is one of the very few to specialize on the flute in jazz, using it as his primary axe, and in doing so he has become the premier musician on the instrument. In three decades of playing, he has also mastered pop, rhythm-and-blues, and classical genres.
Laws grew up in a musical family, with his grandfather playing the harmonica and his mother the piano (which influenced his siblings as well as Laws — his brother Ronnie is a well-regarded saxophonist and Eloise, Debra, and Johnnie are vocalists). Laws started on flute for his high school orchestra, initially to play the William Tell Overture. He also became enamored with jazz at this time, and began playing regularly with a Houston group that eventually became known as the Crusaders.
Laws won a classical scholarship to the prestigious Juilliard School in New York City, studying with master flutist Julius Baker. At the same time, he was gigging at night, playing with jazz and Latin musicians such as Mongo Santamaria, Lloyd Price, and John Lewis, as well as with classical orchestras such as Orchestra USA and the Tanglewood Festival Orchestra.
In 1964, he began recording as a bandleader, amassing more than 20 albums as leader. Laws is also an accomplished session musician, and has worked on recordings with Chick Corea, Miles Davis, Ella Fitzgerald, Herbie Hancock, Freddie Hubbard, Sarah Vaughan, and Stevie Wonder, among others. He also worked on film scores for The Wiz and The Color Purple and collaborated on film soundtracks with Quincy Jones, Bob James, and Claude Bolling for California Suite and with Earl Klugh and Pat Williams on the music for How to Beat the High Cost of Living.
In addition to his jazz work, Laws has appeared as a soloist with the New York Philharmonic under the direction of Zubin Mehta, and with the orchestras of Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Detroit, and Los Angeles, and the Stanford String Quartet. He performed in a sold-out Hollywood Bowl concert with fellow flutist Jean-Pierre Rampal and in the same venue in 1982 with the Modern Jazz Quartet. While a member of the New York Philharmonic and Metropolitan Opera Orchestras, he also was featured at the Playboy Jazz Festival (Los Angeles), Kool Jazz Festival (Rhode Island), and Switzerland’s Montreux Jazz Festival. In addition he has recorded with opera singers Jessye Norman and Kathleen Battle (on the 1991 release Spirituals in Concert).
DownBeat readers’ polls have selected him “Number One Flutist” for 12 years and a Critic’s Choice for seven consecutive years. He has performed annually at Carnegie Hall.
BILL CUNLIFFE – PIANO
Jazz pianist, composer and Grammy Award-winning arranger Bill Cunliffe is known for his innovative and swinging recordings and compositions. Bill began his career as pianist and arranger with the Buddy Rich Big Band and worked with Frank Sinatra, Joe Henderson, Freddie Hubbard, Benny Golson and James Moody. He has since established himself as a solo artist and bandleader, with more than a dozen albums under his name.
Bill currently plays with his trio; his big band; his Latin band, Imaginación; and his classical-jazz ensemble, Trimotif. He performs in the U.S. and around the world as a leader and sideman as well as a soloist with symphony orchestras.
His latest recording is the Bill Cunliffe Trio album “River Edge, New Jersey,” with bassist Martin Wind and drummer Tim Horner, released in April by Azica Records.
JOHN CLAYTON – ARTISTIC DIRECTOR
Grammy-winning bassist/composer/conductor John Clayton has written and arranged music for Diana Krall, DeeDee Bridgewater, Natalie Cole, Milt Jackson, Nancy Wilson, McCoy Tyner, Quincy Jones, George Benson, Dr. John, Regina Carter and many others.
John has been commissioned by many ensembles including the Northwest Chamber Orchestra, the American Jazz Philharmonic, The Iceland Symphony, The Metropole Orchestra, The Carnegie Hall Big Band, The Richmond Symphony, the WDR Orchestra, and the Amsterdam Philharmonic. John was awarded a platinum record for his stirring arrangement of “The Star-Spangled Banner,” performed by Whitney Houston during the Super Bowl in 1990.
John has won numerous awards such as the Golden Feather Award, and the Los Angeles Jazz Society’s Composer/Arranger award. Most recently, John won a Grammy for his arrangements on Queen Latifah’s, Trav’lin’ Light. John has served as the musical director of several jazz festivals including the Sarasota Jazz Festival, the Lionel Hampton International Jazz Festival, the Santa Fe Jazz Party, and the Vail Jazz Workshop.
John is a co-founder of the Grammy-nominated Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra, which is co-led by John, his brother, saxophonist, Jeff Clayton, and drummer, Jeff Hamilton. Also, John and his brother Jeff co-lead the Clayton Brothers Quintet, who have been nominated for two Grammy awards.
Matt Wilson leads the Matt Wilson Quartet, Arts and Crafts, Christmas Tree-O and the Carl Sandburg Project. Matt is integral part of bands led by Joe Lovano, John Scofield, Charlie Haden, Lee Konitz, Bob Stewart, Denny Zeitlin, Ron Miles, Marty Ehrlich, Ted Nash, Jane Ira Bloom and Dena DeRose among others.
He has performed with many legends of music including Herbie Hancock, Dewey Redman, Andrew Hill, Bobby Hutcherson, Elvis Costello, Cedar Walton, Kenny Barron, John Zorn, Marshall Allen, Wynton Marsalis, Michael Brecker, Pat Metheny, Bill Frisell and Hank Jones.
Wilson has appeared on 250 CDs as a sideman and has released 9 as a leader for Palmetto Records as well as co-leading 5 additional releases.
Port Townsend & Fort Worden
Located just 2 hours west of Seattle, Port Townsend is the perfect place to indulge your creative side. With its maritime heritage, Victorian architecture, artist spirit, and a touch of urban chic, Port Townsend is an easily accessible base camp to the Olympic Peninsula and beyond.
Centrum’s home is at Fort Worden – the kind of destination that stays with you for a lifetime. Amidst the magnificent natural setting and the influence of its military past, Fort Worden is home to inspiration, education and personal transformation. People gather here to participate in arts and music events, woodworking classes, conferences, camping and outdoor activities, family reunions, weddings, and much more. Originally designed as a military base to protect Puget Sound, Fort Worden evolved into an iconic and cherished state park. The fort – featuring 100 historic structures – spans two miles of saltwater shoreline with views of the Olympic and Cascade Mountains, and the San Juan Islands.
Click here for detailed instructions about traveling to Seattle to Port Townsend without a car.
Jefferson County International Airport
Airport Cutoff Road, Port Townsend, WA 98368
Located less than two miles from downtown Port Townsend, Fort Worden is easily accessible for both locals and visitors.
General inquiries: firstname.lastname@example.org, (360) 385-3102 x117