Lion City Youth Jazz Festival 2018 Workshop Series: Randy Brecker - A Life In Music


25 May 2018, 5:30 PM - 6:30 PM




The Lion City Youth Jazz Festival is an annual

youth-musician-focused learning and immersion programme, comprising 6 days of

intensive rehearsals, workshops and a final concert on the last day, under the

guidance of international jazz legends and prominent professional jazz

musicians. This year’s workshop series will feature 5-time Grammy award-winning

Trumpeter and composer Randy Brecker from the United States; Bassist and

composer Jay Anderson (US); Lewis Nash (US-Drums); Antonio Hart (US-Saxophone);

Tom Walsh (Trumpet-UK).


Jazz trumpeter and composer Randy

Brecker has helped shape the sound of jazz, R&B and rock for more than four

decades. His trumpet and flugelhorn performances have graced hundreds of albums

by a wide range of artists from James Taylor, Bruce Springsteen and Parliament/Funkadelic

to Frank Sinatra, Steely Dan, Jaco Pastorius and Frank Zappa.

Born in 1945 in Philadelphia to a

musical family, Randy's musical talent was nurtured from an early age. He

attended Indiana University from 1963-66 studying with Bill Adam, David Baker

and Jerry Coker and later moved to New York where he landed gigs with such

prominent bands as Clark Terry's Big Bad Band, the Duke Pearson Big Band and

the Thad Jones Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra.

In 1967, Randy ventured into

jazz-rock with the band Blood, Sweat and Tears, but left to join the Horace

Silver Quintet. He recorded his first solo album, 'Score', in 1968, featuring a

young, then unknown 19 year-old tenor saxophonist named Michael Brecker.

After Horace Silver, Randy joined

Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers before teaming up with brother Michael, Barry

Rogers, Billy Cobham, and John Abercrombie to form the seminal fusion group

'Dreams'. The group recorded two adventurous and wildly acclaimed albums:

'Dreams' and 'Imagine My Surprise' - now collector's items - for Columbia

Records before they disbanded in 1971.

In the early 1970s, Randy

performed live with many prominent artists including Larry Coryell’s Eleventh

House, Stevie Wonder and Billy Cobham. He also recorded several classic albums

with his brother under the leadership of the great pianist/composer Hal Galper.

By 1975, Randy and Michael were

ready to front their own group, the Brecker Brothers Band. A band of

immeasurable impact and influence, they released six albums on Arista and

garnered seven Grammy nominations between 1975 and 1981. Their eponymous first

record, which Randy wrote, arranged and produced, featured his now classic

composition “Some Skunk Funk.”

In 1992, exactly ten years after

they parted ways to pursue solo careers, Randy and Michael reunited for a world

tour and the triple-Grammy nominated GRP recording, 'The Return of the Brecker

Brothers'. The follow-up, 1994’s ‘Out of the Loop,’ was a double- Grammy


In 1997, ‘Into the Sun’

(Concord), a recording featuring Randy’s impressions of Brazil, garnered Randy

his first Grammy as a solo artist.

In 2001, Randy released ‘Hangin’

in the City’ (ESC), a solo project which introduced his alter-ego Randroid, a

skirt chasing, cab driving ne’er do well, with lyrics and vocals by Randroid

himself. This CD was especially well received in Europe, where Randy toured

extensively with his own line-up.

Randy’s next CD for ESC Records,

'34th n' Lex,’ won him his third Grammy for 'Best Contemporary Jazz Album’ in

2003. In May of that year he toured Europe with his Quintet in support of the

CD, and in the summer went back to Europe yet again with the Randy Brecker/

Bill Evans Soulbop Band.

The summer of 2003 culminated in

the special headline appearance in Japan at the Mt. Fuji Jazz Festival of the

reunited Brecker Brothers.

2004 saw Randy touring Europe extensively as co-leader (with Bill Evans) of the

band Soulbop. The WDR Big Band also celebrated Randy and his music that year in

a performance at the Leverkusen Jazz Fest. The date was of special significance

to Randy as it was the last time he played with his brother, who took ill

shortly thereafter with a rare form of leukemia known as MDS.

In 2005, with Mike unable to

travel to Russia for Brecker Brothers gigs booked there, Randy’s wife Ada sat

in for the first time. Randy’s active schedule continued apace with the Randy Brecker

Band performing throughout Eastern Europe and across the globe.

In 2007, Randy was awarded his

fourth Grammy for "Randy Brecker Live with the WDR Big Band” (Telarc/BHM),

the live recording (also available in DVD format) of his performance with

Michael at the Leverkusen Jazz Fest in 2004. Tragically, Michael passed away

that same year on Jan 13th.

2007 also saw the release of a 2

CD set of live recordings of the band ‘Soulbop’ (BHM) featuring Dave Kikoski,

Victor Bailey, Steve Smith or Rodney Holmes and the late great Hiram Bullock.

Randy returned to his long-time

love of Brazilian music in 2008 for the album 'Randy in Brazil,' which was

recorded in Sao Paulo with a full complement of great Brazilian musicians and

released on Summit Records. Chosen one of the top 10 CDs of 2008 by, the CD won the Grammy for “Best Contemporary Jazz Album,”

bringing his Grammy total to five.

A “Tribute to the Brecker

Brothers” featuring Randy and recorded live at the Hamamatsu Jazz Festival in

Japan with Yoichi Murata’s Solid Brass & Big Band was released by JVC

Victor in Japan in late 2008.

And in 2009, Randy’s roots were

celebrated with the release of ‘Jazz Suite Tykocin,’ a project initiated and

conceived by the Polish pianist and composer Wlodek Pawlik, featuring Randy as

a soloist with members of the Bialystok Philharmonic. Tykocin is the

area in Poland where Randy’s

ancestors (mother’s maiden name: Tecosky) hail from, a fact that Pawlik

discovered while helping to search for a bone marrow donor for Michael. 2011

saw the release of ‘The Jazz Ballad Song Book: Randy Brecker with the Danish

Radio Big Band and The Danish National Chamber Orchestra,’ which garnered 4

Grammy nominations and enjoyed enthusiastic critical acclaim. And in 2012, Sony

Legacy recaptured history with the long-awaited boxed set, “The Brecker

Brothers – The Complete Arista Albums Collection.”

A Brecker Brothers Band Reunion

tour of European festivals in the summer of 2013 in support of Randy’s newest

project, Randy Brecker’s Brecker Brothers Band Reunion, re-introduced

the familiar faces of Brecker Brothers Band members from the past and their

special brand of music to sell-out crowds.

A dual-disc release, Randy’s

newest project will be released on September 25th, 2013 on Piloo Records. Randy

Brecker’s Brecker Brothers Band Reunion features a live DVD recorded at the

Blue Note in NYC bundled with a new 11-song studio recording featuring members

of the Brecker Brothers bands from throughout the years including Dave Sanborn,

Mike Stern, Will Lee, and Dave Weckl. George Whitty is back in the production

and keyboard chair, and Randy’s Italian wife Ada Rovatti is in the ‘hot

saxophone’ seat, keeping it in the family on tenor and soprano saxophone. The

new dual-disc recording will be released in North America by Magenta/E-One, in

Europe by Moosicus Records in November and in Japan by JVC/Victor.

A long time in the making, this

project is very close to Randy Brecker’s heart. It is dedicated to his brother,

Michael, and other departed Brecker Brothers Band members.

As a composer, performer and

in-demand Yamaha clinician, Randy Brecker continues to influence and inspire

young musicians around the world.

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LaSalle College of the Arts, G302
1 McNally Street
Room G302
Singapore 187940