Off Minor Jazz Series: 'Mary Lou Williams Tribute'Monday, January 25, 2021 @ 7:00 PM - 8:15 PM
Streamed on City of Asylum’s Virtual Channel. (run-time 60 minutes)
NYC Pianist and composer Deanna Witkowski will be joined by bassist Jeff Grubbs and drummer Thomas Wendt in this program celebrating the music of Mary Lou Williams, as part of the Off Minor Jazz Series. Deanna has selected the best moments from the original 2019 concert @ Alphabet City performed in front of a full house, guiding us through her creative process with behind-the-scenes commentary and a newly recorded song– showcasing Mary Lou’s work and the continuation of her legacy and influence on modern musicians.
Mary Lou Williams’ music transcends time in American culture. With a foundation in the Blues, Mary Lou’s compositions reflect her life as a Black woman and a true triumph of the human spirit. Williams’ career began in the Swing Era with Andy Kirk’s 12 Clouds of Joy and concluded with her collaborating with artists such as avant-garde pianist Cecil Taylor in 1977.
An amazingly diverse bandleader who moves with remarkable ease between Brazilian, jazz, classical, and sacred music, pianist-composer-vocalist Deanna Witkowski consistently thrills audiences with explosive performances that combine virtuosity and heart. Winner of the Great American Jazz Piano Competition and a past guest on Marian McPartland’s historic Piano Jazz radio program, Witkowski’s accessible yet surprising sound is unmistakably her own.
The Off Minor Jazz Series highlights the music of legendary jazz composers and players. The series has been curated by drummer Thomas Wendt, who puts together the right musicians for each concert.
Deanna Witkowski (piano)
Jeff Grubbs (bass)
Thomas Wendt (drums)