Month: April 2014

May 6: Theoretical Planets, Ca$hmist, and The Pleather Pretenders

Theoretical Planets

Theoretical Planets

It’s another exciting night of music at the Portland State Jazz Series! This time, we will feature three musical experiences in one night. Starting off, we’ll have Theoretical Planets, which is faculty member George Colligan’s latest project. It’s an inspired, drummer-led group that lets the horns dictate the harmony. We’ll also have great music by Ca$hmist and The Pleather Pretenders. Be there!


April 28-29: Geoff Keezer

ImagePiano virtuoso Geoff Keezer so thoroughly impressed Miles Davis that the trumpet legend exclaimed, “You look like you can’t do nothin’…we should work together!” Keezer began his jazz career at the tender age of 18, when he worked with Art Blakey. Through the years, Keezer has performed with Sting, Wayne Shorter, Diana Krall and Christian McBride. However, one must hear the pianist’s solo work to truly witness his immense abilities. Keezer is celebrating the release of his new solo album, Heart of the Piano. He will appear at the Portland State Jazz Series on April 28 from 7-9 (Lincoln Hall, Room 47, tickets $10) with professor George Colligan on drums and star PSU pupils Nicole Glover (sax) and Jon Lakey (bass). The following day, Keezer will give a free master class from 5-7, again in Lincoln Hall. The excitement continues!

April 21-22: Tom Guarna

Tom Guarna

Tom Guarna – Photo by John Rogers

This week, Portland State Jazz Series features one of the finest jazz guitarists on the New York scene. Tom Guarna is here in Portland to promote his latest album, Rush (Brooklyn Jazz Underground). On April 21 at 8 p.m., Guarna will perform at the Mission Theater with George Colligan on keyboards, bassist Damian Erskine, and drummer Reinhard Melz. The next day, he will be in Lincoln Hall’s Room 47 from 5-7 p.m. to let you in on the secrets behind his mastery.

April 17: Justin Nielsen/Vocal Jazz Night

The Portland State Jazz Series is proud to feature Boise pianist/educator Justin Nielsen on our upcoming Vocal Jazz Night. Justin NielsenNielsen, a longtime friend/associate of PSU vocal jazz instructor Jeff Baker, has performed with Kevin Mahogany and Curtis Stigers, among many others. Nielsen and Baker will perform in Room 326 (Lincoln Recital Hall) along with drummer Tyson Stubelek, bassist Dylan Sundstrom, and vocalists Kanda Mbenza-Ngoma, Meghan Wilson, Miles Forte, Sarah Hotz, Allegra Jongeward, Justin Benfit, Dereck Watson, and Pablo Saldana. The PDX Collective will also be featured.


April 15: Heppners/Colligan Men

Our Kneebody clinic was jam-packed! Six days seems like a long time to wait for the next installment of our series…

On April 15, we will feature two great studentImage-led groups: Heppners (led by bassist Corey Heppner) and the Colligan Men (the smiling people in this pic)! Come by Room 47 in Lincoln Hall from 5-7 p.m. Like many of our events, this one is free of charge.

April 9: Kneebody

What an exciting week of music at PSU! First, we hosted Donny McCaslin; then, we had a standing-room-only crowd for our own Park Avenue Group. For our third musical event of the week, we host Grammy-nominated electric-jazz group Kneebody on Thursday at 2:30 p.m. The group will give a free clinic in Room 47 of Lincoln Hall. Check out Kneebody’s music here.


April 7: Donny McCaslin

One of the most gifted saxophonists on the scene today, Donny McCaslin wows audiences with imageshis impressive technique and endless musicality. He’s celebrating the release of his 10th CD as a leader, “Casting for Gravity” (Greenleaf Music). McCaslin has performed with Pat Metheny, the Maria Schneider Orchestra, Tom Harrell, and many others. His compositions and improvisations continue to amaze with every album he releases. Come check McCaslin out in Room 47 of Lincoln Hall from 2-4 p.m., and then follow him to Jimmy Mak’s, where he will perform a trio show at 8 p.m.

April 4: Kerry Politzer CD Release Party

Tonight’s Guitar Heroes show was a great success! Next up: adjunct instructor Kerry Politzer will celebrate the release of her sixth CD, “Below the Surface” (PJCE Records) at the Portland Piano Company (711 SW 14th Ave.) on Friday, April 4 at 7 pm. Politzer will perform an e2panel_sleeve_016-final (3)vening of original music with assistant professor George Colligan on drums, adjunct saxophone instructor David Valdez, Thomas Barber on trumpet, and Andrea Niemiec on bass.

Tickets, which are $10 for general admission and $5 for students and seniors, are available at Eventbrite. Come support new music in Portland!