Jazz on the Move 2018 at the Frist

The Nashville Jazz Workshop, in collaboration with the Frist Art Museum, announces the 12th season of the popular jazz performance and education series, Jazz on the Move. Each installment features a lecture and performance highlighting a major figure or period in jazz history. Presented by Nashville’s top jazz artist/educators, the series offers audiences world class music as well as an opportunity to learn more about jazz.

The programs take place on a series of Sunday afternoons. All performances are at 3:00 pm in the auditorium at the Frist Art Museum, 919 Broadway, Nashville, TN. Performances in the series are free and open to the public. Each performance is led by a jazz artist intimately familiar with the jazz great being profiled with an outstanding group of supporting musicians. Presentations in this year's series are:

January 28, A Centennial Celebration of Saxophonist Arnett Cobb with Kirk Whalum

Arnett Cobb was a  tenor saxophonist from Houston, Texas, who rose to prominence in the 1940s jazz scene as lead tenor and arranger for Lionel Hampton, earning the reputation as "The Wild Man of the Tenor Sax." He is considered to be the originator of the “open prairie” tone and “southern preacher” style, and many jazz artists credit him as a major influence, including Kirk Whalum. Cobb, along with Illinois Jacquet, developed the “Texas Tenor” sound which was later to make its way into popular music through David “Fathead” Newman and King Curtis.

The roots of Kirk Whalum's unmistakable rich tenor sound are in his Memphis soul upbringing. From there, he studied and performed in Houston, Texas, where he was mentored by Arnett Cobb.  Kirk's recording career includes more than 25 solo recordings, including several #1 album. He has received three Dove Award nominations, an NAACP Image Award nomination, and two Stellar Awards (Gospel music's highest honor). An 11-time Grammy nominee, he won a Grammy award for Best Gospel Song with "It's What I Do," co-written with Jerry Peters. Kirk has recorded with top artists including Barbra Streisand, Al Jarreau, Luther Vandross, Larry Carlton, Quincy Jones, and, most notably, Whitney Houston, whose smash hit "I Will Always Love You" was fueled by Kirk's famous sax solo.

Here's what Kirk Whalum has to say about Arnett Cobb: "The day I met Arnett Cobb I played a little something for him. He waved me to stop after about a minute of playing my very best and fastest licks… Then he said, lovingly, “You’re playin’ too many notes and you ain’t sayin’ a damn thing. . .  that was probably the most important day of my formative years musically! Arnett became my primary mentor. . . Arnett’s daughter Lizette put his ring on my finger a few days after the funeral. . . I still weep when I hear him play 'The Nearness of You.'"

February 25, A Tribute to Louis Armstrong with Jamey Simmons

Trumpeter Louis Armstrong may be THE major influence on jazz as we know it today. Born in New Orleans, he moved to Chicago in 1922 and later to New York City. Besides trumpet, he was known for his stage charisma and scat singing.  A major figure in the jazz world for over five decades, he also an icon in American popular music. Join MTSU Jazz Studies Director Jamey Simmons for a tribute to this jazz giant.

March 11, The Life and Songs of Nancy Wilson with Dara Tucker

Nancy Wilson, a 3-time Grammy-winning vocalist with more than 70 albums to her credit, is one of the most celebrated vocalists living today. Beginning her jazz career with Cannonball Adderly, she  went on to commercial success in multiple genres. Celebrate Women’s History Month with one of Nashville's most popular vocalists, Dara Tucker, as she pays tribute to this jazz legend.

April 15, The Life and Compositions of Miss Peggy Lee with Monica Ramey

Peggy Lee was a singer, songwriter, composer, and actress. From her beginning as a vocalist on local radio to singing with Benny Goodman's big band, she forged a sophisticated persona, evolving into a multi-faceted artist and performer who’s career spanned 6 decades. Accompanied by an all-star jazz quartet, vocalist Monica Ramey will present an informative and captivating tribute to this American music icon.

The Jazz on the Move series is presented with support from Caterpillar Financial Services and Peter and Anne Neff.

Those attending Jazz on the Move at the Frist will be able to visit the Frist's exhibits free of charge, and will also receive discounted parking. 

The Frist Art Museum is an accredited nonprofit art-exhibition center, with approximately 24,000 square feet of gallery space, dedicated to presenting the finest visual art from local, state and regional artists, as well as major U.S. and international exhibitions. It is located at 919 Broadway, Nashville, Tennessee, 37203. www.fristcenter.org.