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How to Listen to Jazz – Presented by Jazz Winnipeg
November 8 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
New this fall, Jazz Winnipeg presents an ongoing educational concert series called How to Listen to Jazz, taking place at the Fort Garry Hotel.
One part history lesson and two parts musical performance, How to Listen to Jazz presents local jazz performers in themed concerts that focus on a specific period of time from the rich chronology of jazz music. Two hour-long musical sets will be interspersed with educational anecdotes, stories, and historical context to help develop the audience’s ability to appreciate and understand the music and its history. Don’t miss this exciting opportunity to learn How to Listen to Jazz with some of Winnipeg’s favourite musicians!
How to Listen to Jazz, Part 3
Boppin’: Bebop, Hard Bop, and the Cool School
Featuring Jon Gordon
Wednesday, November 8 at 6:30pm
The third instalment illuminates the traditions of Charlie Parker, Thelonius Monk, and more, with an ensemble led by Winnipeg’s premier bebop saxophonist, Jon Gordon, and including musicians Jonathan Challoner, Will Bonness, Karl Kohut and Josh Bonneteau.
A native New Yorker, saxophonist and composer, Jon Gordon was born into a musical family and began playing at age ten. In addition to private saxophone studies he attended Performing Arts High School and won numerous competitions, including the Julius Grossman, Goldman Band, and Performing Arts Concerto competitions. This led to performances as a soloist with the Julius Grossman orchestra, Goldman Band and the Performing Arts Orchestra.
In his mid-teens, Jon’s love for jazz was sparked after a friend played him a Phil Woods record. He began sitting in regularly with Eddie Chamblee at Sweet Basil and started lessons with Phil Woods. From 1984-88 he attended Manhattan School of Music. During this time Jon began sitting in with Charles McPherson, Doc Cheatham, Phil Woods, Mike Stern, Jacky Terrason, as well as working professionally with Red Rodney, Roy Eldridge, Barney Kessel, Al Grey, Eddie Locke, Mike LeDonne, Mel Lewis, Doc Cheatham, Larry Goldings, Ben Monder, Peter Bernstein, and Leon Parker.
Since that time, he has worked with Maria Schneider, Ron McClure, Clark Terry, Benny Carter, Phil Woods, T.S. Monk, TanaReid, Bill Mays, The Vanguard orchestra, Bill Charlap, Ray Barreto, Mark Turner, George Colligan, Chico Hamilton, Jimmy Cobb, Ben Riley, Harry Connick Jr., Bob Mintzer, Bill Mobley, and the N.Y. Pops Orchestra, among many others. Jon also appears regularly as a member of the Jazz Nativity, whose other featured artists have included Tito Puente, Ron Carter, Dave Brubeck, Savion Glover, Slide Hampton, and Harold Nicholas.
Jon has led his own groups at various European, Canadian and U.S. jazz festivals and clubs including, Ronnie Scott’s and The Pizza Express (London), The Sunside, The Sunset, and La Villa (Paris), The Brecon Jazz Festival (Wales), The Oslo Jazz Festival, The Ottowa Jazz Festival, The Royal Caribbean Floating Jazz Festival, Savannah on Stage, The Savannah Jazz Festival, and The Wolftrap festival. He has performed as a sideman at dozens of other festivals, clubs and concert halls around the world.
Currently he is a professor in the Desautels Faculty of Music at the University of Manitoba. His latest album, the highly acclaimed Stranger Than Fiction, was released in 2021.