Honoring 2012 Jazz Master: George Coleman
Presented by SOPAC, The Baird and the Village of South Orange
Produced by John Lee & Jazz Legacy Productions
Tickets: $50, $60
SOPAC Members: $45, $55
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Seniors & Students: $40, $50
The New York Times called it the “premier (jazz) festival in the state.”
Zan Stewart, jazz critic for the Star Ledger stated “...is easily one of the top jazz show of the year...anywhwere.”
In 1998, the cream of the jazz world came to take part in Giants of Jazz, an amazing standing-room-only performance. Now in its fifteenth year, Giants of Jazz has become an annual music phenomenon – literally a one-night festival that has established South Orange as a major New Jersey venue for world-class jazz.
A Giants of Jazz highlight each year is the presentation of the South Orange Jazz Masters Award to a distinguished artist whose creativity has had a major impact on jazz performance and/or education. Previous recipients include renowned musicians Jimmy Heath, James Moody, Clark Terry, Frank Wess, Benny Powell, Dr. Billy Taylor, Frank Foster and Marian McPartland, and Slide Hampton.
About 2012 Jazz Master Honoree is George Coleman
No tenor saxophonist better epitomizes the robust muscularity of that heavyweight instrument of jazz expression than George Coleman. With brilliant technique and a deeply soulful tone firmly rooted in his hometown of Memphis, George has performed with many of jazz’ most legendary figures and influenced countless saxophonists during his half century in music.
For two years George was a member of that groundbreaking quintet with Herbie Hancock, Ron Carter and Tony Williams, recording four classic albums – Seven Steps to Heaven, My Funny Valentine, Four and Miles Davis in Europe – before departing to pursue other projects, leaving that highly visible position to Wayne Shorter. The following year George and Hubbard joined with Miles’ rhythm team for Herbie Hancock’s landmark Maiden Voyage, one of the most popular albums in the history of jazz.
Over the ten years from 1964-74, Coleman freelanced as a member of various groups led by some of the music’s most prominent figures, including Lionel Hampton, Lee Morgan, Elvin Jones, Charles Mingus, Betty Carter, Chet Baker, Shirley Scott, Charles McPherson, Cedar Walton and many more. He also composed and arranged for various ensembles.A winner of numerous honors and awards, Coleman has twice been presented the Key to the City in his hometown, and in 1997 received the Jazz Foundation of America’s Life Achievement Award.
Television credits include Bill Cosby’s 1991 A&E special, Revue, as well as appearances on CBS’ The Guiding Light, and the venerable children’s show Captain Kangaroo.A handsome and imposing figure, George has also amassed some significant modeling credits. In 1991, still photographs with pop icon Madonna appeared in major newspapers and magazines as part of the Truth or Dare! promotional campaign. And in 1997 he appeared in magazine layouts for The Preacher’s Wife. He’s also done fashion layouts for Ebony Magazine and Travel and Leisure.At 76 years old, George is still in full motion. His latest CD, Four Generations of Miles with Ron Carter, Jimmy Cobb and Mike Stern was released on Chesky Records in October 2002.