My Mom - Lida Beasley brass instrumentalist, teacher, band and orchestra director
I want to thank all of you who sent kind messages regarding my mother’s passing. Lida was my beacon and I would not be who I am without her boundless faith in me. She also encouraged many music students who posted their reverence for her Facebook fan page. I was deeply touched by two articles written by former students, which I would like to share with you:
This Saturday - Dwight Trible and John Beasley DUO
Ruth at the Jazz Bakery has given Dwight and me the Boston Court stage in Pasadena to have a voice and piano evening. The jazz critics at theInternational Review of Music just picked this concert “Pianist Beasley’s far-ranging musical imagination provides the perfect setting for Trible’s equally adventurous vocalizing.” http://jazzbakery.org - 310 271-9039
“Slumdog Millionaire” A.R. Rahman US/Europe/UK tour
For the past 2 months, I’ve been on a diet of musician/composer A.R. Rahman’s infectious music. Remember the last scene in Slumdog Millionaire set in a train station with the actors singing and dancing to the song “Jai Ho” and leaving the cinema with the words still on your lips inflected by a twist in your hips. Well, as Music Director in pre-production stage, I’ve been working on 40 songs so I’ll be speaking a different language and surely have a spicier gait at the end of our 16-city tour of the U.S., Europe, and the UK. Come and sing and dance out loud with an average of 20,000 people at LA Forum, Silver Dome, Paris Expo, Wembley, O2 and other giant stadiums. The concert will be a feast for the eyes as Creative Director Amy Tinkham of Madonna, Britney Spears fame has created a show that will run for two-and-a-half-hours and feature dozens of dancers, acrobats and musicians, along with changing sets and an extensive video production. See complete tour list on www.arrahmanlive.com.
We’re down to the Top 4. Every year since 2005 I’ve been arranging music for the show and it’s always fun to see the contestants sing their best and Rickey’s band ‘kill’ the music.
Thomas Newman’s theme “Pleading Guilty” TV Pilot
While hiking in the Santa Monica mountain range a few weeks ago, Tom was making his way uphill on a bike. Now I know how he has the energy to plow through all those film/TV projects. It’s still a mystery where he gets his creativity. He’s truly an original. I was pleased to work with him on his latest project xxx TV show.
Having my own orchestra has been an idea long brewing ever since my dad, Rule Beasley, introduced me to Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Orchestra and Quincy Jones’ “Walking in Space” record. Also, I went to the Stan Kenton jazz camp at age 14 and heard the Stan Kenton orchestra play a song I arranged. Monk’estra celebrates Monk’s classic compositions with a contemporary twist incorporating Afro-Cuban rhythms, modern jazz playing, electronic and traditional big band instrumentation with 18 of the finest jazz soloists and ensemble musicians. We’ve had a couple of rehearsals, but back to this after the A.R. tour.
I’m catching up with all these online music sites. The latest one that has a place for your music, store, tours, and that links to your facebook, twitter, myspace, is reverbnation.com/johnbeasleymusic so along with my website, here’s another platform. And, you can now SHARE this blog, add comments on my website.
Will blog from the road.
Let’s conspire to inspire or as my soon-to-be 21-year old daughter says ‘aspire to inspire.’