Legendary jazz saxophonist James Moody headlines the fifth annual "Moody & Friends" Concert at B. B. King Blues Club & Grill to benefit Purchase College jazz scholarships on Monday, March 30 at B. B. King Blues Club & Grill, 237 West 42nd Street, New York City. Tickets are $100 and can be purchased by calling 914-251-6200 or visiting www.artscenter.org. Doors open at 6 PM for seating on a first-come, first served basis.
Joining Moody on stage will be musical director Jon Faddis, trumpet; Randy Brecker, trumpet; Todd Coolman, bass; NEA Jazz Master Paquito D’Rivera, clarinet and saxophone; Mike Longo, piano; Barbara Morrison, vocas; Adam Nussbaum, drums; Tim Ries, saxophone; NEA Jazz Master Hank Jones piano; and Yotam Silberstein, guitar.
Moody Scholars who will perform with the group include: Duncan Hardy, saxophone, 2008 Moody Scholar; and Andy Roninson, piano, 2009 Moody Scholar. Other Moody Scholars include trumpeter Maxilmilien Darche and saxophonist Andrew Gould, both of whom received that honor in 2007.
Michael Bourne of WBGO Jazz 88.3 FM will serve as Master of Ceremonies.
The James Moody Scholarship Fund represents a desire by James and Linda Moody to create opportunities for the next generation of jazz masters by providing financial assistance and visibility for students of outstanding ability and good character for whom the scholarship makes a difference. A goal is to provide access to quality higher education.
The James Moody Scholarship Fund began in 2005 with an event that celebrated Moody's 80th birthday and has continued each year at various venues. This is the third year the jazz event is being held at B. B. King's. The scholarship has surpassed its minimum $100,000 endowment and the goal is to continue to grow the endowment to enable the granting of full scholarships to Moody Scholars and to support continued opportunities for the next generation of jazz masters.
The Honorary co-chairs at this year’s event are Camille and Bill Cosby, and Quincy Jones.
The Benefit Committee includes: David and Linda Baker; Steven Bensusan, and Danny Bensusan; Laurelyn Douglas and Jon Faddis; Nat Hentoff; Ina Dittke and Stephen Logue; Ginny Mancini; Dan Schiffman and Nancy Ozelli; Bill and Anne Sorin; and George Wein.
James Moody "is one of the jazz world’s most eloquent saxophonists," according to George Varga, of the San Diego Union-Tribune, commenting that Moody is "a masterful musician who speaks volumes whether soaring through a breakneck bebop classic or waxing rhapsodically on a seductive ballad."
Moody's honors include being named a Jazz Master by the National Endowment of the Arts in 1998 and receiving a Kennedy Center Living Jazz Legend Award in 2007. Moody performed at the White House in 2004 for President Bush and twice in the 1990s for President Clinton. He has also performed twice in Bangkok for the King of Thailand, who is a devoted fan.
He maintains an extensive touring schedule and also conducts master classes for university students. His devotion to his craft has been a trademark since he joined the Dizzy Gillespie Band at the age of 21. He is always exploring new ways to expand the art of making music.
For more information about the James Moody Scholarship, please visit www.jamesmoodyscholarship.com.