Hello again, Its been a long time since my last entry and definitely time to catch up with you all! The last couple of years have been heavily focused on my building up the music program at Bishop O’Dowd High School where its been a great pleasure working with the talented youngsters. We’ve been playing at festivals such as the CMEA, the Reno and Santa Cruz Jazz Festivals, and have been on trips to Disneyland and beyond while bringing in guest clinicians and performers. Suffice to say its been extremely fulfilling work! I’ve also been teaching at Berkeley City College where I just finished teaching a summer course on the History of Popular Music in America.In addition, this Fall will mark my 3rd year of teaching basic and jazz piano at Contra Costa College on Tuesday nights. This has all been challenging and forces me to “stay on top of stuff” which is they way I like it.
Musically speaking, I was finally able to release my 3rd cd “Song Without Singing” last year. I’m really happy with the result and special thanks to the great musicians who played on it: Marcos Silva, Phil Thompson, Alan Hall, Brian Rice, Chrisian Pepin, Matt Heulitt, Rob Reich, Sandy Cressman, Erik Jekabson, Matt Clark, Rob Roth, Alex Murzyn, and Greg Wyser Pratte. Lincoln Adler and Julie Ann Accornero did the beautiful cover art and graphics and the masterful Dan Feiszli did the engineering and mixing, truly a labor of love. We received airplay all over the US and even in South Africa. The cd release concerts which were held at Peace Lutheran, the Sound Room, and the California Jazz Conservatory were great fun. Lincoln did a great job video taping our CJC concert (see the “video” page on this website for examples from the show).
This Fall the Fred Randolph Quintet will be playing a bunch of shows at the Sound Room in Oakland, the Empress Theater in Vallejo, and the new venue The Impulse Room in Walnut Creek where we will be premiering new compositions as well as digging deep into our catalog. To stay current you can go to the “gigs” page on this website.
Meanwhile I’ve stayed busy as a sideman for other peoples’ projects and shows.Some of the great people I’ve been working with during the last year are: Bob Kenmotsu, Jet Blacq, Ed Johnson and Avi Wisnia, Sandy Cressman, Bobbe Norris and Larry Dunlap, Montclair Women’s Big Band, The Lost American Jazzbook Project, Ian Carey Sextet, Rana Farhan, Carla Helmbrecht, Robert Donnay and the Prohibition Mob, Charged Particles, The Melanthium Ensemble, Terrence Brewer, Orquesta Dharma, Calvin Keys, and Dmitri Metheny. I’ve done recent recording sessions with Melanie O’Reilly for her Dave Brubeck Project, Lisa B. for her Cole Porter Reimagined project, and with the chamber fusion project Melanthium.Finally, I had the good fortune to have my article “Chart Notation: The Essential Toolkit” published in the July 2016 issue of Downbeat Magazine. This was a continuation of my workshops at the Jazz School and I hope it will lead to other opportunities in this area.
OK, that’s all for now, as always I’m thankful to be able to live the creative life and I hope to see you soon at the next gig!
Hello, everyone. Time has sure flown since my last blog entry! My new position as band director at Bishop O'Dowd High School, in addition to recording the Homespun Trio CD and my upcoming Quintet CD, has kept me quite occupied. Its been a groove working with drummer Bryan Bowman and pianist Grant Levin in the Homespun Trio. This is a co-op group in which everyone contributes equally to writing, arranging, and of course playing. Our recent show at Chez Hanny was a resounding success and we look forward to more performances in the near future so be sure to check my "gigs" page for upcoming shows. To check out the new Homespun CD go to: http://cdbaby.com/cd/homespuntrio. Also, all basic tracks for my new Quintet CD have been recorded at Fantasy studios in Berkeley. Stay tuned to my website for further developments on this project. My Quintet will be previewing this new material at Peace Lutheran in Danville on October 28th. Don't miss it!
I continue my work as a sideman in both live performance and recording contexts. My most recent recordings include the latest Ian Carey CD, Angie Spinelli's new trio CD "Journey", The new Oakland Jazz Choir CD, Ian Dogole's Hemispheres world music project featuring Paul Mcandless and Frank Martin, and Melanie O'Reilley's Celtic Jazz Band.
I have also enjoyed performing during the last few months with Santana's vocalist Tony Lindsay, Al Molina's Latin Jazz Group with Mark Levine and Louis Romero, the Mendocino Festival Big Band, the Scotty Wright group featuring drummer Ralph Humphries, my own Trio performances with Matt Clark, Akira Tana, Larry Dunlap, and many other super talented friends.
Hello, everyone. Wow, half the year has already flown by and many wonderful events have occurred. First of all, Marcia and I became engaged and celebrated with a big bash and gig at Joe’s of Lafayette. We felt very blessed to celebrate this joyous occasion with our dear family, friends, and fans.
In addition, my quintet started the summer on a swingin’ note with an awesome show at the Sonoma Wine and Song Festival on May 24th. The band truly played their hearts out and everybody had a great time. We plan to continue the summer fun at the Fillmore Jazz Festival on July 5th, Pearl’s on July 20th, the Old First Church on August 3rd, and our semi-regular gigs at Joe’s of Lafayette on June 13th, July 11th, August 1st, and September 5th. I also have some gigs scheduled with my trio and quartet, so be on the lookout for those upcoming shows.
As usual, I continued my work as a sideman with many amazing groups in the Bay Area, such as the Contemporary Jazz Orchestra, Collective West Jazz Orchestra, Sandy Cressman's Homenagem Brasileira, and Michael Smolens’s Kriya. I also collaborated with the gifted composer Hugo Wainzinger on Shanna Carlson's new CD, both as an arranger and bassist. This summer, I will be playing regularly with Latin Perspective at the Shoreline in Benicia, the Dan Zemelman Quartet, and Julie Homi’s Homiopathy, just to name a few.
Finally, the school year ended on a high note with my students at Stanley Middle School and the Bishop O’Dowd jazz band who both gave outstanding performances at their end of the year concerts.
I could not have done all of this without the talented players with whom I work and, especially, you, the people who come out and support my efforts and enjoy the music. Thank you so much and stay “tuned” for further announcements.
Fred's 1st Blog
Hello and welcome to my website! This past year has been an incredibly busy and exciting one for me. I have been leading my own band, The Fred Randolph Quintet (Fred Randolph, basses; Erik Jekabson, trumpet; Rob Roth, saxes; Dan Zemelman, piano; and Alan Hall, drums) and promoting the release of my second solo CD New Day (Creative Spirit Records) which received its premiere at The Jazz School in December 2006. This highly successful concert was recorded for broadcast on KCSM’s (91.1 FM) Sunday Night Series and received significant airplay on that station as well as on KSDS (Jazz 88) in San Diego. I also had the pleasure of being interviewed by the great Chuy Varela last March on his show Jazz in the Afternoon. The mojo continued as my quintet played for receptive audiences at The Jazz School, Hillside Club, Bistro Yoffi, Octavia Lounge, and Joe’s of Lafayette, where my girlfriend and I also celebrated our birthdays with a big bash and gig.
As usual, I have been performing as a bassist with many of the Bay Area’s finest orchestras and musicians, such as the Contemporary Jazz Orchestra and Collective West Jazz Orchestra at Pearl’s, Sandy Cressman’s Homenagem Brasileira, Kenny Washington, Larry Dunlap, Frank Martin, and Marcos Silva. In addition, I had a fun interlude with Julie Homi’s band Homiopathy, which included Russ Gold, Dann Zinn, and Barry Finnerty, where we tore it up at the Shoreline in Benicia. I also ventured heavily into the world music scene via gigs with Michael Smolens’s Earplay and Kriya, Musa Hanhan’s Sababa Band, and the Iranian singer, Rana Farhan.
I am a firm believer that undertaking new challenges stretches my creative boundaries as a musician. Thus, I took a step in a new direction by serving as a producer and arranger for the CD debut of Shelly Kutilek, an up and coming singer who is a former member of the Oakland Jazz Choir. It was a wonderful experience and opportunity.
I continue to teach several private students; serve as the director of The Groove Merchants, the Stanley Middle School jazz combo; and give my class in Musical Notation at The Jazz School. I most recently began teaching at Bishop O’Dowd High School in Oakland where I am developing the school’s jazz program.
Please stay tuned for further news and updates. I expect that 2008 will be an even busier and action-packed year. None of this would have been possible without the support of my friends and fans. I am so appreciative and want to extend a big “Thank You” to all of you! I hope you continue to feed your soul with The Fred Randolph Quintet.