Thursday, September 26, 2019 at 7:30 PM
Spine Showcases prepares for the chill, autumn breeze with the next concert showcase, featuring Bob Bowman, Ben Markley and Hermon Mahari! Spine Showcases is a monthly concert series featuring the best contemporary jazz artists in Kansas City for free. Curated by Kelley Gant, patrons can expect some of the freshest experiences that the Kansas City jazz scene has to offer. Featured artists for the next show on Thursday, July 25, 2019, will be Bob Bowman, Ben Markley and Hermon Mehari. The three of them will perform two sets, switching off periodically at different positions.
The Spine Showcases are FREE and open to the public. Every show takes place at Capsule (located 1664 Broadway Blvd, KCMO). Spine Showcases occur on the third Thursday of every month. Doors open at 7:30 PM and the performance begins at 8:00 PM.
Bob Bowman has performed with numbers of artists including Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Orchestra, Toshiko Akiyoshi, Frank Mantooth, Carmen McRae, Pat Coil, Freddie Hubbard, Bud Shank, Ed Soph, Karrin Allyson, Dan Haerle, Steve Houghton, Steve Allee, Bill Mays, Clay Jenkins, Danny Embrey, Todd Strait, Loren Stillman, Bob Sheppard, Matt Otto, Rod Fleeman, John Stowell, Jerry Hahn, Bobby Watson and others. Bob has toured around the world and been on many recordings that have won or been nominated for GRAMMY awards. While performing with these artists, he works with his own bands including the legendary Kansas City group, INTERSTRING and BOWDOG. He has also dedicated himself to jazz education. Bob now resides in Montana continuing to play and influence the music scene.
Hermon Mehari’s anticipated debut album as a leader, “Bleu”, marks a new era in his career. The music covers both the ground of his contemporaries and his own original music in such a way to illustrate his current musical path. “Bleu” includes ECM recording artist Aaron Parks on piano, Blue Note recording artist Logan Richardson on alto saxophone, Peter Schlamb on vibraphone, Ryan J. Lee on drums and Rick Rosato on bass. Mehari was the recent winner of the 2015 Carmine Caruso International Trumpet Competition and a semifinalist in the 2014 Thelonious Monk Jazz Competition. In 2014 he released the CD “Our Journey” with Diverse, his second with the group. Mehari maintains a touring schedule around the world with his own group and as a sideman.
Mehari was also the winner of the 2008 National Trumpet Competition and placed 2nd in the International Trumpet Guild competition in Sydney, Australia. As a founding member of Diverse, whose eponymous debut album on Seattle-based Origin Records reached the Top 40 on the Jazzweek Radio Charts, he has performed professionally with noted saxophonists Jaleel Shaw, Logan Richardson, Bobby Watson, Ben Van Gelder, and Tivon Pennicott. He has also performed with Aaron Parks, Joe Sanders, Hubert Laws, Randy Brecker, Tony Tixier, Dave Pietro, Clay Jenkins and many other great musicians.
Hermon Mehari received his BM in Jazz Performance from the University of Missouri – Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance in 2010. In addition to performing, he dedicates himself to being a serious educator and has participated in clinics and panels around the world.
Ben Markley, a jazz pianist, has performed with Brian Lynch, Greg Osby, Eddie Henderson, Terell Stafford, George Garzone, and John Fedchock. Markley’s latest recording project is “Clockwise: The Music of Cedar Walton (OA2 records)”. Markley, along with special guest trumpeter Terell Stafford, celebrates one of the more influential and beloved figures in jazz through this unique project, showcasing many of the late pianist and composer Cedar Walton’s most revered tunes through new arrangements for big band. Performing iconic compositions such as ‘Hindsight,’ ‘Bolivia,’ and ‘Holy Land,’ Markley brings together fellow faculty members from the University of Wyoming and top-flight Denver-area musicians to produce an honest and swinging recording that honors Cedar Walton while presenting his music in a bright new light. The album received great critical acclaim and was selected as one of the best 4 star rated albums of 2017 by DownBeat magazine
Markley is active as a composer and arranger with many big band and vocal jazz charts published through UNC Jazz Press. Recent arranging commissions include the Jazz Orchestra of Philadelphia and Wyoming Jazz Educators All-State Jazz Band. Compositions from Markleyʼs first two albums have earned him ASCAP Young Jazz Composers Awards. Markley was selected to participate in the Betty Carter Jazz Ahead program held at the Kennedy Center.
Markley’s book A Practical Approach to Improvisation – The David Hazeltine Method was published by Jamey Aebersold Jazz in December of 2014. It documents David Hazeltine’s process of creating etudes from transcriptions.
Markley is an active performer in the Denver-metropolitan area and along the front range. He can be seen regularly at in Ft. Collins as part of the Subterranean jazz trio at Ace Gillett’s Lounge.
Markley currently serves as Director of Jazz Studies at the University of Wyoming where he directs and coaches the Wyoming Jazz Ensemble, and combos. He also teaches applied jazz piano, improvisation and is the director of the UW Jazz Festival.