Four-time Grammy Award winning trumpeter Randy Brecker will perform on Mother’s Day at Kaua‘i Community College Performing Arts Theater.
Denny Morouse of Beautiful Productions presents the jazz icon who “has been shaping the sound of jazz, R&B and rock for more than three decades,” to Kaua‘i for the first time. “He began where Coltrane and Miles Davis left off.” Morouse and Brecker’s wife, Ada Rovatti, will join an all-star band assembled for this unique performance.
With 13 Grammy nominations, Brecker’s trumpet and flugelhorn stylings have graced hundreds of albums by diverse bands and artists, such as: “Blood, Sweat and Tears,” Eric Clapton, James Taylor, Bruce Springsteen, Chaka Khan, “George Clinton and Parliament-Funkadelic,” Frank Sinatra, Steely Dan, David Sanborn, Horace Silver, Jaco Pastorius and Frank Zappa.
Morouse moved from New York to Kaua‘i soon after 9/11, where, he said, “I had to wear a gas mask just to walk through my Greenwich Villageneighborhood after the attack. My daughter had been living here and I took the opportunity to heal from the traumatic experience on this amazing island.”
Morouse, a world-class musician, spent 30 years in New York playing with notables such as Stevie Wonder, Etta James, Aerosmith, John Lennon, Diana Ross, Buddy Miles, Luther Vandross, Ray Barretto, Art Blakey and Jazz Messengers and Tony Williams. “I love it here. The island has my heart,” he said.
Long-time friend and colleague to Randy Brecker, Morouse is dedicated to bringing musical talent to the island’s community through his Beautiful Productions promotion company. Sunday’s concert will be the first under this company. Morouse chose Brecker to christen Beautiful Productions. “We’ve played hundreds of sessions together, so I called him up and begged him to come — I am so happy he agreed,” said Morouse.
Putting together a band for this one-time performance, Morouse called on other mutual friends and respected musicians: Bruce Hamata on bass from O’ahu, Chris Colman on drums from L.A., Michael Ruff on keyboards and Tony Lehoven on rhythm guitar, both from Kaua‘i. They will join Brecker, Morouse and Rovatti for “some funky jazz and a fantastic show.”
Having grown up in Pennsylvania together, their friendship goes as far back as their professional ties. “I was from Pittsburgh, Randy and his brother were from Philadelphia, and we all migrated to New York at the same time. I hope to bring more New York musicians to Kaua‘i to share eclectic music that you can’t always get here,” said Morouse, who also spreads his musical message over KKCR airwaves every other Tuesday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on his own show.
He performs at island hotels and resorts but prefers his weekly gig at Small Town Coffee in Kapa‘a every Wednesday. “It reminds me of a jazz coffee shop in New York,” he said.
Mother’s Day Jazz Concert
When: Sunday; doors open at 6 p.m., show at 6:30 p.m.
Where: KCC Performing Arts Theater
Tickets: Pre-sale $40; Door $50. To purchase via credit card go to www.hulatickets.com. Tickets available island wide at Hanalei Music and Video, Kilauea Healthy Hut, Smalltown Coffee Co., Kapa‘a, Bounty Music, Lihu‘e Kmart, Koloa Progressive Expressions, Kalaheo Scotty’s Music.