Arts and Entertainment

Top acts to play March jazz series at Auburn Wine and Caviar

Barney McClure - Courtesy photo
Barney McClure
— image credit: Courtesy photo

Saxophone and flute master Mark Lewis performs at the Auburn Wine and Caviar Company on Saturday nights in March with a different featured guest musician (or two) from around the region.

Performances are 6-9 p.m. at the venue, 2402 A St. SE,

March's featured guest musician lineup:

• March 2: Barney McClure, piano
• March 9: Karin Kajita, piano
• March 16: Richard Person, trumpet; Steve Luceno bass
• March 23: Paul Sawyer, guitar
• March 30: Overton Berry, piano

About the musicians:

Mark Lewis

Lewis is master of the alto sax, baritone sax, flute and piano, author of more than 1,600 compositions, and has recorded and produced more than 20 albums on various labels.

Rotterdam, Holland was Lewis' home base for many years. He toured and played in most of the better clubs throughout Europe, and taught jazz theory and improvised music classes in several music conservatories.

Lewis lived and performed for several years in San Francisco and Victoria, B.C., as well. Lewis' CD "In The Spirit," recorded at Music Annex in Menlo Park, Calif., made the Top 40 on Billboard Magazine's Jazz Albums chart.

Lewis has performed and recorded with pianists Mark Levine, Overton Berry and Ted Gioia; drummers Candy Finch, Eddie Moore and Billy Higgins; bassist David Friesen; saxophonists Johnny Griffin and Art Foxall; trumpet player Randy Brecker; and vibraphonist Bobby Hutcherson. Lewis often subbed for Stan Getz and John Handy during his time in San Francisco.

Barney McClure

McClure has performed and recorded with many jazz legends, including Zoot Sims, Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson, Joe Pass, Herb Ellis, Barney Kessel, Larry Coryell, Milt Jackson and Gary Peacock, and backed such notables as Bob Hope, Bob Newhart and Steve Allen. He spends many hours a day in his studio composing original music from Reggae to jazz to classical to .... He has written a popular book on jazz improvisation and is involved in managing a number of music festivals. You can also hear McClure in the movies "Officer and a Gentleman," and the soundtrack of "Mr. Holland's Opus."

Karin Kajita

Kajita has degrees in music, piano performance and music education from the University of Washington. She went on to pursue a career in jazz, traveling to contracts in Japan, Denver, Canada, New York, Kansas and Utah. She has played at all the major hotels in Seattle, including the Westin, Hilton, Warwick, Sheraton, Alexis and Sorrento, and frequently performs as leader of her own quintet.

Richard Person

Person picked up his dad's trumpet at age 5 and was fronting dance bands by age 13. In his high school years he also studied saxophone and piano, and worked in bands playing all styles. Drafted after three years of college, he played in the Army concert band and big band performing swing and jazz. After his time in the military he went on the road with several different types of groups, and played almost all 50 states. Finally landing in Southern California, Person hooked up with several influential players while fine-tuning his musical style. There he worked in the recording industry and in clubs. His credits include Hollywood studio stints with Billy May, Les Baxter and the Della Reese Big Band.

Steve Luceno

A highly respected Northwest acoustic bassist for a number of regional artists, Luceno has produced CDs of his own original jazz compositions. Luceno's playing experience includes many trips to Mexico with the Jerry Michelsen Trio and working with a variety of artists in the Northwest, including Obrador, Kelley Johnson, Bert Wilson, Jack Perciful, John Stowell, Slim Galliard, Sonny Simmons, Mose Allison, Ocho Pies and Hadley Calliman.

Paul Sawyer

A Seattle guitarist, Sawyer has played professionally for more than 20 years and is on the adjunct music faculty at North Seattle Community College. He studied at the Berklee College of Music in Boston and privately with master bassist Gary Peacock. His credits include performances with Petula Clark, Lonnie Williams, Sam Andrew (of Big Brother/Janis Joplin) and Steve Smith (Drummer for Journey and Vital Information).

Overton Berry

A Northwest jazz legend and recent inductee into the Seattle Jazz Hall of Fame, Berry has played piano extensively in venues throughout the world, including Japan, China, Viet Nam, Thailand, and Egypt. Overton is a voting member for the Grammy's, music director for the TOBE School of Music and regular performer at major Northwest jazz festivals. As a young man, he was music director for the House of Entertainment at Seattle's 1962 World's Fair Overton has worked with such jazz greats as Carmen McRae, Joe Pass, Dave Brubeck, Vonne Griffin, and Peggy Lee.

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For more information, call the Auburn Wine and Caviar Company at 253-887-8530.

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