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Straight No Chaser - A Jazz Show

Welcome to Straight No Chaser, the Award-winning Podcast hosted by Jeffrey Siegel

Jun 30, 2021

Late last spring,  artist Jim Watt and jazz trumpeter Antione Drye began hosting Jazz at The Shop, a bi-weekly donation-only outdoor jazz series at Watt’s Asbury Park studio. For many, and despite their world-class talent, it was their first opportunity to play since the world shut down in March. Onlookers seemed utterly awed by the level of the music. In all, $30,000 was raised over ten performances and all proceeds went to support the performers.

Watt is building on that success with his project 1000w. “The opportunity was as much about the ability to play with peers in front of a live audience as it was about the financial,” said Watt. “I was inspired to create 1000w to continue to financially help musicians as well as to create a magical collaboration between painting, music and filmmaking.”

 Along with the creation of art and music, is the making of a film to be directed by Danny Clinch. In his storied career, Clinch has captured portraits and documented the live performances of some of the greatest musicians of our time, and his work has appeared in publications including Vanity Fair, Spin, The New Yorker, The New York Times and Rolling Stone.

To assist in making certain money ends up in the right hands.  jazz luminaries Wynton Marsalis, Bill Frisell, and Jimmy Owens are joining him, Drye, photographer/filmmaker Danny Clinch and artistic director/producer David Spelman to act as an advisory board to the 1000w project’s goal of distributing funds -- collected through the sale of Watt’s art -- to jazz musicians who have suffered during the pandemic.

Watt is creating a series of 1000 ink washes in the monochromatic Japanese Sumi ink and water as a jazz ensemble led by Drye improvise as Watt’s paints in real time. Footage of the making of the ink washes from a fixed overhead camera and Clinch’s handheld filming will be the raw material for the making of a film -- an artistic expression inspired by expressive nature of the washes.

Spelman will be scoring the film and the art work is being sold through Watt’s New York City gallery, Jim Kempner Fine Art. Thru the sale of the ink washes, $100,000 will be donated directly to the jazz community, which has been especially hard hit during the pandemic with the closure of most venues. 

Podcast 828 is my conversation with Jim Watt, and we talk about his artwork and his desire to help the jazz community in this time of financial need. More information can be found on the 1000w project here.

The next performance of "1000 Watts" featuring Bill Frisell, Jim Watt, The Antoine Drye Trio (Featuring Frisell & Kyle Benford on bass and drums) & Danny Clinch will take place at Collab, 309 Starr Street, Brooklyn NY, 11237 this coming Thursday, July 8, 2021, 8:00 PM. Suggest donation of $20.