In light of our current state of isolation due to Covid-19. A lot of us are having more time to practice. Here is my recent YouTube post about 5 elements around which you can organize your daily practice. This is directed primarily towards improvising saxophonists, but will hopefully be useful for all musicians. Take a listen!
Peter Lin is an exceptional trombonist and budding entrepreneur. Since he came on the scene over a decade ago as a student at William Paterson he has distinguished himself as a forward thinking contributor to the jazz community. I was so honored that he asked to interview me as part of his jazz business series produced by his company, Yardbird Suite Entertainment.
This was done on March 10th, just a few days before we all went into isolation because of Covid -19. The last segment about “Mike’s perfect day” is a little too prophetic. I didn’t mean like this! This interview was a long one. We’ve known each other for so long, there was so much to talk about and Peter let me talk! I was surprised with what came out of my own mouth. The interview is indexed so you can bounce around to topics that interest you (See below the video). Enjoy.
Jazz Biz 101 welcomes jazz saxophonist Mike Lee for a deep conversation about the life of a working jazz musician, educator, jam session host, and most importantly, a parent. Lots of takeaways here including moving, parenting, changing your teaching attitude, giving vs. taking, finding and giving value, jam session vibes, and tips on creating newsletters. Be sure to check the index below to jump to sections that apply to you! Be sure to check out Mike Lee’s Official Website to see his extensive bio: https://mikeleejazz.com
Remember to like, comment, share, and subscribe to keep this going! *Watch until the end to see a surprise 😉 🎧
Did you enjoy the music on this video? Check out James Cage’s beats: https://go.jamescagemusic.com/
00:00:39 – Mike Lee’s Bio & Current Projects
00:02:28 – Cleveland, Ohio to New York City to New Jersey
00:05:36 – How To Prepare For New York
00:06:50 – Memories of Jams At Star Cafe
00:08:28 – What To Expect In New York
00:09:30 – How Mike Lee Became A Jazz Parent
00:10:42 – Julian Lee’s Story
00:12:57 – Matthew Lee’s Story
00:15:00 – Jacquie Lee’s Story
00:17:20 – On Jazz Parenting
00:20:31 – Giving vs. Taking
00:21:25 – Roy Hargrove, John Lee, & Networking
00:23:58 – Ego, Empowerment Through Taking Action, Blaming External Factors
00:27:19 – How To Get Ahead In Business (Taking Responsibility From Feedback)
00:29:13 – Serving & Providing Value For Audience, Music, & History
00:31:37 – Performances Motivates Education
00:33:35 – Cultivating Next Generation For Jazz
00:34:47 – Changing Your Teaching Attitude
00:38:50 – Teaching Is Contributing
00:45:45 – First Time Experience As An Adjunct Professor
00:48:37 – Mike’s History On Jam Sessions
00:50:45 – Reversing Negative Thoughts on Jam Sessions
00:59:26 – Challenging Yourself At Jam Sessions
01:01:15 – Put Yourself In The Leader’s Shoes
01:06:10 – Tips On Newsletters (MailPoet through WordPress)
01:09:13 – Creating Value For Your Audience
01:11:32 – Mike Lee’s Definition Of Success
01:15:44 – Mike Lee’s Perfect Day
=== 👉Subscribe: https://yardbirdent.com Book a band: https://yardbirdent.com/booking – If you liked what you saw, please follow us on social media: Facebook: http://bit.ly/YardbirdFB Instagram: http://bit.ly/YardbirdIG If you got some value out of this video, feel free to Venmo us: Peter Lin @the_lintet –
Host – Peter Lin Special
Guest – Mike Lee
Filming – Abel Mireles
Editor – Peter Lin
Music – James Cage Cat – Evan Lin
Master drummer and producer, Lenny White turns 70 today, December 19th. I’ve been an admirer of Lenny’s since I started listening to jazz. He appears on many albums that have been influential to me. About five years ago I started playing with him in Wallace Roney’s Orchestra and we did several Wallace Roney Quintet gigs together as well. He plays on my newest CD “A Song For All of Us” and has done several gigs supporting this project.
This January Lenny celebrates his milestone birthday with two weekends of performances at Made In New York Jazz Club in Brooklyn. He as a different band each night. I’m beyond excited to be performing with him on January 5th (sets at 6:00 pm and 8:00 pm). We’ll be featuring music from my CD on this evening along with Ed Howard, Dave Stryker, and, of course, Lenny White. Check out the full schedule of bands that will be performing for this landmark run of gigs. Other musicians featured will be Buster Williams, Christian McBride, Chris Potter, Dave Liebman, and other luminaries.
I’ve spent a lot of time at Dizzy’s over the last couple of years. Most often I’ve been on my way home from my steady gig at the Carlyle with Loston Harris when I stop into the jam session which was for a long time was hosted by my son, Julian. I have also performed at Dizzy’s with Oliver Lake, Josh Evans, Loston Harris, and even played one week as Julian’s sideman for the late set when he was the late night featured artist. But on March 25th at 9:30 – one set only! – I will be debuting as a leader at the famous Jazz at Lincoln Center night club, Dizzy’s Club Coca-cola in celebration of my new CD “Song For All Of Us” on the IYOUWE record label.
The gig, like the CD, will feature the iconic drummer, Lenny White (Miles Davis, Chick Corea, Chaka Khan), as well as master musicians George Colligan on piano, and Ed Howard on bass. Julian Lee will be joining me in the front line. Please join us for this wonderful evening by reserving tickets here. The video below shows some short snippets from our New Jersey CD release at Clement’s Place last month.
Some video from France and Italy started circulating recently. Thought I’d share these with you.
Here’s a version of Charlie Parker’s “Cheryl” from Club Bebop in Rome. With Gianluca Renzi and Lorenzo Tucci
“Simone” From Le Taquin in Toulouse, France With Gianluca Renzi and Lukmil Perez
This is a video I did about the great new mouthpiece from Vandoren. We filmed this at Vandoren studios in Paris in February.
Since my relatively slow schedule this week has allowed me a half a second to take a breath, I thought I’d take a moment to reflect on two inspiring tours in Europe to start the year. Thanks to my dear friend the amazing bassist, Gianluca Renzi, we were able to spend most of January and the first half of February in Italy, France, Switzerland and even a pass through London. It’s amazing how strong the love for this American art form is throughout the world and it was a real treat share this music in an intimate trio format (tenor saxophone, bass, and drums) in wonderful venues with exceptional fans.
For the last three years I have been lucky enough to bring the Jazz House Kids Ambassadors combo to the prestigious Charles Mingus competition. Through this process, my love of Charles Mingus’ music has grown exponentially as I study it more deeply to teach it to the members of the group. The event itself allows our students to gain more insight into the music by getting instruction and feedback from the members of the Mingus Big Band. There are panel discussions for us directors in which we gain further insight into the compositions and the genius of Mingus.
On the day of the competition, this past Sunday, we performed “Reincarnation of a Lovebird”, “Portrait”, and “Peggy’s Blue Skylight”. And low and behold they won their category. To make the day complete, our Jazz House Kids Big Band under the direction of Abraham Burton won as well!
View the Jazz House Kids performance below:
We recorded last week as a promo for Radam’s CD release party this past weekend.
This is the band from the “Smooth” side of Radam’s new release.
Radam Schwartz on Hammond B3, Mike Lee on Tenor, Bryan Carrot on Organ, Andrew Atkinson on Drums,
This is a video from a couple of years ago that I just stumbled upon on YouTube.I miss playing in this band! Josh is an incredible force in the music.
- Josh Evans- Trumpet, Arranger
- Bruce Williams- Alto Saxophone Solo
- Mike Lee- Tenor Saxophone Solo
Bruce Williams, Yunie Mojica- Alto Saxophone Stacy Dillard, Mike Lee- Tenor Saxophone Frank Lacy, Stafford Hunter, David Gibson, Max Seigel- Trombones Tony Sisson, Linda Briceno, Vitaly Golovnev, Marquis Hill- Trumpets Theo Hill- Piano Ryan Berg- Bass Kush Abadey- Drums
While we’re getting the new website up and running, here’s a little something for you.