Jazz Friends For Save KPLU: An Evening To Remember

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On Monday, April 25, some of the Northwest’s hardest-working, generous — and KPLU’s favorite — musicians assembled for a memorable evening of music at Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley and a benefit for Save KPLU.

Trumpeters Thomas Marriott and Lance Buller, vocalists Gail Pettis and Greta Matassa, and saxophonist Anton Schwartz each performed short sets accompanied by a killer rhythm section (pianist Bill Anschell, bassist Phil Sparks, drummer Matt Jorgensen).  Pianist Dave Peck contributed a solo set.

Gypsy jazz masters Pearl Django brought the evening to a close; for their finale, they invited Pettis, Matassa, Schwartz and Buller on stage to join them for a rousing version of “Honeysuckle Rose.”

KPLU Evening Jazz host Abe Beeson was the evening’s MC.  Opening remarks were by KPLU General Manager Joey Cohn, who’s also head of the Friends of 88-5 FM group which made its official bid Tuesday to buy 88.5 from Pacific Lutheran University.

The Jazz Friends concert raised over $30,000 for the Save KPLU campaign, which needs to raise $7 million to make 88.5 an independent, community-licensed radio station.   Proceeds include ticket sales, donations at the concert and ticket sales from a raffle of a 3,000 milliliter bottle of Kendall-Jackson chardonnay autographed by jazz greats and donated by Jazz Alley.  Thanks so much to John Dimitriou for donating the club to Save KPLU for this incredible event.