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Jazz Maui presents the second annual Jazz Blues and Beyond Benefit Concert

By Staff | Jul 2, 2021

A master woodwind musician, Phil Smith has been performing and recording for over six decades.

LAHAINA — Jazz Maui presents the second annual Jazz Blues and Beyond Benefit Concert, featuring distinguished jazz professionals, at 6 p.m. on Saturday, July 3, at the new Bozich Center, Graham Theater on the campus of Maui Preparatory Academy in Napili.

The star-studded lineup features internationally-renowned bassist and vocalist Katie Thiroux, Quincy Jones protégé pianist Justin Kauflin, drummer Matt Witek, The Phil Smith Quartet, Paul Marchetti, Jake Thomas, and Tanama Colibri, along with other special guests.

“This is the first concert in the Bozich Center and one of the first professional post-Covid concerts,” said Bryant Neal, executive director of Jazz Maui. “We are thrilled to be able to present these outstanding artists in a live performance to benefit our music education programs.”

The Bozich Center, Graham Theater on the campus of Maui Preparatory Academy is located at 4910 Honoapiilani Highway in Napili. This is a maskless event and, to ensure health safety for all, it is kindly requested that attendees be fully vaccinated. Vaccination cards are required by Maui County.

Tickets are $25 and $35, depending on seat location, and are available at www.jazzmaui.org.

Preshow entertainment begins at 5 p.m. and a selection of food is being offered by Fond Maui and Kipa Cottage Bakery restaurants, including a BBQ pulled pork sandwich, vegetarian pasta, and curry buns stuffed with vegetables. Preshow food items cost $15 and must be pre-ordered when purchasing tickets at www.jazzmaui.org.

Non-alcoholic beverages will be available throughout the evening, and a cheese plate or jumbo brownie can be purchased for $5 at intermission without pre-ordering. Proceeds from food and beverage sales benefit the arts and athletic programs at Maui Preparatory Academy.

Thiroux is an internationally-acclaimed bassist, vocalist, composer, bandleader and recording artist. In addition, she teaches at the Monterey Jazz Festival’s Summer Jazz Camp and serves as artistic and educational director of the Jazz Maui Camp, an opportunity for students from around the world to get a first-rate learning experience as well as exploring the beauty and culture of Hawaii.

Thiroux’s unique gift of simultaneously balancing sultry vocals and virtuosic bass playing leaves audiences worldwide in awe.

In the words of music icon Quincy Jones, “This girl is IT”.

After losing his sight at the age of 11, Kauflin gravitated towards playing jazz piano, despite having a classical background in violin and piano. He received top honors at jazz festivals nationally and began performing professionally by age 15.

A protégé of Quincy Jones, Kauflin is the subject of a documentary entitled “Keep On Keepin’ On” that follows jazz legend Clark Terry as he mentors Justin as he prepares to compete in an elite international competition.

A composer, producer, educator and Quincy Jones & Yamaha Artist, Kauflin is an instructor at Jazz Maui’s Jazz Camp, one of the organization’s music education programs.

Los Angeles-based drummer Witek has toured the world with many jazz musicians and recorded with Thiroux on her award-winning album “Introducing Katie Thiroux.”

A creative and passionate musician specializing in jazz, he is also an educator for the prestigious Monterey Jazz Festival and for Jazz Maui Camp.

As a master woodwind musician, Smith has a lifetime of experience playing all types of saxophones (tenor, alto, baritone and soprano) and also plays a superb clarinet. His talent has taken him to the stage with such stars as Johnny Mathis, Michael Buble and Aretha Franklin (that’s him on her recording of “I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You”).

Well-known on Maui, Marchetti studies drums and percussion in New York and has performed and recorded with artists such as Mick Fleetwood, Eric Marienthal, Walter Becker, Michael McDonald, Michael Buble and many more. He started his career in 1973 touring and recording with Peter Yarrow of Peter, Paul and Mary. Marchetti has appeared on national and local television shows and recorded and toured with an international list of artists.

A singer, songwriter, author and poet, Colibri’s multilingual and experimental style encompasses world, pop, spoken word and soul. She opened for the Katie Thiroux Trio during the 2017 Jazz Maui Music Festival and in 2018 was a guest singer with trumpeter Mike Lewis at the Blue Note Hawaii.

Hailing from Haiku, trumpet player Thomas is a Maui native and graduate of King Kekaulike High School. He has performed in landmark jazz venues, including The Blue Note and Birdland in New York City. Jake has just finished his sophomore year of college at SUNY Purchase and will return to study in the fall.

Other events organized by Jazz Maui in affiliation with the concert include a workshop held on June 23 at King Kekaulike High School that provided an opportunity for young musicians of all skill levels to study with professional music instructors.

One of the special events that takes place annually during Jazz Maui is an intimate musical experience held at the home of Maui Realtors Nam and MaryAnne LeViet. This lovely evening concert benefits Jazz Maui’s music education programs and was again sold out this year.

Jazz Maui (jazzmaui.org), a program of Arts Education for Children Group (aecg.org), provides opportunities for participation in high quality jazz music education and performances. It is supported by the County of Maui, Arts Education for Children Group and Makana Foundation.

For tickets and more information, visit www.jazzmaui.org, text (808) 283-3576 or e-mail info @aecg.org.