Berklee Blogs

First-hand accounts of the Berklee experience

Author: Rob Hayes (Page 4 of 5)

Guest post: Jonathan Greenstein – The Last Class

Only when we arrived at Boston, and unloaded the van did I realize that this trip was our last class for this semester.  After being with Darren for 3 semesters now, one in harmonic considerations and 2 as part of his ensemble, I can literally say that he has changed the way I play and think about music.

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Guest posts: Josh Hari and Mark Whitfield

At trip’s completion, my back-of-the-van benchmates, rhythm section partners Josh (bass) Hari, and drummer Mark Whitfield, Jr., shot over their thoughts on the project:

What a great trip! It was such a rewarding experience being able to play Mr. Walden’s music with him and with such a killin’ close-knit band. There is also really no other place like the Blue Note in NY, it truly encompasses the history of this american art form. And thank you to Berklee for being hip enough to realize that jazz cannot simply be learned from textbooks, but by playing, hanging with, and listening to the great teachers and students this school brings together. ~Josh Hari

The trip to the Blue Note was a very enjoyable experience. It was great to be around other greats musicians and people. Hanging and playing with Myron was definitely an added bonus to the trip. It was amazing to play with Myron and Darren. Playing at the Blue Note is an experience I will never forget. ~Mark Whitfield

The Show

The Sextet, hammering along on Myron Waldens The Road.  From left:  Jonathan, Ilan, Josh, and Emile.

The Sextet, hammering along on Myron Walden's "The Road." From left: Jonathan, Ilan, Josh, and Emile.

On the way back to the club, passing the West 4th subway, I look to my left and there’s guitarist Jeff Miles, sporting a lemurian grin.  He’s lent Ilan Bar-Lavi his guitar amp, and so is anointed for the guest list.  We cross the threshold a half hour before downbeat, the place is gloriously packed, and we’re extra glad to have seats reserved down front. 

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The Club

Another thrilling van ride.  I was much reminded of The Matrix, and Morpheus’s admonition to his crew.  “You told me never to get on the freeway; you said that it was suicide,” Trinity reminds him.  His reply:  “Then let us hope that I was wrong.”  Intact but enervated, we arrive in Greenwich Village at the Blue Note.

 In live performance on WBGO-FM, the Berklee Scholarship Sextet.  From left:  Victor Gould, piano; Emile Martinez, trumpet; Jonathan Greenstein, saxophone; Ilan Bar-Lavi, guitar; Josh Hari, bass; and Mark Whitfield, Jr., drums.

In live performance on WBGO-FM, the Berklee Scholarship Sextet. From left: Victor Gould, piano; Emile Martinez, trumpet; Jonathan Greenstein, saxophone; Ilan Bar-Lavi, guitar; Josh Hari, bass; and Mark Whitfield, Jr., drums.

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Airwaves

Pianist Victor Gould chats with WBGO announcer Brian Delp about Victors recent acceptance into the Thelonious Monk Institute college program.

Pianist Victor Gould chats with WBGO announcer Brian Delp about Victor's recent acceptance into the Thelonious Monk Institute college program.

After a fairly harrowing ride to Newark, at the hands of Fema, our Ukrainian van pilot, we arrived at Park Place, and WBGO.   Myron Walden, whose compositions the band has been working throughout the semester, will join the band on two tunes.  But, more importantly, he’ll offer a real-time critique of their renditions.  A gift to, and size 14 kick in the pants for, the band from mentor Darren Barrett.

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