Racer Sessions

Sundays, 8-10pm at Cafe Racer in Seattle, WA

Jarred Katz - January 12, 2014


For my first ever Racer Session performance as a curator (I know…it has taken me far too long to make this happen), I decided to compose a piece that brought me out of my comfort zone as a writer and to create a piece of music that was structurally more simple than my past efforts. My goal in essence was to fit all of the necessary information on one sheet of ledger paper. In many of my past compositions, I found myself passing out these long-winded charts that spanned many pages and many rehearsal letters. I also found myself relying far too much on bass and drum ostinatos and thus copying and pasting these grooves throughout most of finale. As a result, most of the music felt very “cookie cutter” and most of the different sections didn’t transition or breathe well together. I felt like I was mapping out too much musical information and that I wasn’t fully utilizing my band members and their “in-the-moment” decision-making abilities. Keeping these things in mind, I tried to focus more on creating a piece that involves more movement and liberty within each defining section. To continue on my theme of creating outside your comfort zone, I also decided that I only had three writing sessions to complete the piece. A little fun creative pressure.

For the session, I will be joined by: Levi Gillis (sax), Brennan Carter (trumpet), and Mark Hunter (bass), and the piece we will be performing is entitled: When Leaners Lead On. The title stems from this very idea of moving on from past musical dependencies/tendencies and recognizing these weaknesses as an opportunity to compositionally grow. This concept obviously extends well beyond just music and is something that has been specifically on my mind lately.

For the jam session that follows, I just ask that everyone should try and think of their own music tendencies and how they might be able to exploit these characteristics as opportunities to try something new or something that is uncomfortable. Switch things up! I think it will be fun.