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Button Factory Jazz: Gary Wittner Group
November 14, 2019 @ 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm$8 – $10
Gary Wittner – Guitar
Matt Langley – Saxophone
Tyler Heydolf – Bass
Les Harris, Jr. – Drums
Throughout a performance career that has spanned 5 decades, guitarist Gary Wittner has played all kinds of gigs and has represented the USA officially 5 times – twice as a Kennedy Center Jazz Ambassador, once as a Fulbright Specialist and twice as a US Embassy Outreach Artist. Originally from New York, he has lived in Maine since the 1990s. Gary has played worldwide for jazz audiences in major urban centers (New York City, Boston, Denver, London, Warsaw, Paris, and more); tribal royalty in Papua New Guinea and Fiji, and jazz royalty (Thelonious Monk’s widow, Nellie). In between all that he has played locally/regionally/nationally in Jazz, Latin, and Middle Eastern bands, releasing 7 CDs as a leader. These have spanned a large variety of styles: New Orleans Jazz, Blues/Folk Americana, Swing/Bop/Post Bop, Free Jazz and Latin music.
An acknowledged authority on the music and life of jazz icon Thelonious Monk, Gary has presented lecture/concerts on this topic at many of the world’s most well known music schools. His book, “Thelonious Monk for Guitar”, published in 1999, is still informing guitar players around the world today. He has recorded Monk’s compositions on 6 of his 7 CDs, and has performed Monk’s music with Clark Terry, Christian McBride, Eddie Gomez, and other jazz luminaries.
Most recently, Gary has been writing original jazz tunes with lyrics and singing. Although there is no Jazz Singer/Songwriter category, Gary’s vocal tunes have been described as “Jazz Cabaret”. Regardless of labels, Gary Wittner has created a body of songs within the Jazz/Blues/Latin spectrum that combine witty, insightful, heartfelt lyrics with complex Post-Bop harmonies. Audiences and musicians alike have been entertained by Gary’s vocal tunes here in the USA, as well as in S. America, Europe and Africa. Gary currently teaches music at the Univ. of S. Maine School of Music and Bowdoin College and keeps an active performing schedule locally and abroad.
- WSCA Radio
- (603) 430-9722