Jazz Festival Set For February 2003

Benny GolsonBenny Golson, an internationally known tenor saxophonist, composer, educator and jazz icon, will be featured at Jazz Festival XXII Feb. 8, 2003, at 8 p.m. in Smith Auditorium at Willamette University.

Golson is featured in a program that also offers the Willamette Jazz Ensemble, the Willamette Faculty Jazz Combo and the "Judges' Choice" bands from the jazz festival that welcomes 24 high school jazz bands from Oregon and Washington.

Golson will also offer a free clinic Saturday, Feb. 8, at 4 p.m. also in Smith Auditorium. Registration is not required.

Concert tickets are $18 for first-floor reserved seats; $15 balcony; $12 first-floor wing; and $10 first-floor general seating. For tickets and information, please call the University Music Office at 503-370-6255.

Golson has been a major contributor to the world of jazz for the past 50 years. With 30 recordings of his own and countless recordings with jazz greats such as Benny Goodman, Dizzy Gillespie, Lionel Hampton, Earl Bostic and Art Blakey, Golson stands as one of the greatest contributors to the history and literature of jazz.

Golson has arranged and composed music for John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Sammy Davis Jr., Mama Cass Elliott, Ella Fitzgerald, David Jones and the Monkees, Quincy Jones, Peggy Lee, Carmen McRae, Oscar Peterson, Lou Rawls, Mickey Rooney and Diana Ross.

He has also composed scores for TV shows including "Mannix," "The Partridge Family," "Room 222," "M*A*S*H" and "Mission Impossible." His talent has been heard in advertisements for Canada Dry, Nissan, Chrysler, Dodge, Chevrolet, Gillette, Heinz Foods, Mattel Toys, Texaco, Orbach's and Liquid Plum'r.

Golson, who is a Guggenheim Fellow, holds honorary doctorates from both William Patterson College and the Berklee School of Music, Boston. In 1996, he received the American Jazz Master Award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Golson's contributions to the world of jazz were recognized last March with a concert at Lincoln Center in New York entitled "The Magic of Benny Golson."