Wil Haygood: Eugene Allen, America’s Butler

White House butler Eugene Allen (right) with President Dwight D. Eisenhower (center) This summer Oscar nominated director, Lee Daniels and an all-star cast of actors including Oscar winners, Forrest Whitaker and Cuba Gooding, Jr., will release the highly anticipated major motion picture, “The Butler”. The film will present a portrayal …


Raydar Ellis: No Longer Defined By My Origin

Jazz, born in the narrow streets of New Orleans evolved into America’s original art form eventually finding its way into nearly every boulevard and avenue round the world. Hip-hop, born in the concrete jungles of the South Bronx by youth desiring a creative outlet to combat social ills is now …


Kris Bowers and Christian Sands: Music + Innovation

In partnership with Capsulocity, iRock Jazz is proud to present: THAT’S KILLIN! We were truly looking forward to hearing these two pianists play for the very first-time in this exclusive performance of Fat’s Waller’s “Ain’t Misbehavin. 

Christian Sands and Kris Bowers are two of Jazz music’s most promising stars. Both have …


Author Dwayne Ballen: My Journey with Julian

Katie Couric, Julian, and Dwight Ballen Dwayne Ballen has a stellar career. He is a three-time Associated Press Award winning journalist and sportscaster. His greatest work to date is “Journey with Julian”, with the foreword written by Branford Marsalis. Released in April 2013, this book is his son’s remarkable journey …


Filmmaker Andrew Shapter: Music and the Digital Age

Director, film maker and photographer Andrew Shapter is the creative force behind the critically acclaimed documentary “Before the Music Dies”. The film, which profiles artists like Erykah Badu, The Roots, Eric Clapton, Dave Matthews and Branford Marsalis, was inspired by the need to give musicians a voice in an industry …


Hebru Brantley: The Art of Storytelling

Hebru Brantley photo by Kristie Kahns Hebru Brantley is a rock star in the art world. He has drawn comparison to the revered and iconic Neo-expressionist/graffiti artist, Jean-Michel Basquiat. He travels the globe exhibiting his work in premier art shows like the famed, Art Basel, and he has a diverse …


Producer John W. Comerford: The Making of “Icons Among Us”

John W. Comerford and Brian Blade Producer, John W. Comerford is an artist and visionary. Through his lens we are able to take a glimpse of what jazz looks like in the present tense. Today’s jazz artists have told their story and Comerford has captured their words and the passion …


1959 The Year that Changed Jazz Documentary

1959 was the seismic year jazz broke away from complex bebop music to new forms, allowing soloists unprecedented freedom to explore and express. It was also a pivotal year for America: the nation was finding its groove, enjoying undreamt-of freedom and wealth social, racial and upheavals were just around the …


“…but can she play?”is the first documentary blowin’ the roof off women horn players and jazz

“…but can she play?” is the first documentary blowin’ the roof off women horn players and jazz. The full-length feature film focus on the lives and the music of women sax and brass players who are challenging gender biases and influencing the transformation of contemporary American jazz. 

Beyond being talented …


Wynton Marsalis: Essentially Ellington

The national Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Band Competition and Festival is held annually in New York City at Frederick P. Rose Hall, the home of Jazz at Lincoln Center. Fifteen finalist bands are selected as finalists and, to prepare, each finalist band receives an in-school workshop in their community …


Before the Music Dies Documentary

With outstanding performances and revealing interviews Before the Music Dies takes a critical look at the homogenization of popular music with commentary by some of the industry’s biggest talents like Eric Clapton, Dave Matthews, Elvis Costello, Erykah Badu, Branford Marsalis, Bonnie Raitt and more. Using historic footage the film looks …


The Girls in the Band Documentary

They wiggled, they jiggled, they wore low cut gowns and short shorts, they kowtowed to the club owners and smiled at the customers…and they did it all, just to play the music they loved. THE GIRLS IN THE BAND tells the poignant, untold stories of female jazz and big band …