Austin – NPR affiliate KUT describes jazz trumpeter Jeff Lofton as “… a veritable jazz virtuoso. Comparisons are frequently made to Miles Davis – and rightfully so.” Jazz fans can experience this for themselves at Jeff Lofton’s 1950s Miles Davis Tribute at The Scottish Rite Theater, 207 W. 18th. St., Saturday, September 29. Show times are 6:00 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 in advance from www.ScottishRiteTheater.org and $25 at the door.
The show features Davis’ compositions and interpretations made famous by the first great Miles Davis Quintet during 1950 – 1959, and includes excerpts from “Kind of Blue.” The Jeff Lofton Quintet will feature Marcus Wilcher on saxophone, Dr. James Polk (Ray Charles’ music director for a decade) on piano, Glenn Schuetz on bass and Steve Schwelling on drums.
Lofton and his wife, Dean Lofton, are producing the show themselves, along with the new Jeff Lofton’s Austin Jazz Series which launches November 2 at Shoal Crossing Event Center. The jazz series brings the jazz supper club experience to Austin with cocktails, dining and dancing. Details are available at www.JeffLofton.com.
“Listen up Miles Davis fans…” from the Austin American-Statesman and “…channels Miles Davis…” from The Daily Texan were early reviews of Jeff Lofton’s 1950s Miles Davis Tribute at the historic Victory Grill in September 2007 – a mere six months after he arrived in Austin from South Carolina.
Lofton last performed the show in Austin at a packed house at One World Theater during SXSW 2010. The show has also traveled to Scat Jazz Lounge in Ft. Worth and been featured in the New Faces Series at The Iridium Jazz Club in New York.The show also launched a jazz series in collaboration with the University of Texas’ Blanton Museum’s hosting of the “Birth of the Cool” exhibit in 2008.
And the rave reviews have continued such as:
“…as good as the real thing…” – Nancy Cook-Mondore, San Antonio Express-News 2-19-12
“Lofton has earned a large, loyal following with a mixture of sheer talent, repertoire and personality.” – Jim Beal, San Antonio Express-News 2-9-12
“…rejoice Kind of Blue fans.” – Austin Monthly
Lofton studied composition at the University of South Carolina and moved to Austin in 2007 at the age of 40. Since then he’s been voted Best Jazz Band at the ’10-’11 Austin Music Awards during SXSW; January 15, 2009 was named “Jeff Lofton Day” by the City of Austin; and he was inducted into the Texas Music Museum. The Austin American-Statesman’s 2010 Out and About 500: Music list noted his “ubiquitous presence and articulate advocacy.” His album, “Jazz to the People,” made the 2009 top albums lists for the Austin Chronicle and KUT. Lofton opened the 2012 TEDxAustin conference with live improvisation based on one his originals, “Rose,” with composer and pianist Graham Reynolds.
In 2010 in the tradition of Miles Davis, Lofton expanded his sound with a new side group, the Jeff Lofton Electric Thang, described as jazz-funk, rock fusion. The group’s first album, “Chasing the Voodoo Down – Live at the Cactus Cafe” released on May 14, 2011 at the Cactus Cafe in Austin. The Jeff Lofton Electric Thang also debuted a “Bitches Brew” Tribute and performed at Antone’s, Momo’s, Lambert’s and Speakeasy in Austin.
About Scottish Rite Theater
The Scottish Rite Theater (SRT) is a 21st century non-profit arts incubator housed in a 19th century opera house. Each year, SRT engages over 12,000 children and families in the arts – from performances to festivals, summer camps and year-round school programs. SRT delivers vibrant, adventurous and imaginative arts programming and educational opportunities for people of all ages, backgrounds and abilities.