DrMyers’s Blog

July 21, 2015

Jazz Artist Celebrates with the Community

Vocalist Aaron Myers captured by Darwyn Dave

Vocalist Aaron Myers captured by Darwyn Dave

Washington, District of Columbia July 21 — The Jazz Community will gather on and off stage to celebrate with entertainer Aaron Myers as he brings in his birthday through music and pool-side fun. Rumors are rampant that other local entertainers, club owners, politicians, and a host of other notables will be in attendance.  Starting with a music filled night of Jazz at Mr. Henry’s Restaurant and then a Poolside Bash at Vida Fitness U Street Penthouse, confirmations are reaching capacity for both venues.

“There’s no better way to bring people together than with music and birthdays ,” Myers said. “Celebrating music and life will be theme of this weekend.”

Myers, now Resident Artist at the legendary Mr. Henry’s Restaurant, is known for his jazz concerts, comedy, and activism. Over the last 6 years, Myers has introduced jazz to audiences through his intimate jazz shows, his radio program “The Exchange” and through his charitable efforts.

There will be champagne, great performances, and a great pool over the two day birthday experience. To those who are accustomed to these events, Myers will bring an element of fun over the weekend that will be memorable.

“This Birthday is special to me,” Myers said. “I’m announcing the upcoming release of my new album!”  Myers also shared another reason the opening festivities hold a certain sentiment.  “For the first time, my Friday night show at Mr. Henry’s will be streamed through a platform that will allow people to view the show from their home computers and mobile devices.  This will be the first show my 98 year old Grandmother will be able to see.  Due to her health, she has never seen my jazz shows.”

Recently, Myers has added “Writer” & “Film-Producer” to his list of accomplishments. Although the projects are in production, the film, reportedly a documentary about DC Taxi Drivers, has garnered a lot of buzz in the DC community. In addition to this documentary, Myers is also shopping around new the feature film script “Paths at Sunset” while finishing up work on TV Pilot “Half Note.”

“Producing a film is not for the faint at heart,” Myers said with a grin. “Deadlines, can make you or break you, but they do help you stay true to yourself about seeing these projects through to completion.”

Aaron Myers, known as the “Class Act,” is a native Texan who has decided to make Washington DC his home. Through his partnerships with charities, business, and politics, Myers has made an impression on the District that merges art with activism.  Visit his website at www.aaron2.me.

Friday Night 7/24: Mr. Henry’s Restaurant 8pm (no cover) // Saturday 7/25:  (7pm – Midnight) Vida Fitness U Street (No Cover RSVP to aaronmyers@aaron2.me)

June 3, 2015

Jazz Performers & Jazz Lovers Connect

Vocalist Aaron Myers captured by Darwyn Dave

Vocalist Aaron Myers captured by Darwyn Dave

Washington, DC, June 3, 2015 –  During the 11th annual DC Jazz Festival, Aaron Myers, a local Jazz Vocalist, hosts “Jazz Performers & Jazz Lovers Connect” a night for Jazz Artists and lovers of the genre, to meet face to face outside of the performance venue.  On Thursday, June 11th, from 7pm – 12am, Artists and Jazz Lovers are asked to meet for a free networking event at Vida Penthouse Pool Club.

“So often Jazz Artists here in DC never get the chance to connect with each other due to performance schedules.  This event is designed for artists to link up with each other, discuss issues within the genre while also connecting with our fans.” said Myers, who was voted Best Singer in the Washington City Paper Best of DC Readers Poll.  “It is my hope that we can share information, expand our base, and make the jazz community stronger here in DC.”
Washington has a deep Jazz tradition that predates the Harlem Renaissance and has been the home to several Jazz pioneers including Duke Ellington, Billy Taylor, Shirley Horne and many more.  With Venues like the Howard Theater and the Historic U Street Corridor, Jazz artists have performed at many DC venues throughout the years.  Next week, Washington will welcome thousands of Jazz Artists and lovers of the genre to participate in the 11th Annual DC Jazz Festival from June 10th – June 16th.  Several venues, both traditional and non-traditional,  across DC will open their doors by participating with the festival’s “Jazz in the Hood” series which brings jazz to many neighborhoods across DC.
Jazz Performers & Jazz Lovers Connect” will kick off at 7pm and go until midnight, allotting time for many artists whose shows may just be ending at 9pm or 10pm.  Artists are encouraged to bring their music and promotional materials for upcoming shows and future Jazz Jams.  This is an event free of charge to the public.

April 9, 2015

AARON MYERS voted “Best Singer” in the Washington City Paper’s “Best Of DC” Readers Poll

Aaron Myers taken by photographer Darwyn Dave.

Aaron Myers taken by photographer Darwyn Dave.

AARON MYERS voted “Best Singer” in the Washington City Paper’s “Best Of DC” Readers Poll

Washington, DC. ; April 9, 2015 ;  Jazz Vocalist/Entertainer Aaron Myers was voted “Best Singer” in the Washington City Paper’s “Best of DC” Readers Poll on April 9th. Myers was voted runner-up in the poll taken last year by the same paper, making this his first win in that category. Myers served as the Resident Artist at the Black Fox Lounge in Washington DC boasting 5 years and 147 headliner shows at the venue before its closing December 31, 2014.

“This was a great way to start my morning” said Myers. “A good friend of mine had tagged me on Facebook wishing me congratulations. Not thinking I would win, I didn’t even buy a ticket to the Best of DC gala.” Washington City Paper was founded in 1981 and is a weekly alternative news paper with a circulation of over 60,000 (as of 2011). “It is an honor to have your fans, friends and family speak up for you like this and help spread the word of your art.”

Myers moved to Washington in 2008 after working as a Field Organizer on the Barack Obama Campaign to become the National Director of the Global Family Program that was then headed by the late author Linda Grover. Not abandoning his itch for entertainment, Myers is currently not only working in music, but directing the documentary “Cab Fare” profiling the lives of DC Cab Drivers who have been driving in the city more than 40 years. Gearing up for the release of his second album “The Lion’s Den“, Myers has also just completed his second feature script “Paths at Sunset” with writing partner Scott Sedar.

You can find Aaron Myers performing at both traditional and non traditional Jazz Venues in the Washington DC area. More information about his upcoming performances can be found at http://www.aaron2.me.

March 23, 2015

AARON MYERS RELEASES NEW JAZZ SINGLE “Stand Right” an ode to DC Metro System

Jazz Vocalist/Pianist Aaron Myers released the new single “Stand Right” March 23rd, an ode to the DC Metro system. A native Texan, Myers served as the Resident Artist at the Black Fox Lounge in Washington DC boasting 5 years and 147 headliner shows at the venue before its closing December 31, 2014. Releasing this single, he will debut the song at To1237176_4679927815781_244853502_nuche Supper Club this Saturday, a new venue in the H Street Corridor in DC.

“When Oren Levine brought the song to me I jumped at it” said Myers. Oren Levine is a jazz pianist/composer who also played with Myers at the Black Fox Lounge. Over the years they developed a musical appreciation for each others style, going on to record together. “As a Jazz Singer, it is nice to have someone write music with your style in mind. It reminds me of the musical partnerships of old.” The new single speaks of the turmoil local DC residents go through when in a rush doing their daily routines but slowed by visitors who have not yet learned the DC Metro Etiquette. A common occurrence, the story is told with a jazz flare.

This is not be the only collaboration between Myers & Levine. A series of songs have been recorded and will be released at a later date. “I am looking forward to the jazz community hearing more of our work!” Myers will debut the song live for an audience this Saturday during his debut performance at Touche Supper Club.

Stand Right” can be downloaded on iTunes, GooglePlay Store, CD Baby, and other online streaming services.

Aaron Myers & Co will play Saturday March 28th at 7pm (doors open at 6pm) with a $20 cover. Touche Supper Club is located at 1123 H Street NE.

March 16, 2015

AARON MYERS & CO. DEBUT AT TOUCHE SUPPER CLUB

Aaron Myers taken by photographer Darwyn Dave.

Aaron Myers taken by photographer Darwyn Dave.

Jazz Returns to the U Street Corridor

Jazz Vocalist/Pianist Aaron Myers debuts at Touche Supper Club, continuing his Jazz quest here in the DMV. Myers served as the Resident Artist at the Black Fox Lounge in Washington DC boasting 5 years and 147 headliner shows at the venue before its closing December 31, 2014. Now, he debuts at a new venue in DC, reintroducing JAZZ to the U Street Corridor while also preparing to release his new album “The Lions Den.”

“Anytime a new venue opens in Washington (DC) and provides an artist space to express their art, I’m game!” said Myers. Touche Supper Club is located in the H Street Corridor, an area steeped in the history of supporting the arts in Washington DC. Since opening, it has created a great deal of buzz in the arts community, not catering to only one form or genre of art, but to many different forms and genres. “Washingtonians should do their best to support any venue that is providing space to artists. The artists of Washington DC are often on the forefront of change and often time provide a voice for the disenfranchised!”

This will not be the first show played by Aaron Myers in the H Street Corridor. “I played a show a few years ago with a singer at HR-57 and was shocked with all the passers by who heard the music and came in. I do hope that energy will continue in that area” HR-57 served the Jazz community for 21 years and was named after H.Con.Res 57 which designated Jazz as “a rare and valuable national American treasure”.

Aaron Myers & Co will play Saturday March 28th at 7pm (doors open at 6pm) with a $20 cover. Touche Supper Club is located at 1123 H Street NE.

March 3, 2015

In Production: Jazz Artist and the Screenwriter

Aaron Myers

Aaron Myers

Aaron Myers has performed to audiences in Washington DC for the last six years.  Voted runner up for “Best Singer” & “Best Performance Artist” in the Washington City Paper’s “Best Of DC” readers poll, Myers has been heard in Embassies, Night Clubs, Festivals, and Fundraisers.  Myers became a DC Staple as the Resident Artist at the Black Fox Lounge (a total of 147 headliner shows) and is now showing the public his other artistic side.  A native Texan, Myers decided to make Washington DC his home 6 years ago.

“I love screenwriting” stated Myers.  “I wrote my first pilot TV show when I was 13 years old.  It was was a situation comedy that I wanted to star three couples.  Jack Lemmon married to Shirley MacLaine, Walter Matthau married to Betty White, and Ossie Davis married to Ruby Dee.  I wish that it could have been produced, I’m sure it would have been an awesome show!”
Now, Myers is currently filming a new feature documentary with emerging cinematographer Jazmine Kiante called “Cab Fare” profiling Taxi Drivers in Washington DC who have been driving more than forty years.  Filming began in January and is already crating buzz in the city with appearances from national lawmakers, city officials and people on the street.
Friday, it was announced that the script for his second feature film “Paths at Sunset” with writing partner Scott Sedar has now been completed and is now ramping up for production.  “This film tells an unorthodox love story of a couple who is approaching the sunset of their lives.  Let me just say, life isn’t over after 60…at all!”
Below, find more information about this DC artist and his upcoming productions.
——————–

“THE LION’S DEN” ALBUM – PRE-PRODUCTION

This is the Sophomore Album of Aaron Myers slated to be released in June of 2015. This album is a combination of Jazz & Neo Soul while paying homage to Jazz legends and contemporary innovations.

“CAB FARE” 2015 – FILMING

Follow the stories of Washington DC Taxi Cab Drivers as they tell the story of an evolving city through the eyes of the ones who know it best. Hear touching stories from DC Cab Drivers, Riders, Politicians & Celebrities while seeing the evolution of a city from behind the wheel of a DC Taxi Cab.

“PATHS AT SUNSET” – SCRIPT COMPLETED

Helen Ware has just been given shocking news that changes her outlook on Love, Life and relationship forever. See how she’s forced to accept her new reality and how she embarks on a journey of love that is quite unorthodox.

“UPON A RIVERS END” – SCRIPT COMPLETED

Life in the Antebellum South is filled with heroic tales of freedom. See the tale of a freedman as he travels to one of the most brutal plantations in Louisiana to bring its slaves to freedom.

“HALF NOTE” – TV PILOT – SCRIPT COMPLETED

Ready for Pitch Aaron Brass is an Entertainer who is on the brink of greatness…so he thinks. With the help of his colleagues, friends and girlfriend, Aaron experiences the pains of making art while trying to “B” in Show Business. Sit back and watch the crazy situations he endures to express his art!

January 12, 2015

Aaron Myers and his Second Act

10818473_10152941630802033_26185113107098685_oJust weeks after closing down the Black Fox Lounge in Washington DC, Jazz Vocalist/Pianist Aaron Myers debuts at Bethesda Blues & Jazz with his new touring band continuing his jazz quest here in the DMV. Myers served as the Resident Artist at the Black Fox Lounge in Washington boasting 5 years and 147 headliner shows at the venue before its closing December 31, 2014. Now, he starts off the new chapter in his career with this upcoming show and work on his new album “The Lions Den”.

“I am excited to display my art in a beautiful venue where so many have played before” said Myers. Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club is housed in the beautifully restored Art Deco Bethesda Theater built in 1938. Since opening, it has become the regions #1 Live Supper Club. “I’m now writing a new chapter in my career, and believe me, this is only the beginning!”.

This will be the first show played by Aaron Myers since the end of his residency. “Expect some great Jazz, soulful Blues and a touch of Comedy. I plan on doing some old favorites, and to also give a tribute to Andrae Crouch during the show. He was and is one of my biggest influences.” Andrae Crouch, a gospel singer/songwriter/producer, responsible for revolutionizing the way Gospel Music is interpreted passed away January 8th. 

Aaron Myers & Co will play Thursday January 15th at 7:30pm with a $10 cover. Doors open at 5:30pm. Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club is located at 7719 Wisconsin Avenue NW. Walking distance from Bethesda Metro stop.

October 20, 2014

Aaron Myers ranked #1 Jazz Artist Globally on Reverbnation

10339544_10152644126902033_418074803278710753_nWashington, DC, October 20, 2014 – Local Jazz artist Aaron Myers has garnered attention from independent music professionals across the Globe.  It was announced Wednesday October 15th, Myers is ranked Number One on the Reverbnation Jazz Charts for Washington DC, the United States and World Wide.  He has maintained this rank since that time.

“Growing up in a town of about 300 people in Texas, being ranked Number One is indeed a dream come true”, Myers said Friday night at his show at the Black Fox Lounge in Washington, DC.  Myers is the Resident artist at the Black Fox Lounge completing over 138 shows since 2009.
Reverbnation is comprised of over 10.6 million music and entertainment professionals globally.  Ranking systems are based upon several factors ranging from downloads, song plays, profile views, etc.  Since 2006, Reverbnation has helped millions of emerging artists build their careers by connecting artists to venues, festivals, brands, publishers, labels and fans themselves.  Reverbnation offers emerging artists from around the world access to the global music industry.
Myers released his debut album “Leo Rising” in 2013 during the DC Jazz Festival to critical acclaim.  He was invited to perform at Blues Alley, the nations finest Jazz and Supper Club as reported by the New York Times, on September 3rd playing to a sold out audience.
“I am just grateful to make my living doing what I’ve dreamed of doing my entire life.  Washington DC has been very good to me, and I am glad the World has been given the opportunity to take notice!” said Myers.
Aaron Myers performs a live Jazz show at the Black Fox Lounge every first and third Friday of the month from 9:30pm to 12:30am.  Learn more about his work at http://www.aaron2.me.

August 12, 2014

Depression is Real

Robin-WilliamsDepression is real.  As an artist, I live with it every day, and the operative word is “live.”  It is not easy, and at times it seems as if I have no problems with the  struggle.  There are times when I feel on top of the world…for a moment.  Then a tunnel surrounds me blocking out any affection or caring word I’ve ever heard from anyone else in my life.  It becomes me at my most isolated, not selfish, state where although people are surrounding me, they have been blocked from my vision.  

 

I remember hitting the bottom.  It was during lunch hour on a Thursday.  Homesick, pressured by the feeling of being inadequate, financial pressures and an overwhelming sense of anxiety had pushed me to my breaking point.  As I wondered on foot in downtown LA, I walked across an overpass and stopped at its peak.  I walked to the edge and grabbed the rail with my hands and watched hundreds of cars pass below.  I stood their frozen.

 

A short period of discomfort followed by an eternal rest seemed more appealing than the inner turmoil I was experiencing, moreover it was becoming like the right answer.  The sound of each car that passed below seemed to lull me deeper and deeper into a dark inner tunnel where death appeared to be the only solution.

 

 Hearing people passing behind me did not distract me and no one seemed to stop.  Maybe to them I did not appear to pose any danger, which as an entertainer, I was, and am, use to.  Making people smile and feel at ease while one is dying inside becomes a habit, and even a type of medication.  When I, and other artists, am on stage everything is ok.  There is no drug on the market that can compare to the gratifying feeling of a loving audience.  The show ends, people leave, they cut off the lights, and the artist is left alone.

 

As I became conscious of my breath, I felt the wind and began to smell the exhaust of the cars and slowly backed away from the edge.  I was lucky, but there are others who are not.
The death of Robin Williams, just as the death of others also involved in the arts, resonates with me in a personal way.  It takes a special person to channel all of the good in oneself to cheer or brighten someone else’s day while inside it seems like things are crumbling.  He was an inspiration to me and will continue to inspire many more to come.
Depression is not a “state of mind’ or a temporary “feeling”, it is an ever present disease.  If you, or someone you know, are coping with depression, seek help, encourage them to seek help, and do all you can to send as much positive energy  and prayers their way.
Again, I was lucky that time.  I am aware that there maybe a time in the future where I may not be so lucky.  That awareness is the daily burden I, and others in my position, carry.  Depression is real.

 

August 9, 2014

Jazz is Here to Stay

This blog was written in response to the opinion editorial “All that jazz isn’t all that great” written by Justin Moyer.

 

Jazz is (not) boring.

Jazz is (not) overrated.

Jazz is (not) washed up.

Anytime I see these words, without the added parentheses, starting off an opinion editorial, immediately I am reminded that our forefathers/mothers fought for the freedom of speech.  It is also my opinion that in there fighting, they would hope the generations that followed them would strive with even more ferver to have responsibility with this right.  Alas, I read the words chosen by Mr. Moyers as he begins a diatribe against a genre of music drenched in self expression…and I drop my head in shame.

The first Jazz album I heard came by accident.  While rummaging through some records at the home of my Grandparents, I stumbled upon a record that seemed different from the others.  It was thicker, visibly older, worn, and on one side simply read, “Gut Bucket Blues”  Little did I know, the sounds that I heard would evoke such emotion 70 years after it was first recorded, and leave such an impression on a 12 year old boy.

Since then my love of Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Jelly Roll Morton, Eubie Blake, Jack Teagrden has not only evolved, but aided me in my appreciation of musicians like Wynton Marsalis, Esperanza Spalding, Kris Bowers and Allyn Johnson.  Each person represents a snapshot of an era, and through their individual expression, a timeless, ageless story is told that transcends words and in some moments, demands change.

  1.  Jazz allows a story to be told in different forms

As a southerner, I appreciate a good story.  Some of the greatest stories I remember hearing were told over the Sunday dinner table.  Waiting in anticipation of a punch-line or a climax in a tale I had heard countless times from my Grandparents is still one of my fondest memories.  With that said, some of my soberest memories come from hearing the same tales, told by a family friend, my mother, or even when passing on the tale to other family members and friends for the first time.  Humans are unique, and even reading stories from a printed text, our voices, inflections, and tones differ adding a different flavor to the text.  Thus is Jazz.

How awesome it is to have heard Louis Armstrong’s version of “Stardust”!   You hear as he takes his trumpet and paints a picture for you with only tones from his instrument.  How equally touching is it to hear Mel Torme sing the lyrics of Stardust, in his twilight years, written by Hoagy Carmichael, some 60 years earlier.  Jazz gave freedom to artists of all genres to not be afraid to add their “flavor” to a song, not taking away any substance or meaning from the composer/lyricist.  If you don’t believe me, ask Aretha Franklin about her cover of “Respect” or Nikki Minaj about the work she put into her mixtapes.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VhLdBFGCkl4

         2. Improvisation encourages musicians to evolve

I am so thankful that the history of man did not stop with the discovery of fire.  With each generation, this concept was built upon.  Likewise it is with music.  When improvisation is captured, it allows other musicians to take one persons’ improvised expression, and to build upon it.

With improvisation, a new voice is given to the musician/composer to share his/her expression.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ecyHa_lktnI

        3. Jazz Continues to Evolve

In the legal definition of “evolve” one finds that it also includes “preserving the good characteristics” and that change can be “random, generationally slow, good, bad or deadly.”  Evolution takes on different tones, in different times, to different people.

The expression of Jazz at one time was only regulated to speakeasies, gin joints, and back rooms.  Then, only in Dance Halls.  Festivals captured Jazz for a while, and then it stayed in school auditoriums or during special performances by Jazz originators.  Now you find Jazz, again, in small clubs and intimate venues, but this time with the invention of new instruments and tools to, again, express Jazz in a different or an “evolved” manor.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_o2RS8WfcbY

        4.  Jazz is Radical

There were 8 recorded lynchings, not sure if there were others undocumented, in 1937 when the poem “Strange Fruit” was written.  When Billie Holiday recorded this with added music to the poem, the number of lynches had decreased to 3, but this terrible act was now introduced through the expression of Jazz to the world.  The honesty of the pain, disappointment and fear Holiday felt towards her country due to its lack of inaction and the continuation of the practice of lynching was, and is, overwhelming.  Her 1939 recording of this, in time, became her biggest selling record.

This courage has been adopted by other artists to use Jazz to speak up, out, and against injustice of people throughout the world.  “Mushy” is not the first or last word that comes to mind when I, and many others, try to describe Jazz.

 

       5.  Jazz is Re-emerging and Local

 

When I moved to Washington DC in 2008 I was surprised at the classic venues located here in the district that offered Jazz.  More venues have now opened their doors to Jazz.  The Capitol Jazz Festival now offers “Jazz in the Hood” showcasing the hundreds of local Jazz musicians in the District of Columbia.  You will find new festivals starting up every year across the country, and globe, to also showcase the growing number of jazz musicians, that bring with them the influence of their time along with new technology.

 

Trends  have been adopted and thrown away.  In the future we will view the fads and technology of today as we now view leisure suits, hoop-skirts, and the “View-Master”.  Jazz has not and shows no sign of being dead or on life support.  To borrow from Mark Twain, Rumors of its demise has been greatly exaggerated!

 

If you do not believe me, walk into a local restaurant or small venue and ask for their live music schedule.   You will be surprised just how “alive” Jazz is, and will continue to be!

 

1237176_4679927815781_244853502_n

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

~Aaron Myers

Resident Artist

Black Fox Lounge

Washington DC

http://www.aaron2.me

@aaronmyers

Next Page »

The Rubric Theme. Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 68,115 other followers