Back from a fun show in Detroit

I'll be taking an extra early flight in just a few hours, Thursday Aug 15, and will be back in Vancouver, just in time for a noon concert at Metrotower Plaza for a cool concert, then Friday at noon at Bentall Centre Plaza. 

Here is a two song clip of my Detroit show, where I was featured with the ab-fab flute phenom Alexander Zonjic........

... and here is some soundcheck and greenroom snippets of AZ warming up and playing MY flute along side his own:

My rare public US political comment

I try to stay out of politics, because it is often Idiots fighting the Ineffective, and it all seems so futile. I am typically a left leaning thinker because the ideals embraced by that camp are usually to the betterment and interest of the 'other 98%'. In theory, I stand for the ideals and goals of the Obama Administration, and reject the bulk of the Right Wing perpetrations for many reasons, but mostly because of their interest in combining Church and State, General Misogyny, Lack of Gun Control. Corporate Greed, and their Rejection of Individuals' Freedom of choice on so many levels. Times have changed- towards the more desperate in many ways- but regardless of 'what was then', there needs to be effective and egalitarian solution to 'what is now'

However, I am prompted to mount the soapbox for a minute or two. There are some good points to this post below (although a little misguided) that make me question Obama's ability to deal effectively with Congress/House (especially in light of sequestering), and how he is perceived in the world and to the US as a country. Sure, one can 'play nice' and 'bond' with the rest of the world, but now is not the time to be perceived as a wimp when it comes to taking a firm (but not overly congenial) stance in the world arena, and showing some solidarity to the good ol' US of A. 

Yes, the Right is often very self serving, short sighted, and counter productive when it comes to law and reform, and makes unholy/unfair/unbelievable lawmaker payraises hard to quash, but just get in there and throw your weight around, O! The Right/ Big Business is a ruthless machine, so unless you get your ballsack strapped in, you will not get a chance to see your long term goals (which most good people believe to be worthwhile) EVER implemented- not just because of an Administration change, but because of a kneejerk, vicious backlash that will certainly undo everything noble that you have strived for. 

The other side of that coin is a danger zone unto itself, so there must be the correct middle ground staked out by all!

I do not suggest you pass this on unless you see The Middleground as the goal we need to achieve- but this can be a call to action for smart, proactive people. Just use your common sense to get a grip on the battle that may end with no winners, especially so for the general population. Knee jerk reactions to challenges don't help, they hinder. Can't we all (I am talking mostly about lawmakers and politicians) take into consideration some much needed level of fairness and brotherhood, and just 'Do The Right Thing?'  I have not gone from Blue to Red... just aiming for a RICH purple.... GMH

From a 4th grade teacher:

The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, DC 20500

Mr. Obama:
I have had it with you and your administration, sir. Your conduct on your recent trip overseas has convinced me that you are not an adequate representative of the United States of America collectively or of me personally.

You are so obsessed with appeasing the Europeans and the Muslim world that you have abdicated the responsibilities of the President of the United States of America . You are responsible to the citizens of the United States . You are not responsible to the peoples of any other country on earth.

I personally resent that you go around the world apologizing for the United States telling Europeans that we are arrogant and do not care about their status in the world. Sir, what do you think the First World War and the Second World War were all about if not the consideration of the peoples of Europe ? Are you brain dead? What do you think the Marshall Plan was all about? Do you not understand or know the history of the 20th century? 

Where do you get off telling a Muslim country that the United States does not consider itself a Christian country? Have you not read the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution of the United States ? This country was founded on Judeo-Christian ethics and the principles governing this country, at least until you came along, come directly from this heritage. Do you not understand this?

Your bowing to the king of Saudi Arabia is an affront to all Americans. Our President does not bow down to anyone, let alone the king of Saudi Arabia .... You didn't show Great Britain , our best and one of our oldest allies, the respect they deserve yet you bow down to the king of Saudi Arabia .. How dare you, sir! How dare you!

You can't find the time to visit the graves of our greatest generation because you don't want to offend the Germans but make time to visit a mosque in Turkey ...... You offended our dead and every veteran when you give the Germans more respect than the people who saved the German people from themselves. What's the matter with you? I am convinced that you and the members of your administration have the historical and intellectual depth of a mud puddle and should be ashamed of yourselves, all of you.

You are so self-righteously offended by the big bankers and the American automobile manufacturers yet do nothing about the real thieves in this situation, Mr. Dodd, Mr. Frank, Franklin Raines, Jamie Gorelic, the Fannie Mae bonuses, and the Freddie Mac bonuses. What do you intend to do about them? Anything? I seriously doubt it.

What about the U.S. House members passing out $9.1 million in bonuses to their staff members on top of the $2.5 million in automatic pay raises that lawmakers gave themselves? I understand the average House aide got a 17% bonus. I took a 5% cut in my pay to save jobs with my employer. You haven't said anything about that. Who authorized that? I surely didn't!
Executives at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will be receiving $210 million in bonuses over an eighteen-month period, that's $45 million more than the AIG bonuses. In fact, Fannie and Freddie executives have already been awarded $51 million not a bad take. Who authorized that and why haven't you expressed your outrage at this group who are largely responsible for the economic mess we have right now?

I resent that you take me and my fellow citizens as brain-dead and not caring about what you idiots do. We are watching what you are doing and we are getting increasingly fed up with all of you. 

I also want you to know that I personally find just about everything you do and say to be offensive to every one of my sensibilities. I promise you that I will work tirelessly to see that you do not get a chance to spend two terms destroying my beautiful country.

Every real American

Ms Kathleen Lyday
Fourth Grade Teacher
Grandview Elementary School
11470 Hwy . C
Hillsboro , MO 63050


Iconic powerhouse George Duke passes away much too early at 67

The Jazz Network Worldwide family mourns the loss of Music Legend George Duke...our prayers go out to his family and friends...RIP George, you are so missed already, your music will keep on in our hearts.

Jazz Keyboardist George Duke Dies at 67

By  Aug. 06, 2013

Image: George Duke
KEYSTONE, JEAN-CHRISTOPHE BOTT, FILE / AP US jazz artist George Duke performs on the Stravinski Hall stage at the 43rd Montreux Jazz Festival, in Montreux, Switzerland.


(NEW YORK) — George Duke, the Grammy-winning jazz keyboardist and producer whose sound infused acoustic jazz, electronic jazz, funk, R&B and soul in a 40-year-plus career, has died. He was 67.

A representative for Duke said the performer died Monday night in Los Angeles. Duke was being treated for chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

Duke’s son, Rashid, thanked his father’s fans in a statement Tuesday. “The outpouring of love and support that we have received from my father’s friends, fans and the entire music community has been overwhelming,” he said. “Thank you all for your concern, prayers and support.”

Duke was born in San Rafael, Calif. He appeared on a number of Frank Zappa albums and played in the Don Ellis Orchestra, Cannonball Adderley’s band and with jazz musician Stanley Clarke. Duke also played keyboard on Michael Jackson’s multiplatinum 1979 album, “Off the Wall.”

His wife, Corine, died from cancer last year. He was unable to make music for months, but he overcame his grief to create the album “DreamWeaver,” released last month. It features a fusion of sounds and a touching tribute to his late wife on the romantic piano-driven ballad “Missing You.”

He began taking piano lessons when he was 4 years old, after seeing Duke Ellington perform. “I don’t remember it too well ... but my mother told me I went crazy,” Duke said on his website. “I ran around saying, ‘Get me a piano, get me a piano!’”

Duke said he learned a lot about music from going to church, which helped him add a funk style to his sound. He played in high-school jazz groups and was heavily influenced by Miles Davis. He earned degrees from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and San Francisco State University.

On tour as part of the George Duke Trio, he performed in Los Angeles at a show where Adderley, Zappa and Quincy Jones were in attendance. Duke soon joined Zappa on a tour for a year in 1969. He joined Adderley’s band in 1971. He met Clarke through Adderley, and they formed the Clarke/Duke Project. Their song “Sweet Baby” was a Top 20 hit on the Billboard pop charts.

Duke became a solo artist in 1976 and released more than 30 solo albums. He also produced for Miles Davis, Smokey Robinson, Gladys Knight, Dionne Warwick and Natalie Cole.

He worked as musical director for the Soul Train Music Awards and other special events. He also scored songs on soundtracks for “The Five Heartbeats” and “Karate Kid III.”


Read more:


Tonight at 6:30 pm PT- live from Spaghettini!

Sunday, July 14 at 6:30 pm PT, I am performing at LA's 'Jazz Mecca', Spaghettini in Seal Beach, CA 

For the great experience of an 8 piece band, led by moi on trumpet, flute, flugelhorn, and digitsl winds, buy tickets and come on down:

If you cant make it in person, you can watch via this link:

or directly from the media player at

I have a great band with me, including Nat Scott on drums, Ernie Nunez on bass, Jason Weber on saxes, Steph Lexner on guitar, and Dave Iwataki on keys. We have Lisa Gaye and Tony Drake on board as special guests. 

Please share on FaceBook!

Thanks for all the great comments! I will post other recent shows from this tour soon!

PS if you miss this show at 6:30, the media player at should play the show 'on demand' in the future.

Exciting new review from one of LA's most influential reviewers, Dee Dee McNeil

Gabriel: Kissed By The Sun & Trumpeting His Talent

Dee Dee McNeil interviews trumpeter Gabriel Mark Hasselbach - the JUNO Award winner will play at Seal Beach's Spaghettini on Sunday July 14th.  Hasselbach's journey has taken him from growing up in Colorado to developing his career as an artist based in Vancouver, Canada.  Read Dee Dee's full interview in the latest online edition of Dee Dee's Jazz Diary.

Here it is in print as well... thanks Dee Dee!

    • Gabriel: Kissed By The Sun & Trumpeting His Talent  (Jul 8, 2013, 7:00 PM PDT)

      Gabriel Mark Hasselbach is a JUNO Award winning multi-instrumentalist with a firm grasp on contemporary and mainstream jazz idioms.


      When I first listened to Gabriel's "Kissed by the Sun" recording, I was impressed by the diversity he showed on his instrument. This was no one dimensional trumpet player. I could hear his hard bop edge. In fact, his straight-ahead side crept through, even when the production was smooth jazz and his soulfully influenced horn lines were punchy and unmistakably rooted in rhythm and blues. I thought to myself, this guy can play it all. Surprisingly, he even added flute as an instrument he mastered.

      Earlier this month, when I interviewed the Vancouver, Canada-based musician, I began to better understand his background and to appreciate his musical accomplishments even more. Here is what he told me:

      GABRIEL:  "I grew up in a suburb called Wheat Ridge, Colorado." (a city a few miles outside of Denver). "It sounds like a rural area, but not really. I remember being around four and seeing the Macy Day Parade on TV. I remember these guys marching around with feathers in their hats, playing the trumpet, and I said to my mom, I want to play that! When we moved to the west side of Denver, the lady across the street taught piano. So I went and had some piano lessons with her, but there was something about the way my hands felt on the piano that just seemed awkward. At school they passed out those little Recorders, you know those plastic whistle things and that was a breeze for me. Something about the way my fingers moved on that instrument felt good. I finally pressed my mom into getting me a trumpet. So, I started playing when I was eight. At about ten or eleven, I used to have this little seven-transistor radio. My parents got it for me when it first came out. I listened to it under my covers in Denver. Do you know what the ionosphere is? It's the shell around the ozone layer and because I was in Denver, the radio waves bounced off the ionosphere at a much greater angle so in Denver I was able to hear New York, Chicago, St. Louis and Boston. I listened to all these jazz shows and heard Blue Mitchell, Clifford Brown, Richard Groove Holmes and those kind of guys. I listened to that stuff all the time. My mom used to come into the room and I'd have my little modified ear piece in my ear and I'd act like I was asleep.

      "My first year of playing, I went into a community band for kids of all ages. I was probably the youngest guy. I was eight and the others were like twelve years old. It was a concert band and we actually recorded a little ten-song album. I think I still have it. It was similar to the Girl Scout cookie thing where you press up a bunch and they ask you to sell them to make money for the band. That was like my auspicious beginning at eight years old.

      "In Junior High school, this sax player was our band director. He was a working guy. He actually got me to dissecting chords and stuff like that. I only had him one year and then we had someone else who I didn't have a good relationship with. So all my teachers were working musicians and I ended up being a working musician

      "I started playing professionally when I was fourteen in Denver; playing for fashion shows and in restaurants and stuff like that. When I was still in high school I joined a band called 'Nitro'. All the guys were a lot older than I was. One day I was going to audition in an area that at that time was probably the roughest part of town called 'Five Point'; Soul Central, if you know what I mean. We used to play down there in these after hours clubs. I was really young."

      Dee Dee: How did your parents feel about that?

      GABRIEL: "Well, you know something? I never proved to them that I wasn't responsible. So they just let me do my thing as long as I didn't get into trouble. Anyway, I was playing with this band. That was the only time I was auditioning for a trumpet player job. It was my senior year of high school. In Five Point they used to play in an abandoned dry cleaners. It only opened up at night, after hours. So this guy is looking at me like, what's this little white guy doing down here, ya know? And he says, play the Star Spangled Banner. So I did and he said, ok, you're hired. Next thing I know, we're on the road doing kind of a Soul band thing. It was a mix of stuff. I had a few features. We played several places and in Colorado Springs and then we'd drive back and play the after hours gig. That was pretty much all there really was to do. There didn't seem to be much of a jazz scene at that time.

      "I eventually came to Canada. I was looking at L.A. and I went and stayed there for a while. I just didn't like all that traffic and the packed freeways. I worked on the cruise ships for a while. Then I said, I'll go to Canada; I'll go to Vancouver 'cause that was supposed to be like the LA of Canada and Canada was supposed to be really cool. I arrived in Canada and started working my way up in the music system."

      Dee Dee: You had graduated then, right?

      GABRIEL: "Oh yeah - I had graduated from Jefferson High School. But we spent the last couple of years on the road."

      Dee Dee: When you say 'we' you mean the group Nitro?

      GABRIEL: "Yeah - the band Nitro. We played the Chitlin' Circuit and it was great. I enjoyed that and I got a really good education in not only R&B but the workings of a band on the road. That kind of stuck with me, 'cause I'm pretty much a bandleader these days. "

      Dee Dee: Who were some of your inspirations like teacher-wise when you were in Colorado?

      GABRIEL: "That's an interesting story too because my first private teacher when I was eight was a friend of my dad's, a fishing buddy and a bass player; Bob Monroney. I played with him for a while. The next teacher was a trombone player, and if you're familiar with the big band era there's a lead trumpet player called Ziggy Elman who's famous for 'And the Angels Sing' . His brother, Leo Elman, had a music store in Denver and I studied with him for a while."

      Dee Dee's Note: (Harry Aaron Finkelman, better known by his stage name of Ziggy Elman, recorded 'And the Angels Sing' for RCA Victor on December 28, 1938 with his orchestra. He was an American trumpeter and band leader. Less than a week later, on January 2, 1939, Benny Goodman's Orchestra, with vocalist Martha Tilton and Elman again, recorded the same song for RCA Victor and that version was a big hit. But the Elman version is rarer. The song was also recorded by the Tommy Dorsey's band. )

      GABRIEL: "Then there was a working trumpeter named Tony Streno. The first guy I studied with, Bob Monroney, has a son who's a very vital guitar player and composer today. His name is Brian Monroney. Brian has played with Tom Jones and Natalie Cole. Brian and I are the same age and he's had a pretty big career. (

      "Tony (Streno) was a good player and I guess he was a good teacher, but I remember spending a lot of my time with him while he answered the phone and booked gigs. He'd say, ok play that. Then he'd say wait a minute. I gotta answer this call. If I didn't necessarily learn the notes so much from him, I kind of got the workings of running a band . The conversations he had on the phone are kind of like the ones I have today; organizing players and schedules; that kind of stuff.

      "So that was probably my last formal teacher. I got a really good idea of what I needed to learn. In hind sight, I probably should have gone to Berklee, but I was so busy gigging all the time that I just really got methodical about what I needed. I studied hard. I made sure I did all my exercises and at this time I started playing the flute too. So I was trying to be very methodical about learning both instruments and not skipping over the hard stuff …you know, that kind of thing. I was running five miles a day, 'cause you know a horn player needs their wind. I was just trying to be an over achiever. If I wasn't going to go to the university, I figured I better push myself.

      "I have some influences that I still feel very connected to and those would be Blue Mitchell and Donald Byrd. A lot of people only know Donald Bird the trumpeter from his later stuff like 'Walking in Rhythm' and stuff like that when folks were trying to crossover and get contemporary when jazz was kind of faltering. I liked his earlier stuff. I've got an I-phone with 64 gigs of memory, so I wind up with all kinds of stuff. Even though I keep changing my music around, getting new material and listening to this and listening to that, but Byrd's stuff stays on my phone and has been on my phone for the last four years because it's something I always come back and listen to. He had the phrasing and kind of combined the lyrical quality of Chet Baker, some of the fiery qualities of Freddie Hubbard, and the bluesier qualities of Blue Mitchell. He just kind of had a little bit of everything going on. I did a tribute to him when he passed.

      "When I moved to Canada, I hooked up with a band called 'The Powder Blues.' It was a bunch of Expats, all musicians from the United States, well, most of them were anyway. We had a really neat sort of jump-blues-band. It was really fun and we had a lot of energy on stage. We would draw a crowd like you wouldn't believe. We sold seventeen thousand records from the stage in six months. From that we got a record deal and then from that we had four number one hits. We had five albums come out and one of them went double Platinum, two went Platinum and one went gold in Canada and in Europe. We played Montreux and all those places in the European market. We tried to break into the US market and came down to L.A. and spent a month and a half touring every place, large and small; big shows and small shows. We just couldn't quite get the traction we wanted. But being in Canada helped me launch what I did because if I die tomorrow at least I know what it is to play in front of twenty thousand people and it's not on my bucket list anymore. Once you play for that many people, for every type of nervousness or stage fright you might have had, you get over it. Like once you've played on live TV, once you've done it" (typical of a horn player, he blows out a stream of air). 

      Phew…and we both laugh.

      Gabriel Mark Hasselbach is a JUNO Award winning multi-instrumentalist with a firm grasp on contemporary and mainstream jazz idioms. He is a unique stylist on trumpet, flute, flugelhorn and more, with over fifteen CDs under his own name, and many more with numerous other artists as a player and/or producer, several of which have gone gold, platinum, and even double platinum.

      You can catch Gabriel at Spaghettini Restaurant and Bar in Seal Beach, CA on Sunday, July 14th. Call for reservations. I expect it to be a sold out concert -

      Gabriel Upcoming Dates:

      July  12, 2013 Woody's, Palm Springs, CA (6:30 pm)

      July 14, 2013 Spaghettini Restaurant & Bar, Seal Beach, CA  (6:30 pm)

      August 8, 2013 Concerts In The Park; 666 Burrard, Vancouver, BC (noon)

      August 9, 2013 MEDA Event, Valleybrook Gardens, Abbotsford, BC  (8 pm)

      August 14, 2013 Jazz On The Ave All-Star Jam With Alexander Zonjic, Dearborn, MI  (3 pm)

      August 16, 2013 Bentall Plaza Concerts, 1055 Dunsmuir, Vancouver, BC  (noon)

      Read about Dee Dees accomplishments:


    Dee Dee McNeil, born in Detroit, Michigan, spent her early musical life as a contract songwriter for Motown Record Company. Her music has been recorded by Nancy Wilson, Jonah Jones, Diana Ross & the Supremes, Gladys Knight & the Pips, David Ruffin, The Four Tops, Edwin Starr and the wife of late, great Reggae master Bob Marley, Rita Marley, to name only a few. Although she is successful commercially, McNeil's roots and real passion have always embraced jazz music. She's a diverse writer, poet, plays piano, sings professionally and has written a number of plays and children's stories. Her freelance articles and CD reviews have appeared in Essence, Pathfinders Travel Magazine, Cadence Magazine, All About Jazz and many more publications, both in this country and abroad. She was the original lady who recorded with the historic Watts Prophets spoken-word group in the early 70's. Their "Rappin' Black in a White World" LP was nominated for an NAACP Award long before rap became popular. Her original song, "What Is A Man" (sampled from that LP) was used in the motion picture "Higher Learning." As part of the first spoken-word group to put danceable music to poetry, she became an opening act for Roberta Flack, Les McCann, Richard Pryor, and many others. Ms. McNeil is currently producing jazz concerts helping keep jazz music alive; raising the pay scale for jazz musicians; introducing jazz to a younger audience and at the same time, sharing historic facts about some of our great jazz artists, who are too often taken for granted. In 2001, Dee Dee won the National BET (Black Entertainment Television) Jazz Discovery Contest, competing with vocalists all over the country. When she is not performing at jazz clubs, she is a part-time vocal coach at the Music Perforrnance Academy (MPA) in Alhambra where she also teaches Artist Development.

    Amazing collaboration by oud master and jazz musicians!

    My very talented , long time friend Neil Haverstick sent me this video link. Neil is a world renowned micro-tonal string instrumentalist and he sent me a goodie! Check out Neil:

    This video below is pretty cool and will be of interest to music lovers of all stripes... well, maybe not Beliebers....

    Some well known jazz and world music musicians collaborate on a project by Joseph Tawadros, who is a an amazing oud player.

    Not a lot of oud going on in the recording world, but there should definitely be more.  The oud is now represented in the new Downbeat critic's poll, so it is definitely a trending instrument.......

    Joseph Tawadros, Bela Fleck, Richard Bona, Roy Ayers, Joey DeFrancesco,James Tawadros,Howard Johnson

    New Album from Oud Virtuoso Joseph Tawadros - Chameleons of The White Shadow

    Check out this roster of players!

    Joseph Tawadros - Oud
    Bela Fleck - Banjo
    Richard Bona - Electric Bass
    Joey DeFrancesco - Hammond Organ
    James Tawadros - Req and Bendir
    Roy Ayers - Vibraphone
    Howard Johnson - Tuba
    Jean-Louis Matinier - Accordion

    An exciting new project from the hands of young Oud maestro Joseph Tawadros. Recorded at Avatar studios in New York over two days in February 2012, Chameleons of The White Shadow brings the best musicians in there field to take part in an eclectic recording which explores new musical territory through cross-cultural, and cross-genre collaboration and improvisation. 

    "They are a grand tree, their thoughts
    rooted deep in the ground, stable and
    strong while their many branches submit
    to growth, oblivious to direction, but
    reaching for the stars."

    Interview with LA Jazz Icon Bruce Nazarian ~ Sunday

    Join me Sunday July 7 @ 5 pm PT, with iconic L.A. radio personality, programmer, and all 'round bon vivant, Bruce Nazarian, for a live interview. Tune in on your computer to the Digital Guy Radio Show at, or for mobile devices of all stripes.

    We will be discussing life, love, liberty, and the pursuit of jazziness, and will play and talk about my tracks, my history, my upcoming shows, and basically just dish the dirt. No topic will be off limits, and Bruce promises to be fierce!

    BTW, a big shout out to everyone in Palm Springs! I will be playing at WOODY'S Friday July 12 at  6 pm PT, then over to Seal Beach, CA, so mark your calendar for Sunday July 14,  6:30 pm PT, where I will be performing at the world famous SPAGHETTINI which will be webcast live by www.Showgo.TV 

    Fans watch via this link at the event time, Sunday July 14,  6:30 pm PT:

    Jazz Fest on Blue Mountain - Ontario- July 5-7 - don't miss it!

    Longstanding jazz impresario Arnold Swishberg hosts Jazz On The Mountain at Blue for 2013!

    Outside of Toronto, in a scenic locale, this festival fills the mountain air with unparalleled jazzy music this weekend!

    Arnold's penchant for picking superb and vital talent is unmatched in his field, and this time he stacks the deck with the likes of fusion pioneer and wunderkind Jeff Lorber, as well as the groundbreaking, yet underheard Swing Out Sister, both on the heels of chart topping recent releases. Also on the bill are other masters of their domains such as saxophonist Kenny Garrett, Holly Cole, and bassist Charnett Moffett. 

    There are so many master classes and other events that this is a can't miss event!

    Sponsored in part by with additional interviews posted by ThePeakfm 

    Get all the details, pack the car, and head on out!