Nina Simone photo courtesy of Dutch National Archives.

Changes For Jackson Street Jazz Walk 

The annual Jackson Street Jazz Walk (JSJW), which was planned for 2020, has been postponed until 2021. Coinciding with Black History Month, the JSJW will be aired as a streamed concert in February 2021. The JSJW commemorates the musical legacy of Jackson Street and is produced by singer, songwriter, and producer Eugenie Jones. Details about dates and artists are forthcoming. View jacksonstreetjazz.org for details. 

Randy Engstrom Steps Down 

Randy Engstrom, the director of the Office of Arts & Culture, announced early December he will be stepping down from his position at the end of January. Engstrom led the department for eight years. During his tenure, Engstrom worked to establish the Cultural Space Agency, ARTS at King Street Station, and The Creative Advantage, a partnership with Seattle Public Schools, among other programs. 

Mayor Durkan announced the appointment of Interim Acting Director Calandra Childers until a successor has been appointed. Engstrom plans to spend his time teaching, advocating for national arts and racial justice policies, and spending time with his family. For more information, visit artbeat.seattle.gov

Safe & Sound Seattle SPC 

Safe & Sound Seattle, SPC, is a Social Purpose Corporation that was recently incorporated by Jonathan Evergreen and three other artists/community organizers in the Seattle area. Their goal is to effectively use COVID safety guidelines from the CDC to implement a plan to host safe shows that employ furloughed event workers, pay musicians, fundraise for venues, and allow people a community space to reconnect with the Seattle scene in a safe, well-researched, and realistic way. They plan to use public parks to host outdoor events, not only adhering to local and state guidelines regarding COVID-19 best practices, including testing for both staff and artists, but also to provide socially distant fan pods—private, weatherproof, sanitized, viewing pods that can accommodate small groups. Currently the proposal is under consideration for permit approval by King County. 

4Culture Building For Equity: Cultural Facilities Grants 

Building for Equity: Cultural Facilities grants provide funding for building, remodeling, and buying specialized space that houses and facilitates cultural work in King County. A total of $1,100,000 is available in the funding pool. Grants are funded through a competitive process that considers the project’s feasibility, impact on the community, and equity in development and construction practice, among other criteria. Cultural Facilities grants are available to King County-based nonprofit arts and cultural organizations and public agencies with at least a two-year operating history. The application deadline is February 5, 2021, at 5pm PST. For details visit, 4culture. org/grants/ building-for-equity-culturalfacilities. 

Chamber Music America New Jazz Works Application 

Funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, Chamber Music America’s New Jazz Works program provides grants to U.S. jazz ensembles to create, perform, and record new works. Ensembles consisting of 2–10 members are eligible to apply; the new work may be composed by the ensemble leader or a member of the ensemble. Grantees will receive funds to support them through the creation and presentation stages of the program. The grant period will run from July 1, 2021–June 30, 2024. Diversity, inclusion, and equity are a primary focus of the CMA. The deadline to apply is February 12, 2021, at 9pm EST. For details, go to chamber-music. org/programs

Registration Now Open for JazzED’s Virtual Protest Songs Project 

This rescheduled program is open for registration with classes running for a ten-week program between February 6–April 10. Open to grades 5–12, the program caters to students of all instruments, including voice, strings, and ukulele. The protest songs taught include works by Nina Simone, Marvin Gaye, Charles Mingus, Sam Cooke, and Bob Marley. Students choose their level based on years of experience. Tuition is on a pay-what-you-can-afford sliding scale; free tuition is also available. Visit seattlejazzed.org/protest-songs for details.

Seattle Jazz Artist Relief Fund Update

Last month, Earshot Jazz announced a new program that will provide direct financial relief to individual jazz artists most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Thanks to the generosity of the Raynier Institute & Foundation, Earshot Jazz will be able to make 50 $1,000 gifts directly to individual artists in need.

Earshot extends its heartfelt gratitude to our community for your thoughtful responses to the Seattle Jazz Artist Relief Fund. It has been our honor to activate this fund and to support Seattle jazz artists in need this past month. Stay tuned for a second round of funding to be announced in mid-January online at earshot.org and in next month’s Earshot Jazz magazine.

Earshot Jazz Magazine Refresh

Earshot Jazz Magazine is excited to make the change to a color-printed magazine. From its inception in 1984, the newsletter, which later evolved into a magazine, was mostly printed in black and white. This year, we’ve decided to not only print in color, but also to update the fonts, logos, and section headings, along with other stylistic elements. Helping us in this endeavor is longtime Earshot Jazz design collaborator Carl Lierman. These changes follow in the footsteps of changes we began in January 2020, when we started a new publishing partnership with Yakima Herald-Republic. Earshot Jazz looks forward to producing a visually enhanced and expressive magazine for our readers. Our next plans include enhancing the web version of our magazine.

Got some news or a story you’d like our readers to know about? Contact editor@earshot.org for consideration.


Posted on

December 21, 2020