Various Artists, The 10th Anniversary Jackson Street Jazz Walk Compilation Album


Self-released, August 2023


In the shadows of the Emerald City’s skyline, there is a rich cultural and musical history on Jackson Street in Seattle’s Central District. Take a walk through the musical heart of this vibrant neighborhood with The 10th Anniversary Jackson Street Jazz Walk Compilation Album, a celebration that captures the rich and diverse jazz scene of Seattle’s Central District and honors the neighborhood’s African-American musical legacy.

Jazz has flourished in this historically Black neighborhood since the 1920s, with figures such as Ray Charles, Quincy Jones, Ernestine Anderson, Bumps Blackwell, and Buddy Catlett, and is known for its uniquely-Seattle contribution to the world of jazz.

Inspired by this legacy, the Jackson Street Jazz Walk was launched in April 2013 by community organizer Knox Gardner and a collection of Seattle Neighborhood Community Councils.

To celebrate its 10th anniversary, the organization released this compilation album—a blend of jazz, soul, blues, and Latin music—that features a host of Seattle artists and serves as a fundraiser benefiting the Carolyn Downs Family Medical Center, the only one of 13 original Black Panther-founded health care clinics still in operation. The CD clinic is named after Carolyn Downs, a Panther, activist, and mother who cared and championed tirelessly for her community.

With such a diverse collection spanning 17 tracks, there are plenty of highlights throughout, including the opening track, “Ey Brother” by Eugenie Jones. Jones introduces the compilation with soulful lyrics that give nod to the historical significance of the Central District. “Quincy and Ray – play every eye on stage” and “the Black and Tan is the Emerald City’s hottest stage” set the tone and theme of the collection. Jones’s vocals, accompanied by Bill Anschell’s piano and Alex Dugdale’s saxophone, capture a classic jazz atmosphere with a modern touch.

The album spans genres with tunes like “Negra Soy” by Todo Es, carrying a Latin fusion of trumpet, guitar, vibraphone, and steel drum. Jovino Santos Neto Quinteto’s “Red Velvet” brings the melodic vibes an influence of jazz fusion and ’70s compositions, creating a playful and quality composition. “Spangalang” by Reggie Goings introduces spoken word over swanky trumpet sounds, providing a historical narrative through vocals. 

Jazz legend Julian Priester’s “Julian’s Tune” adds a significant historical touch to the compilation. Since he arrived in Seattle, Preister has been a foundation in the Seattle jazz community and has played with jazz legends such as Sun Ra, Herbie Hancock, and Duke Ellington. “Julian’s Tune” is a classic throwback—featuring Priester’s swinging trombone solo, accompanied by late jazz icons Tommy Flanagan on piano, Sam Jones on bass, and Elvin Jones on drums—capturing the essence of a classic jazz tune that has influenced and inspired many musicians to follow in those footsteps.

The 10th Anniversary Jackson Street Jazz Walk Compilation Album is a captivating journey through the diverse sounds of Seattle’s Central District. It pays homage to the area’s storied jazz history while showcasing the genre’s evolution through the talented artists who have graced the Jackson Street Jazz Walk stages over the past decade. This album is not just a musical collection but a testament to the enduring legacy of jazz in the heart of Seattle.


Posted on

December 29, 2023