SOMERS — The sixth annual SE Wisconsin Hearing Center Jazz Series, presented by and its owner and UW-Parkside alum, Dave Braun, a local jazz guitarist, will be held at 7 p.m. Saturday, May 19, in Bedford Concert Hall at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside, 900 Wood Road.
The free concert will feature the music of two national musicians, jazz guitarist Frank Potenza and bassist Luther Hughes, and a local jazz drummer, Pete Braun. More about the musicians:
Capri recording artist Frank Potenza is a protégé of the legendary jazz guitarist Joe Pass. He was born in Providence, R.I., and has lived in Los Angeles since 1980. Potenza holds a bachelor's degree from Boston’s Berklee College of Music and a master's degree from California State University at Los Angeles. He is an active educator, composer, arranger and performer with nine solo albums to his credit.
In addition to his extensive solo and freelance recording careers, Potenza has performed in concert with Dizzy Gillespie, Joe Pass, George Van Eps, Mundell Lowe, Joe Diorio, John Clayton, Bud Shank, Mose Allison, James Moody, Harry “Sweets” Edison, Rob McConnell, Brother Jack McDuff, Jimmy Smith, Joe Sample, Ronnie Laws, Conti Candoli, Buddy Collette, Andy Simpkins, Ernie Andrews, Eddie Harris, Dr. Lonnie Smith and many other jazz luminaries.
From 1996 to 1999, Potenza toured as a member of the Gene Harris Quartet, performing with the Grammy award-winning pianist at jazz festivals such as the Fujitsu Concord Jazz Festival and jazz clubs such as the Blue Note in New York, Jazz Showcase in Chicago and Jazz Alley in Seattle. He is a featured soloist on Alley Cats, Harris’ final recording for Concord Records. Frank has performed with his own groups at venues such as the Orange County Performing Arts Center, KSDS Live in San Diego, the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts and Catalina Bar & Grill.
He tours in support of his current Capri Records Ltd release entitled "For Joe," which is a tribute to his mentor and main influence, Joe Pass. His previous release on Capri is entitled "Old, New, Borrowed & Blue." Earlier releases on Azica Records were "First Takes," a duo project with pianist Shelly Berg and "The Legacy," which is dedicated to the memory of the late pianist Gene Harris. It features pianist Larry Fuller (formerly of the Ray Brown Trio and currently with John Pizzarelli), bassist Luther Hughes and drummer Paul Kreibich, both former members of the Gene Harris Quartet.
Potenza is the author of several texts for the USC Thornton Guitar Instructional Series. He is also a charter Member of the Jazz Education Network. Potenza was inducted into the Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame in April, 2017.
Bassist Luther Hughes received his training at the University of Cincinnati's College Conservatory of Music and Long Beach City College, earning his bachelor's degree from California State Long Beach. Hughes is involved in the music business in a number of ways.
As a musician, he currently leads The Cannonball-Coltrane Project, tours occasionally with Nancy Wilson and performs regularly in and around Los Angeles. For more than 35 years, he has performed or recorded with jazz legends such as Gene Harris, Mundell Lowe, Joe Henderson, Carmen MacRae, Willie Bobo, Horace Silver, Harold Land, Don Ellis, Joe Pass, Louis Bellson and Hampton Hawes.
As a record producer and music publisher, Hughes heads up Primrose Lane Music, which he founded in 2004.
As an educator, Hughes has formerly taught at California State University Long Beach, Golden West College and the Musicians Institute. He currently teaches at Saddleback College as well as Cal State Fullerton and also serves as the Southern California regional director for Bruce Forman's JazzMasters Workshop.
Pete Braun is a member of the Dave Braun Trio. He plays in the Midwest from Milwaukee to Chicago. Braun studied with Mark Pulice and Willie Jones III, and has played with Jack Wilkins, Ben Paterson, Tim Fox, Eric Jacobson and others.
There is no admission fee to the concert; donations will be accepted at the door, with proceeds going to a scholarship fund at UW-Parkside. Free parking is available in Lots B and C. For more concert information, go to https://uwp.edu/therita/index.cfm.