The Paul Hemmings Uketet
The humble ukulele has sat on the back burner throughout most of Jazz music's rich history. Paul Hemmings is determined to change that.
With The Paul Hemmings Uketet (pronounced yook-TET), the unassuming four-stringed Hawaiian instrument takes its place front and center, alongside bass and drums, in a contemporary jazz trio that pushes the boundaries of what has often been considered a mere novelty instrument. Based in New York City, Hemmings draws upon the ukulele's inherent warmth and beauty to perform a blend of original compositions, jazz standards, and contemporary classics, all the while showcasing the virtues of the diminutive instrument. From the Hawaiian Islands to the Island of Manhattan, The Paul Hemmings Uketet combines the warm spirit of Aloha with the vibrancy of New York's world-renowned jazz scene to offer an original twist on the instrumental jazz trio.
With a repertoire ranging from Thelonious Monk and Antonio-Carlos Jobim to Bob Marley and The Beatles, IntroducingThe Paul Hemmings Uketet was released in 2012 on Leading Tone Records, and in the intervening months Paul has brought his distinctive jazz ukulele stylings to festivals far and wide (including the Wine Country Ukulele Festival, the New York Ukulele Festival, and the Cairns Ukulele Festival in Australia), in addition to appearances at jazz clubs from coast to coast.
Viewing music through a wide-angle lens, Paul Hemmings incorporates elements of jazz, free improvisation, and world music into a signature style that has been called "bold, beautiful, and full of promise." A jazz guitar player by training, he has released five albums over the past decade, including critically acclaimed recordings with saxophonists John Tchicai and Eric Alexander, in addition to his work with The Paul Hemmings Uketet. His proclivity for crossing musical boundaries led All About Jazz to write, "Hemmings' mixture of cultures, influences, and genres, exploring the edges of harmony and rhythm, is remarkably fresh and a complete success."
For this performance at Empty Sea Studios, Paul will once again be joined by Chris Symer on upright bass and Claudio Rochat-Felix, both established fixtures on the Seattle jazz scene. This lineup of The Paul Hemmings Uketet made its debut in October of 2012 with concerts at The Upright Bistro in Port Townsend and The Triple Door in Seattle.
"The ukulele has been riding a wave of resurgent popularity in recent yearsbut while many of the current crop of ukulele players focus solely on technical virtuosity, few have incorporated the sophisticated language of modern jazz as successfully as Paul Hemmings." The Davis Enterprise
Empty Sea Studios (View)
6300 Phinney Ave N
Seattle, WA 98103
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