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Award-Winning Jazz Doc Jazz Nights: A Confidential Journey Looking For Community Support To Release Worldwide

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The incredibly intimate Jazz music doc about an illicit 2-year residency performed by some of Los Angeles' premier jazz musicians is raising funds via Seed & Spark for the music, vintage stills and archival footage rights to make JAZZ NIGHTS accessible worldwide via streaming.
Jazz Nights: A Confidential Journey hopes to raise $33,685 to release this award-winning music doc to the world via Streaming.

Jazz Nights: A Confidential Journey has launched a crowdfunding campaign on Seed & Spark to raise the funds needed to attain the music, vintage stills and archival footage rights needed to release JAZZ NIGHTS worldwide via Streaming.

After a year-long international festival run and winning the Audience Award at the 2017 Copenhagen Jazz Film Festival (part of the Copenhagen Winter Jazz Fest), JAZZ NIGHTS’ Seed & Spark campaign is offering contribution incentives ranging from $5 to $10,000.

Contributors are given the opportunity to pick which songs, stills or archival footage clips they would like to contribute toward and be the credited benefactors of and all contributions are tax deductible. Jazz Nights: A Confidential Journey is a fiscally sponsored project of the International Documentary Association (IDA), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

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Jazz Nights: A Confidential Journey chronicles eight of L.A.’s premiere jazz musicians who, from 2011-2013, congregated in alternating configurations every Sunday night at an illegal, members-only, back-room hash bar hidden in the heart of Hollywood.

Once a week, these expert musicians formed a circle, a coterie of non-verbal, intuitive communication. There were no pre-determined set lists, no rehearsals. Attendance was through word-of-mouth only, no public advertising. The result was an all-out exploration—both personal and communal—of what it means to be an artist, to take risks, and to passionately follow one’s heart. By time the final note is played,Jazz Nights: A Confidential Journey reveals itself to be far more than a document of musicians or a single event in time; it is a microcosm of the creative and intuitive human experience that has been with us since the dawn of mankind and continues to be a necessary pilgrimage, both personal and cultural, for so many the world over.

From the Director

Producer/director Hal Masonberg explains, “The caliber of musicianship, the setting, and the fortuity to capture this snapshot in time, spoke to my passions. I wanted to capture the vitality and fearlessness of these supremely intuitive musicians in the midst of such significant and historic cultural change. I also wanted to share the music itself, this supreme and powerful force that has come to embody not just the different traits and sensibilities of America–jazz’s country of origin–but the innumerable global influences that have worked their way into and enhanced this deeply vibrant and exploratory music.

“My desire from the outset was to make a film that moved like jazz music itself. The themes would be laid out like individual songs in a setlist. Each song, each chapter, would have its own mood, its own energy and, as the artist driving the story forward, I would allow all the different pieces to come together both as individual pieces and as a whole. These pieces would ebb and flow and interact with one another, support one another as the film itself set out on an expedition to the outer edges of those themes and then, like jazz music itself, work its way back.”

Funding Required

Jazz Nights contains 12 Songs, 14 Stills & 2 archival clips that require licensing rights in order for the film to be shown. Without these licensing rights,Jazz Nights cannot be made available to the public in any form. These rights will allow Jazz Nights to be released worldwide via Subscription-Video-On-Demand (SVOD) services (e.g. Netflix, Amazon Video, Hulu Plus) and Transactional-Video-On-Demand (TVOD) services (e.g. Amazon, iTunes, Google Play). In addition to the licensing rights, Jazz Nights must also raise distribution costs which includes insurance and a distribution aggregator (Distribber).

Praise for Jazz Nights

“I had such a strong feeling of direct engagement with the music and the artists, that there was nothing in between… It so effectively conveys many of the reasons jazz is so powerful and vital.” –Steve Isoardi, author The Dark Tree: Jazz and the Community Arts in Los Angeles, Central Avenue Sounds: Jazz in Los Angeles, Songs of the Unsung: The Musical and Social Journey of Horace Tapscott

“At the heart of creative music, there is the language of life, truth, love, tragedy and expression. The therapeutically shared musical catharsis that emanates from Jazz was intimately captured with rich color, texture and solid sound storytelling. A documentary for all to see!” –LeRoy Downs “The Jazzcat,” Los Angeles jazz radio broadcaster, producer, writer, festival host and curator of the New Just Jazz Series.

“These musicians came together collaborating with a film director and provided an impromptu look at what the future will bring when artists are free to create in a space that has no judgement. The music that is heard is not only an ambiance, or nuance, it is a movement that will set a standard of what underground Jazz means in Los Angeles. Jazz Nights: A Confidential Journey gives back the essence and meaning of real straight-ahead Jazz.” –A.K. Toney, Los Angeles-based jazz poet, writer and performance artist.

“Hal Masonberg’s sensual, understated documentary JAZZ NIGHTS: A CONFIDENTIAL JOURNEY makes a case for jazz returning to the night. And not just the literal night but the night of alternative spaces of the L.A. underground and word-of-mouth, to music free from club and record label skulduggery and allowed to breath again.” –Matthew Duersten, StompBeast.

“The film makers got it right, balancing superb music with an ongoing and intelligent contemplation/narrative from the performers about jazz and its pursuit. Highly recommended.” –Dennis McNally, Cultural historian, author and Grateful Dead publicist.

About the Music

Jazz Nights' featured musicians are some of L.A.'s finest and most renowned: saxophonist Geoff Gallegos, guitarist Emile Porée, trombone player Shaunte Palmer, trumpet player Jordan Katz, guitarist Jon Dalton, guitarist Mike Khalil, drummer Josh Duron, and bassist JP Maramba.

JAZZ NIGHTS pulls the curtain back revealing the lives and struggles of these jazz musicians in a city no longer considered a “jazz town,” why they remain in L.A., what the city means to them and why performing here and building a daring musical community feels so very critical to their existence, their very identities.

The live music captured in Jazz Nights is emotionally exhilarating, meditative, sensual and hypnotic. Combined with intimate conversations exploring the personal journeys of each individual involved, their fears and desires, their struggles, triumphs and influences, the audience will be taken on a journey of their own, one that begs us to explore this human need to be understood, to voice our feelings, to share our vulnerabilities and strengths through artistic means. These events, these gatherings, happen daily in the warm glow of small backrooms across the globe, unobserved by the casual passerby and most certainly out of the purview of the machines of industry.

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