Jazz legend Dave Brubeck died nearly a year ago, but the legacy of the University of the Pacific alumnus lives on in his music, his record on social justice and in the programs supported by the University’s Brubeck Institute.
Tributes to the 1942 Pacific graduate, who died Dec. 5, 2012, a day shy of his 92nd birthday, have been held at major jazz venues and festivals throughout the year and several more are planned for 2014.
“The past year’s celebrations of Dave Brubeck’s life have been a tribute to him as an extraordinarily innovative jazz musician and composer, but also apt recognition of the truly honorable way he carried himself as a human being,” said Simon Rowe, executive director of the Brubeck Institute. “His legacy goes well beyond his music to the way he lived his life.”
That life and legacy will be celebrated again beginning 7 p.m. Dec. 5 at Take 5 Jazz at the Brew, a partnership between Pacific and Valley Brewing Co., located at 157 W. Adams St.
“I think this will be a wonderful way to remember Dave’s music and the kind of man he was,” said Rowe. “It really should be a wonderful evening.”
The next major tribute comes with the opening in January of the six-month exhibit Dave Brubeck: Jazz Ambassador at Jazz at Lincoln Center in New York City. Then comes the 2014 Brubeck Festival: Coast to Coast, March 27-29, in Stockton. Festival headliners include Grammy Award winners Al Jarreau, Eddie Palmieri and Terri Lyne Carrington. The celebration continues in April with the Dave Brubeck Festival at Jazz at Lincoln Center. That will include performances of new arrangements of Brubeck’s music by the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis, and performances by Brubeck’s sons, and current and past Brubeck Institute Jazz Quintet members. Rowe said the Jazz at Lincoln Center event was one of the last that Dave Brubeck helped to organize.
Efforts in the past year to honor Dave Brubeck’s memory have included:
Brubeck Institute Jazz Quintet performed many concerts for area schoolchildren;
BIJQ regularly performed at the Take 5 Jazz at the Brew club in Stockton;
BIJQ earned two consecutive DownBeat Awards for best undergraduate collegiate jazz recording;
Brubeck Institute conducted the 2013 Brubeck Festival with headliners Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis, the Brubeck Brothers Quartet, and Tom Harrell;
Talented high school jazz musicians from across the nation were hosted at Pacific during the Summer Jazz Colony to hone musical skills and gain valuable performance experience;
BIJQ performed at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C., and the United Nations for the first-ever Dave Brubeck Forum, Jazz: A Language for Peace;
BIJQ played with Russian jazz great Igor Butman for An American-Russian Tribute to Jazz Diplomacy in Washington D.C.;
BIJQ played at the 2013 Monterey Jazz Festival;
BIJQ was the featured entertainment during the October announcement of the $125 million Powell Gift made to Pacific, with Eugene “The Senator” Wright, the last remaining Dave Brubeck Quartet member, in attendance.
About the Brubeck Institute
The Brubeck Institute was established by the University of the Pacific in 2000 to honor its distinguished alumni, Dave and Iola Brubeck. The mission of the institute is to build on Dave Brubeck’s legacy and his lifelong dedication to music, creativity, education, and the advancement of important social issues including civil rights, environmental concerns, international relations and social justice. The Institute maintains five programs, including the Brubeck Collection, the Brubeck Fellowship, the Brubeck Festival, Summer Jazz Colony, and the Brubeck Outreach Program.