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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    UA student to play among jazz legends

    At 6 years old, most kids are learning how to ride a bike, or graduating from Velcro straps to actual shoelaces. But when Max Goldschmid was 6, he learned how to play classical piano and began perfecting the skillset that now ranks him among nationally recognized musicians.

    Goldschmid, a performance freshman is not only the youngest ever participant of the Jazz Legends Benefit Concert, he is also the only student ever to have been invited to play with the Legends, said School of Music Professor and Southern Arizona Arts and Cultural Alliance Board Member Ed Reid.

    “I cannot remember in all of the performances that I’ve attended, I’ve never seen anyone else other than the five guest musicians,” Reid said. “What has happened in previous years is a group of U of A students have kind of warmed up that act … but never had a student stand up with them and actually perform next to each other.”

    Among this year’s professional jazz guests are internationally acclaimed trumpeter Byron Stripling, famous for his work on film and television productions, trombonist Andrew Martin, saxophonist Rickey Woodard, pianist Kenny Drew, drummer Joe La Barbera and Nicki Parrott, on bass and vocals. Each visiting artist comes from a vast background, some involving work with famous soundtracks or artists like Paul McCartney, Coldplay, Kanye West and Frank Sinatra, said Chelsey Killebrew, the board’s communications director.

    “I’m really excited,” Goldschmid said. “I feel intimidated a bit, but still honored. I think it will be a great experience and open up some doors for me. “

    Goldschmid, according to Reid, is at a level worthy of these prestigious musicians.

    “The level of musicianship and jazz playing is incredible,” Reid said. “When you hear all that, people will be intrigued by how wonderful it is, and then all of a sudden this 19-year-old steps up and it will be quite obvious that he is with his kindred spirits in terms of ability and knowledge of jazz.”

    Goldschmid began with the piano and continually added to his cache of instruments. Now, as a college freshman, he is considered a multi-instrumentalist prodigy with expertise in nearly every instrument he attempts.

    “He is a superb alto saxophone player, he is a brilliant trombonist and he is a wonderful trumpeter,” said Jazz Legends host Al Cook. “I think he can play just about anything. He’s a genius.”

    The Jazz Legends Benefit Concert will take place at Tucson Country Club beginning at 7 p.m. Friday. The concert is designed to help the community in the area of the arts. The funds from this year’s performance in particular will go toward SAACA’s campaign to make sure that arts and music remain in local schools, Cook said.

    “Music is the purest form of art,” Goldschmid said. “It’s the most honest way to express oneself. It’s a skill that I excel at more than most other skills that I have and it’s something that I feel like since I have this skill I should use it for the rest of my life. “

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