July 20, 2006

Rippington's 20th Anniversary Tour Coming to Gerald Veasley's Jazz Base

RussFreeman.jpgIf you've never heard the Rippingtons up close and personal, here is a great opportunity to do just that! What a great venue in which to hear a band that has helped set the standard for innovative and dynamic music in jazz over the last two decades. Tickets will go fast, so don't delay!

The Rippingtons 20th Anniversary Tour featuring original band members Russ Freeman, Jeff Kashiwa, Steve Reid, Kim Stone, Bill Heller and Dave Karasony is coming Saturday, August 19th to Gerald Veasley's Jazz Base at the Sheraton Reading Hotel.

The Ripps will be performing two spectacular shows on that special evening at 7 and 10 p.m. Tickets are $30 per show. Seating is limited to 140 per show.

The Rippingtons, founded by Russ Freeman in 1987, pioneered the smooth jazz landscape and have been a dominant presence in contemporary music ever since.

Their groundbreaking album, Moonlighting, was voted the No. 1 Most Influential Contemporary Jazz Album of all time by Jazziz magazine.

But Moonlighting was only the beginning of memorable Rippington music. Such hit recordings as Kilimanjaro, Tourist in Paradise, Welcome to the St. James Club, Curves Ahead, Weekend In Monaco, Live in L.A., Sahara, Brave New World, Black Diamond, Topaz, Live Across America, Life in the Tropics, Let It Ripp! and Wild Card kept embellishing their legacy one disc at a time.

To mark their 20th anniversary milestone, Freeman, true to his creative and innovative spirit as a composer and producer, opted not to merely crank out a greatest hits package. Instead, he concocted the exciting idea of an all-star Ripps class reunion.

So in addition to a celebratory tour, he came up with a remarkable new CD/DVD package that includes a CD of all news Ripps music and a DVD featuring a colorful retrospective as well as exciting videos from over the years. He gathered all Rippingtons recording and touring members past and present to alternate on 10 brand new compositions and a sizzling medley featuring newly recorded snippets of nine classic Ripps cuts. The end result is a marvelous medley of music simply but aptly entitled The Rippingtons 20th Anniversary.

Performing at Gerald Veasley's Jazz Base will be a Ripps reunion group featuring such accomplished artists as Freeman on guitar, saxophonist Jeff Kasahiwa, percussionist Steve Reid, bassist Kim Stone, keyboardist Bill Heller and drummer Dave Karasony.

When Freeman started the band, he vowed it would never break up -- that it would survive the inevitable personnel changes and evolve its sound naturally over time. He didn't break that vow.

So Gerald Veasley's Jazz Base at the Sheraton Reading Hotel on August 19th promises to be hosting a magic moment in time when patrons can savor where The Rippingtons have been and rejoice that they still are vibrant, creative and excited about the future.

Tickets are $30 each show. Seating is limited to 140 per show.

Tickets can be purchased by:

Calling CD Exchange at 610-777-2310 to order by phone.
Stopping by the CD Exchange, 360 E. Wyomissing Ave., Mohnton, PA, during regular business hours Tuesday through Saturday.
Stopping by Thursday nights at Gerald Veasley's Jazz Base at the Sheraton Reading Hotel.
Ordering online at www.berksjazzfest.com

We hope to see you at the show! The Jazz Base is sure to become one of your favorite venues, if it isn't already!

Happy Jazzin'

Beverly Packard
Jazz Circle Member of the Berks Arts Council
Reading, Pennsyvania

Posted by Beverly J. Packard at July 20, 2006 3:15 PM