New Yorker, Joshua Breakstone was a child of diverse influences, from Broadway shows and the New York Philharmonic Orchestra to Hendrix, Zappa and Charlie Parker.
Originally he picked up the guitar at 14 and began playing with a high school band and although Joshua was exposed to jazz regularly as a kid, it didn’t quite caught his ear until he heard the trumpet solos of jazz prodigy, Lee Morgan.
Lee’s sound was exciting and made me want to hear more jazz. The fire Morgan played with grabbed me immediately and the way both he and Clifford Brown fully articulated each note has been an ideal toward which I work with regard to the sound I try and get on the guitar. When I heard Bird, I knew I wanted to play like him in the sense of playing things which are meaningful, emotional, and, more than anything else, irresistibly beautiful. The guitar is a real challenge because it tends to be a very visual instrument and lends itself to patterns. In a way, I try and get away from the guitar and into the world where music exists in and of itself, where ideas, articulation and sound exist apart and away from the instrument.
Breakstone graduated from New College in Florida and Berklee School of Music, then broadened his talents in Brazil before returning to New York where he taught, took graduate courses at NYU and performed with area favorites, Vinnie Burke, Warne Marsh, Emily Remler, Dave Schnitter, and Aaron Bell.
His recordings start in 1979 and his first release as leader came in 1983 with the album Wonderful!. Since then Joshua has been a part of over 20 recordings, his latest titled:
No One New with his trio, Lisle Atkinson on bass and Elliot Zigmond on drums.
Breakstone has and continues to tour world wide, perform coast to coast here in the U.S. and is highly sought out as a clinician and teacher.
The goal in jazz is one of self expression- to become a unique voice, to say something in our own way, with our own voice. It’s only in the taking of this leap- from someone who improvises to someone who communicates- that we go from being musicians, craftsmen, to becoming artists. I don’t worry about trying to be this thing or that other thing, my idea has always been to try and say something straight from my heart.
Join us this coming Monday for more insight and the straight ahead sounds of the heart from Joshua Breakstone, which is merely a warm up of things to come, with Trio performances following on Wednesday at Story Mansion with Kelly Roberti and Brad Edwards and then on Thursday at Cikans joined by guitarist Sheryl Bailey and Roberti on bass.
For more information or reservations contact Kelly.
Jazz and More is sponsored by Montana Ale Works.