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in San Francisco's Glen Park neighborhood

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Jazz is Back at Bird & Beckett!
The Duncan James Trio
Live Stream this Sunday
December 27 at 7:30p.m.

Master guitarist Duncan James,  harmonically sophisticated and always swingin’,
has played jazz on our stage countless times in the last couple of decades.

He returns to Bird & Beckett for his traditional last-Sunday-of-the-year-booking,
this time with Carla Kaufman on bass and Benny Watson on piano.


Tune in this evening at 7:30 pm on
Facebook     or     YouTube


Here’s a little taste of what Duncan does so well!

Duncan James has performed with George Barnes, Howard Alden, Bruce Foreman, Mundell Lowe, Marilyn McCoo, Eartha Kitt, Michael Feinstein, Bernadette Peters, Barbara Cook, Chet Baker, Bobby McFerrin, Jimmy Witherspoon, Frankie Laine, Bob Hope, Les Brown, Eddie Sauter, the San Francisco Symphony and the San Francisco Ballet Orchestra. Besides countless clubs, bars, restaurants and concert halls, he’s played at the San Francisco, San Jose, Sacramento, Concord and Russian River Jazz Festivals.

Duncan’s recording credits include three recordings with George Barnes, including his 2003 release on the Concord Jazz Guitar Collection Vols. 1 and 2 CD, his own trio with vocalist Madeline Eastman, five recordings with Turk Murphy vocalist Pat Yankee and two CDs with blues/jazz singer Darlene Langston, including “Street of Dreams” released in 2007. He also has a self produced solo CD, Duncan James “Solo Jazz Guitar”, is prominently featured on Jim Rothermel’s CDs “NeoClassic Swing” and “Memories of You”, and on San Francisco blues diva Dr. Margie Baker’s CD “Live at Rasselas” released in 2010 and “So Many Stars” released in 2014. Duncan’s CD “All My Tomorrows” was released in 2010, available on the Jim Luellen Music Company web site .

He began teaching guitar in 1964, including four years as adjunct faculty at Lone Mountain College in San Francisco – 1972-1976 – and three years as a public school instrumental music teacher in Springfield and Miamisburg, Ohio – 1968-1971. He participated in the Bay Area Young Audience Program from 1981-1991 and began teaching jazz at Guitar Solo of San Francisco in 1986. He is also a mentor for Jazzmasters Workshop having taught three guitar workshops in 2001. Mr. James holds a Bachelor of Music degree from The Ohio State University and has done post graduate work at Wright State University and Central State University in Ohio.

“Where does one begin with Duncan James, the venerable swing jazz guitarist?”- David McGee (Just Jazz Guitar Magazine May 2013)

“San Francisco-based jazz guitarist Duncan James is an old-school jazz guitar master.” – (Just Jazz Guitar Feb. 2011)

Other selected press:

“James’ elegant guitar brilliance”- Phil Elwood (San Francisco Examiner 01/12/1978)

“Relaxed, easy swing and strong sense of melody”- Jesse Hamlin (San Francisco Chronicle 11/16/1983)

“Enjoyable mainstream playing”- Jesse Hamlin (San Francisco Chronicle 2/12/84)

“…an intelligent and skilled mainstream Jazz guitarist”- Derk Richardson (SF Guardian 05/23/1984)

“The great James” – Phil Elwood (San Francisco Examiner 06/08/1984)

“…beautifully constructed riffs”- M. Flicker (Palo Alto Jazz Alliance Dec. 1992)

“Veteran jazz mainstreamer”- Phil Elwood (San Francisco Examiner 08/21/1995 )

“Outstanding”- Phil Elwood (http://www.jazzwest.com 11/8/2002)

“Suave and swinging…a chord-comping master who also turns in impressive solos.”…”With flawless timing and intonation, Barnes and Duncan find common ground between the twin fiddles of Texas swing and the smoky horns of Count Basie’s big band.”- Andy Ellis (Guitar Player Magazine July 2003)

“…including the great San Franciscan on guitar, Duncan James…one of the best on the record” – Frank Goodman (www.puremusic.com)

“Top notch…guitarist Duncan James” (Jazz Search Community Nov. 2010)

“Duncan’s masterful use of chord-melody and his bebop-infused single note lines create a true jazz guitar tour de force.” – Marc S. Schwartz (Just Jazz Guitar Feb. 2011)

“James’ tastefulness as an accompanist to Baker’s strong singing is perhaps best shown on his playing on ‘Please Send Me Someone To Love'” – Ron W. (Jazz and Blues Report issue 334 Mar. 2011)

“Jazz guitarist Duncan James, a swing jazz ‘Keeper of the Flame'” – (http://www.jazzwest.com June 2013)


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The Bird & Beckett Cultural Legacy Project

Our events are put on under the umbrella of the nonprofit Bird & Beckett Cultural Legacy Project (the "BBCLP"). That's how we fund our ambitious schedule of 300 or so concerts and literary events every year.

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The IMA can be a conduit for you, if you join in to make it work.


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