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Jim Witzel-1

Saturday, May 20th – 7:30pm
Jim Witzel Quartet

Jim Witzel, guitar
Dann Zinn, saxophone
Brian Ho, organ
Jason Lewis, drums

$20 cover charge; BYOB
Reservations, call 415-586-3733

Tonight at Bird & Beckett, Jim Witzel’s working quartet draws on original material from their current release, Feelin’ It, along with pieces from Jim’s album Give and Take, with a few standard tunes thrown in for good measure.

Born and raised in the North Bay, Jim studied under John Handy at San Francisco State and went on to freelance extensively around the Bay Area, working clubs and concerts as both a leader and sideman with such players as Mark Isham, Art Lande, Mike Clark, Delbert Bump, Michael Barsimanto, Glenn Cronkite, Mike Formanek, Chris Amberger and Tod Dickow. During this period he joined the “Life is Color” band along with vocalist Jesse Foster and vibist Jon Ericson, and hosted a weekly television series “Jazz After Midnight.”

Jim studied under guitarist Howard Roberts in Los Angeles, and worked there for several years, freelancing with notable jazz masters including Bob Sheppard, Scott Colley, Henry Butler, Richie Cole, Casey Schuerell and Clay Jenkins. In about 1990, he recorded a trio album (Up Until Now) with bassist John Patitucci and drummer Ralph Penland that was lost in a label dissolution, and in 1992 released an album of original music (Give and Take) with an all-star band that included Ernie Watts, Russ Ferrante, Marc Johnson, Ralph Penland and John Abercrombie.

Returning to the Bay Area shortly after, Jim formed a new band performing the material from Give and Take. That group, featuring saxophonist Dann Zinn, drummer Wally Schnalle and pianist Murray Low, performed at the 1996 Monterey Jazz Festival and well as the San Jose and Stanford Summer Jazz festivals. Jim later toured Italy multiple times with both the San Jose Jazz Festival Quartet and the Giulio Cappiozo Quintet.

Jim continues to lead his own quartet, now with Dann Zinn on tenor sax, Brian Ho on Hammond B-3 organ and Jason Lewis on drums, with whom he made Feelin’ It. He continues to work as a sideman with many first-call Bay Area jazz musicians. Jim is also on faculty as Professor of Jazz Guitar Studies at both San Francisco State and Santa Clara Universities and also gives individual instruction.


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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