In our third edition of WHAT’S GOOD(?) we highlight Dan Wilkins: jazz artist, accomplished saxophonist, composer, bandleader, and educator. His influences range from Dexter Gordon to Pujyashri Deepakbhai Desai. Profile by Griffin Woodard.
If you were to see the titles Transfigured, Ebb and Flow, Of Distant Lands, Unraveled, and Soar, you might think you were about to read the treatises of a world explorer, Buddhist monk, or mystic poet. Although he may have certain qualities from each, Lehigh Valley, PA native Dan Wilkins is first and foremost a jazz artist; an accomplished saxophonist, composer, bandleader, and educator. His influences range from Dexter Gordon to Pujyashri Deepakbhai Desai, for example. Wilkins’ sound is like a breath of fresh, cold air which carries the distant majesty of ancient, candle-lit castles; his melodies speak like noble tales of warriors and pilgrims, ever on a journey.
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Props to the homie Kat for adding to her legacy of dropping the illest Fela Kuti celebrations to date, Black President’s Day. If you’ve never been to a Lil SoSo event (Kat’s experience and event design agency) then you’re missing out on some of the most engaging and original events and creative salons, globally, and if you’ve never been to her Black President’s Day events then re-read what I just wrote.
The crowds and energy are amazing, and add to that world renown DJs, live musicians, the highly anticipated Queens Stroll, and video montages of Fela’s performances and speeches, and you’ve got yourself a memorable time. It sounds simple, right, but you’ve also got to have the mix of everything on top of experience or it simply won’t work.
Our SHAOLIN JAZZ in Ethiopia programming is far from over. Join us on Saturday June 4th, at Tropicalia in DC, as we conduct a special edition of SHAOLIN JAZZ L!VE where we fuse our influences from our trip to Addis Ababa with our live performance. For tickets and more info click here.