Chuck Redd with Michael Francis and Ricky Malachi to perform
By Christina Stock
Legendary jazz artists Chuck Redd, Roswell’s own Michael Francis and drummer extraordinaire Ricky Malichi will perform at Pecos Flavors Winery + Bistro, 412 W. Second St., March 12 at 7 p.m.
After enjoying a first-time, unique experience performing with the Roswell Symphony Orchestra earlier in the year, Francis and Malichi are looking forward to performing in a more intimate surrounding at the winery; and it is going to be an extra treat having drum and vibraphone musician Redd performing as well.
Francis is well-known in the area and nationwide, wearing many hats as musician and former director, promoter and organizer of the Roswell Jazz Festival, which he spearheaded. The musician started playing ragtime piano when he was only 18; his love for hot jazz and rhythm and blues became the biggest part of his life and career, next to his family.
In his long career he even owned a jazz club in El Paso where he produced concerts with Ray Charles, Dave Brubeck and Woody Herman to name a few.
Francis is most passionate about Latin jazz, and the audience can look forward to his unique style and entertaining background stories between the songs.
Malichi found his calling early in life, starting to study drums privately at the tender age of 8. Award-time came when he entered high school, where he received eight first division solo and ensemble awards. He was also a member of the All City and All State Bands in El Paso, Texas, where he grew up. His senior year he was the recipient of the John Philip Sousa Award.
Many awards followed. Becoming a virtuoso in his field, his professional music career included performances with big names in the genre, such as Chuck Berry, Herbie Mann, David “Fathead” Newman and Houston Person to name a few. Malichi’s accomplishments reach far and wide and he has been part of the Roswell Jazz Festival, returning each year to perform. In 2015 he was named its guest of honor.
Malichi’s biggest passion is reaching the next generation. He spends as much time as he can with his private students, and visiting public schools and universities to share his love for music.
Redd’s love and mastery of his instruments of choice — drums and vibraphone — are legendary. He began recording and touring around the world when he joined the the Charlie Byrd Trio and The Great Guitars — with Barney Kessel, Byrd Ellis and Herb Ellis — at the age of 21.
To Redd’s credit are 25 European tours and six tours of Japan, with the Barney Kessel Trio, Ken Peplowski and the Benny Goodman Tribute Orchestra, Terry Gibbs and Conte Candoli. He served as Artist-In-Residence at The Smithsonian Jazz Café in Washington, D.C. from 2004-2008.
Next to be a favorite at the Roswell Jazz Festival, Redd is known as the musical director of The Oregon Festival of American Music. He is a featured soloist, annually at The Roswell Jazz Festival, and at the W.C. Handy Music Festival, The Newport Beach Jazz Party, The West Texas Jazz Party, The North Carolina Jazz Festival and The Colorado Springs Jazz Party.
Other appearances recently are, according to Redd, “Jazz at Lincoln Center and Birdland, headlining at Smalls, Mezzrow and The Kitano in New York City and leading groups and presenting educational programs around the U.S. (He has) toured and performed with legends Dizzy Gillespie, Mel Torme, Tommy Flanagan, Ray Brown, John Clayton, Monty Alexander, Laurindo Almeida and Tal Farlow. Recently, Redd has worked with artists that include Rebecca Kilgore, Bill Charlap, Nicki Parrott, Scott Hamilton, Houston Person and Tom Scott.”
Redd can look back being featured on more than 85 recordings, including his Arbors CD, All This and Heaven Too, featuring Gene Bertoncini and George Mraz; Chopin Jazz with Rossano Sportiello; You’re My Everything”with Dick Hyman and Jay Leonhart; and Nice N’ Easy with Houston Person.
He can also be heard on the sound track to the popular television series “The Great Chefs” and the NPR broadcast “Jazz Smithsonian”.
Redd’s career highlights include a concert with the Dizzy Gillespie Quintet in Africa for the Namibian Independence Celebration; a recital at the White House with the Barney Kessel Trio; four concerts at Carnegie Hall with the Mel Torme Quintet,The Great Guitars and The Charlie Byrd Trio and an appearance on “The Tonight Show.” In 2008, he was a featured soloist on the finale concert at The Lionel Hampton International Jazz festival with The Lionel Hampton Big Band and the Clayton/Hamilton Jazz Orchestra.
In 2013, Redd performed with the Dream Band, co-leading with Jeff Hamilton in a salute to vibes legend Terry Gibbs. He was the 2014 honoree at The Roswell Jazz Festival and was the 2013 Los Angeles Jazz Society’s Vibes Summit honoree.
In addition to leading his own groups, Redd was a member of the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra for 15 years. He frequently performs in New York City and is touring nationally at festivals and clubs. He is on the faculty at The University of Maryland School of Music and presents master classes, workshops and lectures around the country.
Redd has a multitude of critically acclaimed CDs out — his newest release in 2019 is called Groove City, featuring John Di Martino, Nicki Parrott, Lewis Nash and Jerry Weldon.
For fans of the Roswell Jazz Festival, the annual fundraiser will be on April 26 at the Anderson Museum of Contemporary Art. A day earlier, professional musicians and instructors will offer feedback and instruction at a jazz workshop at AMoCA, which includes Francis, Charles Gordon, Malichi, Kent Taylor, and Eric Unsworth. More details will follow.
For more information about the concert at the winery, visit pecosflavorswinery.com or call 575-627-6265.
For more information on the Roswell Jazz Festival, visit roswelljazz.org.