Live music returns to St. James Park Sunday May 21st, 2023!
Food trucks and drink concessions
Sundays, May & June 2023
5/21, 5/28, 6/4, 6/11, & 6/18
3:30 pm – 7:00 pm
Sunday, May 21, 2023
Maurice “Mobetta” Brown
+ Opener: Melanie Charles
Trumpet sensation Maurice “Mobetta” Brown orbits simultaneously through three worlds: contemporary jazz, blues-rock and cutting-edge hip hop. He’s a mastermind as a trumpeter, composer, arranger, and producer. When Maurice picks up his horn, his soulful melodies soar into a rarefied space that uniquely marries be-bop to hip-hop and rock, producing his own distinctive sound.
The Chicago area native won the national Miles Davis Trumpet Competition as a teenager, followed by a move to Louisiana to study under legendary clarinetist Alvin Batiste. His critically acclaimed debut, “HIP TO BOP”, recorded in New Orleans, foreshadowed Brown’s unique talent for creating fresh bop-inflected jazz with an urban pulse. Unfortunately, Hurricane Katrina’s devastation forced Maurice to relocate, taking his horn to New York where he established himself by recording with Aretha Franklin, Wyclef Jean, De La Soul, Macy Gray, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Lettuce and The Roots.
His second album, THE CYCLE OF LOVE was named by NPR and the Huffington Post as one of the best records of the year. Brown embraced his be-bop roots with hip-hop hooks and laid raw his dogged insistence on charting his own musical course after a life uprooted post-Katrina. Maurice was then invited to join the newly formed Tedeschi-Trucks Band where he won a Grammy for his horn arrangements on the band’s debut album, “Revelator”. His trumpet was a wailing counterpoint to Derek Truck’s searing guitar wizardry and became a staple of the TTB sound.
Brown’s immersion into hip hop as musician/producer/lyricist culminated in the 2014 release of “MAURICE vs. MOBETTA”. This groundbreaking alter-ego album remixed The Cycle of Love with fresh and innovative hip hop beats. Brown’s jazz roots were enhanced through the lens of a hip-hop perspective. Talib Kweli, Prodigy of Mobb Deep, Consequence and Jean Grae’s spitting rhymes are met by Mobetta’s own, while his trumpet circles effortlessly throughout every track.
He left TTB to reignite his solo career as a musician/producer, setting up a second home in Los Angeles while performing internationally and producing album tracks for Talib, Omar, and Prodigy. Maurice’s third album “THE MOOD” mixed his instinctive jazz roots, soulful melodies and vocals, including the politically charged Stand Up, with guest artist Kweli and Maurice trading vocals powered by his potent trumpet. In 2018, Maurice joined Grammy award-winning superstar Anderson .Paak and The Free Nationals on their worldwide tours. He also performed on Ramsey Lewis and Kenny Garrett’s recent albums, while making his Broadway debut with Dave Chappelle along with Paak and bassist extraordinaire Thundercat. Maurice partnered with jazz megastar Kamasi Washington for his run of sold-out shows at Hollywood Bowl, Barclay’s Center and the New Orleans Jazz Fest. Most recently, Maurice composed the horn arrangements on Grammy winning rapper Logic’s latest album. He has also appeared on the Tonight Show, Jimmy Kimmel, The Daily Show and the Colbert show.
Maurice ended 2019 with a sold-out run at San Francisco’s Black Cat and begins 2020 with a six-show residency at New York’s famed Blue Note. The Maurice “Mobetta” Brown sound has become mainstream as he charts his own musical course with constant evolution, crossover fluidity, coupled with an intuitive vision that lights a fire under traditional jazz, adds sonic brass to rock n’ roll and creatively pushes the production envelope in hip-hop.
There are very few artists whose sound can capture the sentiments of a generation. The Brooklyn born and raised, Melanie Charles, is one of these artists. Over the past few decades, she has made a name for herself through dynamic engagements with jazz, soul, and R&B. Her bold genre-bending style has been embraced by a range of artists including Wynton Marsalis, SZA, Mach-Hommy, Gorillaz, and The Roots. In 2021, she appeared on NPR’s Tiny Desk and stunned with her eclectic style. Through it all, she has remained committed to making music that pushes listeners to consider new possibilities—both sonically and politically. “Make Jazz Trill Again,” a project that she launched in 2016, demonstrates her allegiance to everyday people, especially the youth and is focused on taking jazz from the museum to the streets. “I love jazz, I really fell in love with it deeply. But I was interested in young people interacting with it,” Charles says. The album Y’all Don’t (Really) Care About Black Women is reflective of Charles’ tremendous versatility and imagination as an artist but of also her deep care for community.
Sunday, May 28, 2023
Los Yesterdays + Special Guest
Founded by producer/drummer, Gabriel Rowland and singer/songwriter, Victor Benavides in Pasadena, CA in 2017, Los Yesterdays wanted to create music that recalled their childhood days as young chicanos. “Souldies” is how they describe their contemporary take on the deep soul tracks they modeled their sound after. R & B greats such as Little Anthony, Gene Chandler and James & Bobby Purify to name a few. After writing and recording a few tracks, the songs eventually ended up in the hands of acclaimed producer/guitarist, Tom Brenneck who was working with the late Charles Bradley amongst other projects. Tommy was a fan of the songs but finding out Los Yesterdays were only a duo, he decided to see if his friend, Gabe Roth would be interested in starting a project. Roth, being best known as producer/bass player/bandleader for the late Sharon Jones, as well as the co-founder of Daptone Records. After a few barbecues and meetings with Roth and Tommy, they decided to have a jam session and, in the summer of 2018, a band was formed. And so, we give you, Los Yesterdays.
The band has recorded five singles including the hit “Nobody’s Clown” which has OVER NINE MILLION VIEWS. They have over 240,000 monthly listeners on Spotify, and have performed with Lee Fields and The Expressions, the Ohio Players, Thee Sacred Souls, Brenton Wood and many others.
Sunday, June 4, 2023
JC Smith Band
+ Opener: Noah & the Arkiteks
C. Smith Actor/ Guitarist/ Vocalist, winner of the 2017 ECEM Male artist 0f the year, Metro Newspapers Best Of Silicon Valley “Best Original/local Band”, and 2006 Bay Area Blues Society West Coast Blues Band of the Year award winner is originally from the San Francisco Bay Area. He is an outstanding performer noted for his energy and charisma. Prior to playing guitar, he was the drummer for the Back to Back Blues Band. In 2000, he emerged from behind his drums, armed with a Gibson 335. J. C. attacks the Blues as if he is being guided by the masters like T-Bone Walker, Albert King, and Johnnie Guitar Watson. The J. C. Smith Band’s current release “Defining Cool” is by far the best recording to date. Listed for the 52nd Grammy Awards for “Best Contemporary Blues CD,” it entered the Living Blues Radio Charts at #16 and was a “Pick to Click” on XM Radio. After 20 weeks on the Roots Report, the CD climbed the charts as high as #25 nationally. In 2004, Smith released “That’s What I’m Talk’n ‘Bout,’ ‘ co-produced by Grammy Award Nominee Joanna Connor. This CD shows masterful songwriting, outstanding arrangements, and traditional quality. It features a host of Chicago players including Willie “Big Eyes” Smith, who worked with the Muddy Waters Band for twenty years. 2001 marked the release of Smith’s first effort “Midnight Creeper” which brought him international attention. Smith has toured throughout the United States, Eastern Europe, Mexico,South America,and Russia,to sell out crowds. Smith has work with and shared the stage with notable artists such as Hubert Sumlin, B,B, King, Buddy Guy, Buddy Miles, Son Seals Willie Bigeyes Smith, Pinetop Perkins and many more. He is also known as radio personality Johnnie Cozmik on KKUP F.M. J. C. feels that his goal in life is “To keep the Blues alive and take the message to the people.” For Actor info please refer to Imdb page ( J.C. Smith – IMDb)
Douglas Mancini (Bass) Has worked a number of years with this unit , including our second Canadian Tour. Prior to that he worked with James Armstrong, Chris Cain, and a host of bands in the Los Angeles area. Noel Catura (Sax) One of the Bay Area’s Best. Noel has worked with Joe Louis Walker, Chris Cain, Bobby Wamack, Charles Brown, Sista Monica, and the list goes on. Scott Porter (keys) is an all around pro. He delivers a one two punch that will rock your socks off…Tim Richard ( Drums) Worked with The John Lee Hooker Band and recorded with a host of other top player including John Lees Grammy winning LP Jealous,
This band of seasoned players is a true Blues band with one goal in mind…keeping the Blues alive.
Sunday, June 11, 2023
Discos Resaca Collective Presents East Side San Jose + Guest DJ Sets by Sizzle Fantastic & Chuy Gomez
Sunday, June 18, 2023
On their self-titled fourth album, La Luz launch themselves into a new realm of emotional intimacy for a collection of songs steeped in the mysteries of the natural world and the magic of human chemistry that has found manifestation in the musical ESP between guitarist and songwriter Shana Cleveland, bassist Lena Simon, and keyboardist Alice Sandahl.To help shape La Luz, the band found a kindred spirit in producer Adrian Younge. Though primarily known for his work with hip-hop, soul, and jazz acts, Younge saw in La Luz a shared vision that transcended genre. “We both create music with the same attitude, and that’s what I love about them,” he says. “They are never afraid to be risky and their style is captivating. It was an honor to work with them.”The result is an album that is both the most naturalistic and psychedelic of the band’s career. All the elements of classic La Luz are still present—the lush harmonies, the impeccable musicianship, the gorgeous melodies—but it’s a richer, earthier iteration, replete with inorganic sounds that mimic the surreality of nature—the humming of invisible bugs, the atmospheric sizzle of a hot day. La Luz is an album that celebrates love—of music, of friendship, of life in all its forms.
About the Levitt San Jose Spring Concert Series:
Formed in 2016, Friends of Levitt Pavilion San Jose is a non-profit with a mission to build community through free, all-ages, high-quality live music shows and performances on a permanent stage in historic St. James Park.
The Levitt San Jose Fall Concert Series, will feature top local and national artists, giving a sneak peek of what’s to come when Levitt Pavilion San Jose joins the community of permanent Levitt venues across the country.
Enjoy a fall picnic with friends and family and see how Levitt San Jose will build community through free, all-ages, high quality live music shows and performances in historic St. James Park.
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Interested in volunteering for the Fall Concert Series? Volunteers are needed for event set up and break down, beer and merchandise booth, and welcoming attendees. Interested? Email us firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sunday, October 30, 2022
+ Opener: Will Sprott
Non-Profit Partner: Urban Vibrancy Institute
With a signature sound signified by lockstep rhythms & a deep grasp of soul and funk, ORGŌNE has built a reputation over the past 2 decades as being one of the tightest, fieriest live bands in the country & a top notch crew in the studio. On their new album “Lost Knights”, ORGŌNE offer up a collection of heavy-duty psychedelic funk-rock anthems created to be played loud and raucously.
Sunday, October 2, 2022
Non-Profit Partner: The New Ballet