...a place where the creative arts (including music, visual arts, dance, spoken word) are passionately pursued and celebrated as a means to foster imagination and discovery in our lives. We emphasize improvised performance and exploration, which further our abilities to communicate and craft solutions that transcend cultural boundaries and celebrate our common humanity. We are proudly based in Saxapahaw NC, a fabulous little town smack in between the Triangle and Triad regions, where music, the creative arts and sustainable living in general is vigorously intersecting.
We've been around the block and crossed the ponds a few times and we're just getting started, folks, so come visit us in person or at this site often to check out our ever-increasing offerings. We're having great fun and we want to share it all with you...
on the site menu to the left you will find our three types of offerings:
- performance (mahaloEnsembles)
- exploration (studioMahalo and mahaloPlayshops)
- creation (mahaloWorks)
we do have a FaceBook page, Like us if you'd like!
For whatever reason, we are all graced with a few moments of consciousness on this planet, and fortune presents us with experiences ranging from horrific tragedy to extraordinary ecstasy. Music has the power to illuminate the miracle of our existence, helping us transcend the darkness from which we arise and into which we return, and gives us the strength to endure and celebrate it all. I am grateful to be a member of the musical brigade.
$20/person. Proceeds benefit the musicians and the scholarship fund of Burlington-Alamance Sister Cities. Burlington-Alamance Sister Cities is doing fantastic work arranging international exchanges to and from its sister cities in Mexico and in South Korea.
Seating is limited, the past years have been sold out, and this year looks like it will be no exception, so...
for more info/directions to Dianne and Neal's home out Saxapahaw way, and to reserve seats (please indicate the number of seats), email or phone...
336-675-8444 (N cell)
336-675-1144 (D cell)
We hope you will join us for our favorite event of the year!
The struggle to define jazz has gone on for decades.
Ask lots of folks, you’ll get lots of different answers.
When asked for a definition of jazz, Louis Armstrong famously replied,
“If you gotta ask, you’ll never know.”
Some say jazz is music that swings, man.
Some say it has a bluesy sound.
Some define it by its syncopated rhythms.
Some say it’s jazz when there’s improvisation included.
Some say that jazz is NOT the music of Kenny G.
Then there’s an old musician’s joke about jazz being “better than sex, and it lasts longer.”
During the 20th century one style followed another, from blues, ragtime, Early New Orleans and swing to bebop, cool jazz, modal jazz, hard bop, avant-garde jazz, funk, fusion, post-bop...
Why not simply acknowledge each style separate unto itself?
Why do we use the term “jazz” to encompass it all?
As a jazz musician, I personally need an answer for this question.
So here’s what I’m thinking.
I’m thinking it has something to do with our primal need to know where Home is.
Jazz is Home.
All the different styles that have emerged are related,
like parents and siblings and cousins.
All the different styles come Home to Jazz.
And so we say,
All these different styles belong to Jazz.
Because there are so many styles that fall under
the realm of jazz, the Home of Jazz,
the musical vocabulary of jazz, the language of jazz,
is a profoundly rich one.
As a result, jazz is an extraordinarily expressive language.
Jazz allows for conversation.
You can have an easy, how ya doin’ kind of exchange.
You can have a formal, structured sort of conversation.
You can have a soulful, or sensual, or spiritually ecstatic conversation, beyond words.
I like to believe that most jazz musicians are grateful to be able to play the music.
We have a way to communicate our deepest feelings with others in this world
that transcends the limitations of verbal language.
As we study the music of those musicians who came before us,
as we honor them,
we keep the music, and the traditions upon which it is based, alive and growing.
Because it is born of a fabulous mixture of cultures and traditions
Because so many different styles have emerged during the past hundred years
Jazz is a tolerant language.
Jazz is a tolerant language because, from the beginning,
it has allowed for individual expression through improvisation.
And because it is a tolerant language,
Jazz embraces change.
It enjoys being used in familiar ways
and, inspired by past innovators,
supports exploration of new paths of expression.
Always, it welcomes revisiting its home, its roots.
Jazz is Home.
So, so much has happened since the last post at the beginning of the year, most of it wonderful. In May, Alison completed the masters of arts program at FAU, with a focus on composition. So much fun. Sad to take leave of dearest family and friends in Florida, and thrilled to be back as of July in Carrboro NC, a small town filled with an extraordinary creative spirit. CottonWood Jazz 3 was a great success, thanks once again to our most generous hosts Neal Jones and Dianne Ford, musicians Louis Sawyer, Ben Palmer and David Shore, and the 70+ plus people who came to enjoy the intimacy and excitement that comes with a Jones/Ford house concert. studioMahalo is now set up and offering piano, improvisation and composition lessons to anyone interested. Performing in September at the Hillsborough Jazz Festival and the Carrboro Music Festival was a blast! And for Halloween, Mahalo Arts is so proud to present a very special showing of the cult silent vampire movie, Nosferatu, with Vamplifire, a very, very fine musical quartet performing pianist Peter Estep's original score. SO music is happening with old friends and new; you can expect to see more folks joining the mahaloFriends page. We're just getting warmed up here, so check in often for what's happening!
Following up on her first two suites, last summer Alison completed Suite No. 3: L'Chaim, and then last month Conversation #1, her first orchestral piece. Both works are now posted on the original music page. These recordings are computer realizations of the scores, but you get the idea! (Best to listen using headphones or decent speakers if possible). We're hopeful that Suite No. 3 will be performed informally this spring at FAU. Please take a listen and give us your honest review!