American Jazz Masters podcast series celebrates Jazz Knights 40th anniversary

By SSG Mark Tonelli, submitted by SSG David Loy Song
West Point band

The West Point Band’s Jazz Knights announce the launch of a new educational series, American Jazz Masters. The online series brings together technology and education in video podcasts featured on iTunes, the world’s most-visited podcast site. Viewers can watch or download the free episodes on their computer (Mac or PC) or portable media player.

Each episode profiles the life of an American jazz musician, like Charlie Parker and Miles Davis. The episodes vary in length—about five to ten minutes—and pack a lot of information in a short space. Viewers learn about the artists’ backgrounds and their career highlights. The brief length of the episodes makes them ideal for people on the go. Teachers will find them useful as a way to integrate material into a unit on jazz or on a specific jazz musician.

To celebrate the Jazz Knights 40th anniversary, the series’ newest podcast is a four-part documentary on the Jazz Knights. It features band history, interviews, and behind-the-scenes footage. The series is created and hosted by Jazz Knights guitarist Staff Sgt. Mark Tonelli. To access an episode of American Jazz Masters, viewers should open iTunes (download free at www.itunes.com) on their computers or portable media player, enter “American Jazz Masters” in the search field, and click on an episode to watch or download it.

In addition to American Jazz Masters, the Jazz Knights are planning special events year round to celebrate their 40th anniversary. Join the band for its first performance of this festival year with A Blue Note Retrospective in honor of African American History Month, on Sunday, February 12, at 3:00 p.m. in Eisenhower Hall Theatre. Free tickets can be downloaded at www.westpointband.com

For more information about American Jazz Masters, contact Tonelli at mark.tonelli@usma.edu. Follow the Jazz Knights on YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook.


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