World / Rock / Acoustic
Stephen Jay, Jim “Kimo” West - THE PARALLEL UNIVERSE TOUR
Wed, May 2, 2018
Doors: 8:00 pm / Show: 8:30 pmOphelia's Electric Soapbox
$13.00 - $23.00
This event is 18 and over
Stephen Jay and Jim West are original and continuing members of “Weird Al” Yankovic’s band, having recorded and toured with the legendary musical satirist for over three decades. They are currently touring with Weird Al on his Ridiculously Self-Indulgent Ill-Advised Vanity Tour throughout North America. This one-time appearance at Ophelia’s Electric Soapbox as part of their “parallel” tour is a rare opportunity to experience their unique musical voices and master musicianship as shape-shifting solo artists.
His background includes a BA and MM Graduate Fellowship in composition, USF, and studies with composers John Cage, Lucas Foss, Max Neuhaus and Charles Wuronien. His world music experience includes live performance and studies throughout West Africa. He was adopted into the Niamey Djerma Griot culture by master drummer Isah Hamani. From his field recordings Stephen produced 2 Two highly acclaimed albums for the Nonesuch Explorer Series. (see "Drum, Chant and Instrumental Music") He has also been a featured guest on NPR's "All Things Considered" with Robert Siegel on the subject of traditional West African music.
Stephen's bass recording credits include 4 Grammy winners and many Grammy nominated albums. He is the credited bassist, backing vocalist and orchestrator on "Weird Al" Yankovic's recent Billboard #1 album, "Mandatory Fun", also on 9 RIAA Gold and 5 Platinum albums, doubling on backing vocals, and other instruments including banjo, flute, keyboards, dundun, gulu, percussion and backing vocals. His past work includes bass performance and recording with Wayne Shorter, Hugh Masekela, Alex Acuna, Luis Conte, Rick Derringer, Isah Hamani, Joe Higgs, Betty Buckley, and Jimmy Haskell. He is an original and continuing member of "Weird Al" Yankovic's band, recording and touring since 1982. Stephen's own polymetric funk band, "Ak & Zuie", has toured the US, Canada, and Australia, and has appeared on PBS. He was voted one of "Today's 20 Top Bassists" by "International Musician and Recording World" magazine.
As a film composer Stephen has scored more than seventy nationally broadcast PBS specials and series episodes, including three George Foster Peabody Award winners, and has contributed scores and orchestration to other television shows and to feature films. His own Ayarou Music Library includes more than 4,000 cues and songs of every musical style and description.
“slack key” guitarists and brings his own unique musical
perspective to this great acoustic guitar tradition. He
is a recent winner of the Hawaii Music Awards, a Na
Hoku Hanohano (the Hawaiian “Grammy”) nominee and a
two-time winner of the LA Treasures Award for his
contributions toward the perpetuation of ki ho’alu.
In 1985, after a long summer on the road with musical
satirist “Weird Al” Yankovic, Jim West made his first trip
to Hana, Maui and fell in love with cultural and
physical landscape of Hawai’i, sometimes spending a
couple months a year there. It was there that he also
discovered “ki ho ‘alu” or as it is more commonly called,
“slack key” guitar, an old Hawaiian style of playing
where the strings are loosened or “slacked” to
different tunings, allowing the bass, chords and melody
to be played simultaneously.
Already a devotee of playing in altered, non- standard
tunings, he quickly fell in love with the gentle spirit of
slack key and the great sense of discovery that comes
with exploring new tunings. Records by Gabby Pahinui,
The Sons of Hawai’i, The Sunday Manoa and Peter Moon
played continuously on the turntable or cassette deck
and Jim absorbed ki ho ‘alu more or less, by osmosis. Jim
didn’t concentrate on learning the standard riffs and
songs but instead, developed his own slack key
vocabulary, which now defines his very unique approach
to this great tradition.
His numerous CD’s fuse traditional slack key with his
own musical language, while still retaining the essence
of its “nahenahe” or “gentle” style. Jim, or “Kimo” as he
is called in Hawai’i, has performed at most of the Slack
Key guitar festivals in Hawaii and on the mainland. His
playing has been featured in a number of films, TV
spots, the Disney Channel and National Public radio
and he has shared the stage with most of the living
legends of ki hoa’lu.
Between composing commissions and slack key guitar
playing, Jim also finds time to hone his production
chops and has produced CD’s for a number of
independent artists. Some recent projects include “Eia
Mai Ka La-Here Comes The Sun” (The Mountain Apple
Company) for Los Angeles-based Hawaiian performer
Kapo Ku and Hawaiian tributes to Sublime and the
Eagles for LA’s CMH Records (cmhrecords.com) His new
CD, “Na Lani O Maui – Maui Skies” features pristine
recordings of both traditional and original slack key
tunes and his one of his recent film composing projects
is the 3D short film, “Al’s Brain”.
Ophelia's Electric Soapbox
1215 20th Street
Denver, CO, 80202