Six Questions for Kareem Kandi
Kandi Kareem is a saxophonist, arranger, composer and instructor at both Pierce College and Tacoma School of the Arts. He also teaches privately, conducts Pierce’s Jazz Ensemble II and gigs at Jazzbones, Cutters Point and other venues around the region.
What is jazz?
Any style of music that deals heavily with improvisation.
What three jazz greats, living or dead, would you like to jam with?
Sonny Stitt, Joshua Redman and Clifford Brown.
Your favorite jazz CD?
One CD that I can listen to over and over again is Dexter Gordon’s “Go.”
Charlie Parker or John Coltrane?
Both. Each man had such a monumental influence in reshaping how the world plays music, that as a jazz musician it’s hard to not like both of them.
Best local club to hear jazz?
I love playing clubs, but sometimes as an artist you can’t perform certain material in a noisy bar or restaurant. If I am going to listen — or perform — I prefer places like the Pantages or a concert hall. These venues allow the artist complete freedom to play what they want in front of an audience that’s there to enjoy the musical experience.
Your most memorable performance?
As a listener, Joshua Redman at the Pantages in 1996. As a performer… I know this sounds odd, but I can’t think of a single performance that has been a pinnacle “most memorable” moment. I don’t know if I want to play a most memorable performance. Then the rest will seem empty, boring. Where’s the fun in that?
Photo by Chris Tumbusch