[CalArts] – California Institute of the Arts recently released a redesigned website (http://jazzarchive.calarts.edu/) allowing jazz fans to easily find, download and stream more than 250 tracks of original music from its 23-album jazz collection. The annual CalArts Jazz CD project, led by Jazz Studies Chair and co-founder David Roitstein and produced by Capitol/EMI, is a compilation of works written and performed by students of The Herb Alpert School of Music at CalArts and recorded/engineered at Capitol Studios & Mastering in Hollywood.
With the annual CD, CalArts established itself as a leader among worldwide music and jazz education programs, producing original student work at a high professional level. Each year, the music is distributed to jazz reviewers and radio stations and at music and education conferences and symposiums across the nation.
Today, many music schools are emulating CalArts’ professional approach to student work. “It is miraculous that this wonderful partnership with Capitol/EMI has continued for so long,” said Jazz Studies director David Roitstein. “We are so very grateful for its consistent commitment to our students which has had a tremendous impact on the lives of an entire generation of talented young musicians.”
“The experience at Capitol’s studios is an extraordinary time that all participants remembers forever,” comments Roitstein. The project selection process is open to any student who submits a new composition. A faculty committee selects music with the goal of having as many students record at the studio as possible, representing a wide variety of musical interests at CalArts (music which often deviates from the traditional “jazz” genre).
A significant focus of the CalArts Jazz CD is the collaboration between the Jazz Studies and Graphic Design programs. The artwork on every CD is created by a design student, and chosen, as is the music, in an open process.
During the past 23 years, hundreds of talented artists have been included in the archive, including trumpeter Ralph Alessi, saxophonist Ravi Coltrane and bassist Noah Harmon, among many others. Many CalArts graduates, who were included on one of these cds, have gone on to successful careers in music. Former students have toured and recorded with jazz masters such as Horace Silver, Herbie Hancock, Jack DeJohnette, Roy Hargrove, Steve Coleman, Elvin Jones, Geri Allen, Jim Hall, John Scofield, Dianne Reeves, John McLaughlin, Arturo Sandoval and Brad Mehldau. CalArts graduates have joined successful pop bands, including Beck, No Doubt, Macy Gray, The Calling, the Wallflowers, Garbage, Smashing Pumpkins, Ozomatli, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, Brian Setzer, Chaka Khan, Tina Turner and many others.