THE GATHERING: ROOTS & BRANCHES OF LOS ANGELES JAZZ - A Documentary Film
Producer Tom Paige and bandleader Jesse Sharps are seeking your help to complete a documentary film about The Gathering, a coming together of musicians that took part in a historic event on Thelonious Monk's birthday back in 2005 when Jesse Sharps brought together a stellar cast featuring young, up and coming and influential players from the Los Angeles scene for a day of incredible improvisation and recording. From this event emerged an album, Leimert Park: Roots & Branches of Los Angeles Jazz, and a group that has gone on to perform at festivals and venues around the LA area.
Many of these players share deep connections to the Leimert Park cultural region of Los Angeles and the local jazz and improvised music scene of LA. The name of the group, The Gathering, was inspired by a cultural center not far from Leimert Park that was run in the early 70s by Dadisi Sanyika and Kamau Daaood. The spirit and vision of The Gathering draws its roots from local community organizations like UGMAA, Horace Tapscott’s Pan Afrikan Peoples Arkestra, Billy Higgins World Stage, and many others who spent years enriching people with music, art, and activism.
This historic event featured remarkable compositions by Horace Tapscott, Roberto Miranda, Kamau Daaood, and Jesse Sharps including a version of Desert Fairy Princess with vocals written and performed by Dwight Trible.
Desert Fairy Princess - Intro excerpt from the album version
All the music was captured on 16 track Pro Tools with every song being shot in its entirety on two digital cameras. In late 2008, a CD was released, and from 2009 on Jesse Sharps led the group on numerous performances around the Los Angeles area at festivals and local venues. Subsequent releases include Justice by Abdul Salim and Warriors All by Horace Tapscott.
Warrior's All - Excerpt from 2010 digital release
We now are using the 10th anniversary of the original recording session to reach out for help to complete this project. In addition to the complete recording session, there are hours of live concert footage and interviews with musicians, composers, and community members surrounding The Gathering.
HOW THE FUNDING WILL BE USED
All of the footage has been digitally transferred and we will be using the funding to pay for editing, post production, licensing fees to composers, DVD production, digital distribution, and other costs related to getting the film out to the world.
Tom Paige (Producer, Director) Tom Paige was the executive producer of the Leimert Park: Roots & Branches of Los Angeles Jazz album released in late 2008. He is a videographer that has worked with many local musicians in the Los Angeles area recording concerts, producing albums, and coordinating events. After getting his B.A. in Ethnomusicology from UCLA, he worked for many years in the film industry and helped produce several independent productions and music videos.
Jesse Sharps (Bandleader) Jesse Sharps is an accomplished composer, bandleader, performer, and instructor of music. He grew up in Los Angeles and spent some of his formative years as a musician in the Pan Afrikan Peoples Arkestra as one of Horace Tapscott’s principal scribes and co-bandleaders. He also studied with Cecil Taylor before leaving to serve in a US Naval Band stationed in Germany, where he eventually settled after his service. He has since returned to Los Angeles and has performing and leading The Gathering, along with other groups for several years now.
Emily Koonse (Film Editor) is an accomplished independent feature film and documentary editor. She received her BFA in Filmmaking from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, School of Filmmaking and has edited numerous short films and feature films. Her first feature, PEARL DIVER, was a Heartland Film Festival Crystal Heart recipient. On her latest film project as editor, Emily worked alongside filmmaker Gregory Ruzzin to write and edit the feature film, LOST CHILD? Emily lives and works in Los Angeles.
The Gathering has produced some extraordinary music. We will be sharing great perks at many levels for your generosity and you will be helping to bring a stellar film about some incredible musicians and people to the world.
Some of our rewards include the CD, "The Gathering: Leimert Park - Roots and Branches of Los Angeles Jazz, which includes 13 pages of liner notes on the history of the musicians and the community written by Mimi Melnick.
We will also have professionally produced DVD or digital download options of the completed film for you to own.
And some Schwag for the $100 and up donors:
Please share this project with everyone you know that does or would love this music and would like to support this film.
Thank you! -Tom Paige (director/producer)
Risks and challenges
We have a brilliant and experienced documentary film editor attached to this project and all of the footage has been digitally transferred and is ready to be put together. Our biggest challenge is getting the funds necessary pay for the editing, dvd production, and arranging a screening in the Los Angeles area when the film is complete. We have a great location committed to hosting a screening for nominal fees in 2016, which the funding will help cover. Another potential challenge will be completing graphics and artwork for the final DVD, but we have connections to several graphic artists that have helped in the past. Some additional b-roll footage will be needed and we own the cameras necessary to shoot this footage. Once we get deeper into the editing we will have a better sense of the footage required and will schedule our shoots.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (40 days)