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MJF67, Sept. 27-29, 2024


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© Randy Tunnell
Conversation: Songs for My Father — Soundtracks and Jazz with Kyle Eastwood & Ashley Kahn
  • Conversation
  • Saturday, September 28 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm Pacific Jazz Café

Bassist and bandleader Kyle Eastwood speaks on the role of music — and specifically jazz — in the world of film and soundtracks. It’s a world he knows much about being one called on to create music for movies, a longtime film buff, and the son of famed actor and director (and jazz lover) Clint Eastwood. Kyle’s passion for jazz and filmmaking will be discussed and explored with audio and video excerpts and a focus on his father’s films (Don’t be surprised if you see Monterey Jazz Festival in one of those historic clips!). Moderated by Grammy-winning music historian, author, professor and producer Ashley Kahn.

The Eastwood Symphonic Project is a musical project led by American jazz musician and composer Kyle Eastwood. The project features his quintet along with an orchestral ensemble performing the movie themes from his father’s films.

Eastwood, born in Los Angeles in 1968, is the son of legendary actor and director Clint Eastwood. He grew up in a family of musicians and developed a passion for music from a young age. He started playing the bass guitar as a child and later attended the University of Southern California, where he studied music and played in jazz clubs around Los Angeles. Kyle Eastwood's musical career took off in the 1990s when he formed his own jazz band and released his first album, From There to Here, in 1998. He has since released several critically acclaimed albums and collaborated with a number of other musicians, including his father. Kyle has also contributed to the soundtracks of several films.

The Eastwood Symphonic Project was initiated by Kyle Eastwood with the goal of bringing together his jazz quintet and an orchestra to perform the movie themes from his father's films such as Gran TorinoLetters From Iwo JimaFlags of Our Fathers, and Bridges of Madison County. The orchestral arrangements were done by Luxembourg composer and arranger Gast Waltzing.

The Eastwood Symphonic Project is a testament to Kyle Eastwood's musical talent and his ability to blend jazz and orchestral music seamlessly. The project has brought a unique and captivating performance to audiences around the world and has solidified Kyle Eastwood's place as a respected musician and composer in the music industry. With their impeccable musicianship and boundless creativity, the Eastwood Symphonic Project has garnered acclaim from music enthusiasts around the world. Their ability to effortlessly combine the spontaneity of jazz with the grandeur of orchestral arrangements has made them a captivating force in the music industry.

Ashley Kahn is a Grammy-winning American music historian, author, professor and producer. He teaches at New York University’s Clive Davis Institute for Recorded Music, co-wrote Carlos Santana’s award-winning autobiography The Universal Tone: Bringing My Story to Light (Little, Brown, 2014), and is a producer of Carlos (2023), the documentary on Carlos Santana (Imagine Documentaries/Sony Pictures Classics). He has written books on two legendary recordings: Kind of Blue by Miles Davis and A Love Supreme by John Coltrane, and one on a legendary record label: The House That Trane Built: The Story of Impulse Records. His most recent book is George Harrison on George Harrison: Interviews and Encounters. He also edited Rolling Stone: The Seventies, a 70-essay overview of that pivotal decade. 

Kahn, who was recently awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Jazz Journalists Association, broke into the music business as a tour manager and music festival producer, has held a variety of positions in radio, television, and online businesses. As a journalist, his byline has appeared in many publications and websites, including Rolling StoneThe New York Times, The New Statesman, and others, and his writing has garnered four ASCAP/Deems Taylor awards, and three Grammy nominations. In 2015, he was awarded a Grammy for his album notes to the John Coltrane release Offering: Live at Temple University, and in 2017, he received the Robert Palmer-Helen Oakley Dance Award for Excellence in Writing from the Jazz Journalists Association. Kahn has worked on many music documentaries in a variety of roles: as producer/director—CarlosKind of Blue: Made in Heaven for Sony Music (2005) — as a consultant/writer — Netflix’s Chasing Trane (2016) and Stanley Nelson’s documentary on Miles Davis for PBS (2018)—and as on-screen interviewee in PBS’s Soundbreaking: Stories from the Cutting Edge of Recorded Music (2016); BBC’s 1959: The Year That Changed Jazz (2009); and many others.