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Are you HUNGRY? Create Connect Repeat.

Are you HUNGRY? Create Connect Repeat.

How do I build a career in music? How do I achieve my goals in the music industry? How do I have overnight success? You have to have the HUNGER. The PASSION and the DRIVE to want to be great.

Building Brand in Jazz...

Building Brand in Jazz...

Today I'm sharing some clips from a talk I gave about building and creating a brand as a jazz musician. Sometimes it seems like a mystery how we do this, and that it somehow "cheapens" or music. But we're always making choices (or not making choices - which is still a choice!)

Shape of the Week! Learn and MASTER Jazz Chord Symbols One Shape at a time!

Shape of the Week! Learn and MASTER Jazz Chord Symbols One Shape at a time!

Hey all! Glad you could check out the latest shapes of the week, I’ll be posting them all here as a repository for all the different shapes :)!

Have a great time shedding these, and feel free to stay in touch with questions, happy practicing!

-Nick

C6

Cmaj7

Cmin7

C Half Diminished 7

Cmin6

C Diminished 7

it is time to think of PRIORITIZATION! | Create Connect Repeat

Today I want to talk a little bit about how I think about prioritization. Not only projects, but personally. Like when you get overwhelmed and you're doing a million different things, and you have a million expectations on you. What can we do to try to mitigate some of that and how can we figure out how to make the best out of a situation where we're feeling this stress and sense of being overwhelmed?

Maybe you're not even to the point where you're overwhelmed yet, but you just have so many things going on and you're not sure where to put your attention. This happens to me pretty frequently…

Something that I've been trying to do recently (that I am borrowing from a lot of other people that have talked about this) is trying to think about which of all the things/ all the projects/all the places where your energy is being put - if you focus on one of them, will allow you to knock down the rest of them? And by "knock down the rest of them," I mean, which one will affect the rest in a positive way? Which one will allow you to take the next steps the fastest?

For example, if you are an instrumentalist and you're working on your own music… you're working on music for other people….and you're trying to organize a whole bunch of different projects… the thing is, if you don't take care of your business (meaning yourself!), if you don't take care of your instrument, you don't take care of the basics, the fundamentals, getting better all the time, it's not going to matter, because if you don't take care of what the number one thing is (YOU) you’re going to fall behind. Whatever your major is, whatever your most important thing is - if it's your company, your business, your band, your ensemble, your chamber group, if you don't take care of that one thing, the thing you care about the most, all the rest of the stuff is going to fall away.

I'm not saying to abandon everything else, but to prioritize the things that matter to you. To prioritize the things that are going to allow you to get all the things done, by focusing your energy.

If I take care of what I need to take care of in a day to feel good, to feel like I crossed everything off my list, or at least to feel good about the things that I did (practice, take care of business at home, etc), it sets me up to be able to work on all of the external things that pop up. Taking care of yourself and thinking about yourself first can be a challenge, because a lot of people I know think about all the external expectations and get caught in a constant cycle of not be able to take care of themselves, but it really is so important. If you don’t, it leads to not being able to get done things for other people, which makes you feel even more stressed, and still not take care of the things that they need to take care of for themselves! It proliferates this downward spiral, if you will. And we don't want anyone to get there! We want everyone to break the pattern, and start to focus on what they want out of their situation.

Whatever your situation is, whatever you're working on, think about prioritizing the tasks that get you the furthest (i.e.80% of the way there) the fastest. Whatever the things are you need to do for yourself that are going to allow you to take care of everything (and everyone) else.

For me, those things are right now, working out; making sure to practice my instrument (that being the trombone); and writing music every day. If I don't take care of the basics on those fronts, there's no chance for me to be energetic enough to get all of the other projects I'm doing, all of the nonprofit stuff, all the Outside in Music stuff, all the teaching stuff that I do. There's no way, if I don't take care of myself, for me to do all that.

So, I encourage you, in this very hectic time of year, to start to think about how you're going to take care of yourself, and how you can balance everything, by prioritizing your projects.

Thanks for being here. Have an amazing Holiday Season!

- Nick Finzer

Hear & Now He Sings Now He Sobs

Hear & Now He Sings Now He Sobs

The newest project from my band Hear & Now!

Steps | What Was

50 years ago this month (December 2018), one of the most iconic exploratory jazz piano trio albums hit the scene. Chick Corea's album "Now He Sings, Now He Sobs" featuring his trio of Miroslov Vitous and Roy Haynes was released in December of 1968 and highlighted a plethora of interesting releases that were released in that year. Chick was just 26 years of age in this recording, and it truly is a remarkable work of art.

For me, this album is and was one of the most intriguing musical statements that seamlessly connects improvisation and composition together, blurring the lines between what is and is not, composed. It has followed me throughout my career, popping up in bits and pieces, from a fascination as an undergraduate, to playing "Matrix" on a Juilliard degree recital. During this latest encounter, earlier in 2018, I realized this year marked the albums fiftieth anniversary!  

Earlier this year, my band Hear & Now recorded brand new arrangements of the tunes from Herbie Hancock's "Speak Like a Child" album, a special project for YouTube. And when I learned both "Speak Like a Child" and "Now He Sings, Now He Sobs"  were released in the same year, it seemed fitting for me to delve deeper into this music and present new versions of Chick's tunes as well!

I'm very excited to share these new videos that feature:

Lucas Pino - Tenor Saxophone & Bass Clarinet

Alex Wintz - Guitar

Miki Yamanaka - Piano

Dave Baron - Bass

Jimmy Macbride - Drums

I hope these videos will serve has an inspiration for you to rediscover Chick Corea's original work, and to appreciate the fact that the sign of truly great composition is their longevity and ability to be reinterpreted again and again. 

Please enjoy,

Nick Finzer

MATRIX

NOW HE SINGS NOW HE SOBS

2019 Update for Goal Setting Course!

Hi All!

The new updates are here for the 2019 Goal Setting Course (specifically, a new and updated workbook, the course CONTENT is the same)

If you want to, just grab the workbook here:


Until the end of 2018 use the code GOALS2019 to get 50% off!

NF

Cyber Monday 2018!

University of North Texas Jazz Trombone Studio Merch Now Available!

Here’s some of what we have to offer…

Black Friday 2018!

For one day only - and only 5 bundles available!

Shape of the Week - Cm6

Have you seen the new series up on my YouTube Channel? If not you need to…

Hear & Now 2019 and Beyond; Booking Availability and New Management

Click through on the playlist above to see all of the new things that Hear & Now is up to!

NEW MANAGEMENT/BOOKING

I'm excited to move in a new direction with our domestic booking! Our current agency and management: 

Outside in Music - info@outsideinmusic.com

Current Availabilities:

December 10th - 24th, 2018

March 7 - 17th, 2019

May 20th - June 2nd, 2019

June 17th - July 8th, 2019

July 27th - August 4th, 2019

Thanks to NEXTBOP.COM for the Feature!

BIG THANKS to NEXTBOP.COM for featuring the new project on their site! An honor to be a part of their community! :)

Screen Shot 2018-06-28 at 2.24.04 PM.png

watch the project....

First Trip! Nick Finzer's Hear & Now plays Herbie Hancock's Speak Like a Child!

50 years ago this year (2018), Herbie Hancock and his band recorded some of the most iconic jazz of the 1960's on his album "Speak Like a Child" - and as fate would have it, this music was among the first jazz I heard and performed as a high school student!

 

Nick Finzer's Hear & Now plays Herbie Hancock's Speak Like a Child Track 3 - First Trip (composed by Ron Carter) Lucas Pino - Tenor Sax Alex Wintz - guitar Miki Yamanaka - piano Dave Baron - bass Jimmy Macbride - drums Nick Finzer - trombone and arrangements

Speak Like A Child! Hear & Now plays Speak Like a Child

0 years ago this year (2018), Herbie Hancock and his band recorded some of the most iconic jazz of the 1960's on his album "Speak Like a Child" - and as fate would have it, this music was among the first jazz I heard and performed as a high school student!

 

Nick Finzer's Hear & Now plays Herbie Hancock's Speak Like a Child Track 2 - Speak Like a Child Lucas Pino - Tenor Sax Alex Wintz - guitar Miki Yamanaka - piano Dave Baron - bass Jimmy Macbride - drums Nick Finzer - trombone and arrangements 5

Riot! Hear & Now Plays Herbie Hancock's Speak Like a Child

50 years ago this year (2018), Herbie Hancock and his band recorded some of the most iconic jazz of the 1960's on his album "Speak Like a Child" - and as fate would have it, this music was among the first jazz I heard and performed as a high school student!

Nick Finzer's Hear & Now plays Herbie Hancock's Speak Like a Child - track 1 - Riot Lucas Pino - Tenor Sax Alex Wintz - guitar Miki Yamanaka - piano Dave Baron - bass Jimmy Macbride - drums Nick Finzer - trombone and arrangements

 

A great month for me in Downbeat Magazine!

Hey guys!

I know it's been a while since I've been updating the News section here on the site. But I am SUPER excited to share a few things here about this Month (August 2018's issue) in Downbeat Magazine (yes, even though it is still June!)

I'm SO grateful to for three AMAZING things that are in the latest issue! 

1 - I was named to the Rising Star list again this year, this time up near the top of the list, right next to the great trombonist Alan Ferber! (have you guys heard his latest big band record??? it's KILLING)

2 - I am really glad to have been a part of the great Anat Cohen's latest album "Happy Song" and it was named by the Downbeat Critics poll as the #2 CD of the year!

3 - There's a great new review of "No Arrival" and it earned 4 Stars!

downbeat august 18 features.png

That's all for now. Much more soon!!

Nick

 

Nick Finzer's No Arrival Tour Dates

We're just TWO weeks away from the start of my "No Arrival" tour and we're getting ready to hit the road! This video will let you know exactly where and when:

Here's the rundown:
4.17 CU Boulder College of Music
4.18 Nocturne
4.20 North Coast Brewing Company (Sequoia Jazz Room) 
4.21 The Sound Room Oakland,CA
4.22 blue whale Los Angeles
4.27 The Nash - Phoenix, Arizona 
4.28 Avant Groove Salt Lake City
5.6 Twins Jazz Washington DC
5.10 B Sharps Jazz Tallahassee, FL
5.11 The Velvet Note - Alpharetta, GA
5.12 Nashville Jazz Workshop - Nashville, TN
5.13 Timucua Arts Foundation - Orlando FL
5.23 SubCulture - New York City
5.31 BOP STOP at The Music Settlement - Cleveland, OH
6.1 BLU Jazz+ - Akron, OH
6.2 Cliff Bell's - Detroit
6.3 Kalamazoo Piano Company - Kalamazoo, MI
6.4 Jazz Showcase - Chicago, IL
8.25 Northwest Jazz Festival, Lewiston, NY
8.26 Bop Shop Records Rochester, NY

Where will we SEE YOU?