Modern jazz in Stumptown got a big bump this week as Portland’s only active jazz record label has partnered up with the city’s brightest jazz hotspot. PJCE Records, a label that grew out of the non-profit Portland Jazz Composers Ensemble (PJCE), has been at the center of curating the Portland sound since 2013. It is a record label that is known for presenting full-length records that feature most of Portland’s highest profile jazz artists, and many of its important composers. Releases have been featured in international jazz publications, have received critical acclaim from local outlets, and have helped raise the profile of emerging artists on the Portland scene.
Now in its third year, The 1905 is possibly Portland’s most important jazz venue. What separates this humble pizza joint from other venues in Portland is its connection to the scene itself. The face of the business, Aaron Barnes, is a jazz musician himself, as is another key investor, Holly Resnick. The 1905 is the one place in town where audiences can enjoy live jazz seven nights a week, and the variety in types of jazz that one can hear each night is monumental. From straight-ahead groups like Alan Jones’s Social Music and Darrell Grant’s All 4 Naught, to modern groups like the Christopher Brown Quartet and George Colligan Trio, to funkier acts like Farnell Newton’s The Soul of Jazz and Noah Simpson’s groups, there is something for anyone that likes jazz at the 1905. Combining forces, PJCE Records and the 1905 will be bringing PDX the best originally composed jazz on the first Sunday of every month.
January 6th | Ryan Meagher – Simple Songs
With three releases on the PJCE Records label under his own direction, Meagher is no stranger to the Portland jazz community. 2018 was a busy year as he released his Lost Days and Evil Twin albums, appeared on the PJCE’s Maxville to Vanport album, and Bryan Smith’s two albums, This Is Water and Let Me Take You There. Simple Songs is a new direction for Meagher’s coterie of trusted improvisers—memorable melodies and luscious soundscapes are front and center while the high-flying virtuosity of the quartet’s individual members serves in support of the transparent material.
Ryan Meagher – guitar
Tim Willcox – tenor sax
Chris Higgins – bass
Charlie Doggett – drums