Happy New Year 

Happy 2018!!  It's looking like it's going to be another exciting year already.  

First up is my long awaited Edmonton CD Release date at the Yardbird Suite. I can't put into words exactly how excited I am to finally be presenting my music on one of Canada's finest stages for live jazz! There is no end to how many of the worlds best have graced the same stage in the past and I'm elated to join such a community.  If you're in Edmonton on January 20th, please come and take a musical trip with my quintet. We're playing all original music that we recorded on the CD and there is something for all types of jazz lovers. 

I won't be home in Calgary for long, as I have been invited by the good people at Theo Wanne Mouthpieces to attend the annual NAMM conference in Anaheim, which starts on January 25. While there aren't any performances scheduled, I'm excited to rub shoulders with all the other fine Theo Wanne artists.  

Of course, I'll be back in action with the Prime Time Big Band for our usual performances every other Saturday and there's more to be announced soon! I'll share that news shortly, stay tuned....

 

Fall 2017 

It's been an interesting summer! I took a bit of time to travel and now I'm refreshed and excited for some new projects.  

First of all, I want to send a quick "thanks" to everyone that came to hear the Past Present Quintet last Friday September 8th as Andre and I presented the music of our favourite trumpet players.  We will be putting up some of the video Andre recorded in the near future once we have a chance to review it.  

I'm also looking forward to a few other big projects. On September 29, I'll be joining Kodi Hutchinson for his Quartet Northwest project.  This will be a follow up concert to Kodi's last tribute to the late great bassist Charlie Haden. The last show a couple years ago was memorable for me, Charlie Haden was an impressive musician who played with so many of the players I admire. On top of the great music, you'll get to listen to Kodi's knowledgeable and humourous perspective of the music he loves most. If I were you, I would make a reservation at Lolita's Lounge today.

Next up after the Quartet Northwest gig, will be the Prime Time Big Band CD release.  It's happening at the Ironwood on Saturday October 7th. This CD has been in the works for nearly a year now.  I've only heard a couple tracks so far, but what I have heard sounds fantastic!  I can't wait to hear the rest of it, but sadly I have to. In a few weeks, we'll all be able to give it a good listen. Live big band recordings don't happen very often because they are a lot of work and there is so much that can go wrong. Thankfully the Prime Time Big Band is full of many of Calgary's finest professional jazz musicians. I think we've recorded a disc that we can be proud of. Most of our regular shows are nearly sold out, so if you want to celebrate with us as we release the new CD, call the Ironwood ASAP for reservations.

For those of you that have enjoyed my Baritone Madness quintet with Pat Belliveau and Gareth Bane, you will be happy to hear that I am writing new music for this band with the intent of recording a CD in January 2018! We will certainly want to play the music in public before recording it, so I have arranged a night at Lolita's Lounge. On October 27th, we will be playing a few brand new originals as well as a few new arrangements of my favourite standards. With the three baritone saxes and the comradery Pat, Gareth and I have, it is sure to be another fun night full of great music and a few good laughs.

If that isn't enough, there is a very special project I'll be co-leading with my former professor and mentor, Dr. Jeremy Brown. I'm extremely honoured to be co-leading this project with the man that helped form the foundation of my playing over twenty years ago. The details for this are still being ironed out, but it should be one of my favourite projects.  I'll keep everyone posted as soon as we book a concert and start rehearsing. 

A couple final notes, I'll be updating my calendar soon to reflect all of these shows. It's one of my personal goals to improve my website, so keep an eye out for an updated calendar early next week. I'm also working on other ideas for regular content, such as practice studies/solos for students. If anyone has suggestions, feel free to contact me through the link at the top of the page. I'm always happy to hear from people!

As always, I'm taking new private students for everything from beginner sax lessons to advanced jazz improvisation. Once again, click on the link above to get in touch with me. 

I hope to see some of you at gigs! Please come and say hello.

Keith

 

 

CD Release May 28 

I'm very excited to announce that I will be releasing my new CD soon!!  It's titled Sketches from the Road and features all original music inspired by my travels over the past twenty years.  There's a little bit for everyone in this album, some straight ahead swing, some ECM inspired jazz, some odd meter and a ballad or two.  Joining me will be Andre Wickenheiser (trumpet), Jon Day (piano), Kodi Hutchinson (bass) and Tyler Hornby (drums).

Please bookmark the evening of Sunday May 28 at the Ironwood Stage at 8pm.
Hopefully you can make it out to listen to some all original songs with my band. 

Reservations can be made by calling the Ironwood at 403-269-5581




 

Exciting times! 

Wow!  It's been a while since I updated this, but that's understandable with the amazing month I have had.

The biggest news is that in the past month I have recorded my first album!! I was joined by Kodi Hutchinson, Andre Wickenheiser, Jon Day and Tyler Hornby at OCL studios on October 20 &21.  The band sounded great and I can't wait to share the results with everybody.  Stay tuned for the release dates.

If that wasn't enough, two weeks after wrapping up my album recording at the studio, I had the pleasure of being part of the Prime Time Big Bands Live recording session at the Ironwood Stage and Grill.  The big band sessions also went well and I have heard some of the raw, unedited tracks and there is a lot to be excited about. I'm overjoyed that my big band composition made the list of songs that we recorded, alongside of the works of renowned composers Fred Stride and Allan Gilliland. 

Finally, tonight (November 10) my Baritone Madness quintet with Pat Belliveau, Gareth Bane, Tyler Hornby and Jeremy Coates will be performing as part of JazzYYC's Canadian Jazz festival.  This band is a wild ride and should be a fun night for all. 

If you can't make it out tonight, stop by Kawa this Saturday November 12 from 3-6 for the Jazz jam. All ages and skill levels are welcome and encouraged to play.

After all of these performances wrap up, it will be time to fully update this website.  On the list of things to come are, a Scale Workout of the Day that I have been promising a few of my students.  It's a part of my daily routine and can be adapted for all levels of music students.  Also urgent will be updating my calendar. That has sadly been neglected as I prepared for the recording sessions.  

As always, if you stop in at my gigs, please say hello.

 

Hello 

Hi there, 

I'd like to say a quick thank you for visiting my new webpage.  At the moment there is still a fair bit still in the works, but I hope you enjoy what I currently have here.  Most important is that I have uploaded four original songs recorded last year with the hope of getting funding to record and distribute what will be my debut CD.  Please take the time to listen to them and let me know what you think.  There is an email link and I would love to hear from you.  If you would like to contribute to a debut recording, please get in touch. 

Over the next couple months, I'll be very busy performing at Stage West and their production of the Young Frankenstein Musical, but I will still be playing a few jazz gigs while the show is running.  On June 1, 2016, my quintet will be playing the final concert of the Cliff Bungalow jazz series.  I'll be joined by Andre Wickenheiser, Jon Day, Kodi Hutchinson and Tyler Hornby.  For this concert we will be playing a few brand new compositions of mine, as well as a few arrangements that I'm very proud of and will certainly be on my debut CD when it happens.  Other repertoire for the concert will be pieces written by a couple of my biggest writing influences, Tom Harrell and Kenny Wheeler and one or two select standards.  Another exciting show is on May 7, I'll be playing with the Prime Time Big Band when we welcome Al Kay back as a special guest.  He is a remarkable trombone player and one of the best in the country, so it's sure to be a great show. 

As I mentioned before, there are still features I want to add.  Primarily, I want to add a page to download exercises.  I have been teaching saxophone and jazz improvisation for many years and I have written many exercises for students, some are long some are quite short. The ones that I will be adding to this website are sample solos for many standard jazz songs.  While the goal of improvising is to be creating a new path, I have found it to be beneficial to many students to hear many concepts in written solos before they can incorporate them into their own vocabulary.  The idea behind each one of these written solos, is to aid a student in hearing how a concept sounds by playing them with a playalong or other accompanying device (such as the iReal app or Band In A Box).  Most solos will include examples of chord resolutions and some will add specific concepts such as adding the flat nine sound. At the moment I have quite a few exercises handwritten, as I add them to music notating software I will add them here.  If you would like to be contacted when each new exercise is posted, use the contact page.  Please mention the jazz exercise downloads and I'll let you know when new exercises are posted.  

That's all for now.  I hope to see you at a gig. 
Please come and say hello,
Keith 

Welcome

Keith O'Rourke is a born and raised Albertan. Growing up in Calgary, Keith developed a love for music fostered by many gifted teachers. Since returning to Calgary in 2008, Keith is now a recognizable figure in the jazz community and he adds his own unique voice to many projects. He is currently leading his own quartet (the Keith O’Rourke Quartet) and co-leading a quintet with fellow Calgarian, Andre Wickenheiser in the Past Present Quintet. He has been involved with numerous projects and played in concerts with nearly every major jazz artist in Calgary. 

Aside from his performances Keith also maintains an active schedule teaching private students and small group workshops. He enjoys passing on his knowledge and fostering a love of music to the next generation of players.

Please stop by and say hello at a live concert or contact me here if you are looking for saxophone for any occasion or music lessons. 

January 2018

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