Renowned jazz organist Dr. Lonnie Smith will take the stage with his trio for the second in the two-concert series Heartland Summit Jazz 2012, a collaboration between The Performing Arts Studio and Jazz In June Inc.
The concert is scheduled for 9 p.m. Wednesday, April 25, at Meacham Auditorium in the Oklahoma Memorial Union on the University of Oklahoma campus, 900 Asp Ave., Norman.
Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door, and $15 for students with a valid ID.
A master of the Hammond B-3 organ for more than five decades, Smith has been featured on more than 70 albums. He also has recorded and performed with many of the music industry’s jazz, blues and R&B giants.
A native of Buffalo, N.Y., Smith was immersed in gospel, blues and jazz at an early age. In the late 1950s, he learned to play a Hammond organ. With such early inspirations as organists Wild Bill Davis, Bill Doggett and Jimmy Smith, he began to find his musical voice. “Even though I didn’t know how, I was able to play right from the beginning,” Smith said. “I learned how to work the stops and that was it. It’s a passion for me, so everything else came naturally.”
After moving to New York City, Smith met George Benson and formed the George Benson Quartet featuring Lonnie Smith in 1966. Smith recorded his first solo album, Finger Lickin’ Good, the following year.
In addition to original compositions and a more traditional jazz repertoire, Smith has recorded tribute albums to the music of Jimmy Hendrix and Beck: Foxy Lady (1994), Purple Haze (1995) and Boogaloo to Beck (2003). The Jazz Journalist Association has named Smith Organ Keyboardist of the Year five times.
The Lonnie Smith Trio also includes Jonathan Kreisberg on guitar and Jamire Williams on drums.
The Performing Arts Studio, located in the historic Norman Santa Fe Depot, produces a variety of programs, including the Summer Breeze, Winter Wind and Sunday Jazz at the Depot concert series. Jazz in June’s annual three-day summer blues and jazz festival draws some 50,000 attendees.
For more information about the concert go to http://jazzinjune.org. Advance tickets can be purchased by clicking the Buy Now button above or at the Norman Santa Fe Depot, 200 S. Jones Ave.
The Heartland Summit Jazz series is made possible by support from the Norman Arts Council, Norman Chamber of Commerce, Oklahoma Arts Council, Northeast Blanco Development Corporation, Arrow Gas and Holdings, Midway Market Concert Series, Mark Williams, and Fred Overstreet.