Spotlight: Live Music Movement Foundation’s Houston Debut

Houston’s Jazz scene just got a whole lot more exciting with Live Music Movement Foundation’s debut musical event. LMMF partnered with Leslie Drayton and Few Regrets in mid-November at ALJ Jazz Bar and Lounge, Downtown Houston’s newest jazz venue. The event was an unofficial celebration and reassertion of LMMF’s mission to “present, promote and preserve jazz, blues and soul music through performances, education and the commission of new works.”

LMMF’s founder and Chairperson Kathy Drayton shared some insight into the organization’s plans in Houston for the New Year and beyond.

Now that the Live Music Movement Foundation has birthed itself into Houston’s musical scene with its first event in the downtown area, what kind of events should be expected in 2017?
KD: Upcoming events will include more jazz along with blues. The audience showed an amazing response to the final tune of the night, “A Greasy Brown Paper Sack”. There was dancing and yelling in response to the music. That was a great indication that the crowd enjoys the blues. We’ll also look to have soul music as we explore the various musical genres of African American artists.

What were your take-ways from the very first Houston event? Highs? Lows, if any?
KD: There was tremendous support of the event with lots of family and friends who brought others to the event. The audience really enjoyed and responded to the music in a “call and response” fashion that is indicative of the black experience. This was a great opportunity to expose LMMF to Houston and for us to begin to cultivate a dedicated audience. Audience feedback indicates there is a market for the events we will produce and we should tap in to that market easily.

One of LMMF’s missions is to have musical events which emphasize dancing and socializing rather than concerts where the primary focus is listening. What are some ways you have been able to accomplish this in the past and how do you intend to promote it in the future?
KD: Our Los Angeles events were generally held at restaurants where guests could have a meal while enjoying the music. They were able to see friends and visit during the intermission. We encourage not only dancing where there is a place or a place can be carved out, but movement while seated. The movement can be foot tapping, head bobbing or shoulder shaking. We’ve also hosted Lounge and Restaurant events with a dance floor where R&B cover tunes were, which was a hit with the audience who danced the night away.
At the event at ALJ Jazz Bar and Lounge, the music was so exciting a couple found their spot to partner dance while at the end of the evening a group of revelers danced the ‘second line’ around the lounge waving white napkins as a substitute for white handkerchiefs.
The debut event was an official welcome home to Houston for me and cake was shared with all in attendance. It created a sense of community when we shared the cake with guests who didn’t know us.  To promote socialization in the future we’ll build on what we accomplished in Los Angeles and our debut Houston event. We’ll encourage those in attendance to “move” in some fashion. Since guests are sometimes shy to be the first to move, members of the group may begin the “movement” then others will follow.

Why is it important for LMMF to cultivate an intergenerational audience?
KD: Support of jazz has diminished substantially over the years. Much of the audience enjoying jazz are seniors. As they no longer attend, there will be no one to support the jazz form. The same can be said for blues and soul music. By exposing the music forms to a younger generation allowing them to gain an appreciation of the music performed live, there will always be an audience to support the music and the musicians.

LMMF desires to perform with seasoned musicians as well as those just beginning their careers, are there any particular musicians in Houston you would like to collaborate with for an event?
KD: As we explore the music scene in Houston, we hope to identify the seasoned musicians who have a similar vision as LMMF to begin an association with them. We will also be on the lookout for serious young musicians who are developing their craft as professional musicians and include them in our endeavors.
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LMMF’s vision and mission to present, promote, and preserve Jazz, Blues, and Soul for intergenerational audiences cannot be understated. Dancing, singing, and call and response are a part of the African American experience. Music is a medium to tell a story. It relays history and culture in remarkable ways, and history in none of its forms should be forgotten. The musicians who compose and create are just one part of the preservation effort; we who listen and move to the rhythm are the other.


Denise Powell is an avid reader and her other interests include plants, healthy living and writing. She currently lives in Houston, Texas.


Leslie Drayton and Few Regrets Debut Houston Performance

ld-debutFor advance tickets click here for

Filed under Musical Events


Live Music Movement Foundation Moves to Texas

It is with great pride and excitement that we inform our followers and supporters that the Live Music Movement Foundation (LMMF) has officially moved to Houston, Texas! This is quite an exciting time for the organization and we couldn’t be more thrilled to share the details of the innovative and progressive direction Live Music Movement Foundation is taking upon our big move.


The city of Houston is a new home for LMMF but a familiar one. LMMF’s chairperson and founder Kathy Drayton’s uncle, the beloved Houston guitar player, I.J. Gosey played behind Junior Parker, Buddy Ace, Larry Davis, Joe Hinton, Joe Medwick and Gatemouth Brown on Duke and Peacock Records in the 1950s and 1960s during the Houston blues scene.


Gosey left such a wonderful musical impact on Drayton and the city of Houston, that the idea of relocating LMMF to the city where I.J.’s musical performances were loved and appreciated seemed like a great location for the foundation to thrive in while educating music lovers from all walks of life about the history and impact of jazz, blues and soul music through events and social mixers. In fact, I.J.’s long-standing gigs at two Houston music establishments formed the inspiration for the LMMF objective of audiences socializing around live music.

Live Music Movement Foundation, a double entendre, for moving live music forward by broadening an appreciation of the music and our audience moving to music (dancing) has the mission to promote, present and preserve jazz, blues and soul music through performances, education and the commission of new works.

To acheive LMMF’s mission, the organization will hold live musical events and not concerts, as a way to socialize around the music and dance will always be encouraged! The efforts of our events are to mix all ages and cultures together who have one common love: music.

We will provide opportunities for seasoned professional musicians to perform in an atmosphere that reflects a respect and appreciation of the music. LMMF is also excited and eager to work with young musicians of today to provide opportunities for them to develop as the leaders and entrepreneurs of tomorrow.

The educational aspect of our commitment to keeping the powerful American cultural force alive is our Musical Experience Salon. At these events, listeners will receive information about the history, traditions, and styles of music and the process of making the various music styles that we enjoy. Salons will also serve as a great opportunity for guests to mingle with fellow music lovers.

Our foundation is eager to acquire a dedicated audience to attend our events and bring a friend or two every time they attend. We hope you’re just as ecstatic as we are for our new direction in our new home and look forward to seeing you at our events.

“Change is always happening. That’s one of the wonderful things about jazz music.”

-Maynard Ferguson




sharice-bSharice Bryant is an independent filmmaker and authoress from Ann Arbor, Michigan with a love for the written world. You can find her works on and Jessica Watkins Presents Publishing Company under her pen name, S.Nicole.

Sharice holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Broadcast Production Technology from Bethune-Cookman University and a Master of Fine Arts degree in Filmmaking from the New York Film Academy in Los Angeles, California.

She currently resides in Los Angeles in the independent filmmaking world as a director, producer and writer while also serving as a copywriter for an online marketing agency.


Sunday Afternoon Music and Jam Sessions Hosted by The Del Atkins Trio

Live Music Movement Foundation (LMMF) in conjunction with Grant AME Church and One Love Center will host a series of Music and Jam Sessions on Sunday afternoons beginning September 11, 2016.

The sessions provide a vehicle to present quality music where musicians play (i.e. “jam”) by improvising without extensive preparation or predefined arrangements, except for jazz standards or covers of existing songs.

It is an intergenerational activity where seasoned musicians give opportunities for young musicians and others to ‘sit in’ and perform their choice of tunes. To ensure good quality music and that only appropriate-level performers take the stage, the session will be hosted by the Del Atkins Trio. These are professional musicians who will help guide and direct the music. The trio is comprised of leader Del Atkins, bass, Xavier Gordon, piano, and Felix Pollard, drums.

Join us and bring your friends and family for fun afternoons of good music and good fellowship. Musicians are welcomed and encouraged to attend.

The first session will be presented at Grant AME Church, 10435 S. Central Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90002 on September 11, 2016 from 2:00pm-5:00pm.  The second session will be presented at One Love Center, 901 W. Compton Blvd., Compton, CA 90220 on September 18, 2016 from 2:00pm-5:00pm. The cost of the event is $10.  Refreshments will be available for purchase.

Filed under Musical Events

Western European Art Form Collides with African American Jazz Tradition

Symphonic Jazz Concert

The Santa Monica College Music Department will present a program that is a collaboration between the Santa Monica College Orchestra and Jazz Ensemble.  The performance takes place on Sunday, October 5, 2014, 4:00 p.m., at The Broad Stage at SMC Performing Arts Center, 1310 11th St, Santa Monica, CA 90401.

This program will present pieces from the late Classical Era, original jazz music, and jazzy favorites.

Trumpeter, arranger, composer, educator Leslie Drayton will conduct the orchestra with his original piece entitled, “All In”.  This piece is the third movement of Drayton’s  Indian Summer Dance Suite composed in 1991.  “All In” utilizes and develops a 12-tone row grounded within the context of the blues form. Twelve-tone music was a concept created by Arnold Schoenberg in the early 20th century giving each of the twelve tones in the chromatic scale equal importance.  The full symphonic orchestra with a rhythm section and soloists Keith Fiddmont on tenor sax and Lesa Terry on violin will perform the piece.

The orchestra will open the program with works by Beethoven.  Pianist, composer, arranger, Bill Cunliffe will be featured with the combined ensembles on his arrangement of songs from West Side Story (Bernstein), and Concert in F (Gershwin). In addition, they’ll play a selection from Bird and Strings (Just Friends) with Keith Fiddmont on alto sax.

Dr. James Martin conducts the Santa Monica Orchestra and Keith Fiddmont leads the Santa Monica Jazz Band. 

Tickets available here.

 (Keith and Leslie are advisors to Live Music Movement Foundation.)

Filed under Musical Events