Tribute to legendary mentor Jack Pierson featuring Jack’s disciples: Rick Margitza, Walter White, Gary Schunk, Rodney Whitaker, and Michael Reed

The Rick Margitza Quartet featuring Walter White

Jack Pierson was one of the most active and influential forces in music and jazz education in Michigan during the second half of the 20th century. In addition to his work at Fordson and Edsel Ford High Schools, Henry Ford Community College, and Schoolcraft College, he served in many leadership positions with MSBOA (including as Executive Director from ’92-’99), ASBDA (including as National President), and other organizations. Moreover, as a pianist, Jack performed with Cannonball Adderley, Neil Hefti, and others, in addition to regular Detroit gigs at the Playboy Club, Baker’s Keyboard Lounge, and other venues.

Jack passed away in June of last year, and the outpouring of love and respect from former students and colleagues has been overwhelming. In tribute, this event will bring together some of Jack’s students and others who were touched by his work. Saxophonist Rick Margitza, was a student of Jack’s at both Fordson High School and the HFCC Summer Jazz Studies Program, will lead this ensemble in performing standards and other material that were seminal in Jack’s teaching and performing career.

At midnight, a jam session will take place, allowing for players to pay tribute to Jack’s legacy.

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