Mel Martin—composer, arranger, bandleader, saxophonist, flutist—is one of the most versatile and inventive musicians ever toemerge from the San Francisco Bay Area. In his long career, he’s played a part in many of the innovative movements that have emerged from that creative community. He worked and recorded with a number of the progressive rock and Latin bands of the late ’60s and early ’70s, including the Loading Zone, Cold Blood, Azteca, and Boz Scaggs. In 1977 he founded the award-winning Listen, one of the first West Coast jazz-fusion bands. And he’s currently artistic director of Bebop and Beyond, a group he formed in 1983, as well as leading The MEL MARTIN BAND and Big Band, the Tenor Conclave, and the Benny Carter All-Star Tribute Band.
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Jaijai, what a wonderful mission you've undertaken to create such a place for artistic minds to meet and share their hearts. A place to renew faded determinations, and revive lessened momentums. A place to display our wares and reconfirm to one another that we actually are on the right track.
I commend you, Jaijai, for caring so much that you created this castle of the heart for all of us. I want to share my praise for all of the new friends as well as old friends that I've met and will meet here in our castle. Here we can garnish the where-with-all, the strength, the conviction, and the selflessness through our symbiosis, to share our gift to the world with an unbiased agenda.
My mentor, Daisaku Ikeda says of art: "A beautiful flower delights and refreshes the hearts of all people equally, no matter what soil it grows in. That is the power of beauty. The same is true of great art. It is this spirit that the German poet Heinrich Heine sang of when he wrote that once the peapod bursts open, the sugar peas inside are for everyone to enjoy."