Alphonso Johnson and Friends came to play for the students at Reed Middle School. The band had sent out their letter and resume to 30 or more schools, but only two responded. Walter Reed, always jumping at musical opportunities, got to hear this band first.
Alphonso Johnson played with Weather Report, the outstanding assemblage of musical Olympians from the mightiest moment in jazz fusion history. His ability to relax and inform the audience was a rare combination of humor, generosity, and experience. The kids were instantly on board—and middle school students are a tough crowd!
The rest of the band was equally accomplished: Mario Austin on trombone, Jeff Richman on guitar, James Brandon Lewis on Sax, Matt Star on drums, and Gary Fugashima on keyboards. Amazing band, great concert, thanks to our music director at Reed, Stephen McDonough for saying "Yes!"