JATB was inspired by Norman Granz and Jazz At The Philharmonic (JATP). A jazz concert promoter beginning in the 1940s, Granz knew that a profound connection existed between music and people. Added to that was his belief that the space where the music was presented mattered as well.
Generations of jazz legends of the Great American Songbook were able to share their talent with the larger public because of Granz: Ella Fitzgerald, Oscar Peterson, Nat Cole, Billy Holiday, Sarah Vaughan, Louis Armstrong, Lester Young, Bud Powell, Charlie Parker, Art Tatum… you get the idea.
Where these and other artists once only played in local and modest clubs throughout the country, Granz took them to larger venues (beginning with the Los Angeles Philharmonic) around the world so more people could be introduced to their phenomenal talents. We love what Granz did so much that we decided to take his idea and turn it on its head. (We’re sure that enlightened Granz would agree that jazz standards should be a moveable feast)
At the heart of JATB is our dedication to live music in all its settings, whether large or small. But we felt that something was getting lost in the more common, current larger-than-life presentation of music. We wanted to make it intimate and personal again, so people could connect to the music and artists the way Norman Granz first did. From that grew our jazz concerts in the ballroom of Bing Crosby’s original Northern California home. What a natural place to host a salon series!
Soon after, we added shows outside the ballroom, the “not negotiables” being that the venue had to be special and add to the uniqueness of the concert experience. We wanted everyone in the audience to feel as if they were taking part in something timeless, one-of-a-kind and memorable. The result is JATB—the gold standard!