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A Message From Kim
Thank you for visiting my internet home site. I would like to take this time to tell you something more about my life and music.
My music has always been a reflection of my life experiences. I have had the great privilege of being close to my strongest musical influences. While I have never studied music formally, my mentors have been incredible talents that gave me direct influence which transcend any performance degree.
John Park, my dad, was a brilliant genius of improvisation on the saxophone. A natural talent, he served as a master of music and life, and his sense of humor made him a fun person to be around. With such a keen mind and wit, he gave me a holistic sense that life and music were inseparable in profoundly expressing all the emotions and heartfelt feelings we have in living life to its fullest. I still play his saxophone.
He ultimately served as lead alto with the Stan Kenton Orchestra. After I attended two week-long summer camps with the Kenton Band, I joined Kenton with my dad and toured the world immediately after I graduated from high school. Being around Stan Kenton and the members of his orchestra and educational staff was an invaluable learning experience, as well as a boost to my career. Stan embodied the highest ideals in composing, arranging, and presenting music with a stirring spiritual quality.
While with the Kenton Band, I met one of my idols on the saxophone, Stan Getz. One of the greatest ballad players of all time (along with my dad) I met Stan backstage at the Hollywood Bowl. I remember that I heard him warming up with "Nature Boy" and his live sound blew through me like a cool spring breeze.
By 1988, Stan Getz had become a friend of both my dad and me, although I knew him as "Uncle Stanley." He asked me to join him as Artist In Residence at Stanford University, where we spent many hours together playing and talking heart to heart. I remember his saying: "It's the mood and not the mode that counts."
While I have become versant with the nomenclature of the jazz idiom, it is the feeling and the heart that come first in my playing. Evoking the emotions that I feel in performance with my audience is important to me. Sharing the gifts that I have been given is a humbling experience, which I treasure deeply.
December 13, 2006
Kim Park is the son of the late, great lead alto saxophonist with the Stan Kenton Orchestra, JOHN PARK, and continues to play his dad's horn.
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