Saxophonist Jeff Kashiwa was born in Louisville, Kentucky, but moved to Seattle as a young boy. He received a silver clarinet from his father when he was in school, but when he saw a row of saxophones in the band room, he knew he had found his instrument. He was playing at local clubs when he met Steve Bailey from The Rippingtons in 1989, and when Brandon Fields left that group, Jeff joined them. His first album with The Rippingtons was 1990’s Welcome to The St. James Club, which turned out to be the band’s breakout album.
Jeff left The Rippingtons in 1999 to focus on his solo work, but rejoined them in 2007 for their 20th anniversary tour, and still plays with them occasionally. In 2004, Jeff joined forces with two of his fellow saxmen, Steve Cole and Kim Waters, in an endeavor called The Sax Pack. They’ve recorded three albums together.
Jeff’s most recent album is 2017’s Fly Away. Here’s the title track. His website tells us that he’s joined on the album by Russ Freeman (of The Rippingtons), David Benoit, the late Chuck Loeb (from Fourplay) and Tom Schuman of Spyro Gyra.
Here’s Jeff with The Sax Pack, from their 2015 album The Power Of 3, “Sooner Or Later.”
One more: the title track from The Rippingtons’ 1990 album, Welcome To The St. James Club.
Jeff Kashiwa, your Two For Tuesday, January 15, 2019.