[JPL] Frank Malfitano

JazzCorner at aol.com JazzCorner at aol.com
Thu Sep 21 13:50:42 EDT 2006


With Frank's permission, I post the following:


To My Dearest Friends, Extended Musical Family and Detroit Loved Ones:
 
I'm 'officially' leaving Detroit professionally, effective immediately, but I 
wanted you to hear about it from me personally rather than reading about it 
in the newspapers and trades, which will probably happen fairly soon after I 
reach out to selected members of the Detroit and national jazz media.
 
Some of you were responsible for bringing me to Detroit, and others of 
you were among you my staunchest supporters, advocates and allies during my tenure, 
so I wanted to reach out to you personally for embracing me, and for helping 
me complete the things that we were able to accomplish in Detroit over the past 
seven years. And of course to thank you for all you've done for me and for 
the festival.
 
Please know that I'm VERY grateful to each of you for your support, 
friendship, advocacy, assistance, love and friendship. Without your support the past 
seven years, the things I accomplished in Detroit would never have been 
possible. 
 
As I've said publicly and privately on countless and numerous occasions, I 
honestly believe that Detroit is one of the world's greatest music cities, and 
being able to be involved with the Detroit jazz community has been one of the 
absolute highlights of my three-decade career in jazz. To be able to work with 
Detroit jazz legends like Marcus Belgrave, Ed Love, Marion Hayden, Barry 
Harris, Tommy Flanagan, Bennie Maupin, Barry Harris, Ron Carter, Kirk Lightsey, 
Louis Hayes, Charles McPherson, Geri Allen, James Carter, Donald Walden, Regina 
Carter, Louis Smith, Straight Ahead, Larry Nozero, Charlie Gabriel, Buddy 
Budson, the legendary Dr. Teddy Harris Jr. and so many other Detroit jazz ginats 
has been a personal and professional thrill beyond my wildest imagination and 
dreams. 
 
It's also been a huge honor for me to be involved in the continuing evolution 
of one of North America's and one of the World's greatest music festivals, 
and to be able to bring so many of my gifted musician friends to Detroit from 
New York, New Orleans and Europe to play for some of the hippest audiences 
anywhere.
 
As my beloved wife Kathy and I looked around and surveyed the festival over 
this past Labor Day weekend, and as we assessed things in its aftermath of the 
festival over the last few weeks time, we realized that, for me, the Detroit 
chapter of my life is over and my work there is now complete. 
 
There really aren't any mountains left for me to climb.
 
In retrospect, we succeeded in stabilizing the festival financially in 2006, 
brought about some needed expansion in 2005, got it to its milestone 25th 
anniversary in 2004, created and produced a nationwide and worldwide annual radio 
broadcast in 2003, and together presented some of the greatest jazz and music 
artists the world has ever known for the past six years.
 
As an old Boy Scout, I think I can speak for all of us when I say that I 
honestly believe that we left the camp site a little bit better than we found it 
when I arrived.
 
Originally, I had no intention of returning to Detroit this past year, but 
when festival founder Bob McCabe asked me to return for one more edition, I 
found it impossible not to honor his request to stay on for one more hitch to help 
transition the festival to its new presenting organization and Foundation. 
Now that that's been accomplished, I'm moving on to concentrate on ushering the 
Syracuse Jazz Fest in my hometown in Upstate NY to its historic 25th 
anniversary edition in 2007 and to consult with other start up festivals in Connecticut 
and New Orleans that are beckoning.
 
In closing, my best wishes for continued success with one of the world's 
greatest music festival's in a city that I will always love, hold dear and cherish 
forever. Thank you for being an indespensable part of the Detroit festival's 
historic rebirth, resuscitation, renaissance and revitalization. And Thanks 
for being in my life. May God continue to bless you.
 
With love, respect and gratitude,
 
 
Frank Malfitano
fmalfitano at syracusejazzfest.com






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