Don Washington

Don Washington GigSpace 2017

Saturday June 3, 2017
7:30 PM – $20


Thank you Melanie Weber for Donating the Piano Tuning!
Thank you Walter Burgess for C0-Sponsoring this Concert!

Upstate New York jazz and blues organist-pianist-vocalist Don Washington with Elise Letourneau – vocals and flute, Tim Bedner on guitar, and Marilee Townsend on drums.  Don carries on the tradition of Les McCann, Jimmy Smith, Gil Scott-Heron, and Nina Simone with powerful vocals and piano-organ playing.  This will be an exciting concert with a wide array of styles and musical stories.

Don Washington started playing the piano at the age of five. It was a rule in his father’s house that every child learns how to play an instrument and sing. Being the youngest of five children, Don was determined to stand out from the pack, and that he did!

In addition to mastering the piano and organ, he learned to play  drums, saxophone, tuba, bass, guitar, trumpet and harmonica. Don’s father, the late William M. Washington, groomed his children to be his personal praise and worship team at the Royal Church of God in Christ, in Kent, N.Y. It was during this time that Don learned the vocal and instrumental styles and techniques that would later make him equally comfortable playing uptown swing and down-home blues.

It wasn’t until the early 1990’s that Don became interested in the blues. Like many young, black kids, he thought that this music was old, outdated, and just left over from slavery. This thought would soon be changed! In the spring of 1991, Don had a chance to see Buddy Guy perform live at the Penguin Club in Ottawa, Ontario. The performance was so powerful that Don left the show mesmerized. He realized at that moment that his gospel roots gave him the tools he needed to play and sing the blues.

When he’s not performing, Papadon teaches 7-12 vocal and instrumental music at Colton-Pierrepont Central School (Northern New York State) where he shares his passion for blues and jazz with his students.

For more information please follow the link about Don Washington.