Mike Jacobs is a serious music addict and a composing/occasionally-performing musician.
Born with the last of the boomers. Formative influences: The wake of the 60s and the accompanying baggage, Watergate, pre-format 70s FM, Monty Python, Joseph Campbell, Ken Wilber, Noam Chomsky, Bill Hicks, Jeff Beck, Frank Zappa, Miles Davis, Mahavishnu Orchestra, Jimi Hendrix and others. Have been a semi-pro musician for 40 years - (let the day gig get the best of me). Arriving in middle age, have decided to focus more of my energy on the things closer to my heart - namely trying to find ways to help the music and musicians I care deeply about thrive and grow in today's world.
My Jazz Story
"Follow the money" is a popular saying these days but if you changed the word "money" to "magic" and applied it to music, that would pretty much sum up my journey into jazz. Though I did have my first childhood Jazz infatuation with Louis Armstrong and Bing Crosby doing "Now You Has Jazz" from the movie soundtrack of "High Society," even then my musical appetites were too eclectic and voracious to stick to one genre. My first records were classical albums (which probably fostered a predilection for instrumental music that continues to this day) but soon I was into Johnny Cash, The Beatles and Burt Bacharach as much as Ramsey Lewis, Flamenco and Motown. At fourteen a guitar landed in my lap and learning to play it gave me a doorway into understanding music that increased my fascination with it exponentially. Though my early inclinations as a player were primarily towards rock, as my ears grew, I was increasingly captivated by any players that really spoke on the instrument, regardless of genre. Eventually, even the instrument specific fascination gave way to a general pursuit of any players or composers in any genre that were innovative or enthralling. This was the magic that I followed and that lead me inevitably into jazz. Jazz may now be my most frequent musical watering hole but I don't really identify myself as a "jazz guy." I'm a music guy and for me, loving jazz has almost nothing to do with the sound, vibe or instrumentation many people may associate with jazz. It's the range of exploration, innovation and depth of the players and music contained within jazz that leads me back, time and again. I seek and love these things in many types of music but jazz, by far, has the largest cache of those musical riches ready for the mining.