NORTH CREEK - The Johnsburg area is becoming like a second home to the popular Greenwich Village Jazz pianist Spike Wilner. He will appear at Tannery Pond Community Center Wednesday, Dec.29 at 7:30 p.m.
The concert is presented by Upper Hudson Musical Arts, a not for profit corporation dedicated to bringing excellent music to northern New York. Tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for students.
"Spike was inspired to play ragtime piano at a young age after seeing a docudrama on the life of Scott Joplin," said Tom Forrest of UHMA. "This led to a life-long passion for piano playing, ragtime and jazz music."
Michael "Spike" Wilner was born in the city of Manhattan in 1966. He made his performance debut at the age of 14 by playing Joplin's Maple Leaf Rag at the St. Louis Ragtime Festival, then held on the Goldenrod Showboat moored on the Mississippi River. Wilner continued his music studies through high-school and participated in its award winning jazz band.
Wilner brings with him a long history of jazz music to the local stage. In 1986, he entered into the first class of the, now legendary, New School For Social Research's Jazz and Contemporary Music Program, then led by the late Arnie Lawrence. In this original class, he met and befriended many of today's prominent members of the current jazz scene. This included: Brad Mehldau, Larry Goldings, Peter Bernstein, Jesse Davis, Chris Potter, Jorge Rossi, Sam Yahel, Joe Strasser, Roy Hargrove, John Popper (of the Blues Travelers), Eric Schenkman (of the Spin Doctors) David Grausman and others.
In 1994, Wilner began to work a regular gig at Smalls Jazz Club. This became his permanent musical home and eventually led to his current position there as a partner and manager of the club. He now spends most of his time at Smalls and still plays there regularly on Sunday evenings with his group.
Wilner will be accompanied by Lennie Cuje' on Vibraphone and Jon Roche on Bass. For more information, visit www.upperhudsonmusic.org or call 681-1715.This concert is supported in part by the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency.