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Sacred Music

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1: Sacred Music | A compilation of photos, memorabilia and messages spanning the career of Master Percussionist Jim Brock in honor of his 60th birthday, August 9, 2012. - assembled and designed by Marie Kentnich Powell

2: The older I get, the more that I notice that my Native lineage pops up into my sound. It’s not something I think about, and it’s not necessarily how I play. It’s more or less why I play. - jb

3: I actually feel like my gift was given to me so that I could have a life. - jb | Music is sacred. It comes from God. - jb

4: ... to my late father for giving me his hands. - jb

5: I had some fun playing with Brock back in the 70s with the Moore and Perrin Band. - Joy Perrin, Musician

6: On Bob Thompson: There was a guy that was probably 4 or 5 years older than me, and he was a very interesting drummer, and he was very into the percussion side of it. He had all these great instruments, and I had no idea what they were. All I knew was they looked cool, and they made all these great sounds. [...] He was also the one that let me realize that the drum set - it’s made up of individual instruments. It’s OK to incorporate this ethnic drum in with a traditional drum set. And at this time in the 60’s you never saw it, so I got a real early jump on that kind of thing. It only took that one meeting - that first meeting I had with him - to actually get me hooked on this and realize that that’s who I am, and that’s who I want to be as I grow. - jb

7: Brock is a man of unusual talent and is a musician with deep knowledge of the world’s percussion. He’s brilliant at making fresh use of his knowledge to create new rhythms for new music. No one I’ve met and recorded has this special ability, so bringing Jim into a project means opening a door to a big new world. I first met Jim in 1977 when he moved to the area and began to play with the Moore & Perrin Band. Over the years we have worked on perhaps 300 recording projects together and I’m always ready for the next chance to capture his music. Happy Birthday, Brock! Let’s make a record! - Mark Williams, Producer

8: My connection to Jim is very special to me because when my son, Aaron, was born 29 years ago, Jim was gracious enough to sit in at the last minute on an east coast tour gig for the Spongetones. I've always appreciated the fact that he did that for me so long ago. I consider Jim to be the real deal, and I admire his sensitivity to his clients. He plays to the song, and that's what's it's all about. Jim plays with soul, and I've always admired that about him. He always puts so much heart in to it. Happy birthday, Jim! You're just a punk kid who's still wet behind the ears. - Rob Thorne, Musician

11: Jim is a musician's drummer, producer, composer, and arranger. His varied bodies of work speak for themselves. Honest producing, I call it. One of the finest musician's I have had the honor do work with. - David Floyd, Producer | Whenever I have a chance to play with Jim, I get excited because I know that when the gig is over, I will have learned something. Jim is one of the most organic and spiritual musicians that I know. It's impossible to play with him and not be influenced in a very positive way. - Ron Brendle, Musician

12: Modern Drummer Sept. 1987

13: In the 80's Jim and I were playing with different bands @ the annual Beach Music Awards. We were at a jam session the night before, and after I told him he sounded good, Jim said "These aren't even my congas." Then he told me the story of how he watched them drop his congas onto the tarmac from the plane and how they exploded into a thousand pieces. I still feel the pain of that one even now... - Ziad Rabie, Musician

16: In the music business people tend to refer to each other as "brother". In the case of JB and I the term is nearly literal. I finally figured out one day that I have shared more motel rooms with him than any other person. From The Moore and Perrin Band to Don Dixon and the Jump Rabbits - Brock and I being the jumping rabbits. I am more comfortable around him than most any on the planet. Playing music with JB is as natural as breathing for me. Simply put- he is my personal favorite. - Jamie Hoover, Musician

18: Rhythm does define the difference between life and death, and that’s why music and percussion and rhythm is like prayer to me. - jb

19: My Son ... is truly the mirror of my life. - jb | Happy 60th Birthday, Dad. Thanks for sharing your life with me. - Jamie Brock, Musician

20: Big beso! Thanks for all of your most valuable support over many decades. Love you to life! - Beverly Botsford, Musician

21: Jim Brock has been a friend of mine since the day we met. He is at the top of my list of people whom I respect in the music business. He knows how to put together just the right people to get the right musical results. He is a man of few words; he lets his music speak for itself. Are you listening? - Tim Gordon, Musician | So many things shape what we be-come, and minute to large influences add up to one sum. Many individuals have touched my path, but I have a friend. A friend you are indeed, Mr. Brock. Thank you for years of friendship and inspiration! Happy Birthday, - Donnie Marshall, Musician

24: The most interesting thing that a percussionist can ever do is to take the instrument out of its norm and make it do things that it’s not designed to do. - jb

25: I’m always looking for sounds. I’m always looking for new sounds. - jb

30: Jim Brock, a man of few words but always a huge impact! - Rick Dior, Musician

32: I’ve known Brock for about 35 yrs now. I still remember when he and Hawthorne came to Charlotte. I don’t know anybody who plays any better. He’s a great guy and is always up for helping people out when they need it. - Van Sachs, Musician

33: Jim Brock is a world class drummer and percussionist. Just as Chick Corea said about his friend, saxophonist and flutist Joe Farrell, I will say about Jim Brock: He's my friend; he plays good. - John Alexander, Musician

38: When I think of Jim Brock, two words come to mind - "Groove Master," 'cause that guy can lay down a groove and it doesn't budge. - Tony Hayes, Musician

39: It was a privilege for me to play with Jim. His understanding of the world of percussion impressed me all the time. Thank you, Jim, for allowing me to play with you. I always enjoyed it. Your playing helped me understand better the possibilities of my instrument. Jim Brock - a true artist. - Aris Quiroga Nieto, Musician

41: Dearest Jim, Knowing you since these past years has added so much joy to our lives. You bring in unique talent, a sense of humility, lot of humor and most of all great friendship to cherish for life. I thank my stars for bringing us | together. May God bless you with excellent health, success and prosperity today and always! Love you my friend. Dr. Maha Gingrich, Dancer

42: On "Breaking Silence": "Ride Me Like A Wave", a huge in-concert favourite, almost didn't make the album! No one but Janis and Jim Brock, wanted the song recorded; everyone felt it was "too overt for a woman to sing". -Janis Ian

43: There's a reason Brock has been on almost every album I've done since 1993 - he's really, really good. -Janis Ian

47: I don’t think I hear these sounds any differently than anyone else. I think I actually take time to pay attention to them. - jb | People have asked me before what rhythm is, and the first thing I usually say is “Well, it’s a gift. It’s probably the greatest gift that we’ve ever been given.” - jb

48: To one of my favorite musicians - Happy Birthday, Jim. Here's to all our adventures on the road and in the studio - and to many more! - Bill Cooley, Musician

53: "I can tell when you're about to do something I need to pay attention to because your butt always clenches right before." The man is such a pro, he can even take direction from a tushy. Jimbo, you can watch my butt any day, and I don't say that to just anybody. I love you brother and I'm sooooo glad you were born!!! - Shana Blake Musician

55: Happy 60th Birthday, Dad. Thanks for sharing your life with me. - James Brock, Musician

59: Dear Jim, It's hard to put into words what I am wishing for you on this special birthday, but here goes: To know you are loved, to know you make a difference in many people's lives. To know there are all kinds of people, there with you and scattered all over the globe, who are beaming you love and support and celebration! You're a wonderful and generous musician, and a beautiful soul. My life has been blessed by your friendship and support in more ways than I can say. Thanks for teaching me how to listen, and for bringing the space between the notes to life! Love to you, today and always, dear friend, Kathy in Nashville

66: We met Jim one time, and he sent us an e-mail asking us if we wanted to record a CD. In it he said "We won't make much money, but we sure will have fun!" I used that story to thank him when I accepted Robin’s Blues Music Award, in which I added "You were right about both accounts!” - Tony Rogers, Musician

67: The Future of music is safe in the hands of the amazing Jim Brock. A role model to many; a Hero to me. - Funky Geezer, Musician

69: I have had the pleasure of working with Jim Brock on gigs and recordings since the early 1980s. When we met, he knew I play Blues music and asked me if I had any tips. I just said, “Hit the backbeat, make it swing, and don’t play Rock’n’Roll fills.” He did that thing he does, just looked at me a couple of beats longer than I’d expect, and said, “Cool.” And he proceeded to play perfect Blues drums — not by-the-numbers, but with soul, inspiration, and creativity — any time we’ve played together. I’ve enjoyed his percussion beyond playing a drum kit on recordings too. Can’t make drummer jokes about Jim, he’s too fine a musician. And he has that twisted sense of irony that’s good for a smile even in a bad situation. I’m grateful to Jim for the music we’ve played together and for his friendship. - Bob Margolin, Musician

70: Hey Huh??! - Mark Stallings, Musician | Having played with Jim on numerous recording sessions and live performances, I'd have to say that Jim is not only one of the most versatile musicians with incredible depth I have ever known, but he is also one hell of a great guy and the consummate professional. I always look forward to playing with him again... Play on, brother Jim! - Tom Principato, Musician

71: I've had a love affair with music since I was 3 and I learned to sing my first song, Jesus Loves Me. I grew up listening to and appreciating many styles and later studied and worked under the direction of several notable maestri. Yet no one taught me what Jim has. It was Jim Brock who taught me how to hear music in the world around me. Jim, thank you for sharing that gift and your talents and wisdom with me and so many others. The world is a lovelier place for it. - Marie Kentnich Powell, Singer | I think he would be pleased that someone was using his art for art. - jb

72: Happy Birthday, Jim! I loved playing and recording with you. We truly had some magical moments making Beauty Queen Sister. Your rare talent and poignant insights helped create one of my favorite IG records. I felt like a kid in a candy store to be surrounded each day by such amazing musicians! I hope you know how special you are to this world. Love, Amy Ray

74: As a musician, Jim walks through this world hearing music. He hears it in the wind and water, the trees and birds. He hears it in the very heartbeat of humanity. In my experience, Jim never just plays the music - he | that's all he plays. Jim knows that what you don't say is every bit as powerful as what you do say, and this is the mark of a truly elegant musician. We've made more records together than a person should count, and in every case Jim was at the very heart of the project. Yes, elegant, soulful, delightfully original - would be Jim. | makes magic. He is one of the finest and most elegant musicians I've ever known. What I mean is that Jim is an excellent musician and fully capable of filling the room with amazing notes and sounds. But for Jim, it always comes down to the song and what is most needed to create its most powerful presentation. If the song needs a lot of notes that's what he does. But if all the song needs is a quiet small something and a pause, | As a person, I love working and being with Jim. He has a thoughtfulness to him that goes very deep. He also has this wonderful, sometimes wicked sense of wry humor. He also has this astute way of hearing through to the heart of a conversation that I find inspiring. Often he'll sit there quietly taking it all in then put in the single comment that sums it all up. It is a rare kind of presence. | I've always considered it a privilege to call him not just a colleague, but a friend. And that is the truth. - Carrie Newcomer, Musician

75: One of the greatest achievements I think a musician can make is to find a way to put his personal fingerprint on the music in some subtle way. - jb

77: Jim is one of the greatest percussionists that I've ever had the pleasure of working with; he really understands the Brazilian groove -- he has this in his veins! I really enjoy and appreciate being part of | his projects. He's also an awesome person and a great friend! You have a good heart and a great soul, my friend. Enjoy your 60's, man! Parabens! - Reinaldo Brahn, Musician

80: My association with Jim Brock began almost 30 years ago. I was a young 20 something jazz trumpet player that wanted to set the world on fire and then I got a phone call that helped shape my own career. Through another friend of mine, Tim Gordon, I met this percussionist named Jim Brock. He was putting together a group that would combine elements of jazz and latin music. He had a really unique vision about music and the combination of those styles. The group became the Montuno Jazz Orchestra. It was made up of some of the finest musicians in Charlotte and some of the best musicians I have ever known. At the center of it was Jim Brock and he helped me see music in a completely different light. I could write my own book and call it "Things I've learned From Jim Brock". Soft spoken and introspective, Jim was always more interested in music as a whole and not so much individual performance. I learned how to play more by playing less. Jim taught me about leaving space in the music so that it could breathe and have a life of its own. Although chops are important in order to execute ideas, I learned from Jim that chops aren't the most important thing in music. I learned that the groove was what made music come alive and feel good. It is knowledge that I carry with me to this day. Since the Montuno Jazz Orchestra, He and I have performed and recorded together on many occasions. Besides being a percussion virtuoso, Brock has a knack for finding the center of a piece of music. He has always had a keen ear for what would work in a composition and what might be just clutter. I have always appreciated Jim's quiet demeanor and thoughtfulness, and I can truly say that a lot of what I have learned about the sensibility of music has come from my association with him. I hope we have many more years of recording and performing together!!! Happy Birthday, my friend! And many more! Now, lets go make a record! - Jon Thornton, Musician

81: The thing that is so nice about being a percussionist is that the whole world can be your instrument because everything makes sound. You just need to know how to bring that sound out and how to use that sound. - jb | On Bob Thompson: It wasn’t exactly how he played things. He was an artist as well. He was one of those guys that - there could be an empty room, and he could take this chair, and where he put the chair made a picture that was complete and perfect. And he kind of did this with his instruments, and he did this with his music too. - jb | There’s music in everything. - jb | Nature and percussion go hand in hand because they’re basically the same thing. - jb

82: I'm a sucker for beautiful music. I always have been. - jb

83: I refer to Jim as "The Rock". He inspires me so much with his focus and the way he always give 100% to every project. Playing with him has helped to teach me to mean every note. Without a doubt, he has made me a better player. I'm so grateful to have his mark on my newest recording. It is no wonder why he has been in demand for so long. Combine all of that with the fact that he is just a great guy and fun to be around. I'm glad to call Jim my friend. - Dustin Hofsess, Musician | While I've been fortunate enough to play and record with Jim a number of times, my most treasured moments are when the only thing around is conversation and a glass of scotch. An outstanding talent, a fine gent and most of all, a beautiful spirit. - Chad Lawson, Musician

84: Jim Brock, great man, great musician, proud to call him my friend. - Rusty Barkley, Musician | I loved to tell this story on Jim... and then I found out it was his MO. We were playing in an Irish bar that had old household gadgets hung as decoration. Jim took a chamber pot off the wall and got more music out of that bowl than most can make with a whole drum kit. Happy bday, brother. I love you. - Mike Federal, Musician

85: Jim, you are an inspiration not only to me but to all future percussionists. You are a friend and a teacher. Your passion and drive never quit, and I can't wait to see what you come up with next. - Trevor Powell, Musician | I had booked a tour with Brock and three young string players. Always traveling economically, my friend, Connie drove us around in her van and sold merch. One night after a show, we three adults (Connie, Jim, and I ) gathered in one of our hotel rooms to have a cocktail. As the vodka fell in a cascade over the ice cubes, Connie toasted, " Here's to you" turned to me and said "I love the way you sing," turned to Brock and said "I love the way you play drums," without hesitation, Brock turns to Connie and says, "I hate the way you drive..." - Marti Jones, Musician | I love & respect Jim because he has the ability to play the high-hat part & imagine what the strings are going to sound like. - Don Dixon, Musician

88: During the early 1980's Brock, along with Doug Hawthorne, me and several guitar players, formed the rhythm section at a local recording studio. In that space of couple of years we were fortunate enough to record hundreds of songs on many albums by some noted artists. I was producer and arranger for many of these albums and counted on Brock to always add just the right touches. He would usually be playing drum set but also added extra percussion parts. Jim's dry sense of humor in the studio was sometimes just the right needed element to break the tension. Story number one: One producer, whom everyone knows, had Jim and I staring at a TV monitor, asking us to "create a movie soundtrack", on the spot. All for something like $15 an hour! When we asked for direction, the producer just looked at us and said "play what you feel boys." Brock's answer to that was, in a stage-whisper, "I feel that we're really getting ripped off." Story number two: We were accompanying a noted piano player in the area for a night concert in a church. We had a dress rehearsal, and the piano player was playing more overly-flamboyant "flourishes" than was ever needed during one concert. After the rehearsal, Jim gathered us musicians together and came up with a fiendish plan to disconnect the sustain-pedal from the piano during the concert! We never did it, but that certainly would've cut out 95% of his flourishes!! - Alan Kaufman, Musician

89: I'd like to thank the people below for their help and material, for without their assistance this book would not exist. I'd especially like to thank Jim Brock for touching all our lives in a manner which drove us all to want to make this book exist. Jim, each of us have grown and lived fuller lives as a result of having known you. We can't begin to thank you enough or reciprocate with a gift as special as yours. Happy Birthday! Alan Kaufman, Amy Ray, Aris Quiroga, Beverly Botsford, Bill Cooley, Bob Margolin, Carrie Newcomer, Chad Lawson, Daniel Coston, David Floyd, David Tang, Don Dixon, Donnie Marshall, Dustin Hofsess, Funky Geezer, Jamie Brock, Jamie Hoover, Jan Jensen, Jane McDade, Janice Allen, Janis Ian, Joe Allen, John Alexander, Jon Thornton, Joy Perrin, Kathy Mattea, Dr. Maha Gingrich, Mark Stallings, Mark Williams, Marti Jones, Mike Federal, Monty Chandler, Phil Carias, Reeve Coobs, Reflection Recording Studio, Reinaldo Brahn, Rick Dior, Rob Thorne, Ron Brendle, Ron Joseph Deshaies, Rusty Barkley, Shana Blake, Steve Moore, Tim Gordon, Tom Principato, Tony Hayes, Tony Rogers, Trevor Powell, Van Sachs, Wayne Jernigan, Ziad Rabie, and too many Facebook photograph uploaders to name. A special thanks goes out to Helen Roach and Trevor Powell for their many hours spent on photo correction and re-sizing. - Marie Kentnich Powell

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  • By: Marie P.
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  • Title: Sacred Music
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