Charles “Buddy” Montgomery


The 2016 Buddy Montgomery Jazz Legacy Awards and Concert, an event that will be held at the Hillside Club in Berkeley, CA this Saturday (September 10) will honor musicians who have made contributions to the world of jazz music. Seven-time Grammy-nominated percussionist John Santos will receive his award for “Most Influential Artist” while bassist Jeff Chambers will receive his award for “Musical Virtuoso.” Legendary songstress Marlena Shaw will receive this year’s “Jazz Legacy Award Winner” as she makes her final performance at the event.

Charles “Buddy” Montgomery, who was a pianist and vibraphonist, was considered one of the great jazz pioneers who not only produced his own music but also taught the history of jazz to his students via “Jazz in the Schools” program. Although Montgomery died in 2009, his legacy marches on as his daughter, Charla, will serve as the Executive Producer at Saturday’s event.

I spoke to Charla via e-mail about making the event to honor her father’s legacy.


How did this award show come together? Is this the first award show? Is this your first award show? “I have produced a couple of jazz concerts before, but this the first awards and concert event.”


What’s the purpose of the award show? “The purpose of this type of event is to recognize music artists for their contribution to the jazz genre and to further inspire young musicians to carry on the jazz legacy.”


How long has it been going on and why have it in Berkeley? “This is our first year and we have a good relationship with the Hillside Club venue.”


Please tell me a little about yourself and how you got involved in the award show?  “I am Buddy’s daughter and my interest is to fulfill what he had planned. The music was not only his means of income [but] it was [also] his creative expression. I was always inspired by my father and my family and I want see this become a successful [event].”


What’s your role for this year’s award show?  “Executive Producer.”


What is it that you like about the award show? “The fabulous music.”


What are your thoughts and feelings about the upcoming event? “I am very happy that fans are interested in seeing this happen.”


How did these people receive their award? “The individuals were originally picked by my father except John Santos who we selected for his talent and community leadership.”


Are you familiar with the recipients? “Yes.”


Who are you looking forward to seeing/performing at the awards show and why?

“Marlena Shaw. I’m one of her biggest fans. She is a wonderful performer!”


Are you expecting a big crowd? “Yes.”


If this is a success what will happen next? “We will begin planning for next year.”


What did Buddy Montgomery mean to the jazz community? “See this info page. http://www.bmjazzlegacy.com/jazz-legacy-project.”


The 2016 Buddy Montgomery Jazz Legacy Awards and Concert will be held at the Hillside Club in Berkeley, CA this Saturday, September 10. Tickets are on sale for $30.00. The show starts at 7:30 PM. For more information about the event go to http://www.bmjazzlegacy.com. Don’t miss it!


Here is a sample of what will be in store for this Saturday’s event.

Marlena Shaw – “Go Away Little Boy” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4QZu7AJvFvQ)


Buddy Montgomery – “This Rather Than That” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9LxYVK430W8&list=RDEMs-3zo0m9tyjNTJRG5jGsEg&index=2)