Woody Wilson is the founder, president and executive producer of the Lakeshore Music Concert series at the Tempe Center for the Arts in Tempe, Arizona, USA. He has worked nearly his entire life in the performance and creative arts. 

Lakeshore Music, Inc. (LMI) produces and promotes high-quality jazz programming, master classes and educational seminars in the Phoenix metropolitan area. Based in Tempe, Arizona, LMI evolved from three separate and successful jazz programs launched in Tempe.

Background

From July 2007 to July 2008, JAMN Jazz @ Monti’s Back Door produced weekly jazz events and created a well-known brand for local jazz performances in the Valley. In 2008, JAMN Jazz @ Monti’s Back Door won the Downtown Tempe Community’s (DTC) Madee Esteemed Excellence Award for its innovative contribution to nightlife in downtown Tempe.

In May of 2008, with help from local sponsors, JAMN Jazz expanded to the Tempe Center for the Arts (TCA) with an experimental jazz series in the Southwest’s newest performing arts center. From May to October, 2008, JAMN Jazz produced six hard ticket events featuring virtuoso jazz artists such as Marcus Printup, Judy Roberts, Greg Fishman, Benny Green, Jesse McGuire, Conrad Herwig, Dennis Rowland and others. The JAMN Jazz @ TCA series generated extensive press coverage and created an audience for jazz events at TCA.

In November 2008, JAMN Jazz @ TCA morphed into LakeShore Producers, LLC (LSP). By early December, with a significant sponsorship from Friends of Tempe Center for the Arts and the Jazzbird Foundation, LSP presented a larger jazz and blues series featuring a mixture of emerging and established artists such as Mose Allison, Brian Bromberg, Michael Kocour, Tierney Sutton, Nicholas Payton, Benny Green, Scott Wilson, Bob Corritore, Judy Roberts and Dennis Rowland.

With a growing jazz audience, and added sponsorship from both private and community donors, LSP continued its extensive programming at the TCA throughout 2009 and 2010.

In 2010, Lakeshore Music, Inc. was created as a non-profit corporation to not only present world-class jazz programming at the TCA, but to provide innovative workshops and master class opportunities for promising middle and high school music students throughout the community.

Since 2010, Lakeshore Music has produced dozens of concerts at the Tempe Center for the Arts. Celebrated jazz artists such as Benny Green, Tamir Hendelman, Eliane Elias, Eddie Daniels, Tierney Sutton, Turtle Island Quartet, Gretchen Parlato, Regina Carter, Nicholas Payton, Billy Childs, Karrin Allyson, Terell Stafford, Cyrus Chestnut and Stefon Harris have passed through the Lakeshore Music concert halls.

In July of 2012, Woody Wilson went to Cuba as part of a People to People cultural tour and fell in love with Cuba and its people. His mission from the start was to begin a cultural exchange between LMI and Cuban musicians.

While in Cienfuegos, Cuba, Mr. Wilson and his group were honored by a performance from an extraordinary chamber music octet. In October 2012, with the help and sponsorship of many, LMI presented the Orquesta de Camera del Sur from Cienfuegos, Cuba at the Tempe Center for the Arts as part of a rare cultural exchange with the Northwest Sinfonietta in Tacoma, Washington. For Mr. Wilson, this was a concert that changed the course of his life.

To date, LMI has produced close to 100 jazz, chamber and Latin music concerts. As president, Mr. Wilson has built a small concert series into one of the most respected performance programs in the United States. The goal of LMI has always been to present the world’s best musicians in the worlds’ most beautiful performing arts center. Our current season reflects that ongoing commitment to excellence in artistry. More information on LMI and its program can be obtained on-line at info@lakeshoremusic.org.