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Aram Shelton, Ton Trio II, and 2014 scholarship awards at the BJW this week

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The Bakersfield Jazz Workshop will present another in its series of free clinics/concerts this Wednesday with an appearance by the Ton Trio II, featuring Aram Shelton. The BJW will also be presenting this year's scholarships/awards to deserving jazz students.

This will be the second appearance at the workshop for Shelton, who last visited in August of 2012 just prior to his performance at the Monterey Jazz Festival. His new band, the Ton Trio II, consists of Scott Brown on bass, Alex Vittum on drums, and Shelton on alto sax.

The music of the avant/modern jazz group is described on Shelton's website as moving in and out of conventional structure, melody, rhythm, and texture, accompanied with spacious improvisations. The group's debut album, On and On, is available at Singlespeed Music.

Additionally, despite budgetary restraints and reduced funding, a problem for most non-profit arts groups these days, the BJW will once again provide scholarships/awards, including the Lary Totten Memorial Award, to local students. The monies are specifically earmarked to assist the students with private jazz lessons, summer jazz camps, and/or college jazz studies. According to CEO and founder Steve Eisen, the BJW's Board of Directors decided to continue with the annual program this year, however, the monetary amounts were reduced by 25 percent.

The event will be held from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. in the main dining room of Le Corousse Rouge on White Lane in Bakersfield. As always, it will be free and open to all ages. The evening will start off with a short clinic, followed by two music sets. The awards will be given sometime between the end of the clinic and the second set.

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