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Jeff Kashiwa explores how technology works with music

Jazz saxophonist Jeff Kashiwa has employed an iPhone in composing.
Jazz saxophonist Jeff Kashiwa has employed an iPhone in composing.
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Jeff Kashiwa is a jazz saxophonist at heart but he’s been known to pick up an iPhone to explore different sounds. Yes, an iPhone.

“I love technology and the smart phones have gotten real smart,” Kashiwa, a former member of The Rippingtons, said in a phone interview. “The iPhone has different musical applications, with one you can loop it, repeat it.”

Kashiwa employs an iPhone in his composition “Joy,” which he’ll perform in concert Sunday, Nov. 24 at the Albuquerque Marriott Pyramind North.

“Joy” is actually the last third of a three-part piece. The first section is Kashiwa’s take on Georg Philipp Telemann’s Canon in D, one of a series of canons that he said has a repeated melody that becomes the harmony.

The second part is “Talk to Me,” which Kashiwa described as a funky solo number that he wrote.

In the concert he’ll also play an EWI, short for Electronic Wind Instrument; saxophonist Michael Brecker was a pioneer of the EWI in the 1970s.

“The saxophone is my first passion but the EWI is an extension of it. It has a much larger range and an infinite number of sounds,” Kashiwa said.

Joining him on stage is the Denver-based trio Pockit.

“I’ve performed with them many times. … You can’t always take your own band,” the Seattle-based Kashiwa said. “They learn your music, rehearse it and they’re ready to go. I love playing with them because they’re very professional.”

Other parts of the smooth-jazz program will include selections from his 2012 album “Let It Ride,” as well as older songs he hasn’t played in many years.

Besides touring as a soloist, he performs with the trio The Sax Pack and teaches at Shoreline Community College in Seattle.

He teaches an ensemble class, “Funk and Groove,” and an online class in which he instructs students how digital technology works and how to produce their own music with it.

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