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Horning In

Stacy Rowles boasts a musical heritage, but plays her own tune.


Stacy Rowles' jazz pedigree is impeccable. The trumpeter/flugelhornist is the daughter of pianist Jimmy Rowles, who worked with singers Billie Holiday and Sarah Vaughan and instrumentalists Ben Webster and Gerry Mulligan.

He also taught piano to vocal sensation Diana Krall in the early 1990s.

Many of the senior Rowles' most endearing aspects, from his lyrical improvised lines to his taste for obscure yet ear-tingling standards, have rubbed off on Stacy, 44, who often played and recorded with her father from the time she was a teenager until his death in 1996.

Ultimately an individual, she delivers her material with a warm tone and favors slow ballads and medium-tempo swingers, where the music isn't a secret but an easily heard story.

"If the music goes by too quickly, it's kind of meaningless," said Burbank resident Rowles, who appears Thursdays this month at the Money Tree in Toluca Lake.

"I prefer to slow things down, give you a chance to think about the chord or note that was just played."

Rowles' colleagues at the Money Tree are the subtly startling guitarist Dave Koonse and the resilient-toned bassist Putter Smith. The absence of a drummer offers many pluses, said the brass veteran, who has played in venues throughout the world.

"When you don't have drums, a group can still swing hard, but you have to use a little imagination to achieve that," she said.

These days, Rowles is trying to take her artistry to another level by finding different note choices.

"As my dad said, it's not what you play but what you leave out that counts," she said.



Stacy Rowles plays Thursdays at 9 p.m. at the Money Tree, 10149 Riverside Drive, Toluca Lake. (818) 752-8383.


In Brief: John Beasley, the ex-Miles Davis and Freddie Hubbard pianist and composer, is joined tonight for originals and revamped jazz classics by the supple-lined bassist Robert Hurst and the crackling drum wizard Gregory Hutchinson at Rocco, 2930 Beverly Glen Circle, Bel-Air, 10 p.m. (310) 475-9807.


Zan Stewart writes about jazz for the Valley Edition. He can be reached at

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