Mesonjixx is an artist who currently resides in Omaha. Her father is black American born and raised in the Alabama Ozarks and her mother is a South Pasifika islander from Honolulu. Mesonjixx is the middle child of five.
While living in Chicago (2009-2014) she honed her songwriting and musical style. She’s since returned to Nebraska to find balance in her interconnected nature of her identities as a woman, as one who belongs to two diasporas of two hemispheres, and as a young black midwesterner who finds the plains of America her home. Mesonjixx creates music to find her unique center.
Soon after her performance debut in 2015, Mesonjixx has not only become a fixture of the Nebraska music scene, but has risen to the top of artists in the Midwest. Both as a solo artist and as a leader of a trio and quartet, which has drawn the most talented musicians of Nebraska. In 2017 Mesonjixx released the EP “In the Middle” recorded, mixed, and produced at Omaha’s Make Believe Studios.
Her current trio, with keyboardist Nate Asad (f.k.a. INFNTLP of Omaha hip-hop duo BXTH) and percussionist John Evans, was selected to open for Kamasi Washington’s recent performance in Omaha, and was a returning festival favorite at this year’s True/False Independent Film festival in Columbia, Missouri. The trio’s most recent work includes arrangements of productions from Oddissee.
Andrew is a jazz drummer, percussionist, electronic musician, and composer currently based out of Lincoln, Nebraska. Andrew grew up surrounded by music, and he shares his contagious enthusiasm for music with students and peers alike. Andrew teaches percussion lessons in Lincoln, and performs and records with many different ensembles in the Lincoln and Omaha area jazz scenes. Andrew is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Madeline Reddel Quintet
Madeline Reddelis a vocalist, arts and mental health advocate, teacher, and junior music education student at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Madeline has recently played at multiple Lincoln and Omaha venues for various indie, and jazz shows including The Jewell, The B-Side, UNL Emerging Media Arts Building, Duffy’s Tavern, Cresent Moon, The Storm Cellar, The Bay, and more. Her favorite involvements on campus include UNL Jazz Singers and the Innocents Society! Go Big Red!
Saxophone -Skye Junginger
Keyboard -Sam McDermot
Bass -Henry Tomsu
Andrew Janak Trio
Dr. Andrew Janak is an active saxophonist/composer/arranger/educator currently based out of Lincoln, NE after previously spending several years in Chicago, IL.
Andrew has shared the stage with jazz greats Donny McCaslin, Randy Brecker, Ingrid Jensen, Christine Jensen, Gary Foster, Stefon Harris, Matt Wilson, Jeff Lederer, Jeff Hamilton, Phil Woods, Jimmy Heath and Scott Wendholt. He has also worked with various jazz/commercial groups around the Midwest such as the Omaha Big Band, Nebraska Jazz Orchestra, Mike Gurciullo and His Las Vegas Lab Band, Bob Lark’s Alumni Band Band, Tom Matta Big Band and Andrew Janak and Wind Armada, a progressive jazz group specializing in original music. He also has performed/recorded with national acts such as the Temptations, Aloe Blacc, Johnny Mathis, Michael Feinstein and Justin Townes Earle. As a classical saxophonist Andrew studied with renowned performer/pedagogue Dr. Paul Haar and performed with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Wind Ensemble, Omaha Symphony, Lincoln Symphony, Lincoln Municipal Band, and various chamber groups.
Also a prolific composer, some of Andrew’s compositions have been performed/recorded by groups around the United States including the UNL Jazz Orchestra with Victor Lewis, DePaul Jazz Ensemble with Randy Brecker, Bob Lark's Alumni Big Band and the Nebraska Jazz Orchestra. He recently premiered his suite for tenor saxophone and mixed chamber jazz ensemble, “Midwestern Portrait,” in spring of 2018, in which Andrew was the featured soloist. He was also a finalist for the ASCAP Young Jazz Composer Awards and received a Downbeat Outstanding Performance award for outstandinggraduate college arrangement.
Dr. Janak is also an active scholar with research interests in jazz composition, jazz saxophone and jazz improvisation pedagogy. Andrew graduated with a bachelors degree in music education from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, a masters of music in jazz composition from DePaul University, and a DMA in jazz studies/composition from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. His debut album Borrowed Time was released in June 2017. Currently Andrew is the Adjunct Instructor of Saxophone at Doane University in Crete, NE and Assistant Director of Bands at Mission Middle School in Bellevue, NE.
Hans Sturm and Jackie Allen
Jackie’s extraordinary talent has taken her on tours of Europe, Africa, South America and Asia. Nationally she has toured both coasts and in-between, appearing in Los Angeles (Catalina’s), San Francisco (Yoshi’s), San Diego (Humphrey’s), and in New York (Blue Note, Josef Papp Public Theater). Regionally she was featured with the Chicago Jazz Philharmonic in Chicago’s Millennium Park and Auditorium Theater for an Ella Fitzgerald Celebration. She has performed international music festivals in Detroit, Chicago, The Hague, Stuttgart, Edinburgh, Bologna, Beijing, Hong Kong, Thessaloniki, and SaoPaulo among others.
Locally, Jackie was the 2018 recipient of Lincoln’s Mayor’s Arts Award, receiving the Artistic Achievement PerformingAward and was featured on A Prairie Home Companion where she gave Garrison Keillor a “voice lesson”.
“This is four-hundred-dollar-a-bottle jazz –no cheap imitation.” –Rolling Stone
Born in Milwaukee, WI, Jackie grew up surrounded by music with her fatherplayingDixieland jazz tuba. She attended U.W. Madison studying Voice and Jazz. In Chicago shebegan her recording career for Blue Note Records and others, recording 12 critically acclaimed CDs, most notably: Santa Baby, The Men In My Life, Love Is Blue, Tangled, Starry Night with orchestra, My Favorite Color (USAToday’s Top 10 List).
Her most recent release isa live concert DVD and CD in late 2019 entitled "A Romantic Evening with Jackie Allen" recorded and filmed in the historic Rococo Theater in Lincoln and featuring tenor sax legend Bob Sheppard. A 30-minute version of this program is being broadcast nationally on PBS-TV.
Jackie has served on the Board of Governors and Jazz Nominating Committee for the Recording Academy, “Grammy Awards” and has recorded with numerous Grammy winning artists and producers. She created and instructs the adult primer course, Torch Singer 101 and teaches Vocal Improvisation and Songwriting at Doane University in Crete. Jackie lives in Lincoln with her husband Hans Sturm and son, Wolfgang.
“Allen’s greatest strength is her sheer musicality and the way in which she both frames and interprets her songs.” -Los Angeles Times